Worldwide Friends: Making my mark

I have been anticipating with some dread the need to do a lot of rather tidy embroidery on Worldwide Friends.

Not just the kanji symbols that make up its name on the front, but also the names of each lovely fabric participant and the haiku for the back. That’s a lot of immaculate satin stitch, never my best work.

Screen Shot 2015-02-25 at 3.20.35 pmInspiration struck when the Wedding Quilt for my niece Claire was making its usual nocturnal promenade through my brain, nagging me to make a start. Not yet, not yet…

But I had come up with a lovely idea for it, involving gold calligraphy winding a thread of poetry† around and around the border of the quilt. My calligraphy is rusty, but hopefully adequate, and I think I’ll be content with the results.

I had bought for this purpose gold resist ink and a broad calligraphy nib. You write, wait for it to sink into the fabric, and then heat set it with either an iron or in the tumble drier. Voilà, permanent, dry-cleanable and washable gold. You can also flush colour up to it and it will prevent migration into the next section. Multi-talented, multi-tasking ink. I wanted it in gold for reasons which are obvious if you read the poem, and luckily, I found some.

The WWF inspiration was the dawning realisation that the kanji and donor names would look beautiful if also done this way. The haiku done in black ink on white or beige fabric panels on the back would be the work of hours instead of days or even weeks. I’ll need to do a fair bit of practice to bring my lettering skills back up to speed and will have to sketch out lettering layouts/templates to ensure it all flows and looks nice, but I have great hopes.

It will be a Final Fabulous Flourish, with curlicues, finials and a cherry on the top. 


He Wishes for the Cloths of Heaven, by WB Yeats.
In my opinion, surely one of the most beautiful love poems of all time, and peculiarly appropriate for use on a quilt which is also a wedding present to a dear niece. Love/Cloth/Night = Wedding Quilt!


15 thoughts on “Worldwide Friends: Making my mark

  1. A lovely idea. I have often done my quilt labels in gold pen, but you are taking this a beautiful stage further.

    • katechiconi says:

      I had a lot of fun last night practising with my little calligraphy fibre tip pen and a notebook. I think I’m arriving at the lettering style I want to use for the wedding quilt, but WWF still eludes me a little…

  2. Carole says:

    What a clever idea. That is going to look stunning 🙂

  3. It will be stunning – and I love that poem, a perfect choice.

  4. tialys says:

    Can’t wait to see it!

  5. EllaDee says:

    Great idea to practise, it will build up your hand’s muscle memory.
    I love that nagging voice… really. It knows! I’ve been making arrangements for a quick trip away for this weekend, involving accommodation and dinner out… and tired of searching, thinking about it I just wanted it done but the voice said, no – wait. And it delivered, hotel room and venue in the right place at the right price 🙂

    • katechiconi says:

      I wish my nagging voice didn’t sing such a siren song… the lure of a new quilt to work on, the colours already chosen and sitting on my work table, the poetry running through my head, and the style of lettering almost there, after several hours of filling pages in my notebook… But I have a job to do with WWF, and a debt of gratitude to all those who have joined in, sent fabric, encouraged, written and enthused. It would be very graceless to abandon it for something that can wait, even if it doesn’t want to!

  6. Nanette says:

    Ah, I see now…yes, much luck wishing 🙂 (hadn’t seen this before your email came.) It will be lovely I’m sure.

  7. this will be the sistine chapel of quilts 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s