Worldwide Friends: time for a sandwich

… the kind with pins in it!

Screen Shot 2015-04-18 at 5.39.55 pm

220 pins in place…

It’s layered and pinned. Now for the hand quilting.

I had originally planned to do a 4 stroke basket weave design, with the strokes 2″ apart in a 6″ square. But as I was pinning, the quilt told me this wouldn’t do. In places there are 6 or 7 layers of fabric piled on top of each other, and furthermore, the hexie flowers didn’t want straight lines carving through them. The rabbits weren’t keen either…

So. I looked at it some more, and thought some more as I pinned. The new plan has time-based options, parts A and B.

Screen Shot 2015-04-18 at 5.40.21 pmA is definite. I will quilt around the outside of each red hexie at the heart of each flower. This will also minimise the number of seams I have to cross. If time permits and my hands and fingers hold out, I will also do part B, which is to quilt around each filler between the flowers. A alone will give a puffier, looser look. The addition of B will be flatter and neater. I’d like to do B as well, but will be content with A if I run out of time. That’s 220 red hexies – and the same number of fillers if I do B. I think I will also outline the rabbits, the moon and the curved strip of lettering that is the quilt’s name, which will get done whether I manage part B or not.

The back will have a regular grid of fine blue hexie outlines all over it. On the front, the quilting will scarcely show, as I’m using dark blue quilting thread amongst all those dark blue prints. The original plan for the hanging pocket will not work now, so I’m still mulling that one over. I don’t have to decide until I reach the far side of the quilt, so there’s time. I thought I’d feel a pang of regret at giving up the original plans, but actually, there’s a sense of relief. So I reckon I’m on the right track.

Tomorrow I have to bake most of the day so I can deliver to the coffee shop on Monday. But quilting will commence on Monday afternoon. Cross your fingers for me.

Worldwide Friends: next stage complete…

I’ve got the back panel finished.

Screen Shot 2015-04-16 at 4.38.15 pm

A windy, overcast day. Great for drying laundry, not so clever for photography…

I don’t LOVE it, but I do like it and find it fun, which is all I demand of a back! I’m OK about hanging it this way round from time to time, to remind myself of the haiku, the contributions everyone made, and some of the reds that didn’t appear on the front. There’s just a tiny bit of hand stitching to do on this bit, to attach the small red accent hexies between the large floral panels. I could machine stitch them on, but I prefer hand appliqué.

Finally I still have the facing border to do. This panel is 60″ x 72″, so it needs to be about 5″ wider and taller. I think we’re talking partial hexie flowers rather than full ones, but I need to get it laid out flat, the back offered up to the front and the difference clearly seen and measured before I can be sure. I also need to make some allowance for how the front and back panels will contract slightly when the hand quilting is done. Somewhere in there I have to work out the hidden internal rod pocket, and how the quilting will hold that in place.

Two months to go. In that time, I have to make the facing and do the quilting. I’m going to need a bit of luck and a following wind, I think…

Indigo renamed

This quilt seems to have caught the imagination of a lot of people.

Screen shot 2014-11-30 at 7.04.19 PMThere’s a sort of universal appeal about indigo. I don’t know what it is: the richness and depth of the colour, the fact that it’s a natural dye, or the length of tradition behind its use. Whatever the reason, indigo is used all over the world, it seems.

So far, I have fabrics from Bali, Japan, England and Indonesia. I have been offered some from Rajasthan in India, and some African indigo prints, possibly Adire from Nigeria. They’re all very different, but somehow, they just work together.

Because the first fabric gift came from Japan, I’m renaming this quilt with a Japanese name. This is what it looks like:

Screen shot 2014-11-30 at 4.19.45 PM

It means Worldwide Friends.

I’m going to embroider the name in the Japanese font shown onto the quilt, and also the name of the givers onto the fabrics which were gifts, as a commemoration of the worldwide circle of friendship that is quilting.

If you’d like to join in and offer some indigo scraps, email me (see the Contact Me page on this blog), and I’ll send you my mailing address. All that is needed is a piece of cotton fabric 2½” square, which is enough for me to make one hexie, or one petal of a hexie flower. Your name will be added to the others on the quilt. The embroidery’s going to be in red or white, so this could end up quite a colourful effort! It doesn’t matter if there’s also a lot of white in your fabric, or the overall effect is a bit pale, because that is also part of the design plan. If you have no indigo, but would still like to join in, then a piece of a deep red would also work.

When the quilt is finished, I’ll do a post which gives links to the blogs of everyone who participated, if you would like people to visit. If not, let me know and I won’t add the link.

So, what do you think? Would you like to join in?