Monday, 21 March 2011

Crowing?

Here are some photos of the quilt I completed for DQS10.


The circles start at 1/2in and increase in 1/8in increments up to about 2in, then increase in 1/4in increments to the largest circle (the white wholecloth circle) which is 4 1/2in. They were positioned by eye, and the lines across the circles all radiate from a point at the centre of the spiral (which is not the centre of the actual quilt, because that would have made the whole quilt look out of balance).

Fabrics come from Patty Young (Flora & Fauna), Sandi Henderson (Farmer's Market), Chez Moi (Swanky, I think), Valori Wells (Nest), Heather Bailey (I think Freshcut and Pop Garden) and Amy Butler (no idea!), plus a couple of coordinating tone-on-tones. Some of the tiny quilting patterns are my own, traditional or adaptations, and a couple came from here.

I've tentatively named it 'Crowing' - a nod to my mother's maiden name and the black birds, and because I'm rather proud of myself for successfully using and combining so many techniques on this quilt - foundation piecing, hand applique, mahcine applique, piping, machine quilting and, for the first time, trapunto.


But I'm having major second thoughts about this being my actual swap quilt. I love it, and it has received plenty of lovely comments in the Flickr swap group, but with the amount of time and effort put into this one, I need to be sure the recipient will love it too. So I'm currently playing with new designs and weighing up my options.


The photo above was taken in direct sunshine at quite an angle, to really emphasise the texture of the quilting - it doesn't 'really' look like this!


Trapunto is where an extra layer of batting is inserted in some places on the quilt, prior to quiting, to make them stand out. Each circle is trapuntoed. This post shows a little of how the trapunto was done.


Once I'd added the extra batting under the circles, I quilted the white and colour wholecloth circles. But when I was done, the dense quilting flattened it too much, and I added a second extra circle of batting under these three circles before sandwiching the quilt as usual.


Each pieced circle is quilted closely around the circle and in the ditch along the piecing lines.


To make them match, the wholecloth circles are the same, with the final quilting around the circle and along the lines between the different quilting patterns.


I should have added the black bird appliques prior to sandwiching as well, but I admit I forgot! So I unpicked the quilting along the lines on those three circles (to let the birds sit flat and smooth), and appliqued the birds by machine, using a tiny blanket stitch - unfortunately this now shows on the back, but looks perfect on the front. Then I requilted the lines around the bird.


The birds were all drawn by hand, and given my lack of drawiung ability, I'm very pleased with them. They are all different, but have matching tails


The background of the quilt is McTavished using wahite Bottomline thread (the coloured wholecloth circles are done it Aurifil cotton mako 50). The quilt is finished with narrow black piping attached to the binding, which uses carefully-selected strips from a diagonal zig-zag stripe fabric.

So now the question is whether or not I send this one away - or squeeze another quilt into my tight schedule? It has a hanging sleeve attached, and needs a decision before I can print the label. I'm running out of time, with a posting deadline of next Friday.

27 comments:

Linda said...

Stunning, Emma! The incrementally larger circles, the quilting, and the just-right hint of black in the binding make this awesome. I'd reconsider giving it away too! Maybe you can reach a decision by starting another quilt. If you make the swap deadline, keep "Crowing." Cockadoodledoo!

Sandie said...

Everything about this piece is amazing. I would have no 2nd thoughts about keeping it ~ it's far beyond a swap project and I'm sure you'll replace it with something lovely.

Colleen said...

This quilt is stunning. You spent an amazing amount of time for something to give away! I'm sure that anyone receiving it would truly appreciate your talent and hard work. Thanks for explaining trapunto... I had no idea what that was and was wondering how you got that amazing look on your circles.

Michele said...

Crow away! You certainly deserve it. It's a stunning piece, from the colors, to the placement to the quilting.

I love it.
I want it. ;-)

Sheetal said...

this quilt is more than perfect! you've put so much into it...I'm sure your partner will love it tons!!!

Marianna said...

Keep it. The amount of planning, time and effort devoted to this quilt is too dear to give away. I am sure you can make something equally lovely for the swap. But I would keep this one, no second thoughts.

Sarah@PingsAndNeedles said...

Oh Emma, you know I've been going ballistic about this at every stage, so it saddens me to know that it can't possibly be for me ... in which case ... you should definitely keep it! LOL

No seriously, I think whomever received this would just pop with joy ... but in the end ... it's your decision, and as Marianna says, whatever you make we know will be equally lovely ...

happydaysquilting said...

That beautiful quilt is definately a keeper!

Bec Clarke said...

Wow I don't know how you could part with it, the details and the work are just amazing.
I think you should enter it in a show!!!

Nic Wood said...

Stunning, I can understand why you would be reluctant to part with it!

nic xxx

Milly said...

I would be absolutely stunned and thrilled to receive this quilt in a swap. However, if I were you I'd keep it and enter it in a show or competition!

Vicki W said...

I think this is spectacular. I love everything about it.

Ann Marie said...

How adorable. Just think if you keep this one, and make another one, how do you know you won't love the other one just as much, and then not know which one to send and it keep going. I would send it, and make another for yourself using the few things you learned during this process. Too bad I am not in the swap because I would love to hang this on my wall.

MY SPACE said...

Absolutely gorgeous, think this is my favourite creation of yours yet!

highwaycottage said...

Wow, this is so gorgeous. I can understand you dilemma. So much work has gone into this stunning mini quilt that it would be very hard to give it away. I can say though that if something this awesome were to come to me it would be VERY treasured and loved.

I know your partner will be very lucky even if you send a different mini quilt.

Patchwork and Play said...

I wonder whether your partner may have admired this from afar! How disappointed would she be if you kept it!

Rachaeldaisy said...

I never get enough of seeing this quilt. Its just amazing. Crowing is such a great name. If I was lucky enough to be your partner I would treasure it always.

mandapanda said...

It is gorgeous!!! Well done! Wish I could quilt like this!

lolablueocean said...

If it is in your heart to keep this you should. However, if I was your partner I would be heartbroken. It is truly beautiful.

Robin Quilts, etc. said...

That is some of the most beautiful quilting I have ever seen. I'd give anything to be able to quilt like that.

My Sweet Prairie said...

That is ABSOLUTELY gorgeous, just incredible work. Great design. Perfect binding... everything!! But you already know that. : )

~Monika in Canada

Lisa ONeill said...

Just found your blog - love it - and love the quilt!

Karen said...

Just popped in from Carla's blog. Your quilt is amazing. I know she is thrilled with it! You are an incredible artist and quilter. Congrats on a great quilt!

moshiecreations said...

I saw this up close and personal last night at the Kansas City Modern Quilt Guild. Your work is breathtaking! What a fabulous job! I'm glad I got to see it.

Pieces of Sunshine said...

This is so beautiful and meticulously detailed. Your work is incredible.

Tracey said...

I found this blog via pinterest! Absolutely gorgeous! I fell in love with your work immediately! Keep it going. You have a wonderful talent!

~mo sews with re*purpose said...

I saw your finished product on Pinterest, and I HAD to see if you showed your process! I have not disappointed! This is so imaginative and beautifully quilted. I'm new at quilting, and have not attempted quilting a sandwich yet, but I hope to have results like this one day! Love your blog too! I will definitely be checking out your projects!