I LOVE doing swaps, because I am always inspired to try something new. The only bummer is that I am always giving away my very favorite projects (though what quilter actually gets to keep anything he/she makes?).
I designed this mini quilt for a new swap called “Fab Little Quilt Swap”. It truly was fab and the doll quilts that were created were simply delicious.
My super-secret partner was Shecanquilt and I was really struck by the triangles, curves and neutral colors in her inspiration mosaic:
I also found this piece of artwork by Tom Moglu in her Flickr favorites and I couldn’t get it out of my head:
I was a little stumped, because I didn’t know how I wanted to represent these images, but then as I was falling asleep one night, the image of curvy, wonky flying geese popped into my head. I think I proceeded to lay in bed for an hour trying to figure out if it was actually possible to create.
Here was my original drawing:
Once I had this drawn out to full scale (about 18×18), I cut out each curved section and paper-pieced it. I had a pile of grey, cream and white scraps (cotton and linen) to pull from as I pieced.
Here are the first few sections completed and laid on top of my design:
And here is the completed top:
I will let you in on a little secret. The sharpest curves are hand-stitched together. I could not, for the life of me, get the curves to lay flat by machine. No amount of clipping, or starch could flatten it into submission. Then I realized that there was no need to make myself crazy, when I could just sew it by hand.
You’ll notice that the finished top is different from the original drawing. That was partly due to time constraints and partly because I usually start improvising when I’m working on something that is this organic. I also didn’t like that the bottom section looked like a roller coaster!
I added a little hand-quilting and vertical machine quilting:
And a bit of red to the binding:
I was really excited and sad to send this little quilt off. I really want to explore this design more and make another larger one to keep and maybe enter into my first show.