Saturday, January 16, 2010

After a long, long incubation period...

Some years ago (3, maybe?  4?), I took a 3-day class from Jane Sassaman, and the fuchsias above are what resulted.  I liked it a lot as far as it went, but I didn't know where to go with it from there.  At the time, I think, I planned to crop it way down, so that those upper leaves would be cut off and maybe even part of the fuchsia on the right.  So, I stalled.  I liked it enough that I didn't want to finish it just to finish it, and it seemed like a good idea to let the ideas percolate.

Over those years, I'd take it out of the closet and hang it on my design wall and contemplate it, with the goal of finally getting it done.  At one of those times, I remembered that I'd chosen fuchsias to begin with because they remind me of my grandmother.  She had hanging baskets of them on her patio, and as a kid I was fascinated by their little balloon-like buds and how they look like tiny graceful dancers.  And somewhere along the way, I thought about incorporating some sense of lattice to the background, because I remember looking up at the fuchsias against the lattice patio cover.

Well, after all that time, something hit me a few weeks ago and I've been working away on this.  Finally!  How satisfying to get this piece back out and to make progress on it!  I was looking at quilt blocks, and found an old traditional block called "Grandmother's Choice."  How appropriate, eh?  I tried to piece them in a way that creates a lattice pattern, and I've attached the fuchsias and leaves to that frame.

I'm still not satisfied with the lower right corner -- where the dark teal background creates a sharp vertical line against the blocks... I've tried drawing in a bit of the block to fill in, but it doesn't overcome the heavy line.  I may end up fusing/appliqueing some parts of blocks to have them sort of fade into the background.  We'll see.
But I'm liking where this is going so far. (BTW, it's hanging kind of wonkily on my wall but it is actually straight.  Or it will be.)


Vicki W said...

What a transformation!

Terri Stegmiller said...

This is gorgeous. I like your idea of having the blocks fade into the background in the lower section.

Gerrie said...


Brenda said...

Beautiful! (and fuschias are PINK too!)

yarngoddess said...

I love where you're going with it. If you're not a purist about this project, you could lightly paint in some suggestions of a continuation of the blocks where the line bothers you. It doesn't bother me at all, and I'll be interested in what you do next.


Deborah Boschert said...

Wow. I just love this combination of designs. Lovely.

To me, the thing that stands out on the lower right is the half blocks. Could you replace the black/green/light blue sections with the same background fabric? Then you'd have the strong diagonal sashing pieces with the pink corner stones and the line might not be so abrupt.

Gari said...

What a wonderful creation you have going. I like that instead of cutting into that beautiful block you waited until it could tell you what it wanted. And the other corner will tell you, too, if you are willing to wait, again.

Terry said...

The line doesn't bother me. The whole thing is beautiful!

Dolores said...

It's very pretty.

Diane said...

What a little time will do! Gorgeous.

How big is the piece as it stands now?

elaine said...

It is beautiful.

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Kristin L said...

I love a quilt that's not afraid to be a quilt. I completely get the lattice and grandmother reference and the ending/edge of the blocks doesn't bother me either. Like Deborah suggested, perhaps you could "blend" parts of them into teh background by changing teh black to your dark teal green and the light green with the paler batik. OR, you could continue the blocks (either in their current coloration, or re-pieced) with stitch. You could also quilt more leaves at the top, behind the flowers and then do teh rest of the lattice in the ditch and the more solid area of teh background in a more subtle lattice pattern. Whatever you choose, I'm sure it will be gorgeous.

Heidi said...

beautiful.. for me fuchsias mean a memory to grandma too :-)
I always get some from my sister on my birthday to commemorate her.

sophie said...

Those fuchsias are pinging my memory–could I have been in that class with you?

I love where you are taking the piece. My class projects often incubate until I pick them up knowing what they need to become MINE from a design perspective. I am a reformed quilt class junkie and have actually taken Jane's abstracting nature class TWICE ... so it's a little embarrassing to think about just how many are waiting for me to return to them ;-)

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