Thursday, December 02, 2004

Friendly inspiration

Yesterday, Rita came by for a visit, bringing with her goodies to share and inspire. We poured ourselves fresh, hot cups of coffee and went up stairs to my office to talk about art, projects in progress, and other fun subjects.

My interest in my in-progress chair quilt was reawakened when Rita reacted so excitedly to the pieces I had up on my design wall. I was SO excited in that project when I got started...I drew chair after chair, trying to get the perfect comfy arm chair shape, until I was happy. I made freezer paper drawings, I cut fabric pieces, and I made test blocks before I settled on a fabric selection and method I liked. Then, when the first assembly stage of each block was one (fusing) I put them up on my wall...and stalled. They've been there for the past 10 days. I've been wondering whether they're too cute? too symmetrical? too...too something? Rita's reaction to them ("Definitely not too cute!") was encouraging. So, maybe I'm on the right track.

Rita shared what she created in Melody Johnson's fusing workshop (see http//, and the results of her creativity workshop with Libby Lehman. Very cool! And we looked at a few books, which got my mind spinning with ideas and images...

Once we started talking fusing, I pulled out some shapes I'd cut and fused in an abundance of enthusiasm one evening after a workshop day when I did Melody's workshop with the Pacific Piecemakers. I put a squiggle in a square, vaguely wave-ish. But after making block after block after block, I wasn't able to put them together into any way that thrilled me. So, another day some weeks ago, I slashed them and inter-fused curving bits of fabric...More exciting, but still no excitement when I tried to put them together. So, the other day, wanting to play with the new Olfa circle cutter I got at PIQF, I took a few of those fused blocks and cut circles out of them. VERY EXCITING!

Rita took one look at them and said "I wonder how they'd look with stripes..." I reached into the closet and grabbed a piece of purple and white striped fabric, then scattered the circles on them. Magic! I knew I made those circles for a reason.

Having solved my problem, we turned to Rita's "dot com" blocks from the class we'd taken together from Freddy Moran. Rita had the blocks all made, and we spread them out on the floor, then started turning them every which way. So many different patterns and shapes! Rita rushed right home to keep arranging and to sew them together...which I suspect she's done by now.

All in all, it was a very inspirational visit...and I think we both came away invigorated. How wonderful to have friends who can light that creative fire!

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