I’m a little late posting the closer look at the quilt I made but I still want to share it with you all…
Because I love challenges so much of course I have ones that are not Project QUILTING that deadlines are approaching rapidly. With the 3rd Project QUILTING Challenge – Annie’s Vision – I decided I needed to make it work for my Sun Prairie Quilt Show Challenge – Celebrate as well. They had given us some pieces of black fabric with different colorful prints on it that we had to use in our piece that needed to be themed ‘Celebration’. I wasn’t exactly sure what my quilt was going to ‘celebrate’ but I knew it would be something!
Being inspired by Annie Young Arts work was not a problem. I love the color, I love the flowers, but most of all, I love the texture of her work. I knew that my quilt was going to focus on the texture. The first thing that I made for my quilt was the compass above. I LOVE Chris Lynn Kirsch’s Compass Caper’s book. It breaks it down Compass’s into such simple DIY steps that you can literally make one of any size or shape! The black colored print in my compass is one of the challenge fabrics. I had considered ‘Celebrate Freedom’ for a bit on this one so I used the firecracker fabric in this too.
Next – the background for the compass – I decided to go with free form piecing. I mixed orphan blocks with scraps of fabric I had to create the background. I really wanted to just ‘feel’ this quilt come together. I had no intention of over analyzing or thinking about it too much. I just let the piecing and the quilt flow from my subconscious and onto the fabric. For the Celebrate challenge, I did have to keep it between 24” and 28” square so I ended up tweaking it a bit in the end. By putting all these random pieces together a texture was created in that.
Next decision – what do I do next!?
I considered a few things. Leaving the compass in the upper left corner and adding a really textural tree to the right side of the quilt. The scaling of the piece was wrong though so that was out.
Next thought was to use the compass as the center of a flower – like a cone flower. It wasn’t quite it.
I finally figured it out what I wanted to do. It was going to be tricky since there was already so much going on in my quilt. Whatever I added had needed to really stand out…
Before I put on the compass I free form quilted it in my own version of McTavishing (Yes –I still need LOTS of practice). It’s fairly tight quilting which also adds tot he textural element of this quilt.
I initially had the quilt on my ‘long’ arm but the bottom tension was way off so I had to rip the stitching out. I just did it quick on my regular machine. I REALLY need to just put things on my long arm and practice a little each day so I can work out all the kinks. Another thing on the ‘to do’ list I guess. So now that it was quilted it was time for me to add that ‘special something’ to this piece. It had to be textural, it had to be awesome. I realized that the inspiration for this quilt was right on my wall (Yes, I’m super lucky to own some of Annie’s work) – Lollipops for Ayla. (she also uses a similar technique in other works like the lolliteen gang)
My compass became the middle of the ‘lollipop’ and I rolled solid fabrics up to start the process. I rolled them and then zig zag stitched them around the compass. I started with oranges and purples – two colors Annie mentioned that she used often in her work in my mini interview with her. I just kept adding twirls around until it felt right. My fabric rolls varied from kona cottons to some fun orange corduroy. Once I had my main twists down I added even more texture using fun fibers, some glittery rik rak and even some hand-dyed lace trim.
In the picture above you can see that I even added some white wiry cording – which I chose because of the white you often see in Annies’ work.
For the Celebration contest my description will go something like this:
This piece was inspired by the incredible work of Annie Young Arts. Not only is her work beautiful, amazing and textural but she inspires others with disabilities to follow their dreams and do what they love. You see, Annie Young is a blind topographic artist who did not let her disability hold her back. Not only does she paint amazing work, but she also participates in triathlons and volunteers in her community. My quilt celebrates Annie, her spirit and her inspiration.
I hope you enjoyed reading about my process! Now I need to block it and add a hanging sleeve. You’ll be able to see at the Sun Prairie Quilt Show in April.