Well – I’ve been working on this quilt, sort of in secret, for awhile now. It actually all started in 2012 with Fabric Fascination’s BOM quilt blocks. I had a great time making these blocks using fabrics I typically wouldn’t – but look just how beautiful they all look together! My next task was figuring out how I wanted to put them together for the finish. Of course, I couldn’t just put them together like a typical sampler. In my dreams one night – I figured out what I was going to do! First – I had to add some thicker strips of fabric onto each side of the blocks. Then – Jared figured out the dimensions a hexagon would have to be to encompass a 12” block with 1/4” seam allowances. After that – a family friend used those dimensions to make a Plexiglas template for me to use to cut out my blocks. And finally – I made each of my sampler blocks into hexagons. For my layout to work I had to make some ‘filler’ blocks. I made more hexagon blocks using the lighter batik fabric and then adding strips of the other fabric as well as some fun orange batiks. Once it was all pieced I sent the quilt to my aunt, Barb Raisbeck of Quilts by Barb, to quilt. She put an all over hexagon pattern on the quilt – a perfect fit! I’m sure at this point you’re wondering what in the world does ‘Fen Koan’ have to do with my quilt finish reveal? So – I have a great friend, Trish Frankland of Quilt Chicken, whom I go to when I have trouble coming up with names for things or coherently writing something important. After some coffee and time on the internet – Trish came up with ‘Fen Koan’ for the name of this quilt. Of course I had to ask how she came up with that for the name – so … here’s what she wrote.
I went looking for zen words because it’s a peaceful quilt. When I found koan (which is often thought of as an unsolvable riddle), I went looking for hexi words. Honeycomb is another hexi word – and another use for the word honeycomb is to RIDDLE something, like with holes. OMG – so koan-honeycomb-riddle. So then I went looking for nature words for the color scheme – and fen is a irish-type word for the peaty bogs (good for water blues and grassy greens!) And there it was … fen = grassy marsh, wetland which describes the color scheme koan = a paradox to be meditated upon and koan applies to the peaceful feeling evoked by the quilt, and the fact that your quilts aren’t usually this quiet – that it’s something to wonder about and think on