Quilts for Sale

Friday, February 8, 2008

Rethinking Earth Tones

Toast with Jam
26" x 31"
Featured in the gallery section of Focus on Batiks by Jan Smiley

Detail of Toast with Jam

Most people familiar with my work know I work in brights. But for a complete change of pace, I took a departure from my comfortable palette with Toast with Jam. Starting with several batik swatch packs from Carol Britt www.batiks.com I added earthy commercial and hand-dyed cottons from my stash. I began creating irregular log cabin blocks, placing each on the design wall once it was stitched. To my great disappointment, the blocks did not speak to me at all; they had no personality. I searched through my hand-dyes and thrift store clothing for my favorite reds and purples. It wasn't until I added those shades to the mix that the piece started to work for me. I then had a grand time putting the blocks together.

Initially, I thought the quilt was going to have a rusty-red border. But an olivey/brown color hand-dyed by my friend Susan Webb Lee www.artquiltstudio.com was a much better choice. I selected several colors and types of threads (cottons, rayons, metallics) for machine quilting in my favorite wavy grid pattern. The border was then embellished with chenille cording hand dyed by my very talented friend Michele Merges Martens. www.michelemergesmartens.com
Using the #21 foot for my Bernina 1530, the chenille was couched down after the quilting was completed. As I didn't want the couching thread to show, I chose a monofilament thread in the top needle and used a zig zag stitch.

I was honored to have Toast with Jam selected for Jan Bode Smiley's book Focus on Batiks. www.jansmiley.com


Exuberant Color said...

I liked this one the minute I saw it in the book. It is so comfortable looking, with the soft tones. I'm with you, liking to work with the brights, but I always learn something when I work out of my "favorite zone".

Michele said...

I like this one very much, the color combos are great!

Lisa said...

I LOVE THIS ONE! I love all of your work! *smile*