I first heard the name Fibonacci years ago at a Milwaukee Art Quilters meeting. Having a degree in Dental Hygiene, art theories and terms were not typically in my vocabulary. But I loved geometry in high school, so this sequence of numbers grabbed me immediately. Let me share a bit of an explanation for those of you who have no idea what I’m writing about.
The Fibonacci sequence is a series of numbers in which the next number is attained by adding the previous two numbers:
1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55, 89 …
This series can be used to model or describe an amazing variety of phenomena in mathematics, science, art and nature.
I did a quick walk through my yard and saw Fibonacci numbers everywhere. For example: my coral bell leaves have 5 main veins – and 5 is in the series:
Impatien petals come in 5s too.
Each branch of leaves I counted on my marigolds had 13 leaves.
And all the little clovers had 3 leaves (no 4 leaf clovers to be found):
An ear of corn has 13 rows. I didn’t have one handy to share a photo so, since it’s still corn season (sadly nearing the end of corn season), feel free to count the rows the next time you enjoy one.
And the human body is filled with these numbers: 1 head, mouth and nose; 2 eyes and ears; 5 fingers on each hand, and toes on each foot.
The mathematical ideas the Fibonacci sequence leads to, such as the golden ratio and spirals, are often appreciated for their charm and beauty.
When the Fibonacci series is drafted on a grid a spiral results.
I was thinking it might be interesting to continue the grid above, and then make it into a quilt – using a different fabric for each area of the grid. It could be a fun “modern” crib quilt!?!
This spiral is found many places in nature. The example I’ve seen cited most often is the nautilus:
a pinecone is another example of a Fibonacci spiral:
I marked in the spirals on this image to make them more obvious (and the cool thing is – they actually spiral in both directions!):
And isn’t this vegetable I bought at the farmer’s market a beautiful example of the spiral?
When any two successive fibonacci numbers are taken as a ratio (ie. 34/55), it is very close to the “Golden Ratio” which is approximately 1.61803.
For a better explanation than I can give you of this concept click here 😊.
So, what does this have to do with quilting???
Well, these numbers are supposed to be visually pleasing and the Milwaukee Art Quilters often chose their challenge quilt size to fit the Golden Ratio. Both of these challenge quilts were made according to this ratio:
Wendy was inspired to begin our collaborative quilt “Welcoming the Son Into Our Garden” by a photograph she’d taken of sunflowers.
The center of sunflowers is always a fibonacci spiral, and her photo was so perfect she decided to simply photo transfer it onto fabric for the quilt.
When I was coming up with a quilting design for my Compass Craze quilt, I decided to use a Fibonacci spiral spinning out from the center of the quilt.
I marked it on the quilt, stitched on the lines, and filled in with tiny spirals.
Here’s a detail for a clearer view of the spiral:
Perhaps if I had free-hand drawn the spiral it would have been just as visually pleasing, but I am very happy with these results.
Have you ever used this series in any of your quilts? Do you think you might try it in the future?
Even if it’s not your thing – I hope you found it interesting. God has made His creation beautiful and orderly, just like we attempt to do with our quilting.
And before I end this week’s post, I’d like to remind you that registration for the Academy of Appliqué opens tomorrow. I am honored to be teaching at this exciting event and I blogged about it a few weeks ago (click here for that post).
Well, the time to sign up is imminent! So, if you’re contemplating being a part of this wonderful event – please read the following message I just received from Barbara:
“Ready . . set . . .Registration for the Academy of Appliqué 2021 opens in just under 24 hours at noon EST tomorrow, Labor Day, September 7th. YEAH!! I understand that some are nervous and jittery about what is happening in the world and the uncertainty. I have an observation – Just under 6 months ago, COVID came “on the scene,” and how the world changed. Our event is not for another 6 months. I am optimistic that things will be better by then – and I, for one, NEED something to look forward to! REGISTER! And we will work this out together.
I LOVE Registration Day – the excitement, the panic (ha ha), the fever pitch that the committee works at, and of course – the food! Every year a team of 10 – 15 WONDERFUL ladies (and gentleman) arrive at my house at 10:00 in the morning. We discuss issues from the previous year, walk thru the process and “play act” a few registrations. Then we eat (oh, the food is DELICIOUS. We have to keep up our strength, ha ha), go potty, and man (or woman) our stations. When registration opens at noon, no committee member will get a break for at least another six hours. The printer works continuously printing registration submissions, another volunteer vigilantly keeps them in time-stamp order, another volunteer is manning incoming calls for questions or problems, another logs registrations into a tally sheet to keep track of the number of students in a class, four ladies are calling the attendee back for credit card information, another is processing the credit cards, and yet another is entering the registration into Quickbooks to produce a written confirmation of the classes, track the monies, and invoice for any remaining balance. A LOT OF MOVING PARTS! If history repeats itself, we will receive about 75 registrations in the first 10 minutes, and many classes will fill within the first few hours. I LOVE IT! Even the stress and pressure. Pressure on the Registration Committee but NOT ON YOU! Hopefully this is an exciting and stress free day for you.
REMEMBER: noon EST tomorrow, Labor Day, Monday September 7, 2020 to register for the 2021 Academy of Applique in Williamsburg, VA. There is still time to drool over the Class Catalog, pick a few classes, call you fellow stitchers, and be ready to register tomorrow.
With a copy of your completed WORKSHEET in hand; at high noon, or shortly thereafter, log onto the website at www.academyofapplique.com and click on the “Registration” tab. Click on the words “REGISTRATION FORM.” You will not be able to see the form until noon tomorrow.
The Form should take you less than (5) minutes to complete .Once you have completed the online form, check the disclaimer box at the bottom, and click “SUBMIT.” After you submit your form, you will get the following screen which verifies that your application has been successfully submitted. It says :
“Academy of Applique Registration
We have received your registration.
Insert other information here.
Save the link below, which can be used to edit your registration up until the registration closing date.
Edit your response.”
PLEASE DO NOT CLICK ON THIS LINK – It causes the form to be submitted twice. Simply click the “X” or back button to close this window. Someone from the committee should be calling you back within a couple of hours to confirm the class(es) you are registered in, verify the total registration fees, collect your credit card information, and answer any questions you may have.
If you have made a mistake, or want to add a class, simply tell the Academy representative when they call.
PLAN B: Should we experience a problem – DON’T PANIC. We have brought additional phone lines in for just such an emergency. Simply call (757) 565-5299 and we will take your registration by phone, or email your class request with a contact phone number..
REMEMBER – THIS IS A NO STRESS DAY (at least for the registrants, Ha Ha).
Feel free to email me on Registration Day if you encounter ANY problems.
Until then, I am available to answer any questions, or help chose classes if need me. Feel free to call (757) 565-5299 or email .