Donna sent me the photo of her Lake Michigan quilt during the time I was posting about being inspired by the colors of nature. This is what she said:
“Here’s a quilt that I made inspired by Lake Michigan. Every time I looked at the lake there were all kinds of marvelous colors which always changed with the time of day or the season. I’d say to myself, I have fabric that color! (My favorite color is blue, go figure)
It’s called ‘Ode to the Many Colors of Lake Michigan’.”
What a spectacular work of art! I love the glow in the center. She then sent me a second email in which she mentioned an inner “border” she appliquéd on, just because the quilt needed it:
“Between the lady of the lake blocks and the outer border there is a 1/4 inch stripe fabric appliqued on. It kind of needed that definition, though I didn’t want to do it. Once done it was a nice addition.”
Donna admitted that appliquéing that narrow striped border was worth it, and I really admire the effort it took. What an effective addition!
I’ve had a few occasions in my quilting life when the quilt was done, but it just needed a little something more. One of them was “Pekoe and Cut Black”, a quilt I made for a “Tea” challenge. I decided to pull a bunch of white/cream scraps from my stash and dye them in tea. I only used these fabrics in the quilt, including the binding. So the outer edge ended up looking quite bland.
To add definition I couched a piece of variegated yarn in the ditch between the binding and the quilt and I was much happier with the results:
And here’s a detail shot:
Another quilt which benefitted from couching a “piping” along the binding was one I made with my friend Sharon Rotz. We made it for the New Quilts From an Old Favorite challenge at the National Quilt Museum in Paducah. The “Old Favorite” was the monkey wrench pattern and our quilt is entitled: Two Friends Monkeying Around:
It was accepted into the competition, hung in the museum during Quilt Week, and traveled with the exhibit for 2 years before we got it back. At that point Sharon decided to enter it in an art competition. She felt the edge needed a bit of definition and couched black cording along the binding.
This addition framed the quilt well and we took first place! Here’s a detail shot:
I think these “spicing up” additions we’re well worth the effort in each of the above quilts. Have you ever added a little extra zip to a quilt in this way? If so, please send me photos!
Many of you have heard the story of my Tea quilt, but in case you missed it – enjoy 😊:
I drew a number of swirls originating from a center circle until I found the one that was just right. I then stitched them together using Caryl Bryer Fallert’s applipiecing technique. I quilted each area with a different free-motion quilting pattern, adjusting the design when it hit my pre-marked circle.
This quilt is part of my “Crossings” series where portions of the quilt are made separately and then the pieces are connected back together with beads. It’s a spiritual journey series of quilts in which I feel the beads cross the gap and hold the broken pieces of my quilt together as my faith in Jesus Christ holds the broken pieces of my life together.
In most of the quilts in this series I bead together rectangles or squares. This time I decided to make the entire quilt – quilted, bound and finished. Then I cut the circle out of the center of the quilt, finished both edges with corded piping, and beaded the circle back into the hole it had created with pyramid beads from a broken bracelet. It was quite a gutsy move, but I was pleased with the results.
For some reason I feel like making myself a cup of tea right now 😁.
Wishing you all a blessed Thanksgiving!