Monday, October 15, 2012

Exquisite Journey

Exquisite Journey
90" x 45"

It all began at a quilting retreat in Vermont at France Holliday Alford's lovely home and studio.  Only I wasn't there, and didn't even know about it yet!  Frances is well know for her ability to get people together to work on fun and collaborative projects.  After the first round of efforts in Vermont, she extended the invitation to a few more!  I eagerly jumped in for a go, as did Leslie Jenison.  We got very minimal instructions, along with a sketch and a few photos.  Here is a link of an earlier post on my progress.  Eventually the first group, Frances, Victoria Findlay Wolfe, Michele Muska, and Hoodie Crescent, (see Hoodie's post for more info on the creation of this wonderful quilt!) sent us their panels for assembling the quilt.  Leslie and I had each completed ours, and we took on the task of putting the works together.  It was a mighty job, but we were up for the task....and had a great time!  How we went from this....
 to this.... is a miracle of creativity and synergy!
This quilt is so fun!  It has a path wandering through it, and many wonderful details along the way. When we first put it together, we couldn't decide the order of the panels, so we kept rearranging until we found this one.  Then we noticed that it was slightly hard to see the path because each person had different colors in their paths.  We united them all with a string of multicolored batiked dots that I had piled in a little box in my studio.  They worked!  ...and added a nice element of whimsy and seemed to pull together all the colors.
Detail of Hoodie's panel.  Love the plastic fish embellishments!
Here's a closeup of sewing one of the dots on the quilt.
This is me pinning the circles on to see how they looked.
Here's Leslie trying to fit this rather large and un-wieldy quilt under the machine.  We likened it to try to fold a piece of plywood in half and sticking it under the machine, and then laughed so hard we had to take a break!
Closeup of the actual stitching of the panels.  It took 2 of us to hold and guide it through the machine.
Hoodie's houses
 I also thought it was interesting the number of recurring themes and design elements.  There were a lot of houses, a few trees, fish and birds in the different panels.  Here are the houses:
Michele's fabulous houses on the hill.
These are my houses, both in the tree and on the ground.
Here's another view of my panel with the ladder going to the clouds.
Here's a view of one of Frances' houses and an adorable owl charm hanging on her tree.
Bird and tree imagery:
A detail of Leslie's work.  Love her bird and the ball of silk ribbon in the center.  Goes together so well with her fabric choices!
Leslie's nest.
Michele's wonderful tree!
Victoria's dancing dolls, possibly my favorite embellishment on the quilt.  So joyful!!
Victoria's garden.  LOVE this tall flower and the stitching!
All in all, this was a fun and wonderful project to work on together.  Exquisite!  And I love the way the quilt incorporates both the individual and the group.  We were so proud and honored to have it juried into the group category at the International Quilt Festival this fall in Houston!

And, last, Leslie and I were playing with a blacklight.  I don't remember why...., but our quilt totally glows!  And, you won't see this in Houston (because in Houston, the lights will be on.. lol!) Here are a few photos, taken in the dark, with the blacklight, of our glowing designs and threads.  Enjoy!!


Terri Stegmiller said...

Love it! That looks like it would be so much fun. One day I hope to do something along these lines.

Leslie Tucker Jenison said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Vivien Zepf said...

This is so totally cool! What wonderful collaborations and amazing results!

Leslie Tucker Jenison said...

What a great post, Kathy, about all the fun we had! It was an interesting challenge to work on our individual panels, but even more fun (and challenging!) configuring them together and finding the small elements that made the piece more cohesive. Who could have imagined that we would be having fun with a black light at the end of the day?! Too bad we can't figure out how to make this baby glow at IQF Houston!

Kathy York said...

Leslie, Now it makes me wonder how many other quilts in Houston would be glowing with a blacklight....if only..... :)

Martha Tsihlas said...

Thank you for the post! I always enjoy seeing the group quilts you guys put together. Such a talented group!!