Saturday, January 14, 2012

Making Tracks

Part of the reason that I started my blog was to spur me to finish off a few of the projects that I have on the go; it seems to be much easier to start something new than to wrap up projects that have been started. Today I have my biggest success yet to share with you. You will recall a while back that I goofed and stitched part of the picot border onto this quilt backwards. Well, the ripping and re-sewing is now done and this week I got down to the business of applying the final borders to finish the top. Yup, after more than 14 years in the works, it's done!

Why this one took so long is a bit of a mystery but it is the first quilt that I hand stitched and it has followed me through our first years of marriage and a few years ago a move to our new house, every now and then popping its head up to remind me that I had some unfinished business to attend to. This summer I decided to bite the bullet and finish up the last two blocks and then figure out what I was going to do about the borders.

This is the one that I credit with changing how I look at and construct quilts. The pattern is called Goose Tracks but I like to call it my Sigrid quilt after a close friend of ours who provided the inspiration for my new approach. Sigrid was a great friend of my sister Betty and a prolific quilter. She loved to stitch by hand and was seemingly constantly stitching, using wonderful colours and patterns to create spectacular, rich projects; she also did beautiful cross stitch. I remember her loving Jinny Byer (take an online tour of Jinny's home). Sadly Sigrid passed away quite suddenly several years ago and we still miss her dearly. Betty inherited her wonderful quilt frame which had been made by Sigrid's husband Bill, and she constantly puts it to good use.

Shortly after Sigrid's death I started this quilt. Up to that point my quilts were relatively standard - all the blocks were identical and the fabric choice fairly straighforward. For this one I loosened things up, incorporating more flexibility into the palette, piecing the 'solid' alternating blocks using 4 different cream prints, using a selection of prints for the pieced blocks rather than making them all the same, and taking the same cream prints and randomly incorporating them into the picot border.
Don't get me wrong, I still love two-colour quilts and a certain format/structure to my quilts, but now I find myself drawn to using tones of colours rather than restricting the layout to a limited number of prints - your eye is constantly moving around the design exploring the mixing and matching.

Goose Tracks
So here it is. I found the pink outside border fabric this summer not really knowing what I would use it for but I think that it is ideal and absolutely LUV how it looks! I'll back it with more of the same. It's also the first time that I have tried making a picot border and it was lots of fun to do. The whole thing harkens back to my Grandma's aprons - I just find it totally old fashioned, soft and welcoming and the blend of fabrics reminiscent of how quilts were once made with whatever was at hand.

Goose Tracks

I'm not sure how to quilt it yet but I am thrilled that it is now a complete top and one huge step closer to being on a bed!...M

1 comment:

Brandie said...

Gorgeous! It'll look wonderful where ever it is, bed, couch or bucket.