Thursday, December 19, 2013

Warm Thoughts

As I was straightening up the house for the holidays I came across Kathy Doughty's latest book, Making Quilts. The Official Cookie Tester had given it to me for my birthday in the summer and I'd tucked it away to spend time with later. Chilly temperature continue and snow falls daily so it was nice to escape into the warmth of Australia, if only for a few minutes.

Besides being a great source of inspiration it has an interesting perspective on the difference between quilts made by Australian quilters and many of those made in North America that I had been musing about myself. She explains so eloquently: "The seemingly neutral background of the landscape creates the perfect backdrop for dynamic sun-drenched colour." If you follow any Australian quilters at all you know that it's easy to recognize their love of colour and creating with bold, non-traditional combinations of prints - very graphic, in many respects. The more I see, the more I want to move in that direction.

That said, a second glance at this particular book shows a lot of the patterns in browns and muted prints, but still very graphic. They were all shot out of doors so it's possible that the 'seemingly neutral landscape' is influencing that as well.

These cog wheel blocks hold a certain appeal for me - maybe because I've seen some wonderful, fun iterations of them on Sue Garman's blog.

This one, Kaffe Fanfare, has been a favourite for a while. I saw it in the background of a photo on Kathy's blog when she was in France at a show and have been musing about it ever since. This shows the background being fairly green but the blog shot showed it more of a teal/deep turquoise, which I think is what caught my eye.

Soul Searching is an exercise in working with your scraps to create colour groups and ultimately reflects our fabric preferences - a snapshot of the aspect of the colours that you tend to choose, including value, hue, warm or cold and graphic impact of the prints. It's also an exercise in how we see neutrals. Much more than first meets the eye.

Interestingly, all of her quilts in this book are square, something that I usually avoid. Regardless, they are wonderful inspiration and I hope you enjoyed them too...M


audrey said...

It is a lovely book. I too am drawn to the bolder, more graphic look of many of the Australia inspired quilts. None of my local quilt shops carry the proper fabric to dabble in these styles though. It's hard for me to buy a lot of fabric off the Net because I'm such a visual person.:)

Susan said...

A beautiful, inspirational book. Wish it was snowing here now.....just hot and dry.