Tuesday, October 23, 2018

You Can Build a Bridge If You Can See the Other Side: New Quilt

Last January, when I was working on the quilt, What Are We Becoming? a few scraps of hand-dyed cotton fell into place on my work table and spoke to me. They whispered that they wanted to be something, perhaps a pillow, perhaps a quilt. They neglected, however, to tell me what subject they were touting. 


I humored them for a few days. And added more scraps the beginning of February.


I played with them.


And finally used Heat 'N Bond to stick them down. I pinned the top to a backing with batting in between. I  hung up the quilt-to-be in the studio, still puzzling about it. Minimalistic. No printing or words. Yet.


Would I hand sew it? Embroider it? I had thought of using stencils of people's shadows, but I saw the boxes were too small for that. After I finished the Crows and Cons quilt in July, I turned back to the mystery quilt in August and machine stitched the box edges.


I sewed on the binding. And I began focusing and turning over ideas. Boxes. Being outside the boxes. Not being a checkbox. Thinking about not fitting a prescribed role or idea. But most of these were rectangles. Bridges? I turned to drawing and writing in my journal. This tussle we have with communication is always on my mind.

 


The ideas were circular: "not what are you but where are you not what are you" and "you can build a bridge if you can see the other side you can build a bridge." I added embroidered xs, then the silver threads connecting the rectangles, then the circular embroidery in yellow.


September went by. Once the Where Is My Home When My Home Turns Against Me?  jacket was finished, the slates were cleared. I finished the embroidery today, October 23, 2018, nine months after conception.


Sashiko thread was nice and thick for the cursive embroidery. I like the hand-dyed, gradated color.


This quilt was an interim project, to be worked on when things were quiet, and with no deadlines. Once again, some for better and some for worse, I learned about materials, sewing craft, and color contrasts. And lastly, I was pleased to use up more scraps. The freedom to choose everything, including the timeline, made it a little more challenging to focus. But here it is, finally finished.



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