Tuesday, February 21, 2012

New Quilt Project - Collector

Here's a project that's been waiting in the wings for a while.  I finally got going on it yesterday, mainly because I wanted to do some paper piecing practice before I start Sedona Star.  The Sedona Star fabric has arrived, and been washed, so I should have something to show really, really soon now!  LOL.

But in the mean time, here is the beginning of the quilt I've been calling "Collector."  It is going to be a charm quilt, with only the background fabric repeated throughout the quilt.  The pattern was designed by Cosabeth Parriaud and included in Quiltmania's Winter 2008 Special Edition, which is published in French.  I was immediately taken by the graphic punch of the quilt:

Stars and Squares
I spent a long time figuring out what gives this quilt it's sparkle.  I'm discovering that any time I think about a quilt for too long, I have to make it!  The sparkle, I decided, is due to the high contrast darks and lights, both between the blocks and within the fabrics themselves.  That's what I'm hoping to duplicate!

I started with the "square in a square" blocks:

This was my first time ever doing paper piecing.  These have not yet been ironed or trimmed.  Thanks to all the great instruction available on the internet these days, it went pretty smoothly.  Alex Anderson's show about paper piecing on The Quilt Show was particularly helpful.  She suggested that beginners start with vellum paper, which is translucent.  That is what I used, and it is excellent stuff!  With the translucent paper you can see the fabric underneath, which allowed me to "compose" the squares to their best advantage.

In the photo above, the fabrics in the bottom left and right hand corners, as well as at the very top, are cotton Japanese kimono fabrics that I bought at Japan Center in San Francisco over ten years ago.  It is great to finally use them!  The two centre ones with the chickens are from the Folk Heart collection by Connecting Threads.  I love that collection.  Kaffe Fassett fans will have already recognized the green fabric on the right as his Millefiore design.  The pale blue butterfly fabric is at least 15 years old.  You can see why I am calling this quilt "Collector!"  While I was working on these blocks it occured to me that making quilts is really just an excuse to play with fabric.  I think the fabrics are the main event for me!

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