“It is vain for painters to endeavor to invent without materials with which the mind may work.” (Sir Joshua Reynolds)
Cute litte Squirrel Finger Puppet, no teeth!
Another few hours at the studio yesterday morning and I am procrastinating right now to get back this morning. I did a lot but it hardly shows since the tower o' quilts hasn't climbed much, but what I did was cut batting, backing and trip up the 2x2' tops, then layer and pin them so they are ready to quilt today. i think I only did 2 or 3 yesterday and have 20 to go. I'm not being too careful about these puppies since nobody has cared enough about them before this to actually finish them up, but they are mine and I feel the obligation. And all the collecting I have done is definitely part of the autobiography! Maybe a way-too-big part. Sigh. So here's the process:
Cutting backing fabrics from whatever I have that has big enough chunks without piecing. I try to cut several at a time if I have yardage, but sometimes I am left with chunks that can be easily pieced so I do that too.
I precut a bunch of cotton fiberfill in advance to make layering easier- here is one piece smoothed out onto the backing fabric.
And then the top of a quilt chunk I had worked on years ago, appliquéing dresden plates and circles from old blocks and pieces to the pink and red backing which proved to be a real pain since it was so badly pieced to begin with. But I press and smooth out as I go, and just having the smaller pieces makes things go more smoothly since I can flatten the bubbles, and the really bad parts won't show once they are installed on the tower.
For these purposes, no basting, I just pin the layers together for an assembly line quilting marathon, simply following the design lines enough to hold it together. You get the MAX for the MINIMUM, as they say...
Here is the pile of quilties waiting to be machine sewn- I think I am up to 20 now.
Top piece is quilted in a spiral, next one is a diagonal grid following the original pencil lines that were on it when I bought it in the early 80's.
As soon as the quilting part is done (enough!) I cut out the center hole to fit over the Sono tube, in this case 8". I made a template for this circle so all I do is fold the square in half and trace on the centered template and cut the 2 sites at once. My hands are killing me! (And that's why I nixed any binding when I realized how many edges I have in all these pieces!
And that is precisely why I spent decades collecting old textiles- quilt tops and odd blocks, bags of lace saved off worn out clothing, table linens- both elegant and the old 30's printed models, tea cloths, and on and on.And I have always felt the 'things' were more important as women's work that the actual articles.
For the ART PART today I have this installation happening, showing the crew and the equipment for one large museum piece-
If I ever show this autobiography tower, I will need one of these forklifts...Wouldn't that be nice?
Well, Heigh Ho, Off I go! Have a wonderful Sunday.