Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Fast forward a few years . . .

to 1996 or 1997. Donna Ingram and Pat Slusser of Watercolor Quilts fame wrote a couple books and started teaching throughout the country. Dierdre Amsden published a book on colourwash quilts. Quilters everywhere were on the colorwash-watercolor-creative illusions road. They started creating all sorts of visual illusions in quilts. One of the popular illusions was creating illumination in quilts. One chose an area of the quilt for the source of "light"created a design that seemed to glow and radiate from that source. Donna Ingram and Pat Slusser came to our guild and taught a class on adding illumination to quilts. The class list called for lots and lots of 2" squares of light, medium and dark fabrics.

What to take for the class? Once again total crazyness took over. Here was this stack of 8" squares sitting on the shelf taking up space. I decided to cut them all into 2" squares, sort them by color and value, and take them to class. I went to a local pizza place and bought 12 new large pizza boxes. Took me at least a couple weeks to cut and sort all the squares. I arranged them in the pizza boxes according to color and value. Come class day I was ready - carrying a stack of pizza boxes almost too high to see over. I was all ready to learn, having also ruled off a huge piece of Pellon fleece in 2" squares.

Well, creating illumination in quilts turned out to be WAY outside my comfort zone. I had arranged about 200 squares on my grid by the time the class was over. I wasn't enjoying the process at all. I took the grid home, hung it in the upstairs junk room and left it there. Squares drifted off. I picked them off the floor and carefully placed them in the right pizza boxes. After about three years I decided I would never finish it, so I pulled all the other squares off the fleece, put them back in the pizza boxes, and stuck the pizza boxes in a closet. I used the Pellon fleece to expand my design wall in my sewing room downstairs. The 2" squares began to age nicely tucked away in the corner of the dark closet. I did my best to forget that they were there.

Part 3 to follow . . . .

9 comments:

Lisa D. said...

I had precisely the same experience with the watercolor type quilts. I took a class but had no knack for it at all. Looking forward to learning the rest of the story of the 2" squares...

Judy said...

You have me laughing with this story...poor 8" squares sit patiently and then finally get to come out and be chopped up only to be put away again!! I never cared for the watercolor quilts. Just not my cup of tea really. I can see the issues with making one of those!

Can't wait for the 'rest of the story"

Laurie Ann said...

I did the exact same thing. I did make several wall hangings, but really hated the process. I burned all the pizza boxes and then like an IDIOT I threw away all the 2 inch squares. I didn't know what great things I could do with them. Oh well.

paula, the quilter said...

Never made one of those watercolor quilts because I just didn't have the inclination, especially after reading the books. *grin* But. I do have pizza boxes to put project kits into and I have a lot of 2.5" squares in shoeboxes. Love the story and can't wait for the next installment.

Nadine said...

Oh, I just can't wait knowing part three of this story ! You will be my first blog-visit tomorrow, for sure !

Smiles,
NADINE

Libby said...

I am waiting anxiously to find out what was to become of those 2" squares -- this is a fun story *s*

DubiQuilts - Debbi said...

What a funny story.

Early this year I cut (1) two inch square of every fabric I had in my stash. I wanted to scan each fabric to import to Electric Quilts and make a watercolor quilt. I love looking at watercolor quilts. I too started but got no where. I just could not stay on task. Now the squares sit in a tub.

I can't wait to here the rest of the story.

Anonymous said...

At least you did not lose them... I am still looking for the blue/yellow/white ones that I have partially sewn together. (I was going to do an Irish Chain - after getting WAY into the top, I did not like the effect I was getting...) In the mean time, I had a mini-revelation on how to use those "units" - don't remember the revelation now - but that is o.k. because right now, I can't find the blocks either... (I am definatly going to "use them" I love that color pallette...)

ForestJane said...

Can't wait to see how this turns out!

Are you going to keep a count of how many squares you will have used in the quilt? Might be fun!