One of the Friars used to say, “Blessed are the Surprise-able for they shall be surprised”. As quilters I think we’re among the surprise-able when we work on our quilts no matter how much we plan there is always a level of surprise when the quilt is complete. There is always something that happens along the way that I don’t expect. Oh wait, the whole process is a bit of a surprise for me because I don’t really plan much along the way. It’s kind of freeing to work this way.
Every once in a while I need to do a bit more planning….mmm planning is the wrong word. I need to see what the thread looks like on a quilt to get a sense for the overall effect. Thankfully this time I have a practice piece to play with thank you Jeanie! This quilt is special, really, really special. A bit of background, when Jeanie and I won a first place ribbon for Feather Zone I sent her some Robert Kaufman Radiance – turns out it’s prepared for dying which means that Jeanie can put it through the printer to get whatever color she wants. And it’s pretty, really pretty.
See, Oops I’m not really giving you enough to see the whole thing. Oh I’m a tease, I know. I can’t quite help it. Until I’m a bit closer to being done I don’t want to share the whole quilt. Jeanie and I emailed and phoned to talk about the next step. Our arrangement is this: Jeanie comes up with the concept, and pieces and I choose the batting, thread and stitching design. Along the way we check in with each other to affirm where we’re going. Sometimes the emails fly back and forth. This time it’s all about the color. The quilting will be dense but will be mostly in the background of the quilt. I’m bubbling away here. Bubbles, bubbles everywhere. I love quilting bubbles. I needed to know how the colors would play on the surface before starting the stitching so here are 3 of the 4 colors I tried out before settling on the blue. I thought the orangy red would work well, uhm not so much. I liked the pink but it started overwhelming the dots. So we’re going with. . . the teal blue and the green in 1. The colors head more toward the background. Originally planned to use the teal in number 4 for the border however that’s changed and I’m going to use Twist that will fade to the background.
Having a piece to play on has been priceless it means a little less flying blind. The rest of the quilt remains a bit of a mystery and i like it. With quilting I like a few surprises.