i have a new and fun project in the works! on saturday, january 18, 2014, jessica darling of austin came to the Houston Modern Quilt Guild for a color theory lecture and workshop. even though i coordinated the event, all i knew was that we were to bring fabric scraps and that we would be working with color.
boy, was i in for a surprise! when we took a break for lunch, after she had shown some quilts made by herself and others and talked a bit about her own personal history with color usage in quilting, jessica had all of us (there were about 36) dump our scraps into a big pile in the middle of the room.
after lunch, jessica led us to the pile and pulled fabrics to show us how she wanted us to work. she asked us each to choose a fabric that would be the "party hostess" in our quilt. she explained it something like this: you go to a party hosted by a friend, and she's the only one you know well. you do, however, know a few of her other friends who are there well enough to say hi, ask about their kids, job, whatever. then those people have friends, too, that you don't know yet. so your party hostess fabric is the one that's going to tie all of the other fabrics together.
for my party hostess fabric, i picked up a chunk of this lovely print from Denyse Schmidt's Flea Market Fancy line that someone had brought:
then, i went around the big pile picking out scraps that drew from the colors in this piece. i picked other mustard-y yellows, greys, corals, peaches, browns. those were the friends of the hostess that you knew just a bit.
those fabrics led me to others. these were the friends of friends.
i carried my selected scraps back to my worktable and got down to business. i cut, sewed, cut, re-sewed and basically improv pieced until i had a squarish bit roughly 12-15" on each side.
i had a few of these larger pieces done by the time the workshop was over and it was time to pack up. after i got home,i pulled out my "blocks" and my remaining scraps and got back to work. i had to add a couple of more scraps from my own stash to fill out the quilt (less than a 12" square total), but i was able to get a 44" x 57" top pieced together.
as you can see, i did end up with several of the prints from the reprint line of Flea Market Fancy in there, but i also added on scraps from the designer's Florence line, and other completely unrelated fabrics. i was able to incorporate bits of text fabrics, which are some of my favorites, but mostly i was working outside of my comfort zone here.
i used both browns and greys, together, because both appeared in my party hostess fabric. it really hurt to use them together in a quilt, but i'm pleased with the result. i never, ever would have paired some of the fabrics i used together without this workshop. for example, the floral party hostess fabric with the diagonal stripe you see two large pieces of. nonetheless, i love how the top turned out! there are some fabrics i wish i hadn't used, especially a rusty orange grunge-like blender that appears in the upper right and lower middle of the quilt, but even that's not so bad when you look at the quilt as a whole.
i've picked out a grey print from one of Denyse Schmidt's lines for Jo-Ann that i bought two bolts of for the largest part of the backing, though i'll have to add a strip to the width, probably some kind of mustard yellow print. i've got binding picked out, too. i plan to have this finished by the third saturday in February, as the Houston Modern Quilt Guild issued a challenge to the attendees of the workshop to come to the February meeting with a finished project to be entered into a drawing for a prize.
with a bit of focus, in two fridays you could be seeing the finished quilt!