Art Every Day, Wednesday, February 27th, 2013
Ah Simplicity, I love you!
This piece is very similar in color to yesterday's piece with it's strong warm-vs-cool colorway. It began with the big, blue bone bead. I wanted to be able to use at least one of them (I have three) so I chose the colors to coordinate with it.
This piece is so simple, but it packs a wallop as far as machine quilting design, density and color choice are concerned. I was talking with a group of students this weekend about how to finish their highly decorative, embellished quilts and one of the gals was astonished by my belief that the more complex the quilt top is, the more simple the quilting should be and that simple meant not stitching on a ground with a contrasting thread color. With this piece, I really wanted to show how even a little contrast, like the dark brown thread used for the stitching in the blue swath that runs through the break in the orange, can make a statement. If you really want to add to a quilt top then contrasting thread can be used, however, tread carefully because every misstep with the machine will show. I kept the quilting really simple, yet bold, in the orange areas, matching thread color to fabric and choosing to use a straight(ish) line that moves in opposition to the vertical line in the brown stitching. Then, in the blue background I used a stitch that contains a bit of both curve and straight line and quilted every 1/4"-1/8" to really push back that blue. I purposely left lots of the dye painted orange batting around the outer edge to make a secondary frame. I'm rather pleased with the whole effect.
Then, came time to decide where to put the circular/oval bead. When you've only one accent to add, it's placement can be very important. It's placement is exactly where it told me it needed to be. It adds weight to the bottom of the piece and plays off of the broken curve in the orange really well.
Well, I'm trying like the dickens to get the info for my upcoming Taos retreat on line today - so off to work I go.