Thursday, May 13, 2010

I've got quilting on my mind

I've been thinking about quilting patterns a lot lately; not patchwork patterns, for the quilt top, but patterns for the actual lines of thread that hold the layers of the quilt together. I've decided that I really like the crinkly look that comes from lots of quilting, like in my disappearing nine-patch, but I want to do something beyond the stippling I used on that quilt.

As a child, I used to make drawings by starting with a couple of long, swooping lines, and then turning them into an animal, or landscape, or just a geometrical design. Why not start a quilting pattern the same way? Like this:So, I decided to move to the white board and play! (Please forgive the glare.)
After putting in a few big, broad lines, you could echo those lines to fill in the whole quilt.
Starting with a few simple lines would serve a double purpose, too; not only could you give the quilting pattern an outline, but it would be like basting the quilt, getting the layers connected broadly across the whole "quilt sandwich." Here's an example of starting with just two lines:
Or three:
The topmost line didn't work for me once I started filling in; I took it out, and ended up with this. You could give the quilt a lot of movement and directionality with the quilting pattern!
I decided to see what this sort of quilting pattern (shown in black) might look like when put on top of a simple, geometric quilt top, reminiscent of a simple strip-pieced rectangle-based patchwork pattern (shown in green).
You could make a very simple patchwork pattern incredibly dynamic! I like the contrast between the straight horizontal and vertical lines of the "quilt top" and the more fluid, organic lines of the "quilting."
I think I may have to try to put together some small, simple quilt tops this weekend so I have some canvasses to play with. Maybe I'll do some small baby or lap quilts using bold color combinations, about which I'm curious but haven't yet tried: yellow and blue, a watermelon pink-and-green, or simple black and white. So many ideas, so little time...

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