Wednesday, May 03, 2006
I have finally begun to work with the fabrics I bought in Australia almost three years ago. By a great coincidence there was a big quilt show in Melbourne the day we were there and I not only saw quilts, I was able to buy fabric!
I wanted to use some sort of circle pattern to echo all the circles and dots on Aboriginal designs, and at first thought I would do some version of Drunkard's Path. But when I saw Reynola Pakusich' book Circle Play I thought that would be a good use for the fabric. She uses circles of the focus fabric(s) appliqued to backgrounds made out of half-square or quarter-square triangles. The idea is to echo the lines and colors of the focus fabric in the background blocks, and create an attractive "value flow" of lights and darks across the quilt. Her examples are stunning. It remains to be seen how mine will turn out. These are very difficult fabrics to work with because the colors are unusual, even garish, and the whole effect is very busy. Putting them together with backgrounds that won't make the busy-ness overwhelming is going to be challenging.
Here are my circles and the few blocks I've made so far. It's too early to see how this will work. I have actually done a few more blocks since taking the pictures, and the effect does improve with more blocks. I would like to get the whole layout finalized before we leave for France in two weeks so that I could do the handwork while we're gone. But that may not be possible because it would be a mistake to rush this step, and a little time to cool is probably a good idea.