Saturday, August 06, 2011

"Steppdecke für Katz"

I know I promised, but the Christmas elf made me do it.  I never know what to get my mother and it occurred to me that she's always cold now, so a nice lap quilt might be in order. Our family heritage is German and as a youngster, Mom was called Katz--short for Kathleen.  Steppdecke is the German word for quilt , so this is the quilt for Katz.

This is the fabric pull.  The fleece for the back is in the foreground of the photo and was the color inspiration for the rings.

The final nine pieces are being fussy cut here.  My mother loves roses, so I pulled several fabrics with large rose designs.  You can see the turquoise tone on tone fabric that I'm using for the background of the rings.

The bias binding is all made, too.

The fabric plot is finished and the first quarter of a ring is laid out.

This is the second quarter of the ring.  I always try to include large and small scale designs as well as a mix of florals and abstract designs.  I want your eye to move around the rings when you look at the quilt.

The first ring is finished.  It's so bright compared with my woobie, but I'm liking it.

Speaking of my woobie, it's in the hoop and I'm hand quilting it in the living room.

Update: August 8, 2011

Three rings finished.

Friday, August 05, 2011

"Each Pink Triangle Has His Own Story"

Rudolf Brazda, the last survivor of the so-called "Pink Triangles," men who were interned in concentration camps by the Nazis because they were homosexual, died this week at 98.  It is so important that we remember all of those affected by the Holocaust, so I thought this would be a good time to share some photographs of an old quilt of mine titled "Each Pink Triangle Has His Own Story."

Made in 1994, it was inspired by a dear friend of mine who had learned he was HIV positive.  He was a long-term survivor, but we lost him in 2004.  I chose the pink triangle as the primary symbol because it was being used then and now by ACT UP (AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power), an organization devoted to educating people about AIDS.  The playwright, Larry Kramer and the artist, Keith Haring are two of its more illustrious members.

Because the aim of the Nazi system of labeling people was to remove their individuality, I decided I wanted to make a large pink triangle composed of lots of little individual ones. The equilateral triangle is very cooperative in that way.

I used lots of non-traditional quilt fabrics like brocades, lamé, satins, and suit knits, along with the cotton fabrics.  Some fabulous fabrics were essential.

This is the label on the back.  I chose the title because a gay man's story is the unique narrative of his life journey and is something he shares with his friends and family.

Wednesday, August 03, 2011

Making curtains

Anna recently painted her office which was an odd purple color and she asked me to make some new curtains to go with the new soft blue color.  I went to Hancock's last week and scored this gorgeous Kaufman decorator fabric that was regularly $40.00 a yard for $4.00 a yard.  She has two windows side by side and wants short, café style curtains.  The panels are all sewn together (I usually make the curtain about two and a half times as wide as the window.) and I've made 400 inches of single bias to finish the edges.

Like the curtain I made for my studio, Anna's will be lined.  They wear much longer and have a more substantial look if they are lined.

This is a detail showing the bottom edge finished with bias and a little look at the lining.

Anna's curtains will be more in the style of the one I made for the kitchen window that faces the front yard.  She's like me and likes lots of light to come in the windows.

The binding is sewn to the front side and then brought around to the back to be hand sewn to the lining.

This is the first line of sewing to create the channel for the curtain rod.

I taped the Ruby Beholder to the machine to mark one and a half inches from the needle.

The first panel is all finished.  I'm off to Safety Pin Studio to finish the second one.