Thursday, October 21, 2010

fabric shopping--again

OK--so the blue quilt is almost done. Just a bit of tweaking and finish work. It's time to start a new wall hanging. Now I do have another large wall hanging to work on. It is also blue. But first I need to work in some other color. After all, I will be doing the Washington Craft Show in about a month and my selection of work is a bit limited.

So it is off to The Textile Co again. You may remember this wonderful fabric store--in Greenfield. I have posted about it before. An old buggy factory. In the same family for 3 generations. No web site. No credit card but a wonderful selection of fabric.

I make sure I have a bit of extra time. I am not sure exactly what I am looking for. I think I want to make another quilt like desert hills only in different colors. It is a good size. Sells well.

At first nothing is leaping out at me. Some fabrics just seem too familiar. Too much like the blues I have been working on. Then it hits me. I see a fabric I just have to work with. It is a green--rather soft in color but with so many other interesting fabrics on top of it. I am not sure what to do with it. Maybe that's why I like it. Also it does remind me a bit of feed sack cloth. It could be a reproduction fabric. No, it is from 2009. But still that is what it reminds me of.

I keep looking. Grab another fabric that could be a reproduction. These prints seem to conjure up memories.

Look at all these designs. I grab another--this one a bit more brown. But again a pattern that looks old.
I start to think of prairies. Dry fields and endless skies.

I grab some others--a Civil War reproduction. A fabric called Simpler Tymes. An olive green with wheat enclosed in a hoop. Oh this is getting interesting.

I put them up on my design board trying to get inspired. Hmm.

What interesting colors. I decide I have to make a test piece first. I need to get a feel for how the colors are going to work together. I don't see them as potholders, but I could make some placemats. Get used to the colors. I arrange the fabrics for the placemats. It is hard to get the order right. Which fabric is darker? How do the prints work?

There is something haunting about these colors. The placemats are soft. Maybe a bit greener than I might have thought they would be. I like the bits of pink and green though. The undertones of gold.

Should I make another test--or will the quilt be too studied if I do. I want to plunge in. I remember in grade school my sister and I took swimming lessons at the city pool. Now since we were country kids our lessons were always at 8 am. The water was still cold from the night air. There was a high dive--this was a long time ago. And we had to jump in from the high dive. Now I was not a great swimmer. The dive scared me. The fall was long enough that I can still remember the feeling. The water when it hit you was cold and deep and startling. But I soon learned that it was even worse if I stood up there and thought about it. Much better to hold my nose and just jump in. Get started.

That's what I think I will do with this quilt. I have so much I want  to do before the Washington Show. I think I should just start. I do know what a couple of rows will look like. Maybe the other rows will then follow. If not I can always make more placemats while I am thinking. Hopefully then the questions will become more obvious.

And you my reader--how do you start a quilt or any other project?  Do you just look and begin and do you fret about the quilt? Any hints?


  1. I like the placemat. Can't wait to see how the quilt develops.

  2. Thanks--I will try to keep everyone posted.

  3. Hi Ann, I really enjoy checking your blog. I don't know how you get so much done! I quilt everyday and it still seems never enough. I also have my next project in my mind and sometimes while I am working on one thing the next project appears.... I love your quilts, they are so beautiful and even inspiring to look at. Like a magic view! You can travel right where you sit when you look at your quilts! I have been really pushing myself to find what it is speaks to me the most, and I really love a cozy warm and "old fashioned" looking quilt. One you might find on your grandmas bed, all worn and traveled. I was thinking though, I still put so much thought into these cozy quilts I love so why when I look at all these landscape quilts do I feel like I "should make those." Then I realized that your quilts say, Ann made this and isn't it wonderful she puts her heart into them! And mine.... SOOOOOOO different say the same thing about me. That is the joy of quilting! Never comparing what we can and can't do to each other, just seeing the beauty in both. Your work is breathtaking. You have a gift. I am going to go back and stew over my next project now. Keep the posts coming and maybe I will get back to my blog someday!

  4. Oh Lisa I am blushing. Thanks for the kind words. But yes do get back to your blog so we can all enjoy your quilts also.