Sunday, December 21, 2014

the turning of the season

Today is the Winter Solstice. Already the afternoons have added a couple of minutes--how nice. And soon--well in January, the mornings too will add minutes. Don't ask me to explain--I can understand it when I read about it--but not well enough to write about it.

For many there is a tenseness and anxiety of this season. The pressures of doing the right thing. The hussle and bussle of the shopping malls. I am so lucky. I will get to spend precious time with my DH and wonderful step-children. What fun it will be to spend time catching up on their lives.  Prepare a lovely meal for them. I know it will be lovely.

This is also the time of finishing orders and getting ready for Baltimore in February. Almost a spring show. I decide I must make my quilt "river of green." Although I have made it once, it is needed for the Baltimore Show and the perfect quilt to get me in the mood to be inspired again after spending the last month making the small accessories that sell this time of year.

I pull out the image of this quilt and study it. Yes, I have many of the same fabrics though I will never be able to recreate the curves and swirls of the fabric. This quilt has such a spontaneity when I made it and I must recapture this feeling. How hard it is to have planned spontaneity.

I made it last year as I prepared for Baltimore. New and fresh. The curves of the river anticipating the river that I would soon gaze upon when I moved into my new studio.

river of green--38x38"--Ann Brauer

Part of a series of new work I made last year for Baltimore. "Rainbow in the mist"--a finalist for the Niche Awards.

Rainbow in the mist--38x38"--Ann Brauer

"Dreaming the rainbow"--it sold even before the show. I was on a roll last year, wasn't I? Also a Niche Finalist.

Dreaming the rainbow--99x99 inches--Ann Brauer

What can I do this year? How can I top these quilts? Not something to overthink, I tell myself. One step at a time. Just do it. Make the quilt--green river. I cut out the greens and take a deep breath.

Green river--Ann Brauer

This is the key to the quilt.

Green river--Ann Brauer

The teals are a bit easier. Sure, I don't have all the fabrics but I can tell the essence of this quilt is the rich brightness of the fabrics. The blue must shine through.

Green river--Ann Brauer

Yes, there are the curves--although different than before.

Green river--Ann Brauer
I then check out the greys. Some the same and some different. I count and recount. Check. Not that it has to be matchy-matchy. But I do want it close. I pin it up and look. Yes, this is similar.

Green river--Ann Brauer
Now to sew it together and then to create new quilts that will grab the attention of the Baltimore customers and push me in a new direction. I sketch an idea. Wonder how it will look in the booth. Think I may try it soon. Hmmm. This could work. I imagine it in my booth. Does it meet my requirements--new, dynamic, a challenge. Fun.

How do you get started on a new project? Do you look forward to the start of the New Year? Is Winter Solstice for you the turning of the season? Will I see you at the Baltimore Show? The Paradise City Marlborough Show, the Hartford CT Show? But more of these later.