I thought I should give you a behind the seams look at my latest piece: ”Some like it hot”. It’s presently featured at the Fall International Quilt Festival in Houston in the IQA exhibit A world of Beauty.
How it all started
I started this project during March break. I had sent out my Remembering Sochi quilt for the Spring International Quilt Festival in Chicago and realized I had no quilt to show during my April lectures! On the very first Saturday of March break, my son was sleeping over at a friends’ house… So I woke up at 5 am as I realized I had the basement all to myself! I worked on the project till the rest of the household awoke. It was the most productive hours ever!
Once out of my studio with a coffee and the other kids up and about, I drafted my design using my EQ8 software t0 ensure that I would not lose track of where I was going. That’s when I also realised that it would be kind of cool to have the border melt into the panels as a reminder of the name the quilt would have!
Finding the proper name
Yes! I already knew I was going to call it ”Some like it hot” because I wanted to play with warm colors. And since I was using my Dancing Diamonds pattern, I wanted to use a name that was close to the diamond theme. Just like when we decided to call the bag pattern the Gem Bag! See where I am going? Diamonds made me think of the movie Diamonds are a girls best friend with Marilyn Monroe… and she also made the movie Some like it hot! That’s my 3 degrees of separation. And if that’s not enough to convince you: Billy Wilder wrote the script for the film with writer I.A.L. Diamond!
I was so happy to have the initial layout that I went back to the studio a couple of times over the weekend to work on it some more. And I realized I needed more purples and pinks to add to the mix. This called for a trip to a quilt shop! I also got a bolt of the luscious Canvas Collection from Northcott as the grey was the perfect match to the project for my border, binding and backing.
I literally spent my March break playing with color placement. Cutting up diamond shapes and strips and laying out to see if I would get the look I wanted.
The following weeks were succession of play dates with my fabrics. I would have about 15 to 30 minutes at a time and found myself going really crazy and fussy cutting to get the perfect colour mix.
I would make each strip and sew along and place once more in the design. taking pictures every time to stare at when I would get bored in my every day life. As soon as I would have some time, I would go back to the design and play once more with the section that I didn’t like on the photos.
I managed to have the four panels sewn together just in time for my trunk shows. Then I was off to Chicago and had to set it aside. But when I returned from the Spring International Quilt Festival, I really wanted to finish it to enter in the IQA A World of Beauty that would be at the Fall Festival. The deadline was end of May. I had six weeks to finish the project and had no clue how!
As they say: the world works in mysterious ways! On May 1st, my youngest boy ended up being sick and I had to stay at home one day to take care of him. Needless to say that’s all I needed! While he was sleeping or watching TV (cause I am not that crual) I would run to my studio to finish the borders. For the very first time in my life the four mitered corners were PERFECT!
And off it went to Colleen Paul for quilting! She knew we were working on a tight schedule but was once more ready for the challenge. Of course, Colleen came up with great ideas to relate the theme of the quilt. First, she custom quilted the panels with flames and then did some bobbin couching on a bunch of circles. Finally, she went for a commercial digitized quilting of the border with Pearl Rope by Sharon Perry. Once more, she really worked her magic AND only had a week to make it happen!
While she was making the quilting, I prepared the binding. I picked up the quilt and spent the following Saturday hand stitching the binding. A dear friend invited me over to her place so that I could take photos of the quilt on a design wall with a huge window to have correct lighting. Then I submitted the quilt to IQA: 10 days before the deadline. Cause I don’t like being rushed!
I found out in July that the quilt was accepted and that’s when I sewed the sleeve and finished the label. On August 1st, the quilt was off to Houston for her big debut.
I hope you’ve enjoyed the behind the seams look at my latest piece. If you can make it to the International Quilt Festival from November 8th to the 11th, drop by the quilt to see it live!