Thursday, October 15, 2015

The Giants - Part One

When I talked about my stash the other day, I mentioned I use large prints on the back of my quilts. It's a funny thing, but when I take photos of my quilts I don't take photos of the backs, which is a bit of a shame because I choose the backings so carefully. I never just use what I have hanging around.

So last weekend I set up my quilt stand and remedied that situation. Some of the photos have a blue cast because they were taken in the shade on a sunny day, but you get the idea.

In 2009 I made this quilt, Letters From Home as a sample for Tonya Ricucci's book, Letter Play Quilts. Tonya had stipulated the quilts had to be quilted. I had never had one of my quilts quilted before and was wary to let somebody else loose with it. Fortunately Julie Sefton intervened and recommended Chris Ballard.

When I talked to Chris on the phone she said, in her inimitable Southern accent, "I don't know how I'm going to quilt your quilt. I'm going to hang it up on the wall. Your quilt will tell me how it wants to be quilted."

Right then and there I knew Chris was the one, and she has quilted all my quilts since. I let her do her thing and it is always perfect.

At that time I had been reading Julie's blog and saw how Julie used a lot of pieced backings for her quilt. So I assembled this out of a Kaffe and some leftover bits. As you can see I added a cat emoticon.

When the quilt arrived at Chris's house she gave me a call, "I like the way you didn't drop the ball on the backing."

I've never forgotten that, and make every effort to "not drop the ball" on every backing of every quilt I make.

 Here is The Quick Brown Fox, also made in 2009.

And here is the back. Generally I feel backings are a great big space, and need something equally big to fill it up so it doesn't look stupid. I guess I just don't like a lot of empty space.

In between "arty" quilts, I make "normal" ones, or my version thereof. I made this because I wanted to see how many so-called rules about placing fabrics next to each other that I could break. I was going for broke, and ended up with a jewel box. The result is my quilt "Laughing Out Loud."

Here's the fabric I chose for the backing. It's an eye-popping Philip Jacobs print I was lucky enough to get on sale. I figured if I was going for broke on the front, I had to go for broke on the back. I gave this quilt to my Mom, so I don't have a "proper" photograph of the back.

My son asked me to make him a yellow quilt.


(An aside: The tutorial for this quilt, Slashed Squares, is here. It's an easy quilt to make, and has lots of possibilities. It is the single most popular page on my blog, having over 27,000 hits since I wrote it in 2008.)

He said he wanted a "Quilt of Sunshine" so when he took a girl to the fireworks they could lie on a nice quilt and he could make a good impression. You can read a bit more about it here. My son gave me all kinds of grief about the fabrics I selected, but I have "Mom Armor" and I ignored him.  He was, originally, quite dismayed at what I selected for the back.

Giant Magnolias.

I had asked him if I could make "to Paul from Mom with love" in free pieced letters on the back of the quilt. He said "NO WAY" so I just made "XXX..." which is the way we sign letters to each other. (Tell that story now, however, and he slaps his forehead and says, "I was WRONG! I should have LET YOU") This is the same son who's getting the Petals quilt. I only have one child.)

When I gave him the quilt, he carried it home and placed it on his bed. He's never once let it touch the ground on the beach or at the fireworks. It's on his and DIL's bed as we speak.

BTW, the other print on the back, a small Japanese design printed in metallic gold, was chosen by him against my advice. Gold sparkly stuff on quilts WILL wash off eventually. So now the back of the quilt is flowers, and gray.

He loves the flowers, and he's graceful enough to admit he was wrong about them.

More backings and more quilts later!


Silverthimble said...

I particularly love your Jewel Box Quilt. I love all your quilts but this is the one that "speaks to me the most". 😀

sharon said...

Lynne - I love your quick brown fox quilt very much, your way with describing your process is great too. just realized that my purple quilt I made for my aunt used your slashed squares technique. that tutorial is timeless. - - Sharon
ps - hope to take another class with you in 2016...

Gale Bulkley said...

I too particularly admire the Laughing Out Loud quilt, although it's really hard to pick a favourite in that crowd.

Pat said...

I love your LOL quilt. It's nice to see the backs, too.

Anonymous said...

Great post!

Quiltdivajulie said...

I love posts like this -- stories, process, and the joy of gorgeous quilts!