31 January 2013

Kapalua Batik...

I am not sure how long ago I purchased this jellyroll, but I know it's been sitting around awhile. I never had much of a plan for it, but finally made a quilt top from it this month.

I knew I wanted to add some solids (yes, SOLIDS) to my next project, so what better place to hide some in plain sight among all these colors? I found four solids I could love—a bright chartreuse, a deep raspberry sherbet, scrumptious eggplant, and bright orange. I played around with several different designs on the computer. I wanted to intersperse the solids but wasn't sure about its order—randomness, hard pattern, or perceived randomness IN a pattern? And then, what would be the easiest way to sew it all together? My first runs at it looked something like:

Colorful, but not too orderly/orderly enough. Then I was reminded of a zig zag pattern I liked and came up with how I wanted to  sew 20 sets of two strips, then each of the solids onto that. I arranged all 40 strips into a spectral order I liked, numbered them (you'll see number labels in my layouts), and paired them. Here are those 20 sets of strips, arranged beautifully. Yes, it did take quite a bit of manipulating to get them to lay this way, but what good is having beautiful fabric if you can't fondle it?

Once all of the pairs were put together, I needed to add them to their solids. Which way to best attach the solids—long strips or short ones? Short ones won the day. (Based on the arrangement in this shot, I am wondering if I am a wanna-be bartender? Look at the cocktail napkin fanning of those blocks!) Problems I ran into in this jelly roll of strips was the fact that all the long edges were already 'pinked' and they were not all consistent in width. Using all those edges as guides gave me some wonky dimensions. This required some adjusting of seams along the way and that gobbled up lots of time. In the future, I will straight cut all the strips into a width I know is consistent and even.

So I had the idea in my mind and printed out so I could follow it while piecing. Zig zag. I attached 80 pairs of paired batiks to 80 solids and started thinking about the vertical strips I'd build to make the zig zag. Hold on a minute. What if I rotated these blocks and mixed up the pattern a little? Hmmm. Sure, I could do that. It wouldn't be a hard zig zag, but more of a suggested zig zag?
Time to commit. Here's how the columns of blocks went together. Having to go back and 'fix' some of the strip inconsistencies made this part of the process a bit more tedious than necessary, but all in all, it still went together fairly well. Oh, did I mention I wanted the back seams to be pretty, too? I pressed and flared my seams and love the effect even though no one sees them.

I'm not sure how I'm going to finish, back, or bind this top, but I'm happy to have this much done. Right now it's about 54" x 67". Voila!

1 comment:

  1. Now this is gorgeous! I can't believe I have such a creative friend. Lucky me!