Nellie"s Needles

Monday, March 24, 2008

"Come With Me to the Kasbah"

My journey with this quilt began with a collection of seven blocks featuring spirals that were made for me by Thursday Bee members of the Smoky Mountain Quilt Guild. The resulting combination of them with my block and fabrics reminds me of being in a North African kasbah at night ... the exotic confusion of lights, the wares displayed in the souks and the many twists and turns of the alleyways. The spiral is one of the oldest symbols and much used in North Africa.

48"x 63"
Here's the back where a great deal of hand-stitching of the strips of fabric over every seam plus four vertical ones supporting the length was done. The colored blocks are the bee exchange ones.
And here's a detail shot of the edge finishing on the front of the quilt.
... and on the back. It's the usual double fold binding technique. I allowed for a 1/2" width on the front and a 2" width on the back for added support to ensure that the edges wouldn't curl either to the front or back when it hangs.
I appreciate all of you who have followed the process of my designing this quilt and a big "thank you" to all who left comments. It is one of the most complex quilts I've ever done because it started with that diverse collection of blocks rather than what I would've chosen from scratch. Here are the links for the steps taken to get it completed.
Books about designing that are in my reference library are:
  • Design Basics (2nd editon) by David A. Lauer - ISBN 0-03-063911-5
  • Design For You (2nd edition) by Beitler & Lockhart - SBN 471-06337-1
  • Art and Visual Perception - A Psychology of the Creative Eye (new version) by Rudolph Arnheim - ISBN 0-520-02613-6
I just delivered this quilt to it's first show, "2008 Festival of Quilts", the 10th biennial show in the Farragut Folklife Museum. The show runs fron March 27 th thru the 30th.


Magpie's Mumblings said...

This is absolutely breathtaking Nellie! The back is a work of art in itself. I really wish I could see this for real.

Vicki W said...

It turned out great Nellie! I've really enjoyed watching this develop.

Sequana said...

Let me be the first to say that it's so beautiful I could almost cry. I've watced it from the beginning and printed a few of the most helpful posts.

I wish you were on my ECRR team.
*L*'s just wonderful!

Kay said...

It's wonderful! A show deadline to meet as well as the public view of the design process
t must have been a little tense. You met the challenge wonderfully.

Cindra said...

Absolutely gorgeous! THank you so much for sharing the process.

teodo said...

Nellie.........your memory of Africa through this quilt in wonderful! It's true, sometimes some works reminds us of moments we have lived and we'll never forget.

Thanks for the name of the books. I'll be looking for them.

ciao, ciao

teodo said...

your quilt will be admired by all the visitors of the
ciao ciao

Anonymous said...

Goodluck at the show - Im sure it will do well. As you know I think it is great!

Karen said...

From its varied beginings to its finished title, this is an amazing work! I love the title, it is perfect! The back is a work of art in its own right as well. To 'watch' the process in the designing of this quilt was a privilege. I am so glad to have been a witness. I learned something from each post.It is sure to be the star of the show. Congratulations on a beautiful work of art and its inclusion in the show.

Liz said...

This quilt is so striking! It was so interesting to watch it evolve. Thank you for sharing it with us.

Micki said...

Fantastic finish. You have created a wonderful piece. I have enjoyed seeing the progress of this piece. Thanks so much for sharing with us and good luck at the show.

Karoda said...

you really did work this quilt! and such a complex design that turned out really well.

now are you give credit to these 3 books for teaching you everything you know about design?

Clevelandgirlie said...

What a wonderful finale to the journey of this quilt - to end up at a show where so many people can witness it's magnificience!! What a wonderful experience it has been to share this journey with you.

Agapequilt said...

Your job is very beautiful.Annamaria

Nellie's Needles said...

My thanks to all of you. Your comments just reinforce my husband's opinion. When I was photographing it the other day, he gasped when he came out to see it and stated that it should win "best in show" at our Smoky Mountain Quilt show that's coming up in May. Well, I don't see that happening. But the funny thing is, at that moment the thought had crossed my mind as to whether this piece was worth all the time and effort put into it. Do you know that feeling of being too close and involved to really "see" the piece? I've felt this way about a number of works that have eventually very much appealed to me after a bit of time away from them. In fact, just about every piece I create there's some point where I wonder if it's worth finishing. But I do and they end up worthy of existing.

Karoda, the listed books are my favorite three of quite a few in my library. These are the ones that get pulled off the shelf most often and I always find a nugget of information or wisdom that keeps me going in the "right direction".

Shelina said...

It's such a gorgeous quilt Nellie - thank you for taking us on your journey and allowing us to see your thought processes. I've often wanted to make a creation like this - with such visual complexity - yet a coherent whole - a true creation each step of the way - and you have given me lots and lots of inspiration.

Karoda said...

Thanks Nellie for answering on the books.

I bet you enjoyed the first day at the show!?

Beverly said...

I love your gift for taking disparate elements and turning them into not just a cohesive whole, but a glorious work of art. Thanks for sharing the whole process. You've got me thinking, that's for sure!

ACey said...

It makes me smile to think of all the people who will view this quilt and gain some inspiration from it, in addition to all of us here in blogland.