January 19, 2016: Japanese Quilts at the New England Quilt Museum, Part 2; project updates and thoughts on creativity and procrastination

Greetings!  As promised in my last post, here are some more quilts from the exhibit of Japanese quilts at the the New England Quilt Museum.

This is a dramatic black and white mariner’s compass quilt that greets museum visitors at the beginning of the exhibit.  It is a tour de force of piecing and I really like the embroidered  feathers that decorate the outer portion of the quilt:

11915 compass quilt#1 11915 compass quilt#2 11915 compass quilt#3 11915 compass quilt#4

Please click on the pictures to enjoy the details!

The next one is a wonderful depiction of light reflecting on water.  The artist had to use different fabrics, some with a shimmer, arranged appropriately, in order to get the appropriate effect and she did a masterful job of this!  I wish I had gotten a picture from a bit further away as the effect is most visible at a distance.  In the fourth picture, if you enlarge it, you can see how the stitching enhances the effect and includes some hand stitching.

11915 ebbtide#1 11915 ebbtide#2 11915 ebbtide#3 11915 ebbtide#4

The next quilt is another of the fabulous medallion style quilts at which these Japanese quilters excel.   Just enjoy the pictures of the details!  Great design and use of fabric!

11915 bluesky#1 11915 bluesky#2 11915 bluesky#3 11915 bluesky#5 11915 bluesky#6

Excellent design in this next quilt!  I love how she used circles and the way she created a star in the center.  It’s all hand done!

11915 skyflowers#1 11915 skyflowers#2 11915 skyflowers#3 11915 skyflowers#4

The last one I’m showing today is another applique and hand quilted masterpiece, including trapunto.  Gorgeous!  Enjoy the details!

11915 happiness#1 11915 happiness#2 11915 happiness#3 11915 happiness#4 11915 happiness#5

That’s all of these for today, but I have more for future posts!

Here are my circles from this past week.  I’m experimenting with adding layers of circles, off center with some of them:

11915 new circle all 11915 new circle#1 11915 new circle#2 11915 new circle#3 11915 new circle#4 11915 new circle#5

Next step for me is to put all of these up on the design wall and see how they look together, but more importantly, make a determination as to what size quilt I might have at this point.  I want this to be a wall or lap quilt, not too big, so I may be close to having the number of these that I want.  If I am close, I will think about starting another, different, circle quilt.

There was an interesting article in the New York Times this past week about research that shows how people who procrastinate often are more creative.  By not acting too quickly one gives oneself time to think about/contemplate various different solutions to issues and challenges.   That extra time often allows the brain to make connections that might not have initially been present. That, of course, assumes that one is thinking during that time delay!  Well, I have spent several hours thinking about what kind of border I want on We Are Stardust.  I’m not procrastinating, I’m thinking!!  I have several design books that I often look through for inspiration.  Here are some of them and some closeups of designs that caught my eye as possibilities:

11915 grammar of ornament 11915 decorative borders and frames book 11915 treasury of patterns book

11915 design#1 11915 design#2 11915 design#3 11915 design#4 11915 design#5

After much thinking, I’ve decided that some sort of vine border is OK for this quit.  The middle picture shows border ideas that are not appropriate for this quilt and way too complicated, but would be great for a different future quilt!  So I spent some time drawing a couple different ideas inspired by the above pictures.  I tried out a different idea on the right and on the left of the central “tree”:

11915 practicing ideas#1 11915 practicing ideas#2 11915 practicing ideas#3

The more rounded leaves on the right would be easier to applique, but right now I’m liking the look of the more pointed leaves on the left better.  Do I want to commit to that challenge or settle for the easier way?   I’ll study these for a while before deciding.  Also, I think I will do interior prairie points similar to what I did on this quilt that hangs in my bathroom:

11915 prairie point border#1 11915 prairie point border#2

It’s good to feel closer to a border solution for this quilt!

Meanwhile, besides the daily circles, I am spending time hand quilting Stella Nova:

11915 in the hoop#1 11915 in the hoop#2

My echo quilting lines are a half inch apart which is the same distance apart as the lines in the Baptist fans.  I’m wondering if I should quilt additional echo lines in the border in between these, but not sure.  I remember reading that the density of quilting in a border should match that in the center or the quilt might not lie flat.  If so, I should leave it alone the way it is so that’s probably what I’ll do.

I’ve joined a health club and started to swim on a regular basis!  Getting more exercise is one of my goals for my semi-retirment so I’m happy I moved quickly to do this.  Swimming is an excellent exercise and I’ve always loved being in water.  The extra time I’ve had so far feels decadent to me, but deep down I think I deserve it after all the years of hard work!  Back to work – but only half time! – the day after tomorrow.

Be grateful, be kind, and cherish each day!  Gladi


2 thoughts on “January 19, 2016: Japanese Quilts at the New England Quilt Museum, Part 2; project updates and thoughts on creativity and procrastination

  1. Wendy Caton Reed

    Thank you so much for sharing the Japanese quilts. I went with a friend last time and these quilts are simply stunning. I love the border proposal for We Are Stardust. Barbara called you a sewing “machine” on her recent blog post. And, she meant it in the most admirable way! I think the half inch echo in the border looks great. You are a fast quilter, almost done! I think the Quilty 365 has been a good exercise for me. I enjoy learning from all the different ways to make circle quilts. I love your circles on circles. It will be a wonderfully graphic quilt. I just may make another next year and be a bit more creative. Thanks again for sharing.

    1. gladiporsche Post author

      Thanks, Wendy. Hope you get a chance to see these Japanese quilts before the exhibit is over. I’m pleased with my progress on Stella Nova and am getting the entry ready to send for the VQF next Monday! Am enjoying the circle project! I love following your blog. Gladi


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