Wednesday, April 30, 2008

The Lazy Lily blooms

Marianne has received my DQSII Lazy Lily quilt, so now I can post more about it's making. I was really about to sweat (and curse & scream). It had been a week since I mailed it and still she had not received it. I have mailed to Europe in that amount of time. I thought for sure it was lost. I even spoke to someone at the post office yesterday about the remote site from which it was mailed (I incidentally had one other package mailed that same day also to somewhere in Michigan that had not arrived safely). It was starting to smell fishy. But fortunately, Marianne emailed last night to let me know the quilt was safe, and loved. The two words a quiltmaker wants to hear most.

At the beginning of the swap, I anonymously emailed her since she does not have a blog. She sent me this picture of a quilt she recently bought for her bedroom as a potential source of inspiration. It reminded me of something southwestern, with the oranges and turquoise. Immediately I thought of these fabrics which I used on this Round Robin border recently.

I also remembered that on one of my duller afternoons I used some of these fabrics to "test" what the disappearing 9-patch pattern might look like. I made up this block which is about 15" x 18" or so, but really did not know what I was ever going to do with it.

After seeing her quilt I knew exactly what I was going to do. Now generally when I do swap quilts, I make to order rather than having a stash of pre-made, unpersonalized basic quilt tops. Sometimes these can be nice. I have heard of people that make their swap quilts this way. I just choose not to so that the quilt is more personalized. But the fabrics were the right colors, and I had very little of them left in my stash. You see, the brown and turquoise (& it's combo) are not my standard colors. In fact, until I had recently worked with them, I probably would have just said I don't care for them. Actually, brown is still just for mud, but the turquiose is growing on me. What I needed to do was make the quilt have a focal point, a border & something more than a bunch of random, unpersonalized squares.

I also thought I needed to bring out the orange tones a little. Again, orange is a color I don't stock too much of. Mind you, I have several hundred yards of fabric in my stash, just not in orange, or turquiose! So I did what I love most - went shopping for fabric. I left the 3 cherubs sleeping and typed up and searched on orange+quilt. Four days later and completely stress-free (unlike actually fabric shopping with my whining, grabby herd of youngens), I got 4 orange half-yard options to audition for the Day Lily I sketched up to add to the quilt. Now, Marianne thinks it is a Tiger Lily, which it could also be since it is partially striped. In her email to me last night, she wrote...

I especially appreciate the tiger lily on the front. That's what I'm calling it because I grew up with wild tiger (orange) lilies in the ditches all around where our house was. I appreciate it because here we have such long winters...

During the design, I called it a day lily. Lilies symbolize spring to me. They grow wild everywhere where I live - in the ditches, in manicured gardens, in hilly fields. Each flower lasts barely longer than a day, hense the name. Besides, I didn't really know what else to add to the quilt that was orange. I am really pleased though that she likes and connects with lilies too. It is needle-turn appliqued on, with it's stamen (is that the right name??) appliqued on. It's leaves are a dark batik which matches the dark olive in one of the dotted fabrics.

I added a wider ivory border around the disappearing 9-patches & hand quilted a couple rows of hand quilting. In retrospect, I wish I had done a couple more rows, but then. I like the center part of the quilt which is hand quilted in concentric & overlapping circles. You can sort of see the quilting in the picture of the label I put on the back, also a circle. The lily on the label is drawn on using permanent sharpie pens. They are just wonderful!
The recipient says it coordinates with her bedroom & new quilt very nicely, and that is all I needed to hear. It is definitely nerve-wracking making something for a person that hasn't a blog so you can at least get a sense of their style & likes.


calamitykim said...

wow! That was gorgeous! A lovely lily! I really like appliqué over piecing! I am adding you to my sidebar. You are in the 4 seasons with my friend Tami- right?

Tanaya said...

Such a lovely quilt!! Thank you so much for playing along in this round. I hope that you post about whatever you receive in return as well.

Mom said...

Yes Tami does the 4-Seasons swap too. I coincidentally made her last swap quilt. thanks for your note. I think your quilts are whimsical and fun (Oh, to have such an imagination!)