How many Christmas quilts do you have? I have one or two small quilts and a couple of table runners. My friend Andra has an amazing number of Christmas quilts– wall quilts, bed quilts–all kinds! And she has decorations to coordinate with her quilts that fill her house with Christmas cheer. Don't you love Andra's little tree coming home in the pick up truck!
A few weeks ago, my friend Sujata gave me a copy of her new book, Cultural Fusion Quilts. When I first flipped through the pages, I wanted to crash into my stash of fabrics, start cutting like a wild woman and make every single quilt in the book. Oh yeah, it's that good! I have beaten down that insane impulse because I know exactly where it would have lead me– with a huge mess.
Instead of going off with rotary cutter half cocked, I have allowed myself to read through the book, enjoying Sujata's story, her inspirations, her colors and her methods.
Many quilters know Sujata Shah from her very popular blog, The Root Connection, but I didn't meet her that way. A gasp of delight was my first reaction to seeing her quilts when she showed them at a guild meeting. I gotta know that woman! A colorful and exciting quilt introduction led to our friendship.
My very favorite thing about the book is how Sujata translates her inspiration into quilt form. The quilt “Toran” was inspired by little flags, strung as welcoming banners, called torans.
The photo Sujata took of a fort in Rajasthan, India, reminds me of my visit to Mehrangarh Fort, when I was in Rajasthan, and I wonder if it is the same fort. I so want to make a quilt to remember my amazing trip.
I am in awe of Sujata's connection between inspiration and fabric translation. How easily she constructed the blocks with her free-form piecing technique. Everybody could do this! All of the quilts in the book have clear instructions.
Color! Sujata and I live at different ends of the rainbow. Actually, her quilts are color explosions and I love them. But I am so inspired by the quilt, Winter.
Maybe because it speaks to me, so perfectly eloquent, right now when December days in Chester County are so gray. Or maybe because I want to make a quilt using my own colors of greens and blues. Don't you absolutely love it when a quilt book shows you different color ways! There is so much encouragement and suggestion for individualizing.
Sujata says “Quilts are wordless documents of personal and family history written in stitches.” She let's us see her story, told with open whole-heartedness. Her book invites quilters to join her spontaneous creativity, with easy, just plain fun techniques, to stitch our own impressions and memories.
Go ahead! Give yourself a Christmas present! Cultural Fusion Quilts: A Melting Pot of Piecing Traditions.
I'm a fan. Big fan!
I knoooow! It has been a long time since my last post. I have been sewing like a demon but I can't show anything because everything I have been working on, is for Christmas gifts. Maybe that means lots of posts later! I can't wait to show some of my customer's quilts that I have been longarm quilting. Did you catch that word “CUSTOMER?” That's right! I have decided that using my longarm sewing machine is so darn much fun, that I can't churn out enough quilt tops to just quilt for myself.
Much more on my new venture coming soon.
I do have a few postcards I just made that I can share. I am deleriously in love with trilliums– (and can't wait for May when they will be in bloom.) I taught a postcard workshop at Mt Cuba Center last July and I am amazed how many trillium lovers there are! Mt Cuba is renowned world wide for trillium research and propagation and the word spread. I received many requests from people wanting to buy cards and went into crazy production mode, creating small works of art.
The Goldfinch Donna Tartt
The Husbands Secret Liane Moriarty
Rescue Anita Shreve
March Geraldine Brooks
This World We Live In Susan Beth Pfeffer
Don't Go Lisa Scottoline
Still Life With Breadcrumbs Anna Quindlin
The Invention of Wings Sue Monk Kidd
The Rope Nevada Barr
Some Nerve Patty Anker
A Year of Wonders Geraldine Brooks
Shanghai Girls Lisa See
The Signature of All Things Elizabeth Gilbert
We Are Water Wally Lamb
The Haunting of Maddy Clare Simone St. James
Life as We Knew It Susan Beth Pfeffer
The Art Forger B.A. Shapiro
Sisterland by Curtis Sittenfeld
Amy and Isabelle by Elizabeth Strout
Roses by Leila Meacham
Broken Harbor by Tana French
Room by Emma Donoghue
Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout