Monday, November 7, 2011

I'm a Yankee Doodle Dandy....


I finished my Patriotic quilt/piece of art.  I’m pretty happy with it.  It’s now hanging in my dining room taking pride of place.   

There are TONS of mistakes in it and the machine quilting is just horrible but I can look past its faults to appreciate the beauty of the design and overall presentation.  I love it.

I purposely designed it to look primitive as the inspiration I had for it was from a primitive painting I saw years ago.  The original artist (sorry, I don’t know the name...) depicted three  48 star flags overlapping each other.  I decided in my design I was going to represent the original 13 star flag first, then the 48 and finally on top the 50.  Of course it’s representational as I didn’t have the space to really put all those stars on these flags – but the placing of the stars is correct in that the original 13 were in a circle, the 48 row by row and the 50 offset.  I used artistic licence I suppose.  This piece was trickier then you might think for a rather straightforward design.  After I pieced the 13 stars and than the 48 my husband pointed out to me that I’d put the stars upside down!  How could I have missed that!!!  Anyway there was a lot of unpicking done with plenty of swearing under my breath for making such a stupid mistake.  Also in keeping with the primitive look, I wanted my stripes to ‘wave’ a bit, meaning as you can see from the right edge, there’s a bit of a ruffle.  And with the binding I used blue in the mostly red and white half and red in the mostly blue area – just to give it a little visual interest.  All the strips are machine quilted with swirls and the stars are slightly echo quilted – again I wanted to give it a primitive edge so I left much of the fields of blue untouched and focused mainly on the stars.  Leaving it this way gives it a flag on flag on flag feel instead of one solid piece.  

You can see it’s been mounted on a wooden frame.  This is for two reasons.  One,  I wanted to ensure it hung right so the frame gives it some structure that just leaving it loose wouldn’t have provided and two, my husband is absolutely nuts about not putting any holes in our new houses walls.  He’s loving the blank wall look and it took me a while to convince him that a few quilts strategically placed added to the look of the house and not detracted from it.  He conceded and built this frame with one more in the works for the living room.  You wouldn’t believe how many pictures I have sitting on the floor throughout the house.  Admittedly they don’t look bad where we’ve placed them and I’ve gotten used to looking down at them instead of up.  It’s also caused me to think outside the usual square when it comes to displaying pictures.  I’ve made a nice arrangement of black and white photographs we’ve taken on top of a low boy set of drawers my husband made and I like it.   I think the bonanza of photographs and art work I displayed in our last house caused my husband to OD  so now his brain needs time to soak in the Zen of a blank wall.

My artistic grouping
You can see our very big (and heavy) mirror is now positioned on the floor in the hallway.  It looks pretty good I think.  

Now that my patriotic quilt is done, what's next?

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