Last year our local guild held a challenge called "Stitchin' the Blues." I made a quilt for that challenge, and as I was brainstorming names for that quilt, I recalled an old blues song titled "Jackass Blues." I didn't want to use that name for my challenge quilt, but it did bring to mind a photo I had taken a few years ago -- and the idea for another quilt was born.
I drafted a pattern from my photo using Photoshop, and used raw-edged appliqué for the donkey and barn. The background is pieced using improv curves.
I scanned the music for the song to create custom-printed fabrics for the background.
It took a couple of iterations to get the color right. I used the rejects on the back, along with a full fat quarter as a label.
The fabrics used in the appliqué, and the binding, are mostly from Regency Ballycastle by Christopher Wilson-Tate.
The song "Jackass Blues" was written by Art Kassel and Mel Stitzel in 1926. Here's a link to a recent version by Tuba Skinny, and here is a link to Joe "King" Oliver's version with vocals.
(My original challenge quilt can be seen near the end of this post -- along with a hint about this quilt.)
March 13, 2019
In contrast, the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness,
generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.
Galatians 5:22-23 (NABRE)
A few years ago, I heard a sermon based on the Fruit of the Spirit, as listed in Galations 5. I was familiar with Tonya Ricucci's Word Play Quilts from another project, and it occurred to me during the sermon that these words could be made into a quilt. It took a long period of musing to settle on an approach, but I am happy with the end result.
The layout is an improv variation on a medallion quilt, with a pineapple in the center. (The pineapple is based on a design by Sassafras Lane.)
For colors, I started with a Kona fat quarter bundle that struck me as fruity (even though it is called "Sunrise"). Some of the colors even have fruity names, such as Tangerine, Pomegranate, Peach, Sour Apple, and Lemon. I added Ice Frappe for backgrounds, plus other coordinating solids.
(It turns out a fat quarter does not provide enough fabric to make one of these word panels.)
I toyed with the idea of using only solid fabrics, but I couldn't resist using fruit-themed prints. The word panels all use a fruit print for the letters, with a solid background.
A couple of the borders are fussy cut from fruit prints.
Most of the words were made using Tonya Ricucci's methods, while a few were paper pieced. I wanted to give an impression of varying fonts. "Patience" and "Gentleness" use patterns by Kristy Lea (except the upper-case "P" is my own design).
"Love" is another paper piecing design of my own. "Kindness" is semi-improv but based on a design by Amanda Jean Nyberg.
Peach fabric seemed suitable for "Peace"; this and a couple other fabrics are even scented.
I made the word panels plus a few of the fruit blocks without a definite layout in mind, then worked to piece it all together. Spaces were filled with either traditional blocks or more fruit blocks. Of course I had to include some orange peel blocks, and there are hourglass blocks near "Patience."
These are fussy cut from a fabric used on the back:
The strawberry block uses a pattern by Kerry Green. The watermelon is another pattern by Kristy Lea, and the citrus pattern is by Amy Friend.
I designed the pear myself, based loosely on one of the prints in the quilt.
The outer border is composed of traditional pineapple blocks. These were made using paper piecing too. I scaled the patterns to fit the space available; the blocks on the side are not quite the same size as those along the top and bottom, and the corner blocks are not exactly square -- but they are close enough to not be noticeable. I fussy cut the centers from various fruit prints. I almost wish I had stuck with just the strawberries -- they seem just right for these blocks.
I quilted different free-motion designs in the background of each word. A Christmas gift came in handy for marking some of the designs -- Judi Madsen's Quickmark Assist ruler.
More orange peels, naturally, quilted using a grid marked with the above ruler:
The binding and one of the borders are made from a watermelon rind print. I quilted some words into the green border -- "The Fruit of the Spirit," "Galations 5:22-23," "Those who abide in me and I in them bear much fruit," "By their fruit you will know them," and my initials and the date.
I started stitching on this quilt in late 2017, and focused on it beginning last September. I missed a couple of deadlines I had hoped to meet for show submissions; then I learned that our church would be having a 9-week sermon series on the fruit of the Spirit. I wasn't able to complete the quilt in time for the start of the sermon series, but it was ready for the last two weeks of the series. I was happy to have it on display for those services.