Thursday, January 31, 2013

Madrona Road Challenge - Completed!

I finished my Madrona Road Challenge Quilt for the (Kansas City) Modern Quilt Guild!

The challenge was presented to us in the KCMQG in an email:
Create a modern quilt based on or inspired by a traditional block. This can mean changing the scale of the block, improvisational piecing of the block (similar to wonky log cabins and wonky Ohio stars), use of asymmetry, negative space, etc. The traditional block must appear once somewhere in the quilt (even if it is on the back!).
If you're stumped about which block to use as your inspiration, feel free to browse this database!
Size: Your finished quilt should be at least 18" x 18". At most? Well, if you've been needing to make a quilt for that king size bed and you can get it done in a month, go for it!
Other fabrics: You will receive a pack of seven fat eighths (one of each fabric). You are welcome to add additional Madrona Road fabrics (any of them) or solids (or solid-ish fabrics) to your project.

Skyscraper (26"x38")

The block I chose to start my quilt off is on the left side of the quilt in about the middle.  Do you see it?  It's a log cabin.

I had fun building this little quilt.  I started with the log cabin block and built the strip you see it in.  After that, I just started improvisationally adding to the quilt in strips.  I had in my head from a sketch I shared previously that I wanted it to look somewhat like a cityscape.

Skyscraper - Back

I love quilts that have cuddly backs.  I found this dark grey flannel and thought it was the perfect back for this quilt.  I bought a bit of the fabric with the trucks from the Madrona Road line and appliqued the trucks to the bottom of the back and used them as my labels.

Truck 1

Truck 2

Truck 3

Can you see how I quilted it?  I used the squiggly wiggly stitch my machine has programmed into it and just went in straight vertical lines down my quilt using my walking foot.  I love the way it crinkled up when washed.  And it was super fast to do!  It only took me about 1.5 naptimes to get it quilted!  (1.5 naptimes is about an hour and a half of real work time.)

Skyscraper - Telescope

We took a little family outing on a beautiful January day to the Nelson-Atkins Art Museum.  I had in mind a photograph of my quilt with this awesome sculpture of headless bodies by Magdalena Abakanowicz and that was the whole reason we went down there.  I had my trusty quilt photographing assistants with me.  Daniel  was on my back in the mei tai I made (will have to blog about that) and Jason was going to stand behind one of the sculpture bodies and pretty much hug around it and hold my quilt in front.  It was going to be awesome. So, here we are... our little family is out setting up this shot, Jason has climbed into the middle of the bodies and is getting his arms around the sculpture when we hear "Sir.  We need you to step away from the sculpture.  Please enjoy your visit."  Ah!  Caught by security and scolded over the loudspeaker AND I can't get the shot I wanted of my quilt.  

Now, I'm all for not touching things, but come on.  The sculpture is outside.  It gets rained on.  It gets snowed on.  Birds are free to crap on it.  Why can't I photograph my quilt with my husband standing behind it?

Maybe that's why I became a quilter and studied architecture in school.  I'm drawn to mathematically inspired design.  I don't really understand why something somebody creates is so precious that nobody else can touch it.  Okay... maybe mummies and such shouldn't be touched, but only because they're ancient and if they've survived that long they should maybe be allowed to not have smudgy fingerprints on them.  Maybe this is the reason I'm a fan of this quilt.  I think things that are made should be used.  Quilts should be slept under.  Tables should have books on them.  Buildings should be stood in.  Sculptures that birds can poop on should be available for me to touch.  

Anyway... that's my ramblings about art and the artistic attitude.  Things should be touched.  Quilts should be rolled up and used as a telescope.  They should be played with.  I make things with the intention of them being dragged through the mud and thrown in the washing machine.  That's my two cents... or should it be more like my two bucks with inflation figured in since that saying came around.  

Quilt SpecsTitle: Skyscraper 
Fabric used:
  • Quilt top: Madrona Road in blue colorway, Kona Raffiea, Kona Cornflower, and Kona Charcoal  
  • Quilt back: Dark grey flannel & labels from Madrona Road "Farmstead" print 
Approximate size: 26"x38" 

Blogged about while in progress here, here, and here.


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