Monday, May 23, 2011

Birth of a Memorial Quilt - Design Wall Monday

How many types of graph paper do you own?  This weekend, I was struck by the depth of my graph paper collection.  I mean, how did I manage to collect so many different kinds?  Anyways, I was rifling through them because I  needed to start designing a commissioned memorial quilt for a family friend.  This is the third commissioned memorial piece I've taken on and I'm never quite sure where the quilt journey is going to take me.  I sit down with the client and talk about their love ones.  They hand me photos, bags of clothing and memories.  I try to look all confident but it all seems a bit overwhelming.


So the first step is to start sorting the fabric, so that I can get a feel of the direction the quilt is going to be.   While I was making piles, I found a ton of plaids and stripes - a lot of neutral, earthy colors - hints of red here and there.  It just all felt very male.  I never worry about the fabric type - that is another day's problem.

Then I sat down at my work table with my favorite pencil set  and a big piece of graph paper and just stare at the blocks until ideas come to me.  I want something with direction for this quilt - very traditional - large enough to cover a bed.  I want there to be spaces enough to highlight treasured t-shirts, photos, maybe quotes and dates. I want the design to reflect the person. . . simple. . .hard working. . . .male.   After a couple of hours, this is what I came up with.  It doesn't mean that the quilt will end up exactly like this - but at least its a start!

More great design walls at Judy's Patchworks!

7 comments:

Chris said...

I love the design you have created. I am starting on a T shirt quilt in the next week or so. I look forward to watching your progress ;)

FrancesB said...

I like your design quite a lot. I think there is one thing though which might be bothering me: the horizontal rows of flying geese go clockwise, while the vertical rows of flying go counter-clockwise. Overall, really nice design.

AnnieO said...

I love graph paper and pencil too! I like your medallion design and can just picture how you described fitting in other memorable items around the piecing. Terrific.

Quilter Kathy said...

I admire people who can plan out a quilt and think through all the details...I just can't envision things this way. Your design looks great to me!

Nina-Marie said...

OMG Frances - you are so right - didn't even think or catch that! Thanks so much I'll make the change!

Nina-Marie said...

Kathy - you know its all about work style - I kinda think that I'm so structured that I get a bit OCD with it. Even when I'm making a quilt that is suppose to "evolve" I still have some kind of little sketch so I have an idea where I'm going. I'm not quite sure if this design will end up like this though!

Dianne Leatherdale Johnson said...

I only have about four types of graph paper,all inherited from my Mother. I found it most usfull in twice planning the move of a flower shop where many lineal yards of counters and fixtures had to be laid out exactly, and ahead of the move. Did it in two days over a long weekend with no loss of working business days. Apparently this was unheard of in the industry here in our area.
Yay graph paper!