But I didn't let that stop me from staying up and trying some experimental quilting with scrap fabric. I've been thinking about learning to quilt for at least ten years now. I think I might have finally wrapped my head around the idea. I'm torn between really old traditional patterns, and more contemporary free-form quilts. This weekend I stopped by the local used book store and picked up a great book from the 1970s:
American quilts and how to make them features some beautiful images of quilts from the early 1800s, as well as outlines of the pattern pieces needed to make them. They remind me a lot of some of the quilts at the Winterthur Museum, where I spent a fair amount of time in the past two years. I really love some of the applique quilts--they look like gorgeous wallpaper. I've also been very interested in the quilts from Gee's Bend for the past several years. I particularly love these free-form takes on the traditional log cabin pattern:
(I'm not sure if the above one is from Gee's Bend, I can't figure out where I found this image--apologies!)
As I obsessively combed the internet for quilt inspiration, I also happened upon some gorgeous Hawaiian quilts. I don't think I've ever seen these before, but apparently there is a very strong, unique quilting tradition in Hawaii.
Not only are the shapes and colors amazing, but take a close look at the quilting--I just love the way those contour lines look.
Above: contemporary Hawaiian quilt made by Deborah Kakalia, courtesy of the Bishop Museum.
Click here to see another amazing Hawaiian quilt [it's mustard yellow and white!] and to find some free quilt patterns. I'd love to try one of these out, though I'm fairly certain that those large appliques would be very difficult to cut out, and even more difficult to sew down without crazy puckering everywhere. Perhaps I'll work my way up to these one day.
Do you have any favorite quilts or quilt patterns? I'd love to see them.