Thursday, March 27, 2014

Indian Paintbrush (Finish #1)

Where is 2014 finish #1 you ask? Did you notice it was missing....Here it is!
I have tried for a days to get the picture posted upright through various approaches. Not only that, but the color and quality of picture is also poor. But that is not going to stop me from happily posting my first finish of 2014 (back in January. This quilt was a delight to work on. It began on a trip home from Muskogee Azalea festival in April 2009. I pulled off the highway to take a picture of the Indian paintbrush that grows wild in Oklahoma along side of I-40 in the springtime. Genus Castilleja is a perennial herbaceous plant native to this area. 

Indian Paintbrush - Original design, Wanda Robinson@2014
On that day there was a particularly vast array of flowers blooming that really inspired me! I had been dabbling with Ruth McDowell's design techniques and style for piecing flowers and scenes. And planned an adventure with mom to attend Ruth's Designing From Nature quilting retreat/workshop in Western Massachusetts that fall. This was the design inspiration I was looking for.

I had such a wonderful experience met my inspiring quilter friend Coral (A Fine Line Studio) there! All design work for the Paintbrush was done at the workshop. I completed piecing several months after returning home. I really enjoyed the design work, auditioning fabric, and sewing. Just seeing the bright unfinished piece hanging in my office/quilt work area was such pleasure! When I went back to MA in March 2010 to visit my new friend and attend her guild's quilt show, I took the quilt top with me and finished the few remaining pieces. By that time, Coral had her quilt finished and hanging in that show. It was magnificent! 

At the Thimble Pleasures Quilt show, I decided to ask one of the very talented women exhibiting at the show to quilt Paintbrush for me. After discussing the quilting design for the piece I left my quilt there to be machine quilted by her (whose name escapes me at the moment). A few months later, Paintbrush arrive home. And there it sat on my design wall, and sat, and got buries, and missed entry in one show after another. I began adding binding at one point but was never satisfied with how to complete the corners. Then it sat longer...years until January 2014. I just sat down and in the course about about 3 evenings finished hand sewing the corners. Done!

Now my favorite Indian Paintbrush happily occupies a place of honor on the family room wall. I see it everything I come in the door. It also will need a label. Hummm.... The quilt will finally debut in our local quilt show this fall! I still love it as much as ever and long to work on another design using the same techniques. But for now (for today at least), my goal is still finishing things.

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