I was invited to make an art quilt with the theme Personal Iconography: Graffiti on Cloth. This is the third year in a row that I have made a quilt for the group Dinner@Eight. My plan was to use fiber items that I have saved or collected, or been gifted over the years. I gathered them all and brought them to a retreat for fiber artists in April (Focus on Fiber in New Smyrna Beach, FL)
I worked on a couple of arrangements, and played with my 'ingredients' until I was satisfied with the composition. Everything was pinned to the background fabric and batting. Folded it all up, and brought it home.
Then, I went to Chicago for the International Quilt Festival. Then I went to Nebraska for the Studio Art Quilt Associates conference. Then I came home and tried to get caught up on what I had missed while I was gone. A reminder email came from one of the Dinner@Eight curators. I replied that it would take a miracle for me to finish on time, and I apologized that I probably wouldn't make it this year. Soon, it was June 20, and the Dinner@8 deadline was June 23.
I had my composition all laid out. All I would have to do is to stitch all the pieces down, quilt the project, finish the edges and photograph it. I had three whole days. I decided I should give it a try. So, I worked like a madwoman for 3 days, staying up late into the night, and rising early to work on my project. I got dibs on the kitchen counter before anyone else could take it over. I bent my needle. My fingers got sore. BUT, I FINISHED and submitted it at 10:30pm, shortly before the midnight deadline. It was quite stressful, and I never want to wait that late again.
Just today, I received notice that my work had been selected for this year's exhibit!!! It will be shown at the International Quilt Festival in Houston this fall, and hopefully, at the Festival in Chicago next spring!
One of my favorite 'ingredients' is my green bloomers which I used to wear in high school PE class. Don't know why I saved them, but they certainly don't fit me anymore, and my precious mom embroidered my name into the waistband, so they are part of my personal iconography. Also the long white nylon gloves (like stitching through concrete) that I wore to many Rainbow Girl events and a couple of Proms. Other precious items are art gifts from other fiber artist friends. There are pieces of some favorite clothing items, and a Girl Scout badge that never got sewn on to my sash (which I no longer have). So, I am happy to have used these various little pieces of my history and my friendships. The quilt is not my usual style, but I love it. There are many precious pieces with loads of symbolism in it. NFS. The title of the work is Precious Threads.