Saturday, 7 July 2007

Indigo quilts

Jane Western asked for more pictures of the indigo quilt in the post about using a hoop under the quilt.
I made two using these 3 Cats fabrics. Sometimes I make quilts that are real no brainers. They're not ugly quilts, just ones which go together fairly quickly, need not a lot of thought and little creative energy. I don't fuss about points, or the quality of the quilting too much.
These two were made for the sofa in the sitting room. Just something to drape over you when having a nap.
Some people when looking at this quilt see stars (that was the intention) but others see a Japanese car logo. If you see the car logo, it's obvious how it went together. Piecing 60ยบ triangles is very easy as if you leave on the corners, everything lines up nicely for piecing.
The 3 Cats fabrics were originally printed in England and went for export to Africa. Eventually the factory closed down and someone rescued the printing blocks (or were they rollers?), happily they are now being produced in South Africa.
When you get these fabric they are as stiff as very stiff card. Washing a few times softens them up and loses the excess dye. They are printed by using a resist and on the back are 3 cat heads. On the newer fabrics you'll find not only the cats, but 3 leopards, 3 fish and other motifs. Maggie Relph
imports these fabrics back to England, they are gorgeous, be aware that they are woven on 36" looms so fat quarters are smaller than those on the 'normal' 42" looms.
This 2nd quilt is made using kaleidoscope blocks, one of my favourite traditional block patterns as I love the secondary impression of circles.
Last year (or the year before My memory is shot (grin)) I went to a woad farm in Norfolk and learnt about woad indigo. We also had Jane Calender teaching us a little shibori. She is a master shibori expert. Jane uses synthetic indigo (apparently all indigos from different plant or coal sources are chemically the same). I bought some pots of the woad indigo but I shall not be using it to dye fabric but to mix into paint for our bedroom. Nothing else has quite the same blue. Perhaps my love of indigo harks back to desperately wanting a pair of Amco jeans when I was a young teenager in Australia. I coveted a pair of these so much. My mother bought me a pair of fake synthetic jeans which were NOT the same thing at all.


Jane Weston said...

Oh thanks for sharing Sally. They are absolutely stunning. I love those indigo fabrics. I recently bought some from Maggie and that's what I used to make a handbag recently. You are so right about them being stiff as board and the excess dye. I wish I'd pinked the edges of the fabric before I washed them because they frayed in the washer and the tangled mess was a challenge.

Vicki W said...

Hey Sally - thanks for visiting my blog and leaving a comment so that I could find yours! I love these quilts. The fabrics are lovely.

Grandma Mary said...

My girlfriend fell in love with the second blue and white quilt, the one based on the kaleidoscope block, that is on the Bird on a Wire blog. Is this a pattern or must I re-create it?
Many thanks,
M. Westin