The Challenge of A Challenge

I’ve been working on a 12 inch square piece for my traditional guild’s paint chip challenge. We’re to pick 2 colors whose names begin with our initials. So, if Martha Washington were to participate, she might choose Moonlight Silver and Wasabi Green. If you’ve ever shopped for paint you know that names given to the colors tend to be fanciful.

My chosen colors were Mulberry and June Day.

mulberryJune Day

Since we could only use the two colors (and tints, shades, values of them) plus white and black, many of my stash fabrics were out of the running. Luckily, I had won a group of purple batiks as a door prize, so I combined them with my hand dyed mulberry fabric.

My first attempt yielded this. The fabric at the center really does match the mulberry swatch, but my camera doesn’t think so.


I free motion quilted it, and added iridescent purple paint to make the outer purple areas more uniform. Then, I used Frieda Anderson’s fused binding technique to finish the edges. I named it Kapow! Readers of comic books will understand this allusion. To enlighten you youngsters, comic books are now called graphic novels.

Kapow!Then, since I had so much fabric already pulled out I decided to make a second square. This time I used the slivers technique and made various yellows the background of rows of slivers. After I got all the rows sewn together I decided to add silk yarn and decorative stitching. When that didn’t seem enough, I pulled out my gold paintstik.

Well, I still didn’t like it. The individual rows looked great as a border around my first effort but didn’t work when sewn together. I disliked it so much I seem to have deleted the photo I took of it. I should have realized that if the “bones” aren’t right no amount of cover up will improve a design.

So, I sliced that square up, made some quilted fabric to insert between the slices, and sewed them all together. About this point my sewing machine gave up the ghost (see my post about getting it fixed) and I finished the zigzagging on my old Elna.

Slice-slashI had already bound the original version, so I zigzagged the edges of my inserts and left jagged edges. I’m not going to call Berry Pie a success, but it’s better than it was. Of course, with all that slicing and slashing it now measures 11 by 14 inches, so I can’t enter it in my guild’s challenge.

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