I Just Closed My Eyes

And came up with an idea for a quilt – the streaks of color you see when you rub your eyes hard. The internet tells me they are called phosphenes. If you meditate a lot, you might know them as nimitta. I had thought of calling this one Scintillations, but maybe I should go with Phosphene Forest.

I pulled out small leftover strips (more scraps,) sewed them together, and set them into a navy ombre fabric. I just love ombres as they give luminosity to a quilt, and color gradations without the bother of sewing a bunch of pieces together.

ombre2After trying and rejecting various yarns and ribbons to stitch on top of the blocks, I decided to do scattered hand stab stitching in undulating columns. I’ve ironed fusible fleece to the back in columns to give stability to my stitches and a bit of dimension.

Phosphene backvariegated Valdani perle cotton

The hand stitching is done. I used variegated Valdani perle cotton We’ll see how well the fleece works out once I add batting to the whole piece. I’m now puzzling over how to quilt this.

Phosphene ForestMy husband, the scientist, says the design is too geometric to represent phosphenes. He really doesn’t grasp the concept of artistic license.



Filed under In Process, Project Ideas

18 responses to “I Just Closed My Eyes

  1. Pingback: In The Eye Of The Beholder | The Snarky Quilter

  2. patty

    What an interesting piece. I look forward to seeing it in person at our next meeting.

  3. Rebecca

    p.s. “Dreamweaver” is going through my mind now.

  4. I like how the indigo fabric, even faded/ombre fabric with the hand stitching evokes sashiko stitching, which in its early incarnations was a peasant way of extending the life of the fabric by layering together different blues and stitching together to make a pleasing, yet utilitarian item. Lovely quilt and stitching! And it does look a little like fairy dust.

  5. Diane Bird

    Wow! I really like this.

  6. jennyklyon

    Fascinating, original piece; the hand stitching adds a lot to this piece. Quilting is a real quandary. You can’t just machine quilt parallel lines because there is no place to turn. Maybe parallel lines of hand quilting-have to experiment with different threads. I just think that the quilting has to be very simple, the story is already told with the gradient, shots of color and the stab stitches. Strong piece!

    • I have been thinking of doing machine stitched jagged lines down the narrow strips of color, but still need to quilt in the hand stitched parts. I may just do a simple follow the seam machine stitching along the colored strips to anchor the sandwich together and then do hand quilting.

      • Rebecca

        That sounds like a plan (but as a beginning quilter, I do tend to like to “anchor” the layers). I can imaging stab-stitch quilting much like your embroidery, but in non-contrast thread, to add texture rather than pattern.
        OR you could do that in the plain areas, and machine-quilt non-parallel lines (like your colored strips) through the colorful embroidery stitches, so that the areas echo each other.

        Excellent use of scraps and ombre!

      • Thanks for all the quilting ideas. I’m a bit leery of machine quilting over the hand stitches, for fear of pulling them, but maybe if I go slow…

  7. I just love this! The embroidery adds so much and the ombre fabric is perfect–I love it all!

  8. Really like that scattered hand stitching – sort of looks a bit like fairy dust … 🙂

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