Sewing started out in some ways as a reaction to spending 10 hours a day in front of a computer screen. After punching out at work, the last thing I wanted to do at home was to sit back down in front of a Mac. I've never "designed" a quilt on a computer. I've thought about it - done a couple "sketches" in Illustrator, but ultimately, that process (then and now, at least for the time being, never say never) just doesn't appeal. Process is paramount for me. No, actually pleasure is paramount for me. If I were to design a quilt on a computer, I would then feel compelled to execute that design as flawlessly as possible. There would be no room for improvisation or happy accidents or whimsy. It would feel like a lot of pressure. I don't like feeling pressure. It is in no way stimulating to me. It is the opposite of fun, and fun is the only reason for me to make quilts, dig?
Cut to early February, three months into my current sabbatical (layoff), and my friend Charlotte asks: are your quilts available for common folk to purchase or are they strictly museum acquisition pricing levels? Pffft, I replied, they are totally available in whatever budget you got, sister!
I sent her jpgs of all my available finished quilts, but none was really the right size/color. She was looking for a birthday gift for her partner, Roz, something that would work in their bedroom on a Queen-sized bed. I told her the best thing possible would be for me to make something specifically for them. I've known Charlotte and Roz for a few years now, been to their home on several occasions, but never seen their bedroom. Charlotte asked us over for dinner and afterwards we all tromped to the second floor of their beautiful brownstone to survey their bedroom and talk logistics.
I think they were a little nervous. I was a little nervous. But also really excited. I took some phone snaps of their walls and artwork, their rugs, the chair next to the fireplace. I asked them some questions. I tried to weigh how much they were committed to the reds in their bedroom, how much importance to give the William Morris pattern on the armchair. Roz said she like asymmetry. I started thinking about what I could make that night in bed while I fell asleep.
In a few days time, I sent Charlotte a short design rationale to get her feedback: