Thursday, February 19, 2015

Anni Albers

Anni Albers. Yep, this one.
So I was hit by this urge the other night to try to salvage an abandoned quilt I had folded up and stuck in my limbo pile. It had started life as an homage to an Anni Albers print (you know the one). I started out following it faithfully, intending to duplicate the sequence of half-square triangles exactly, but eventually gave that up as my eyes kept doing some weird eyeball dyslexia, inverting the pattern and flipping the triangles and making it surprisingly hard and ultimately too fussy and frustrating to continue.

I decided instead to just randomly sew the HSTs together. I also added in some indigo patterns and polka dot whites with the solids, thinking they would add a little bit of visual depth. At a still fairly early point I began to feel like it really wasn't working, but powered forward anyway, because sometimes that can work. Eventually, however, there was no denying it. I didn't like the way the solids and prints interacted in such close proximity, and my (ahem) casual commitment to aligning corners was just not working out. Blech. Hated it. Fuckkkkkk.

Before the frogging.
That is always a sad moment—when you reach that point of finally acknowledging that something isn't worth finishing. You weigh the amount of time, and the physical and emotional energy spent, and you feel sad. I try to resist this, because I know that no effort is ever truly wasted—I always learn something that will inform the next project—but still.

I find lately that I spend that quiet time before falling asleep thinking about patterns. I am still flogging away toward my end goal of becoming a surface designer but it's a steep learning curve. The last thing I do before shutting down my laptop for the night is spend some time browsing Pinterest,  looking at all the beautiful vintage patterns. I also like looking at the many, many images of beautiful minimalist interiors that proliferate there. I find it weirdly relaxing. I was contemplating white-walled, well-ordered, uncluttered home interiors when I was seized by the desire to grab my seam ripper and put it to work on the failed Albers quilt. I didn't actually get out of bed and do it right then and there, but made a mental note to attack it first thing in the morning.

It took a couple hours (while listening to this:—so good!) but I ripped it all apart and refashioned it, lining up the HSTs in vertical rows and inserting white panels in between.
Much better. Deep, satisfying breath. I still plan to add a white panel to the top and bottom once I get some more white kona, but I am already pleased with how it looks on my wall. I don't think it's the most interesting quilt I've ever made, but I'm okay with that. It makes me happy to have arrived at this solution for those HSTs. Relieved even. And happy to now have one less orphan in the limbo pile. Yeehaw!

Sunday, February 1, 2015


Playing around with some new spiderwebs. Thinking about scale and color relationships. Not sure where I'm going with these yet.

Happy Heart Day

It's that time of year again. Making Valentimes. This year's version feels a little more somber than last. But that's okay. The verse is the last line of the Larkin poem, An Arundel Tomb. Each one is a little different, made out of various photos loitering in my collage pile. All rectangular, roughly 4"x6" and sewn.