Friday, May 16, 2014

A compromise of peace

A few years back I wanted to enter a quilt contest, and I was convinced that my entry should reflect the color wheel - in a really grand way.

Within the first few days of hearing about the contest and deciding to enter it, I changed my mind and decided the quilt should actually be based on that simple but groovy - universally recognizable - peace sign.

Over the span of about six days I teetered back and forth between these two design choices, driving myself (and my sons) nuts trying to decide.

Before long I then began to desire that my quilt should incorporate both elements, but how was I going to do that?  Then, one morning I woke with a start.  A cosmic two-by-four smacked me between the eyes and provided me with the perfect marriage of both artistic desires.

I spent a couple of days graphing out a very large peace sign, then colored in a wheel to lay under my image in order to decide where each section of the spectrum should fall.  I even sent several choices to friends for their input as to how to position the color portion.  A few days later that decision was made, and I set about collecting the materials it would require to migrate gradually from one color to the next.

This aspect would prove to be more difficult than anything else.  The company sponsoring this particular contest stipulated you could only use materials purchased from their store, and you had to have receipts to prove it!  Well, since this chain store was touting the contest as an 'annual event', I didn't even blink twice as I began to amass my collection.  MANY fat quarters (and eighth yard cuts) later I could begin cutting!  More than 170 different materials were used overall.

Long story short -

Sadly, the store discontinued their yearly quilt contest after only two years, but PQ1 is a joyous celebration of color...and of my determination to see it through.  If I could have known sooner into the assembly process  that my hands were't tied to such rigid obligations, I would have had a broader palette to select my fabric from, but I truly believe I managed to make the best out of it anyway.

PQ1: Let it Begin with Me took over 880 hours to assemble and quilt  (4,225 1.5" cut squares for the top and another 30 pieces for the back and binding; measuring 65"x 65"), and it was worth all of the effort because now I have the chance to share it with all of you visiting from

The hardest decisions I have to make any more regarding this quilt have to do with categorizing it for shows and contests.  For Blogger's Quilt Festival I had a tough time narrowing it down from five category possibilities to two, but I think I settled on Original Design (OR ROYGBIV).  [Coin toss]
I am proud to say that EVERY portion of this quilt is original; even the templates I created by hand for the three large peace doves, right
down to the smallest four - are my work (with a little divine inspiration from Picasso).  And because I went a little crazy while cutting out the 1.5" pieces for the color gradation, I still have bags of usable pieces leftover.  To date, I have made several variations of my original design - including exact miniatures, and quad designs with varied color placement.  I love them all!

Thank you, Amy, for the chance to enter your festival.  And thanks to everyone who took the time to view my quilt blog.  Enjoy the'll find me there, somewhere, wandering and enjoying the work of others!

My sons - bless them - thought there should be a photo of the back, too. It's very windy ~


M-R Charbonneau said...

What a beautiful way to combine the two! Love your colour flow - wow!

Wendy @ Wendysquiltsandmore said...

What a great quilt and an interesting story behind it. I certainly know that feeling of buying lots of fabrics for a quilt, just to be sure you've got the right one when you need it. I love how the peace sign turned out - almost pixelated. Thank you for sharing it with us all.

Tiffany said...

This is incredible! What a labor of love!!

CitricSugar said...

170 fabrics? WOW!

Very groovy.

Wendy said...

wow! I couldn't believe it when I saw this quilt was made from tiny squares! Did you start it for a future year's contest then but no finish in time?

Rachel said...

That's a lot of little squares, but it paid off. Those color transitions are seamless. Nice work!

Sally Hurley said...

Wow! That's a lot of squares. I'm glad you showed a photo of the back as well. So impressive. It is a beautiful quilt. Such nice work