Thursday, November 19, 2009

on books and binding

This is what I did the last two weekends:




It's a baby quilt for my friends' firstborn, who is due next month and whose arrival is much anticipated. I'll post pictures of the quilt once they receive it, which will never happen unless I get it in the mail!

Really, I spent one weekend on the quilt. And most of that time was spent agonizing over whether it would suit the parents' style, but in the end I decided it would suit the baby regardless and that is what counts. I pieced it at my mom's house in Tennessee, and quilted it in a few hours before we drove back to Bloomington. So really, it was a quick little thing, and I am proud of my work. The second weekend involved finishing the binding by hand, which didn't take long. It was on the heels of another binding job: 268 linear inches of binding made, machine-attached, and hand-finished with love and for money.

I gave myself a break from sewing this week, and read Cormac McCarthy's The Road cover to cover in maybe three sittings. So good! Tales of the post-apocalypse have fascinated me since I was young, and this one is particularly engrossing. Good news: after the fall of civilization, we will still have biscuits and coffee. We just have to find the hiding place. I hope that's in the movie, because it's a very human moment.

Yesterday I got my copy of Color Your Cloth by Malka Dubrawsky. The page that made me gasp:




Using letterpress stamps to pattern fabric! I don't imagine you can achieve great detail, but the possibilities...! This will be a spring project, unfortunately, because it's too messy to do inside this tiny house but too cold to be outside for very long.

Malka's modern take on an ancient craft is so thrilling! I've dyed fabric to use in quilts a little in the past, and was always interested in the process. The books I referenced were hopelessly mired in hippie aesthetics, and I didn't know how to use the information to produce something I would like to look at and sew with. (Pardon my prepositions.) But then this book came into my world, and I can't wait to use it!

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