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First Winter Holiday Quilt Block
Submitted by Pam on Mon, 07/23/2012 - 07:00
"Welcome to the North Pole: Santa's Village in Applique" by Becky Goldsmith and Linda Jenkins - Piece O' Cake Designs.
When I first saw a completed quilt based on the designs offered in this book, I wanted very much to make one just like it. I was completely enchanted by the playful little houses and tipsy trees.
But I just never quite got to it. I would pull out the book and dream and that is about as far as I got - for years!
And then last year I realized that what I really wanted to do was to create a similar quilt but using my own designs - designs that more closely reflect me and what I am all about - like Nisse, Tomte, and Yule Lads; 'shrooms, snowflakes, and trees; St. Nicholas Day, St. Lucy Day and Winter Solstice. All of a sudden I really started getting quite excited about making the quilt.
And then the thought occurred to me to break this quilt project into little pieces - make one quilt block every year and eventually assemble the blocks into a quilt.
I began to realize what had been holding me back all these years - I do not want to replicate the work of another designer and I do not really want to make a big giant quilt - at least not now.
For now, I am thinking of making each block as a miniature quilt just exactly the right size so that when it is hung over a picture on my wall it will completely hide it over the holidays. Rather than bind the blocks, I hope to figure out a way to hem them so that if in the future I decide I want to stitch them together into a large quilt I can do so.
But for now - small quilts seem to work better for me.
The theme of my first quilt block? I was surprised by what my Muse settled upon - Winter Solstice - the longest night and shortest day of the year. But - it is after all, a very important day to me because it is the shortest day and that means the sun begins it's journey northward and days grow longer.
Hating the long, dark nights and gloomy bursts of grey (daytime) of winter as I do, it does seem logical to celebrate the solstice with my first block.
In far northern latitudes, the solstice sun just sort of skims along the horizon during the daylight hours and it is this long "twilight" that I am using as the theme for the first mini quilt.
It just so happens that I have all the fabrics I need in my stash. I have treated myself to lots of pretty embroidery floss - for the trees and sun rays and maybe ripples in the water. We shall see. As is the case with all the projects I am beginning this Christmas in July - I am flying by the seat of my pants!