Whitework: An Experiment

I’m not sure if this classifies as either Trapunto or Whitework – perhaps neither, since it’s not stuffed nor is it white-on-white. It was an experiment and collaboration: my friend Jacklyn, an extraordinarily talented artist, sketched the octopus for me one night in January, and I set about hand quilting it throughout the year. It was one of those “I wonder what this would look like…” projects, something to keep me quilting in the months when I didn’t have time for a big project. Bonus, it’s portable… 24” square. I quilted in parks, at the beach, at friends’ houses, at my grandmother’s house (traveling projects are the best)… and now, finally, it’s done! Well, almost done, actually. I need to stare at it for a while, as I feel it needs a few more strategic lines but I’m not sure quite how they go yet. Also it needs binding. And another ironing. And then perhaps a photo shoot at the aquarium?

I used 15 colours of thread in this. Teal, blue, purple, pink, metallics, variegated variations therein. The many tiny little sucker-circles – so many to be frustrating, some days – were quite challenging to quilt, and I’m glad this wasn’t any bigger than my 17” frame can handle, as there was a lot of rotating involved in those.

Definitely doing more of these. The process of creating dimension and flow and shape with just lines and colours – I love it.

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