Last month I shared Deborah Mersky’s tex-tiles with you. Today I’m welcoming you into my house.
Joe and I have lived here for many years. Fabric is woven into our home and life. Each piece of cloth tells a story.
It reminds me of the place where it came from, and of particular meals or celebrations.
Some of the fabric on the windows and doors is from around the world.
I made some of the curtains.
The quilt is by Sarah Mary Taylor, a gift from Ella King Torrey. Our friend Kay gave us the indigo-resist Hungarian deer. The cat pillow is from my sister-in-law Julia. Sigrid upholstered the bird and cherry couch with fabric that Roberta found. Almost every piece of fabric reminds me of friends and family.
And then there are tablecloths!
And more tablecloths…
All of this fabric makes daily life richer, and it feeds my work. Here are a few new still life paintings.
I’d like to take a textile tour-de-friends. Please snap a picture of fabric from your home or life that means something to you and send it to me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I will post the pictures on this blog. Thank you!
Posted in Uncategorized
Tagged applique, color, embroidery, inspiration, mola, pattern, pillows, Quilts, still life paintings, suzani, tablecloths
In southern Spain and Portugal there are tiles everywhere, called Azulejos. There are tiles inside and outside of buildings.
These tiles share a quality with quilts in that the individual squares have beauty, and that beauty is amplified through repetition as larger patterns are created. As in quilts, beauty also comes from the irregularities. There is beauty in the broken tiles, the mismatched repairs and the sliding brushstrokes. Here are tiles from Lisbon, the Alentejo, Seville and Granada.
Some of the tiles are dimensional.
And some (like quilts) give the illusion of dimensionality through light and dark.
Some are geometric.
And some are narrative.
Some show the passage of time.
The connection to quilts seem implicit. I hope to design some fabric to make it explicit. Please join me for some imaginary mint tea in this courtyard to think about it.
Why are blue and white so good together? Blue skies with white clouds, midnight with white stars, blue willow dishes and sailor shirts are all good. And blueberries of course.
For the quilt Blue Bop I cut many slightly crooked stripes out of a variety of blue and white fabrics. The cutting was quick and dirty; there was no measuring involved. A little irregularity can give breathing room to a quilt.
I sewed the irregular stripes together into four long strips and then trimmed those so that they were even from side to side. I flipped and flopped them until the arrangement was congenial and then sewed them together. Blue Bop!
Blue Bop 84″W x 120″H
Most of my paper quilts are also blue and white. I soaked some of the paper in tea to give variety to the whites. The paint is gouache – opaque tempera. The tubes of paint have good names: Ultramarine Deep, Cobalt, Cerulean, Indigo.
The paper is stitched together on the sewing machine. The threads can be part of the conversation.
To conclude, here is a painting by my husband, Joe Max Emminger.
Oh, Yes 38″W x 47″H
Oh, Yes is a simple quilt. The red letters are appliquéd onto a black and white fabric that I designed for a line called Chickadee. My original design was a papercut, about 8″ x 10″.
In The Beginning Fabrics reproduced it in black and white, as well as in color. The Oh, Yes quilt is backed with the color version of the pattern.
I like quilts with words on them. This quilt by Nancy Ward Butler of Jamestown NY is poignant. She must have stitched away some of her grief for her granddaughter as she stitched in her love. The quilt was preserved with a handwritten note saying it had won “Second Prize for the Most Beautiful Quilt.”
When I thought about what I wanted to say on a quilt, or just in general, YES seemed like the obvious choice.
I was too lazy to say it more fully, as Cornelia Catharine Vosburgh did in this quilt from 1874: “& From Every Corner Flowing Joyful Crowds Assemble Round And Spake Withe Xalted Zeal.”