Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Moving

I am not a last minute person. Given a deadline I deduct a week, set that as the 'real deadline' and aim to finish early. And I always do.
Of course I am not a person who has ever moved house either. Whilst the move did go very smoothly, given that I had minimal time off work, the packing, the unpacking and the decisions about which of the many rennovations should begin first and how they would be done and where we would buy the necessary items crowded out all time for quilting. If you don't count the four days I absented myself to go to Festival of Quilts. Which was all about other people's quilts and not at all about actually making one.
So perhaps it is not suprising that my quilt turned out to be a last minute one about moving house.
And with all quilting items in inaccessible boxes, apart from one carton of lorikeet themed cloth and thread separately packed, I had to be a little inventve with my embellishments.

The  blue houses on this quilt represent  both all the ones we saw, considered and rejected and all the houses which surround us in our new community. The yellow tags are made from greetings cards pushed through the door by our new neighbours, some of whom welcomed us without even knowing our names. The orange band represents the warmth of the home we will create once I get rid of the ubiqitous white anaglypta wall paper and faded brown carpets. But that home will carry memories of the only other home my husband and I ever shared and so I have kept the key for that house together with some thread wraped nails. You may remember the unusual source of inspiration for this quilt. Well, one of the hardest things about leaving that house was leaving items my Dad had made for it - fitted furniture, patio and pergola - as he is not able to do so much phsycial work now. So, the screws from the desk which saw me through three stages in my career and was latterly used as my temporary studio have come with us and  six now adorn this quilt. The green vine stitching and the orange petal stitching represent the wonderful garden which we acquired with the house, the upkeep of which represents a whole new challenge in my life.

We do not have any broadband in the house at presnet due to the spectactularly useless service from our phone provider. So the quilt was completed at lunch time and after work on the reveal day, photographed and cropped on my personal laptop and tranferred to the work internet system via memory stick to be uploaded with a few hours of Californian time to go. Thank God for time differences.

13 comments:

Linda said...

I love the way you have combined new experiences with old in his piece.

Gerrie said...

A lovely idea - to commemorate your move to a new home and have a remembrance from the former.

Lisa Flowers Ross said...

It's great to see all the different solutions to this challenging color scheme. I have also posted my "play-along" quilt on my blog, http://lisasartmusings.blogspot.com/2010/09/twelve-by-twelve-lorikeet-challenge.html

Diane said...

I love it, Helen! And I love how it incorporates the story of your life over the past several months, bits of your old house, parts of your new life... the color scheme adds such happy energy and strength to this, too. I love that you used wrapped nails from the pieces that your dad made for your old house. (That got me teary-eyed reading it, it really did.) What a lovely commemoration of your move.

and isn't it interesting that we have two quilts in this batch that reference the moves you and Deborah have made?

Terri Stegmiller said...

A great idea to take current events, such as your move and to create your quilt around it. How lovely to add in bits of card from your new neighbors.

Margeeth said...

Helen,
I think you are quilting again really soon after your move. I actually am quite envious of you being able to do this. I am in a Dutch quilting group where we make quilts that are 50x50cm and our latest theme (for which I am already a month late) was "moving house".

Deborah Boschert said...

I like this phrase "moving house." Do you really say it just like that? It's different from common language in the US. We just say "moving." Your phrase is so much more specific.

The wrapped nails are fabulous.

Of course... you know I'm right there with you. You were smart to pack your lorikeet materials separately.

Kristin L said...

I love the nails and key too. With something as major as moving house, it would be silly to think that it wouldn't affect/appear in your art. You've done a wonderful job interpreting the bird colors into your own personal experience.

Karen said...

You always manage to nail the current events, public or private, and this time is no exception. Those yellow tags are wonderful and aren't you fortunate to have such nice neighbors.

Terry said...

I love how personal this piece of yours is, Helen. And isn't it interesting how many of us Twelves have moved in the three years we've been at this. This reminded me of my shelter quilt, made when we moved. I have saved souvenirs of the houses we have lived in and--perhaps this will help in leaving the things your father made for your old house--left things behind in the hope that they add to the warmth and personality and leave some of ourselves in the houses we have inhabited. That is something I adore about old houses--the bits and pieces of former residents that become part of your own life. It's a wonderful piece, with great meaning.

Brenda said...

I thought maybe the background quilting represented the broadband cables that are not connected!

But seriously, congratulations on getting the quilt done and posted in the midst of such an upheaval.

Call me sentimental, but I still have housekeys from David's and my first home together. Maybe I need a quilt to put them on.

Nikki said...

I love your little houses. The bright, bold colors make it a neighborhood I would love to live in. I'm happy to hear that your neighbors have been so welcoming and I'm very impressed that you were able to create such beauty in the middle of chaos.

kirsty said...

Those momentos are so touching :)
Even in the midst of moving chaos you can make something so full of thought and reference?! Wow!