Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Still Life with Eggplant, Burgundy and Emerald

I think it was because I was standing in the middle of the Convention Center in Houston, not far from an exhibit of beautiful Baltimore Album quilts, when Deborah told me of our new color palette (she'd been surfing, I hadn't), that I immediately glommed on to the idea of making my own version of a Baltimore Album block. My posts here and here show a bit of my thought process and fabric auditions.

Nikki's photo, and the names of the colors themselves had me thinking of food and bounty. So I decided that I would work with the literal meanings of eggplant, burgundy, and emerald, even if I didn't stick strictly to the colors themselves. In keeping with my self-imposed rule to keep a close tie to traditional quilts, Baltimore Album, which is typically full of flower baskets and cornucopia (bounty) made sense.



My interpretation was inspired by contemporary applique defined by use of rich or bright colors and lots of pattern. I also looked to painting and collage which often represents bounty in still lifes. While my version is probably more traditional quilt than cubist still life, I like the way it turned out, and am so pleased that, though it was iffy at times, I managed to keep the light Kaffe Fasset fabric with all the circles. I loved it's eggplanty background from the get-go and saw the light circles as representative of eggplant slices.


10 comments:

Deborah Boschert said...

I just love how you work through a bit of inspiration, following the idea completely through and adding your own style along the way. The pink rickrack is perfect! You really found a way to make each item look just like it is supposed to look while still using wild patterns. I think the two leafy branches really set it in the Baltimore style. Lovely traditional quilting too!

Diane said...

What a charming piece! I love how it refers to the traditional album block with such contemporary content and fabric and color! And the rickrack circle! I love it! This has a fun zip to it that gives off a happy energy.

By the way, you might be interested in a quilt a friend of mine, Katherine McKearn, made a long time ago, her take on a Baltimore Album quilt. She lives in Baltimore and made her own Avenue Album. She made each block sort of wacky and personal to her family, and it ended up winning a bunch of awards and being shown all over the place. You can scroll down and see a picture of it here:
http://lazygalquilting.blogspot.com/2007/08/inspiration-notebook.html

Nikki said...

I absolutely love the eggplant! I see the bright shiny spot of its slick surface repeated from every angle.

Brenda Gael Smith said...

I probably shouldn't but the first thing I thought was how perfectly formed the ric rac circle is - no messy join, no extra bumps or ridges. This reflects your thoughtful composition and execution. As I've said before,I am glad someone incorporated a wine bottle in their piece but my favourite element in your album is that voluptous eggplant!

Terri Stegmiller said...

This is a lovely and unique Baltimore album style piece. I love the rick rack circle, which adds an unexpected texture and the embroidery adds even more texture above and beyond that of the gorgeous fabrics.

Terry said...

Oh yeah, that eggplant! I love the Baltimore style block design, but you COULD have just stopped with the eggplant and had a winner!

Karen said...

Right off the bat I love the rickrack and the handstitching on this piece is amazing. There is so much to look at here, I can't take my eyes off it.

Gerrie said...

And how did you do that seamless ricrac circle??? I agree with Terry, that eggplant is just so sensuous.

Kristin L said...

The seam is in the lower left part of the circle. Ricrac is surprisingly forgiving -- I was able to adjust my circle slightly until the bumps lined up.

Françoise said...

Oh yes, I had to look very hard to find that seam in the ricrac! I agree with Terry and the others, this eggplant is amazing. Beautiful hand stitching too.