Friday, July 6, 2012

Not a Tile Quilt

 Mystic Koi Pond

But it does have a tile quilt connection.

When our book, Tile Quilt Revival, was published in 2010, all the new quilts from the book were on exhibit at the Road to California quilt show in Ontario, California, thanks to our friend, Stevii.  (Thanks again, Stevii!)  Carol and I had a great time sitting in the middle of the exhibit talking to people and autographing books.  Our first Meet the Authors experience!  Here are some pictures of that exhibit.

But, back to Mystic Koi Pond, while there and shopping around a bit we spotted a gorgeous fabric with big beautiful Koi fish from Japan.  We were really drooling when the fabric was spread out on the cutting table.  It was a little pricey, but we finished off the bolt, which was only about a yard, and split it up between us.  So, that is the tile quilt connection!

This year at our annual quilt retreat in January, I decided that it was finally time to do something with the fish.  I was pretty nervous about it all but I designed an 8-inch block and took along a collection of batiks.  I was amazed when my plan actually seemed to work!  I did have some excellent guidance from the other participants in our sewing room (named "Fat Quarters") and I moved the blocks around so that the light ran across the quilt on the diagonal rather than in the center as I originally planned.  I liked the quilt so far.  If the fish didn't work, I'd still have a quilt I liked.  But, now to see if the fish would actually work on top of this pond I had made for them.  I was even more nervous when I cut out the first fish and placed it on the background.  Miraculously, it worked!  So, I cut out the rest of the fish and hand appliqued them in place, swimming around in their own mystic pond.  There were three single fish and two pairs.

 I didn't actually finish the applique until later and then I sent it to Shirley G. for her machine quilting expertise.  She quilted concentric circles all over the quilt, as if someone had just tossed a handful of pebbles (or fish food!) in the water.  And now I finally got the binding on and it is finished.  It's about 48'' square.

Here's a couple closeups.

 Carol's fish are still looking for a place to swim.  ( No pressure, my friend!)