As a young college grad, I traveled around Europe with two girlfriends and we made the trek to West Berlin. The Cold War was still in in full throttle and the Berlin Wall divided the city. I remember our Berlin visit vividly: climbing the perches alongside the Wall and viewing the coiled barbed wire and no-mans-land; seeing an East German officer on the other side simultaneously looking back at us through raised binoculars; walking by the famous Reichstag and Brandenburg Gate on the other side of the wall; and the nighttime return train trip through darkened East Germany – floodlights flashing underneath the train to watch for possible escapees trying to ride the underbelly of the train to the West. Watching “The Wall” come down in 1989 was a joy to behold. I’ve always wanted to return.
Two years ago our family had the opportunity to visit Prague and were able to make a side trip to Berlin. I was spellbound by what has happened since reunification – such a vibrant city, in touch with its past and building towards the future. One of the places to which I returned was the Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church. The original church was damaged in a 1943 bombing, and the spire has been left unfinished as a WWII memorial. The church has a beautiful stained glass window that captivated me with the large expanse of cobalt blue contemporary stained glass. The glass, designed by Gabriel Loire, was inspired by the colors of the glass in Chartres Cathedral.
Since that trip I’ve wanted to create a stained glass quilt inspired by Berlin. I started by creating this pillow using stack and slash techniques while piecing it together with sashing that was just under 3/4″. While I had always intended on making a bed sized quilt, this was a more time consuming process that I’d planned! I think I’ll stop at this creation for now. I’m very pleased at how it came out and love that both sides retain a modern feel.
I finished this a while ago but only recently got around to photographing it. I’m not sure what I want to title it yet. It features my fascination of creating blocks from random tiny scraps leftover from other projects . It’s one of my favorite things I’ve ever made!
Went a little nuts on the free motion quilting!
Found a way to use up some of my fabric selvedge scrap collection – much needed new covers for our well used living room pillows!
Selvedge Pillow Covers
Who knew there was an official day?
I enjoyed participating in the 7 Quilts in 7 Days Facebook posts. Thanks to Cathy Miranker for nominating me! You can see the first post here.
I’m not really sure where I’m going with this. I’ve been saving solid neutral pieces for a while and wanted to use them in some way with various bigger scraps. I like how it’s looking though! My daughter thinks it looks like the movie Inside Out when they went into the world of abstract reasoning – I think she’s right!
Abstract a Reasoning from “Inside Out”
Sometimes I just get a hankering to pull out my itsy bitsy scrap pieces and see what I can do with them. This is what got started from my yellow bin. I then went on to pull out more. Each colored piece is about 4 1/2 inches across and the strips prior to sewing are about 3/4″ to an inch or so, and finish up at 1/4-1/2 inch each. I’m not sure what I’m doing with this – I may make into small pillows for the living room.
How I love a long weekend! I had a wonderful, restful and reflective time with my family and alone as well. And part of that time involved finishing two quilt tops I’ve been planning for a long time. This one uses 36 different “made fabric” blocks (4 inches each) that I made two years ago from Kona solid scraps left from an auction quilt I donated to my son’s high school.
SF Waldorf Auction Quilt
I loved how the improvisational small scrappy blocks turned out. I wanted to makes something special with them and held onto them for ages not sure what to do. I decided to make a wall hanging for my office at work (just got moved into a window office with an amazing view of downtown San Francisco, Chinatown and the SF Bay! Woo Hoo!) The office space is sparse and I want to bring some personality and color to it. I still have to decide how to quilt and bind it, though.
I literally have bins and bins of old jeans from my family plus a pile I’ve been hoarding from an elementary school rummage sale for (ahem) over a decade now. I have a long term goal to use them all up, but it may well take a lifetime before I could sew so many! Anyway, here is the first one towards that goal. Pants from my son, my daughter and some of my own.
Long Family Pants