Friday, November 1, 2013

Transit - a mini quilt

Transit

Here is Transit, my Four in Art Group project for this quarter. Transit was inspired by the theme Urban Maps. She is a 12" square made of Kona Cottons and a Paris map print from Etchings by Three Sisters (I think this one is out of print now, but they keep releasing other nice map prints).

I love maps, which is a good thing because I am geographically challenged - that is, I have no sense of direction. I am a great navigator with a map - without one I might as well be sleeping. In considering the theme Urban Maps, I thought about the many maps we use in a city. Street maps, building maps, park trail maps, exhibit maps, bus and subway maps. The maps we carry around in our pocket and bag, consult often, fold and refold, until they are tattered and illegible.


That diagram is of what the Light Rail Rapid Transit (LRT or subway) system in my city will look like sometime in the future, if all goes as planned. Right now we just have the red line and the south part of the dark blue line. I decided that I would just copy it. How hard could that be?

I considered making a paper pieced pattern which would have given me a perfect replica but dismissed that idea because first, I am a bit tired of paper piecing (all those pickle dishes and such) and secondly, I wanted the map to look worn and a bit ragged. So I decided to just dive in and improv piece it. 

Transit

I started in the middle and made some good progress with strips cut at 5/8" thick so that I would get about 1/8" of colour once pieced. I did cut the "river" strip a bit wider to distinguish it, like on the diagram.

But, I have to say that when I got to that red and blue bit, the part where it goes up, turns the corner to the right, then goes across and turns another corner, well I got quite stuck. Both the very small size and my lack of experience with this kind of thing meant that I must have ripped that part out at least 20 times over two different sewing sessions. In the end I pieced it all and I learned some good lessons too. I am glad of its slightly wonky and worn appearance. The rest of the piecing seemed easy in comparison.

Transit

Of course, I did leave it to the last minute, and last night I was racing to finish - the last binding stitch was sewn at 11:35 p.m.. My friends on Instagram were the best, they cheered me on and were so supportive. You can see my instagram photos here, and if you don't yet follow me, consider doing so, as I am there often, sometimes more than I am here these days.

I quilted lines with Aurifil 12 wt. variegated blue thread that had happily arrived the night before from Fiona at the Celtic Thistle - my prize from the Holiday Memories event - thank you again Fiona. The lines are representative of the folds on the map, which over time get all wonky and messy on my maps.

Transit - back

For the back I picked this texty, collage print (Melange from the Eclectic Elements line by Tim Holtz, you can buy it here.) It feels modern and urban to me. I also used Insulbrite as the batting so that I can use this mini as a trivet.

Transit

So there she is, Transit. The background is a Paris map fabric.

The rest of the very talented Four in Art group are revealing their quilts today too and can be found here:

Nancy - Patchwork Breeze
Elizabeth - Occasional Piece Quilt
Rachel - The Life of Riley
Betty's Flickr Page
Amanda - What the Bobbin?
Carla - Lollyquiltz
Anne - Spring Leaf Studios 

Last, I get to declare the group's theme for the next quarter. I have chosen Urban Structures. I have great plans to do the next one in a more timely way too.


Oh and I am going to link this little finish up to some of the Friday links. There is Finish it up Friday that Amanda at Crazy Mom Quilts hosts and TGIFF over at M-R at Quilt Matters

Back to work, there is still a fair bit of Friday left. I cannot wait for the weekend.

Best,

Leanne

36 comments:

Katelyn Vawter said...

This is so cool. I cannot believe that you improved pieced this...though I practically saw you do it on instagram. lol It is fabulous.
- Katelyn @ Sing While Crafting

Debbie said...

oh I love reading about your process here and what a cool end result!

OPQuilt said...

Oh, wow! I'm in love love with your art quilt, and again, you've outdone yourself. I love the wonky quilting very much, as it does represent that folded, time-worn aspect of maps. And the improv piecing is stellar--it really brings to mind that turns and lines and travel of mass transit railways.

I love also that it is Edmonton's hope for the future, and that you have celebrated this by making a piece of art. I have hopes that someday soon, our town and our area might have mass transit--it's really a way of connection, as are these little quilts.

Bravo! Leanne. Just terrific.

Rachel said...

Yay! It turned out great! It totally represents a well used map. I've loved subway maps since the first time I was on a subway (in London) I like how (relatively) simple they are. Great job all around. And I'm super excited about the next theme. I already have a plan!

Jenny said...

super, super cute.

Catherine said...

That is brilliant Leanne

Carla said...

Leanne, your quilt is so fun and I love your description of the process. I, too, am directionally challenged, so totally understand the need of a map...or even better GPS!! Now...to start brainstorming "structures"!

Sarah said...

Wow! That's some improv! Great job L!

Sarah said...

So very clever!

heart of charnwood said...

That is an amazing mini, I love that you improv'd it, I love improv, but i would have had to have a really big think about it first, which kind of goes against the whole point!

Adrienne @ Chezzetcook Modern Quilts said...

Very Cool. This is so neat!

Sheryl said...

Your mini quilts lately have been so inspiring. I never really got into hangings before, but I'm really starting to appreciate them.

Katy Cameron said...

I'm laughing because that's exactly the kind of quilting I was first thinking of for my mini!

I do love how this came out, and I am a total map geek, I love navigating by maps. I really want to do the Strathclyde Passenger Transport network in quilt form, but for 2 years I've been putting it off because I thought I'd have to pixellate it, and I couldn't quite face that many squares lol

Nancy said...

You did a great job on depicting the transit map and your descriptions of maps, folded, wonky, etc. really show in the quilt. The Paris fabric is such a good background. Unfortunately, my computer is not bringing up the photo of the back. I will check back later.
Also, do mention to your bloggers to visit my Four in Art Map quilt at www.patchworkbreeze.blogspot.com

Judith, Belfast said...

Brilliant wee piece of improv.piecing L! And I adore those butterflies on the back. JXO

Emma said...

What a wonderful interpretation of the LRT map. I can't believe it is an improve quilt. Beautiful!

MariQuilts said...

Love how this turned out!!

Schulz Family said...

Visiting from crazy mum quilts. I love transit!!!! Well done

Vera said...

Pretty cool mini. I like the back side as well :-)

What Comes Next? said...

nicely done! you persevered and the improve piecing worked wonderfully - very cute little piece

AmandaK@whatthebobbin said...

Wow. Sorry to hear you had a difficult time getting those last bit together. So glad you persevered, it turned out great. I absolutely love the quilting that mimics the folds a map aquires over time.

AmandaK@whatthebobbin said...

Ohh...and I am excited about "Urban Structures".

Rachel said...

Such a cool quilt, well done for persevering! Rx

Betty said...

Leanne, what a sharp map quilt - good job! I love the background AND all the ever-so-narrow roads. Funny, the more I work with narrow pieces, the more they appeal to me, especially in the final presentation. Love it!!

Charlotte said...

fantastic!!!!!!

Cindy said...

I am so in love with this mini. You're hilarious, too...your personality shines through here. Fab job.

M-R Charbonneau said...

I'm a big fan of maps too and I love what you did with yours, Leanne. Using the map print as the background was a brilliant idea! Great job!

Anne said...

I so relate to your comment about being a good navigator IF you have a map. Me too. I think it was a great idea to go with a more improv approach to the colored lines. That's what I really like about your map. The fabric choices were excellent too. Such a perfect background for the transit lines. Really like your choice of structures for our next mini. Lots of thoughts already coming to mind.

pennydog said...

That's fantastic and it looks so difficult!

Adrianne said...

This sounds like a very cool but challenging project! I think your piece turned out beautifully and I'm amazed that it is all improv!

Sarah said...

I'm really liking these map art quilts! Yours really does look like a transit map. I have a good sense of direction and it seems to have passed on to my kids. I clearly remember driving with them in the backseat telling me what was coming up soon and where we were etc when they were only two. It was a proud mummy moment! Like another milestone in their development.

Canadian Abroad said...

It's such a cool little mini. Loved watching it develop on IG.

FlourishingPalms said...

I know several of the quilters in your group, so it's fun to see your various interpretations of maps. I love yours. The graphic-ness (if there is such a word) of it really appeals to me. I can picture this hanging in an office, or place of business. So eye-catching!

diane said...

I think you did a wonderful job of interpretation

Celtic Thistle said...

Wonderful mini Leanne, I am delighted that the threads arrived just in time for your quilting too :)

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