Friday, November 1, 2013

Transit - a mini quilt


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. 


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.


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.


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.