Michelle’s Birds: Thoughts on design and process

Making decisions about fabric and design.

One day I came home to a huge bag of fabric and fabric scraps on the back porch. It had been left for me by my neighbor. What a great surprise!! I went through the fabric feeling it, folding it, separating it into color families and wondering what I might use it for. Little immediate inspirations and others to ponder. I came across pieces of cotton with orange birds on a green field with accents of brown and white. Hum, odd combination… when will I ever use this?

Green birds fabric
I squared up the edges and left it sitting on my table as I explored the other fabric and began the creative process of visualizing certain prints with color and shape. The birds sat for about three days before I really thought abut what I could do with them. Keep in mind that the amount of the bird fabric was limited to what you see here.

Green birds beginning layout

After I put the quilt top together it hung in my closet for a few months.

Michelles' Birds

Every now and then I would ponder the design and wonder how I was going to quilt it. Finally, (Brilliant!), I imagined the solid areas quilted with the bird motif. Done!

Michelle's Birds detail front

What I learned from this is two-fold: First, open your self to a variety of color combinations. You will be surprised at what may result. And second, the making of a quilt is a process. It is done in stages however you look at it. Allow yourself the grace to put something aside while the next steps for that particular creation bubble and brew. I look at the tops hanging in my closet and frequently add to them… Have fun, be creative and laugh a lot.