inspirations: fields of basil

by the time you read this i’ll be heading to houston for the international quilt festival.  this is my third time attending, and i’m picking mom up on the way for our second annual quiltapalooza reunion.  while i’m definitely looking forward to oogling all the quilts on display this year, taking a few classes and perusing the vendors, i’m particularly excited to see the Eye of the Quilter: Inspirations exhibit.  it’s their second annual photography exhibit that had an open call for submissions.  i missed entering last year, but made sure to enter this year.

my dear friend maddie got married this fall and my mom and i decided to make her a quilt.  we quickly found and agreed on the pattern “crossing,” designed by bill kerr and weeks ringle of (featured in the june 2010 issue of american patchwork & quilting).  we chose this one because it reminded us of an aerial view of farm fields and the sashing brought to mind farm-to-market roads.  perfect, because both maddie and her now husband come from hard working and fun loving farm families.  i asked maddie what her color theme for the wedding was going to be: basil green and black.  mmm, basil… at the time, basil from last year was starting to sprout all over the garden and it continued to provide a muse for this project all summer and into the fall.  mom and i chose a selection of six green batiks and opted for a dark brown batik for the sashing (black just didn’t seem right).  mom and a friend back home cut all the pieces and sent them to me for assembly.  after arranging scanned images of the fabrics in illustrator to make sure no squares of the same tone touched, i started sewing.  thank goodness i made myself a map to refer back to!  after it was all put together and kitty approved, i sent it back to mom for quilting.  we corresponded with the quilter and i sent her images of the basil growing right outside my studio window.  we discussed how important the design of the quilting itself was to the theme of the quilt and she found a quilting pattern that resembled the growing structure of basil.  i crossed my fingers that it would all come together as planned.  a few weeks later i was on a plane and the quilt was finished, waiting at home and just in time for the big event.

down on the farm
quilting detail
mother.daughter quilting duo
mother.daughter quilting duo

maddie asked us to help set up for the wedding and graciously invited us to stay at her house the night before.  i couldn’t wait to hear about their reaction upon opening the gift, so i gave it to them that evening as they wound down from an exhausting day.  the reaction was even better than i imagined, particularly from jason, who seemed shocked that someone would spend so much time and effort on a wedding gift.  that’s what you do for good friends celebrating a very special occasion.

for the newlyweds

i previously posted some photos of the quilt in-the-works, but that was before i submitted an image for the Eye of the Quilter: Inspirations exhibit.  this is the image i submitted, and now you know the story and inspirations behind it.  instead of submitting a single image, i made a triptych including an image of the garden’s basil, the aerial view of the quilt’s fields and farm-to-market roads, and the quilted basil pattern as seen from the back of the quilt:

inspired by fields of basil

i’m happy to say it was accepted into the exhibit.  see you in houston!

p.s. if you can’t make it to houston this year, head on over to amy’s creative side and her blogger’s quilt festival and take in the fun of this online quilt fest in the comfort of your own home.  there’s some really cool quilts to see… i’ll post the fields of basil there too.  enjoy.

35 thoughts on “inspirations: fields of basil

    • Thanks Kylee! The exhibit wasn’t a competition, but there was a selection process involved. Apparently there were over 1000 entries. I was glad to be among them.

  1. A lovely story all around. You found a perfect way to use your design skills, collaborate with your mom, and give your friendship a beautiful form.
    You’re already a winner!

  2. Adorable, love it LOVE IT. Which fabric line did you use, The greens are so great together… For me you have the first prize in this event!!!

    Greetings from France

    • merci beaucoup! i don’t know what the fabric line was… but i recall gold foil on the end of the bolt… we selected from a variety of batiks available at the quilt shop.

  3. Bill and I are always delighted to stumble upon stories such as this about patterns we’ve designed. I’m sure the newlyweds will treasure your work.
    Best Wishes,
    Weeks Ringle

    • Thank you Weeks for stopping by! We knew your pattern was perfect the minute we saw it, and we had so much fun putting it together. I enjoyed looking at the other quilts on your website too, will keep them in mind for the next big project… take care!

  4. Andrea, I’ll make sure my pals who are going tomorrow stop by to take a look at the exhibit! That quilt is gorgeous: what a wonderful gift of time and love!

    • thanks cindy! i hope your friends took you along… so many great garden-inspired quilts there…

  5. What a beautiful quilt! Such a thoughtful and generous gift and big congratulations to you for having the photo accepted into the Festival exhibit! Have a wonderful time!

    • thanks julie, glad you approve with the brown, much more earthy and suiting with the rest of the quilt.

  6. hey everyone! thanks SO MUCH for your kind and generous comments!!! it was fun to see the photo in the exhibit but even better to hear from you 🙂

  7. This is such a wonderful quilt! I enjoyed reading the story behind the design and the selection of colours and fabrics.
    The colours and layout work so well. And the quilting is stunning.
    What a beautiful quilt and a special gift!

  8. Wow, Sweetheart! What a gorgeous quilt, and hat a great story. just beautiful. Have fun at the quilt show- I am soooooo jealous!

  9. Beautiful quilt! I too love Weeks’ & Bill’s designs. I’m really, really hoping they’ll teach at Houston next year (it’s a possibility).

    It was a treat to meet your mom. I’m sorry we were too pooped to get together. Next year, maybe we can stay at the same hotel.

    • thanks michal! let me know what you hear from weeks & bill, it’d be fun to take a class with them!

  10. Andrea, I’m not exaggerating when I say that this is the prettiest patchwork quilt I’ve ever seen. You’ve done a wonderful job and how nice to have help from your mom and friend too. Great team work! What a treasured gift it must be for your friends.
    Your photo is gorgeous as well and what an honor to have it chosen for display at the quilt festival.

  11. Your quilt is beautiful and I really like the triptych image tying it all together. So many layers of meaning, including working on it with your mother. This is a quilt that more than the two recipients will treasure.

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