fiberliscious

Monday, February 7, 2011

My family tree

A while back, a new friend suggested that we do a block exchange.  I would make a block and send to her and she would make a block to send to me.  We would then each complete the other person's block as a finished quilt. As both our families are environmentally conscious, we decided to use trees as the theme for our block.

I have never done anything like this and to be honest, I was very intimidated.  She is such a skilled, talented designer and quilter.  I am not sure that I could make something that she would appreciate or even like!  Even though she said, "no stress, no time limit, just when ever the mood strikes".   Still I had an immediate brain freeze. 

It was almost Thanksgiving.  Family holiday dinners and celebrations are coming along quickly, but wait! I had a vision.  I was compelled  to make this block in the midst of all this helter skeltered activity.  It took almost no time at all to make my sketch, grab some scraps and do some quick free piecing.



The holidays passed and I had not mailed this off to my friend. One day as I was critiquing the block, still hanging on my design wall, a thought suddenly occurred to me.  I realized why I was so compelled to get this completed in the midst of frantic holiday preparations.  You might notice that there are four tree trunks in this block.  One block for each family member: father, mother, daughter, son.  The tree on the left is spaced slightly apart from the other three.  The branches from the three trees on the right seem to be stretching out toward the tree on the left.   My daughter lives across the country from the rest of our family and would not be home for the holidays this year.  She would be spending the holidays with her husband and his family.  Was this a subconscious effort on my part?  All the while I was making this block, I wanted to extend it to include many more trees to complete the picture. But we had set a size limit.  I would have to save this idea for another day.   In the mean time ~ this block has gone to my lovely friend to share a part of my heart and my family.  And I am looking forward to receiving her block.  A gift from her heart and her family. 

Do you ever have those moments, when you look back at something you have created and realized that there was a deeper, unconscious force that causes you to create ?  What colors to choose, how to relay to others what you are feeling?  


16 comments:

Jennifer D said...

That is a beautiful block, subconcious or not, your feelings came out.They came out in such an expressive way. I would love to see the finished product.

Lynn said...

The block is beautiful and before I read your description I looked carefully at the middle of the 3 trees because on my computer it looked like there was a person reaching out....Interesting!

Victoria @ BUMBLE BEANS said...

I love your tree!! it's great! I often can look back at a quilt and see the "message" clearer afterwards.. not always at the time... Great self realization!

Sujata said...

Dear Mary,
I can not stop staring at this block! And now that I know how it evolved, I am so inspired, nervous, intimidated all at once!
For me, as my quilts evolve the stories start taking place in my head.. and, the process becomes more meaningful.
Thanks for letting me be part of this fun process.

Lisa said...

Wow, there are so many tings I want to say . . . first off, YOU are a very gifted and talented quilter! That block is amazing.

I love that you just jumped in and sewed and then stood back and looked. I am a firm believer in our intution and grace guiding us, in everything! I am just loving this block and all it represents to you. Can't wait to see what you receive from your friend. ox

Nifty Quilts said...

OMG! This is so beautiful, I don't have words. Just amazed at your talent and skill. I agree about the unconscious often creating for us. Gives me goosebumps.

Em said...

All of the time and that is what is so exciting for me is that I have an initial idea and I have no idea how it will end or continue to inspire even when long completed. The trees are gorgeous and feel very rich and sultry.

Pinkadot Quilts said...

It is amazing! I think you were totally in the moment when you made this one...lovely!

Melissa said...

This is stunning and I know your friend will love it:)

VivJM said...

This is wonderful in so many ways! I love the colours, the design, and the way the subconscious message reached out to you. Precious!

Barb said...

really wonderful piecing and colors!

CharlotteP said...

Those trees are just perfect...beautifully abstract yet treelike at the same time...and you always have an unfailing eye for colour and pattern too. Congratulations - love it!!
Incidentally, glad you say you have a sketch...I have tiny sketches everywhere...help me avoid forgetting those moments of inspiration!

Angela said...

Yes, I also see a woman in the middle tree. She is on a long skirt, bending her body to the left and reaching out with her left arm.
This block is beautiful and very inspiring.
And yes, I have also had that kind of experience, creating something that has a deep meaning.

cartulinas said...

It's gorgeous at first sight And it has a story behind! Just my perfect block! Would you share a recipe on how to do this kind of block?
Marta in Spain

Jacky said...

Wonderful, creative block and I love the story / sentiment behind it! What a beautiful exchange.

Dan (Made by a Man) said...

Absolutely beautiful composition and story. Thanks for sharing it.