Rebel inspiration

How to arrange
twenty 11 1/2 inch blocks made from silk ties

too structured for me today

I tried integrating reds, pinks and all sorts of other ideas inspired by my fellow bloggers' comments.  Nothing felt just right.  Except this bright orange linen tie that I had yet to cut apart. Not enough in that skinny tie to last very long.  So I had to give up on the idea of the linen, unless I want to stop and hand dye some linen fabric.   
 I opened one of the storage units that hold 
my stash of multi-colored florals
and this Alexander Henry design was looking me straight in the face.

Maybe because of the brisk fall air, seeing pumpkins everywhere I go, 
but shades of orange kept whispering to me.  And then perhaps the upcoming holiday was hovering in the back of my mind too?  I think that Sujata's brilliant use of color was also nudging at my subconscious.  The ties were just not quite as colorful as I had hoped.

Now how to put together 11 1/2 inch blocks with 7 1/2 inch blocks. Don't even ask me how I ended up with these disparately sized quilt block units.  Let's just say it was therapeutic at the time.

Late one night, perhaps because Kaffe Fasset was in town teaching and lecturing, I opened up one of his books of quilt patterns, "Passionate Patchwork".  This may have also been the result of seeing Nifty's blog with the wonderful striped shirtings quilt as well as her suggestion of using black as a connector. Very dramatic, yes?  Color issues solved for the moment.

But wait, too much black and too much orange to fill in the spaces, was detracting from the silk.  I need to let the silks shine. 

so more spacer blocks were needed.  

And I won't bore you with the countless
 arrangements and rearrangements.  
Here is where it hangs now.  
66" x 34" 

No telling what may happen next.  What you see is not always what I end up doing.
Thanks to all for your suggestions and inspiration.  It's not over yet. 


  1. Wow! It reminds me of an Anna Williams quilt. Such great use of color and contrast. Those tiny black strips and the varied sizes of blocks make this SO exciting!! I absolutely LOVE it!

  2. wheee, fabulous! so much more interesting this way, than if you'd made all the blocks the same size.

  3. I LOVE where this is going! So excited in anticipation with what you might do next! I love those little slivers of black connecting the blocks here and there!

  4. There we go on an adventure! For some reason, this project sets a very interesting (and funny) mood in your posts. I, again, had a couple of chuckles.
    Don't let anything to get on your way!
    Whoaaaa, down the slide we go!!!

  5. There is so much excitement in this project. The bright orange pops and the small black strips along with the filler blocks make this so interesting and vibrant. Amazing!

  6. Did make me think of Anna Williiams, but your quilt is more dense, and far more regular in piecing. I sure don't know what to do next; but I'd try a sashing of black and white squares. I really struggled with my Tie Quilt; and I had really dull ties. Really, really dull. I finally paired them with Japanese cottons to make half square triangles. It is still a dull quilt, but maybe better for the cotton prints.

  7. I love that line...What you see is not always what I end up doing. I so get that. Can hardly wait to see what you actually end up doing.

  8. ha! so you see that contrast doesn't always mean a wide swash of solid color or varied texture! the whispers are serving you well! this cloth is moving in such amazing directions, i can hardly see which turns and spirals come next!!

    joe in montana

  9. I do like this. I can see that there might be a hundred permutations you can play with. The orange fabric and spacer strips give it a lovely "jump" and bring out the other colours. (I'm (currently) a great fan of orange). Thanks again for sharing your processes.

  10. I love the last sentence - it's not over yet, lol. Love where this is going - sometimes it's about the journey, isn't it? I LOVE the A. Henry fabric - I've always loved his stuff, it never gets old either, always exciting. Adds a nice zing in this piece! You didn't ask...but sometimes when I am looking for ideas, putting it on point gives a fresh perspective. Just a thought, I totally love it now.

  11. I'm having fun watching this come together and change as you go. I look forward to the next instalment, and I must say that is a lot of ties.

  12. What fun to watch the process ... glad there are only slivers of the black now. And very glad so many of the ties are right next to each other ... love where you're heading!


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