One of my clients came to me with a challenge. She wanted me to make a quilted wall-hanging of the condominium of a very good friend. The detail alone was daunting, but what made the request specifically challenging was the boxy-white nature of the building. This is a much beloved place for my client. She has wonderful memories of summer’s spent at this Ocean City condo. I needed the end result to be as beautiful as her memories.
What I decided to do was make the background like a sunrise. The sky could be multi- colored where the building could not. I also ‘lit up’ the section of thecondo that her friend owns. Then I made the grasses and fences in front of the building in purples and blues to imitate the early morning light along the dunes.
I also had to be careful not to make the whole building white. I have done this on small-scale quilts, where white is the primary color. At those times I leave the details to the stitching. But on such a large project, I had to inject more color. So I chose to enhance the shadows and architectural features of the building that may otherwise be unnoticed.
This was also a challenging quilt because of the handwork I had to do to put in the rails along the balconies. The layers of fabric and the backing on this quilt made the hand sewing difficult and I had to use a set of pliers to pull the thread through. My fingers ached for days!
So this was my great white whale, my Moby Dick. It almost defeated me, but unlike Captain Ahab, I had a wonderful husband who cheered me on everyday. Thanks, Babe!