Lois is quilting each block as she completes it.
I love the dark background!
I really enjoyed making this block – the toughest challenge for me was deciding on a crown for my blue bird. I went through about five crowns, including chopping up what little Liberty of London fabric I had. A friend actually went to London several years ago and bought little pieces of gorgeous fabrics for me. I haven’t used too much of it yet. I find that the weight and feel of the fabric is different- It ‘s a bit thinner and feels more like silk than cotton. I know Paula Nadelstern uses lots of Liberty fabrics in her kaleidoscope quilts.
I think the butterfly added some interesting color contrast. The birds beaks are little bits of the Australian fabric I buy every year at the Somers, NY quilt show (which is coming up next weekend!). I try not use too much of the that fabric, since the weave is really loose. I mainly use it for bags. I used little white cylindrical beads and a bit of black ultrasuade for the eyes – it is a bit difficult to see them in the photo.
This past Tuesday, a circus historian, William Schnitzer and a former NYU librarian, who is the ultimate researcher, George Thompson, got together with Ashley (Collections Manager at HHS and blog assistant) and I, to dig deeper into Hannibal’s past. I think we now have about six more articles on the escapades of that poor elephant. Hannibal was an Asian elephant who was brought to the United States at the age of 12- He had quite a temper and was notorious for his tantrums- he was known to have killed at least one man, several horses (especially ones he did not like) and raised havoc in countless cities across the country. I will have a map of all the places he visited this coming month.
I will post the newspaper clippings, as well as their transcriptions, in the History section of the blog. I will start putting them up this week.
And thank you Mona, for your inspiration –
Mona finished this block a while ago and had it posted on “The Civil War Bride Quilt blog” (I have a link to that blog on the right sidebar) – I just love how she changed the shape of the bird- Also, the legs (which I am trying to copy)
I took a wonderful workshop with Kim Diehl Friday. I learned some really interesting tricks on how to prepare appliques. Also, how to press circular and sharp pointed appliques onto freezer paper.
I have taken the bird on the right apart at least three times, trying to work with colors that fit. I think I may stick with this choice. I still have a lot of time until I get to applique that section. Need to find the right material for his crown – I found a really old piece of Jenny Beyer border fabric to use for the crown on the bird to the left. And thank you, Mona for the idea of smoothing the bird out a bit, elongating the beak and changing the legs.