Friday, November 30, 2012

It Takes a Village II, and Other Africa-Inspired Quilts

I think this might be the last of my African huts quilts for awhile, but I don't promise, and I'm calling it It Takes a Village II, because I can't think of a better name for it. But it shouldn't be confused with my pattern by the same name. The blocks on the inside are pieced from 5" squares, with 2 1/2" red corners on two of the corners. Instructions for this are in the book Nickel Quilts. And then I've added indigo borders on each of the sides, and African huts set against indigo on the top and bottom borders. A great use of scraps, and at 60" X 80", it will make a great lap quilt for someone.
What I'm really excited about, though, is the African improvisational pieces I'm working on. Each piece measures 7" X 14", and each is inspired by a different traditional African textile. This first is inspired by a barkcloth bag I bought in Kampala, and the second is inspired by a piece of Kuba cloth from the Congo. Ghanaian black fabric printed with gold and a similar North American print, form the borders.
I'm not sure yet how many pieces will make up the whole of this "African Sampler", but what I do know is that it's going to hang all together eventually. But before I join it together, I am handing it over to my friend Joan Darling, who doesn't believe anything is finished until it's beaded. I have given her free rein to bead as she wishes. This, however, is proving harder than I imagined! I think it would be fair to say that I'm someone who likes to stay in control, and I'm having to loosen up quite a bit. Which is a good thing, but not necessarily easy.
This last little piece is called Birds of Rubingo, and was made up as a kit for Quilt Canada in Halifax. The birds are all different and were embroidered by two Ugandan women who are not part of the Bitengye Designers, but wanted to find a way to earn some income for themselves. The striped border and Shweshwe borders (South African indigo fabric) frame the birds perfectly. I am offering this kit, which measures 14" X 44", for $19.95 - 20% off the full price of $25. There are only 6 remaining, so the first 6 people to get in touch with me will receive all the fabrics and instructions to make the top for this charming wallhanging. Please order it from - my shopping website. Check back on Monday, when I will offer two more kits at sale prices. Until then, happy quilting!

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