We The People

November 3, 2017 Design, Journal 0 Comments

For two years I have been obsessed with the musical Hamilton. I’ve got books, biographies, watched the PBS special over and over, watched every interview Lin Manuel-Miranda has given, memorized the score, learned how to rap – you get the picture. Looking into the great ‘American Experiment” I started thinking about the documents written by the founding fathers and the frustration I feel about the current climate of the country. I needed to get something down on fabric.

The phrase “we the People are Created Equal” was buzzing through my head so I went unto the studio and started drawing “people” on graph paper. The first prototype was missing something, in fact, my husband did not see people at all! I kept at it and added more of a “body”. No longer were their heads floating out in space. I liked this prototype, the arms were raised at the sides of their heads trying to get the attention of the onlookers. To me they looked like they were shouting.

      

I hit the computer and designed a layout using three different sizes of the same block and did a layout without the words.

        

Pulling fabric was so much fun, different colors and textures even made a journalist with newsprint fabric. I wanted to incorporate some handwork into the quilt. It was my goal in 2017 to do some slow stitching. With that in mind, I did a blanket stitch around the heads of all the people.  Various low volume prints made up the background of the quilt. I then turned my attention to the back. I had leftover “bodies” of the people and wanted to incorporate them into the back of the quilt.  Back to EQ-7!

    

A stripe of these triangles up the middle of the quilt was fun and colorful and used up my snap triangles. On one side of the quilt, I used a solid dark gray and on the other a print that looks to me like barbed wire fencing. Now to my long armer Stacey Bendure who works at http://mainelysewing.com/

I knew what I wanted to use as a quilting pattern, an allover barbed wire pattern which would echo the fabric and add another level of social commentary. The heads of the people would be excluded in the quilting. It was so cool to visit while the quilt was actually being quilted. The graphic on the left below shows the pattern on the computer screen and the heads of the people taken out of the allover pattern.

 

The binding was pieced from the prints used for the words, framing the entire quilt in a dark frame. When it came time to photograph “We the People” I turned to Kitty Wilkin @nightquilter

Kitty took the quilt to the high line in NYC! she came back with some great shots that captured the essence of the quilt.

By the way, I finally got Hamilton tickets!  August 1, 2018 – can’t wait!