Monday, September 3, 2018

Millefiori Moonlight

"Millefiori Moonlight," 39 x 28, handmade by Pam Geisel, Sept. 2018

My initial inspiration for this quilt was the colorful sunsets we’ve been having due to the wildfires out west. I knew I wanted to make a quilt that was primarily dark cool colors (blues and purples) with some pops of warm colors (yellows, oranges, and reds).


First I got out all the blues and purple fabrics (commercial cottons and batiks) and pulled out the ones I thought would work. I didn't use all of the ones in this photo, but I did use most of them. I pieced the background with half square triangles and with the blues and a few blue/purple fabrics for the sky (getting a little lighter where the moon would be), the dark purples for the bottom mountain range, and the plums for the middle mountain range.

Top left photo - background for the purple cloud and the Roman Glass fabric; top right photo -background for the red cloud with the Roman Glass fabric; bottom left photo - background for the bottom orange cloud with the Roman Glass fabric; and the bottom right photo - background for the middle orange cloud with the swirls cut from the center fabric and the Roman Glass fabric.

As I was selecting fabrics to use, I was also inspired by some fabrics called "Roman Glass" by Kaffe Fassett for Westminister Fabrics that had color circles on top of other colored circles, but I thought they were too dense for my needs the circles out and fused to other fabrics to create the clouds. I also fused nine of these circles to the moon.


With the piecing and raw edge applique done, it was time to quilt! I used navy blue and purple threads to quilt lines that echoed the clouds and mountain ranges with the lines being 1/4" apart and mostly running horizontal.


There is no quilting on the moon and since the quilting around the moon is so dense. it puffed up away from the background. I stuffed a few extra pieces of batting behind the moon to help it stay puffed. I also couched yarn around the mountain ranges, the clouds, and the moon.


I hand sewed six buttons (as pairs) in the lower right corner to help balance the moon in the upper left corner. I also added some glass beads to the moon. I finished the quilt with a knife-edge binding.


The layered fabric circles reminded me of millefiori which is a glasswork technique with multicolored patterns which are viewable only from the cut ends of the glass cane, and this also gave me the name for the quilt.

As always you can click on the photos to see them larger.

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