Remember when I told you about Bee Adventurous, the new round robin-style quilting bee I’m in? Well, the work I showed you then was Round 1, when we all made our own pieces to pass on.
Round 2 was just a touch trickier. Who knew adding something to someone’s beautiful handmade work was going to be so damn difficult??! Ok, so maybe I should’ve seen that coming.
I knew that my contribution to Rebecca’s (@greenandbell on IG, a friend whose work I admire more than I can say) quilt was going to include low volume flying geese – I could see that almost immediately. Her segment was made of intricate, colorful squares, and my gut said it wanted angles and couldn’t have anything too colorful next to her section or it would drown it out. I sewed a bunch of low volume, low contrast flying geese and was crazy about them. And then got stuck.
I originally placed a couple of stars between the geese and it was pretty, but it had no cohesion with Rebecca’s piece. I also went back to the original assignment, as it were, and looked at Rebecca’s Pinterest inspiration board for her project. I decided the stars were stepping too far away from her style. Working your style into someone else’s isn’t easy – it’s a balance, taking care not to simply mimic their style, instead finding a way to blend the two seamlessly.
It took me a few days of sweat and tears, but I decided to replace the stars with five circles, English Paper Pieced in quarters, in color blocks. The color and shot cottons I used would tie into Rebecca’s work without competing with it. I had also previously felt that in order to be truly representative of me, there really should be some hand-stitching involved in my contribution, so landing on an EPP solution put out a couple of fires with one cup of water. As soon as I imagined the circles in place, I knew it was the right choice and I got stitching.
I’m really happy with what I made for Rebecca, and I hope she is too! It’s a little bit me, a little bit her. And it made me step outside the box and see my sewing a little differently which, for me, was the whole point of this bee!
(Rebecca’s work up top, mine below it. This photo was kindly provided by the bee member now in possession of this project, Ruth (@birchandbirdsong on IG), because my turn with it was plagued by dark and rainy days. Other than this photo, pardon the unpolished WIP-nature of the shots in this post. This is what it really looks like as I work. :) )
Next up, Clare’s project, which you can see the start of on her blog. It’s been added to by Rebecca since then, and I’m totally unsure about this one. We’re already a month into this round and I only really have an inkling of an idea of how to proceed! So yeah, wish me luck, eh?