Earth Stories: Making a Small Statement

One of the requirements of the Earth Stories exhibit was that we were to make a small, 12×14″ piece that was sort of a poster of what the big piece was about. So how to summarize the whole issue?

Luckily, I had some part of my drawing brain back sometime in late August. I was nearly finished with the big quilt and school was starting, so I was going to panic soon. I sat down and drew this in one evening. Of course, that was after I stared at the paper with the rectangle perimeter drawn on it for about 6 days. Let’s be truthful here.

Aug 19 13 001 small

I wanted to emphasize that the birth control allowed us to decide how to feed our kids, that it gave us choices about when to have kids and how to space them.

I was still a little psycho about pieces on this tiny thing though. It has 133 pieces. Ayep. Still crazy.

Aug 24 13 157 small

Traced it onto Wonder Under in record time (50 minutes).



Aug 25 13 041 small

Cut them out (24 minutes). I really should do more small pieces)…I’d probably be less frustrated. But also probably less fulfilled. Scary balance there.

Aug 26 13 003 small

Then I started the fabric-picking…I had not put the other fabrics away, because I wanted to be choosing from the same pile of stuff…so the two quilts would speak to each other. They are related, you know. It took just over an hour and a half to choose the fabrics…

Aug 31 13 008 small

Then I trimmed the pieces in just under an hour…

Sep 3 13 004 small

And started ironing them down…

Sep 6 13 003 small

Here’s a pile of pieces ready for a background…

Sep 6 13 009 small

Then I realized I didn’t have very much of the background fabric left…to be specific, this is what I had…


Aug 31 13 004 small

So I used the same sky fabric from the big cloud, then pieced border on top of it…but as you can see, I didn’t necessarily do everything completely straight (this is why I don’t piece quilts)…

Sep 7 13 124 small

I do have a degree in fixing things that are fucked up, though, so I pulled apart and restitched a seam…

Sep 7 13 126 small

Ironing it all together and to the background took a little over 2 hours (mostly because I screwed up). Then I stitched everything down (26 minutes), sandwiched, pinbasted, and started quilting…about an hour for all of that.

Sep 7 13 130 small

Afterwards, I once again forgot that tiny-ass binding is a pain in the ass to stitch down, so I did it anyway (I will never learn)…

Sep 8 13 045 small

Binding it took a couple of hours. I started this on August 24, finished on September 12 (and that’s only because I took a long time on the binding). It took 9 hours and 19 minutes. Holy crap. That was easy. It is difficult for me, though, to get enough meaning and depth into a small piece to make me feel satisfied with it. I think this one is successful, as are the other two small ones I did last summer, but it’s not a size I enjoy. I may work on that this summer. There’s something to be said for finishing something in one day. Maybe I’ll set a goal.

Next post? I finally reveal both pieces and talk about the exhibitions and the catalog.


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