Sunlight on the Water

Linking Up with AHIQ Month 2

Earlier this month Kaja posted a suggestion for AHIQ that we should use what we had.  I accused her of spying on me, because I had already picked some fabrics for this quilt. Here follow the details.

The Back Story 

I spent a lovely ‘girls’ getaway’ weekend with my mother and some cousins at a mountain lake; a favorite childhood haunt of all three generations present. As usual I took too many photos.  I am always intrigued by reflections in water, so I may have taken more pictures of the water than of the actual surroundings. I loved the colors  pattern effects of sun and wind on the water, and decided to use these inspiration for a new improv project.DSC09586DSC09636

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I pulled out a group of “watery” looking pieces that seem to live in this color palette.  IMG_0731

Along the way I found this sunshiny sheet of strips, made with some purpose in mind that now eludes me. (Yes, those are bananas on the right-hand end.)  It sat there on the sidelines; and every so often I glanced at it, but could not figure out how it fit in!


I started making blocks by stacking three or four pieces, cutting them in freehand curves and switching layers.  I made three sets of blocks in this way, each using a different range or fabrics. The first was medium range, mostly blues and greens shown below, left.IMG_0787 IMG_0789

The second and third sets were darker green/brown, and lighter blue/silver, on the right. I now had 50 blocks all rectangular, all with curving seams, and in varying sizes. I assembled the top by sewing blocks into rows of approximately equal length; then splicing rows together, by overlapping them, cutting and stitching together along gently curving lines. And toward the bottom, on a sudden impulse, I added in three narrow inserts of the sunshiny strip piecing. It seemed to be a good transition to the golds and browns towards the bottom. And thus, I used what I had!  IMG_0795

I didn’t notice the little hopping frog until after I had taken the photo, but he looks right in his element, don’t you think?


As I prepared this post, I went searching for photos among the tens of thousands of pictures I have stored on my computer in the past four or five years. After looking at a number of images that were not just what I was looking for, I realized that I’ve been following a similar process with my improvisation for quite awhile now.  Is this my style? I’m not satisfied. Except for the lower right, they are all in the UFO bag being neglected. The falling leaves was lucky enough to be hand colored, quilted and hung in the kitchen.

IMG_1889 - Version 2 IMG_4645 IMG_2345 IMG_1984 See the similarity?  I have a vision when I start out, and I work in much the same way in all these pieces, joining, slicing, re-combining, and so on. I’m going to have to think about what it is I am going for. I do like the way this month’s effort turned out, however, and I will proceed with quilting in hopes that it becomes something I am really proud of. And for next month, I’m hoping I can make myself do something a little different! Just being aware of the group of you spurs me on.