Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Work In Progress - Autumn Blanket

Today is great blanket making weather as it is unusually cool and overcast. I've been working on a new one for a few days now.  The picture is a small scale test which I usually put together to see how the different wools will work together and to try out thread colors. I was going to use a 5.5" square template. However, you can't assume that what works well in the tester will scale up as nicely.  This is one of those cases. 

The colors are alive - wheat, gold, orange and red balanced by heather green and a rich navy for contrast.  My plan was to keep it simple and let the colors carry the day.  So I started laying it out - a random pattern of 5.5s  and a few large 11 inch squares interlocked with some rectangular pieces.  It didn't work, it was horrible.  No matter how I moved the squares around it didn't have the energy I was looking for - instead it just looked busy.  Such frustration. Why doesn't this work?  I love these colors!  I took several pictures, which I recommend you try doing to evaluate any visual medium as it helps frame the work allowing you to look at it more objectively.  The squares were too small and some of the lighter colors were dragging all the energy out of it.  What if I made larger squares by sewing the smaller squares of the same color together?

Would that give it some texture from the seams and the color blocking I was looking for?  I opted for the larger squares and fewer colors and began sewing.  Next problem; one of the colors  didn't have enough material to get the number of squares I needed.  Here's where the fun begins because you have to come up with ways to make it work with the materials you have.  So, I decided to create a new square, a black and white one that I would sew from other scraps and punctuate the blanket with 3 or 4 of these.  They would create some energy and fill in where I was lacking material.

This is working out pretty well but I'm not quite there yet so I'll give you a look in a day or two. 

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