- Copyright © 1995 Caryl Bryer Fallert
- Size: 88" high x 88" wide
- Materials: 100% cotton fabric / 80/20 cotton/poly
- Techniques: Hand dyed & painted, machine pieced,
appliqued, and quilted
- AQS Best of Show $15,000.00 Purchase
- Collection of The
National Quilt Museum of the United States
See more information and details below
MIGRATION #2 is about what I imagine it would
feel like to fly along with a flock of migrating birds. Since
they are birds of the imagination, they don't represent any
particular species. Standing in my garden on my farm in Northern
Illinois, I can see vast expanses of sky. Almost every day
there are flocks of birds passing overhead, migrating, or
just traveling together from one pond to the next. To me,
the idea of flight represents the ultimate feeling of freedom.
December of 1994 I decided to design a large quilt which would
incorporate elements of my whole cloth series along with string
piecing and appliqué. The outlines of the birds were drawn
on paper and scanned into the computer as bitmaps. They were
traced using a program called streamline, which converted
them to vector drawings (objects that could be manipulated
and colored) in Corel Draw, my computer drawing program.
the final color study as it looked on my computer screen.
The fill in the center square is actually a bitmap made from
a slide of one of my painted fabrics. The fill in the outer
border is a standard Corel Draw fill that I altered to look
like one of my painted fabrics. I intended to have triangles
in the sweeping curves, but I didn't feel it was necessary to draw
each one in the sketch, so I just flushed in a stock, geometric
texture fill to see if the idea would work.
I printed the line drawing onto acetate and projected it
onto a large piece of paper to enlarge it to the finished
size. The paper became the templates for cutting the fabric.
Once I finished piecing the top, I decided to quilt some long
feathered plumes intertwined with the sweeping curves.
knew that these would become major design elements so I went
back to the computer and drew the center lines of the plumes
and projected them onto the quilt top, and marked the lines
The line drawings of the 21 birds were Xeroxed onto wonder
under, which had been fused to black fabric.
|Each bird one was carefully cut
out with embroidery scissors then fused and stitched with a
very narrow satin stitch, which becomes almost invisible. Quilting
in contrasting thread, outlines each bird.
In the lower right corner, the birds are larger - about ten
inches long. As they fly diagonally across the painted sky,
they become smaller and smaller, until in the outer border
they're only about 3-4 inches long.
center fabric was painted with fiber reactive dye in an expressionistic
design, incorporating the pure colors of light. The outer
border fabric was painted in the greens, browns and lavenders
In the sweeping graduated curves, I have
pieced a variation on the traditional "Flying Geese"
pattern. In this variation, the "Geese" fly in a
path that is graduated in both size and color, and curves
around the outer border. A fabric painted
in striated rainbow hues was used to make the center triangles
In each triangle I quilted the outline of
a bird. I designed one symmetrical bird on my computer,
then stretched and skewed it in over a hundered different
shapes and sizes to get a bird that would fit in each of the
triangles. Here are just a few of the variations.
|The machine quilting becomes a major
design element in this quilt, providing a foreground dimension
that is contrapuntal to the painted background design. Top stitching
thread in many different colors was used, so the stitching could
be clearly seen against the background. Long multicolored "feathered"
plumes intertwine the arcs of "Flying Geese". In each
of the triangles of the "Flying Geese" the outline
of a flying bird is quilted. The center, painted fabric is quilted
in freehand patterns of sky and wind. The outer border is quilted
in darker, more organic patterns of earth and garden.
|With the exception of the outline
of the birds, all of the machine quilting was done freehand,
with no marking of the quilt top. This kind of quilting is like
doodling. It's patterns are as distinct to the individual quilter
as handwriting or a signature.
On the back of the quilt is another original variation on
"Flying Geese" in the form of one large 72"
radially symmetrical block. The bobbin threads in the machine
quilting echo the colors of the top threads, and mirror the
flying bird design on the front of the quilt.
single birds flies toward the upper right corner. The "Flying
Geese" on the back of the quilt are made from the same
striated fabric from which the "Flying Geese" on the
front were cut. Another version of this fabric, painted in slightly
darker colors was used to bind the quilt.
Exhibitions and Awards:
- Permanent collection of The
National Quilt Museum of the United States
- MID-ATLANTIC QUILT FESTIVAL, 1995 (juried) Williamsburg,
PA FIRST PLACE
- COLUMBUS HERITAGE QUILT SHOW, 1995, Columbus, IN
- QUILTERS HERITAGE CELEBRATION, 1995, (juried) Lancaster,
- AMERICAN QUILTERS SOCIETY SHOW, 1995, (juried) Paducah,
KY BEST OF SHOW
- SPECTRUM: THE TEXTILE ART OF CARYL BRYER FALLERT 1983-1995,
Museum of the American Quilters Society, Paducah, KY 1986
- Caryl Bryer Fallert: A Retrospective, New England Quilt Museum, Lowell, MA, August 20 - October 31, 2015