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Updated 12/13/12
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All of the fabrics in this quilt are from the "Gradations" collections designed by Caryl Bryer Fallert for Benartex, available in our secure Internet Store.
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  Feathers in the Wind © Copyright 2010 Caryl Bryer Fallert, Bryerpatch Studio, Paducah KY Feathers in the Wind
by Caryl Bryer Fallert

Printable Version (517k PDF)
  • Copyright 2010 Caryl Bryer Fallert
  • Size: 42" high x 61" wide
  • Techniques: machine pieced, and quilted
  • Materials: fabric: 100% cotton  / batting: 100% celulose
  • Owner: Linda Schmidt, Paducah KY

SEE details & more information below
Larger image (151k) with more detail

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Design Concept & Process
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Design Concept

For many years birds have been a recurring theme in my work. At one point I began focusing on the patterns within a single feather, and the patterns created when feathers overlap. I have made hundreds of sketches/doodles using these patterns as a launch-pad for my imagination. Many of these flights of fantasy go far beyond anything that could be found on a real bird, but they still reflect patterns found in nature, both in birds and in plants. During the last eight years, I have made a series of quilts based on the most interesting of these raw sketches. This is the thirty-second quilt in the series.

The fabrics for this quilt are from the "Gradations Collection", designed by me for Benartex, and they are based on my original hand dyed gradations. The juxtaposition of intersecting gradations in the plumes of the feathers creates the illusion that they are lit from within, rather than from an outside source. The background was piecced from sky colors, intersperces with thin stripes of purple to represent wind. The machine quilting was done freehand with many different colors of thread.

Process:

Original doodle
The design started with a small pencil sketch on paper. I scanned the sketch into the computer and played with the proportions. Once I decided on the rectangle, I made separate sketches of the feather shapes and the background shapes. Each of these were scanned into the computer and converted into closed shapes which could be filled with color. (See full color study below)

To make a full size drawing I copied the line drawing onto clear acetate and projected the lines onto freezer paper using an overhead projector. I drew the basic outlines with pencil and then spent several hours refining the big drawing and adding all of the information I was going to need to piece it together. The completed freezer-paper drawing was hung on my work wall and the piecing began. I cut one piece at a time from the master drawing and ironed each one to the wrong side of my fabric. Each individual template in a series was ironed to successive colors in a gradation. I cut around each paper template, adding a quarter inch seam allowance around the edges. The pieces were sewn together to form modules, which were then assembled into the final quilt top.

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detail of big freezer-paper drawing
With the feed-dogs up, I quilted in the ditch around the feather shapes first, then free-motion machine quilted the rest. I used feather patterns in the plume shapes, with flourescent red threads to create more luminosity. The purple stripes in the background were quilted in a zig-zag pattern, and the sky colored areas were quilted in shapes that I think of as wind patterns. All of the free-motion quilting was done free-hand, with no marking. I think of this as drawing with thread.

Exhibitions & Awards:

  • Bluegrass Biennial 2012, June 2-August 31, 2012, Claypool-Young Art Gallery, Morehead State University, Morehead, KY
  • American Quilters Society Show and Contest 2012, Paducah KY - Third Place (wall quilts)
  • 2011 International Juried & Judged Quilt Festival, September 30-October 2, 2011, La Conner Quilt & Textile Museum, 703 Second Street, La Conner, WA, 360-466-4288 • www.laconnerquilts.com First Place (non-traditional pieced)
  • Quilts a World of Beauty: International Quilt Association Show, 2010, Quilt Festival and Quilt Market, October 28- November 7, 2010 and traveling First Place (small abstract art quilt)
    • International Spring Quilt Festival/Cincinnati, April 8-10, 2011
    • International Quilt Market/Salt Lake City, May 13-15, 2011
    • International Quilt Festival/Long Beach, July 29-31, 2011
  • Bryerpatch Studio, Paducah, KY, 2010 Quilt Week Caryl Bryer Fallert and Friends Exhibition

Publications & Media:

  • International Quilt Association Show CD of winning quilts
  • The Quilt Channel: Linda & Terry Schmidt: video prepared for closed circuit TV during Quilt Week in Paducah KY
  • Stitched: Documentary premiering at International Spring Quilt Festival/Cincinnati, April 8-10, 2011 and Maiden Alley Cinema, Paducah Kentucky, April 26-30, 2011
  • Catalogue of 2012 Show Quilts, Paducah Kentucky, American Quilters Society, p. 32
  • Paducah Sun, Thursday, April 28, 2011, C P. 1
  • American Quilters Society Wall Calendar, 2013, AQS, Front & Back Covers
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Web Site Design by Caryl Bryer Fallert 1997-2011 All Rights Reserved
Bryerpatch Studio • 502 N. 5th St. • Paducah, KY 42001 • USA
caryl@bryerpatch.com • 270-444-8040
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