Thursday, 31 May 2012

A 'peaceful friend' of childhood imagination.

Hello, finally beginning to stop dragging my feet and getting back to the world of blogdom!
Still having a go slow on the stitching side of things because of damaged fingers but I think I'm almost there - good job, I musty be on a 5 month lay-off now!
Frustration, what frustration!?  :)

So I thought I would drift back once again to quilt making of the past.....

......please meet' Kumi' - my peaceful friend.

I had long wanted to make a black and white quilt but instead of basing my piece on patchwork I'd discovered Sashiko quilting and determined to give it a go!
Traditionally this japanese style of quilting was white on navy
 but who says things cannot be different?  :)

The horse was from a favourite childhood book of mine 'The Silver Brumby'.
 I had always loved the 2" high image on the front of the book and had always said I would use it at some point in  my life.....I set to to create my own versioin, somewhat enlarged, to be the centre-piece of the quilt. Then, using a very useful book I found in the local library, I set off on the then little known process of creating a sampler border of different sashiko designs.  I loved the way each pattern had a name and association so typical of the japanese.

.......a little closer in on the stallion, I love the movement from the flowing mane.

A little blurry I'm afraid but you can see the quilting to the back of the horse where I tried to show rays of light radiating behind.....

This pattern is a variation of 'Seigaiha' - blue ocean waves.....

This one is a variation of the 'Asanoha' - hemp leaf design.....

 This pattern is 'Shippo tsunagi' - linked seven treasures.

Each pattern requires a grid to be drawn on the cloth before drawing in the actual design to then stitch stitching was maybe not as precise as it should have been at the pattern junctions but I was pleased in the end as it was my first attemp!

 Here at the bottom I placed some oriental characters that I hope depict the message of 
'peaceful friend' -  a strong association for me to a beautiful white creature, imaginary, a piece of childhood, but so real nevertheless.

A comment from a lovely lady recently causes me to note that apart from patchwork piecing and borders, which I do on a sewing machine, most of my work is done by hand.  I love the flow and texture that true hand quilting gives, though I am thinking of machine quilting simply because of a matter of speed but my first love will always be the hand work.  I never thought to say before and didn't realise people would think I worked by machine!!!!!
Hey-ho as they say.

Hope all you stitching fiends are busy and creating yet more wonderful stuff.  :)

Best wishes,  Ash.



  1. So beautiful! Your work is exquisite and your imagination is incredible!

  2. First....I am so so sorry that your fingers are taking so long to heal....for a person who loves handwork....that would include me as well..I really feel for you....hope things progress quickly from here...
    Second.....this quilt!!!!!!!!! This is so so amazingly beautiful....I adore horses....and the quilting is spectacular..!!!! What an achievement !!! I just did my first very small machine quilted was a piece I would have probably tied if not machine because the embroidery would have been interrupted with hand quilting....but I will always love the hand work is such a peaceful thing to do...I think that is why I love embroidery...
    Well....lovely to see you posting...I think I had better do the same....the gardens have taken over my life at present!!!
    Happy day to you!!

  3. Oh my goodness, Ash! This quilt is gorgeous! You do such amazing work.

  4. oh my, your work is stunning!! I really must get on and make a quilt!! I have the equipment, just keep running out of time :(