A Tale of Two Quilts

Sassaman Moths and Moons Quilt

Welcome back to the the Sassaman Ideas Blog. After suffering a case of digital burn-out and creative discontent, I’ve taken a hiatus from blogging. But in the meantime I’ve discovered the more immediate joys of communicating via instagram and Pinterest. These social formats have revived my interest in weekly blogging. So I am hoping to come back with more “heart” this time.

I wear two professional hats, one the beret of an artist and the other the practical ball cap of a designer. I intend to share both these roles with you in this new series of posts.

The quilts above are a rare mix of both these roles. They were made to feature the FreeSpirit Leaf Dance collection. My personal art quilts are usually made with solid colored fabric cut into shapes to be appliqued. Even though, my commercial fabric has an identifiable Sassaman style the repeat pattern of the yardage requires that it be used in its own unique way, as traditional pieced quilts, for example. These moth quilts show a little bit of both worlds.

The original quilt is on the left. It was intensely machine quilted before the moths were applied. Each little leaf is individually stitched with thread tails tied and buried at both ends… quite unreasonable and ridiculously time consuming. But I have a very high tolerance  for meditative and tedious craftsmanship. Yet this quilt design seemed like a good candidate to become a commercial pattern, as it could be made successfully with all kinds of fabrics, in which case the construction needed to become more accessible.

So in the second version, the wreaths are appliqued and the moths are beefed up to have a grander presence. There are features that I like in both pieces.

Sassaman Moths & Moons 1 Quilt

Here is a detail of Moths and Moons One. I used lots of Sew Sassy topstitching thread in both translations. You can see why I had to quilt the background before I added the applique. I could never make the wreath embroidery stop and start at such weird angles.

Sassaman Moths & Moons 2 Quilt

Here is a detail of version two. I am pleased with the contrast of the gray wreath on the white brocade moon. Do you have a favorite? Now to get the pattern written! By the way, there are two free Leaf Dance patterns available on my home page that you can  print and make without any waiting. Enjoy.

8 Responses to “A Tale of Two Quilts”

  1. Kim Bates says:

    These are just beautiful- what a lot of work but well-worth it!

  2. Diane Evans says:

    I can’t wait to see the patterns, Jane — at first glance, the differences between the two aren’t obvious. They’re both so intricate looking — and beautiful.

  3. Like you, there are things I would choose from each of them. I like the clear moons on the first, and the upward antennae design. However, I do like the darker wreaths in the background on the second, as well as the “beefed-up” moths. These are both just marvelous! Hoping to see at least one of these in person when you visit Music City in September.

  4. Vivian says:

    Love the design and prefer the white moon on the left. I like the symplicity of the white and lines of the antenna.
    However, I like the larger wings on the right and the black wreaths.

  5. kitty says:

    Beautiful work!! I like both versions very much; the second, more dramatic one is my favorite. The moon looks more mysterious as the heads of the moths on the moon create a face-like impression when I lean back. The moths, also, are more physical than in version 1, where, for me, they are an expression of elegance as are the embroidered wreaths.

  6. Melissa P says:

    What an impossible choice! Although, I have to say, I favor the second one (if only because the thought of all those tails needing to be buried makes me itch).

  7. trade80silks says:

    This is fast becoming one of my favourite patterns

  8. Cay Denise says:

    Very nice…the quilting is so effective and supportive of the design!

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