Monday, October 13, 2014

Green Heroes Completed. Finally.

I finally completed my quilt on ecologists, naturalists, nature activists, writers, legislators, and other "green" heroes. I started it in 2012. I embroidered the portraits and names on green and set the blocks with a green leaf print on black.

Aldo Leopold, "A Sand County Almanac" author
I wanted to try something new. I decided to quilt images representing the different 'heroes' achievements. I don't think it is really successful. There is too much unquilted space.

I found the dark border fabric very hard to quilt. I used a green thread darker than the block fabrics. I quilted around the leaf shapes in the inner border and did a Methodist (sometimes called Baptist) fan in the outer border.

I hated doing the quilting, every one-and-a half spools of thread of it. Partly because the dark fabric made it hard to see the quilting, but also because I was so unsatisfied with the quilting...perhaps because I could not see it! I started it on my quilt frame, but found it was hard on my back and switched to a hoop.

The quilting took all winter and all summer and into the fall. It was packed up for three months or more because of moving. I lived in three addresses while I worked on it.

To illustrate how I did the quilting design, here is John James Audubon.


I chose his turkey illustration for the left side area behind his head.

Here is what the quilting looks like; I turned the photo into black and white so that the stitching shows up better.

Lois Gibbs, the grass roots organizer of Love Canal, has the danger sign on the left and a house and swing set on the right. I wrote a blog post about her on Nov. 5, 2012 found here: http://theliteratequilter.blogspot.com/2012/11/my-green-heroes-quilt-lois-gibbs.html

It is one of my posts with the most traffic.

For Pete Seeger, the Clearwater sloop is in the background to represent his work with the Hudson River "Clearwater" Revival
And of course his banjo with it's famous saying also appears in the quilting.

I finished the binding today while watching Ken Burn's series The Roosevelts on TiVo. Teddy died in the episode I was watching. Of course he is on my quilt because of his work creating the national park system. 

Only a few of the drawing used for the embroidery were created by me. The rest were drawings from Better World Heroes "Eco Heroes," There are twenty "heroes" on the quilt.



Audubon






Rachel Carson

Wendell Berry