Good morning my beautiful quilty friends! Ok, all of you that read my blog know that I am what my partner lovingly refers to as a "batik freak". I would rather buy a batik than another other fabric almost any day. As a result, I am always on the look out the batik section of the quilt shop or when a batik line comes out from one of my favorite companies. You also might have noticed that I've become a huge fan of Tamarinis! Every line she makes is gorgeous and as a picky consumer I feel thrilled that she makes my batik shopping more fun every year.
I don't normally post a picture of the whole line when I blog, but this time around I thought I would talk about what I look for in a good fabric line, so I wanted to show you all of the fabrics that are available in the delectable Speakeasy line from Island Batik.
I often think Tamarinis and I must channel a similar psyche because she creates lines that do exactly what I'm looking for. As you look through the options in the photo above, note that she has lights and darks, several medium values, coordinating colors, a couple of powerful stand outs, and a general luminosity that makes the fabric a little something special. As you can see, from a design standpoint, the bases are loaded and we are ready to hit a home run. Tamarinis knows that I like powerful brights and I'm less drawn in by lines that don't contain a red, so she was sure I might not go for this one, but as you can see it was the glow of this line that made it sure to delight me.
When I got this fabric into the studio, I had a plan in mind, but when I started pressing samples of it in the spot of sun I get from the north window, I knew I had to change to something that would show off the inherent glow of this fabric. I switched gears and went to a design I hadn't planned to put out just yet.
As soon as I began the piecing portion of the project, I knew I was making the right choice. You can see in this image how the fabrics pick up light beautifully. In talking about fabric, I rarely bring up luminosity. I talk about color, value, intensity, and print extensively with students, but luminosity (or the glow of the fabric) is harder to gauge and to show at times. However, you can see here how the gold tones (that provide the base of the yellow/green fabrics, some of the purples, and even the lights) radiate as though from an interior in the fabric giving the appearance of a glow.
To accent the natural glow of the gold tones in the fabrics, I chose a neutral background fabric and two deep dark examples from the collection to be the focal circles. Take note of how the darks appear with the brilliance of the golds in the sashing fabrics.
Here you can see in a portion of the build, how the neutral background allows the radiance of the Speakeasy fabrics to pop towards the viewer, while the darks become deep pools the viewer might feel they could fall into with the slightest effort.
In quilting this project, I again chose threads that wouldn't detract from the luminous golds and would instead allow them to become the warming feature of the quilt. If I were more of a piecer, I imagine that these gorgeous glowing colors might have been the points of stars or the bright centers of a log cabin design. They have so many opportunities.
The finished quilt top was exactly what I had hoped for, a piece that showcased the luminous fabrics in conjunction with their dark counterparts. I even changed my border plan to create a thin interior border, which exaggerated the effect. All in all I was very pleased and titled the quilt Bagatelle, which is another word for baubles or little bits of things.
When choosing a good fabric line to work with, I'm most engaged by lines that cross the breadth of quilt design and allow me to have access to darks, lights, mediums, variety of print, change of scale, a couple of powerful pop out examples, and (when I'm lucky) a glow that will make the quilt extra special when it is complete.
Thank you for joining me today and all the other bloggers this week in the Speakeasy Blog Hop! I hope you enjoy this beautiful line and stay tuned for more special gems from Tamarinis in the future. I have a feeling this designer will keep hitting it out of the park for all of us Batik Freaks!
Be sure to visit all of the blogs on Tamarinis latest creation. Everyone will offer you beautiful ideas and some of them will even offer you beautiful prizes!