This all started with my desire to make a quilt I could hang. Like, as art. In my house. I pictured a nice burst of color in winter - something warm and seasonally appropriate that I would enjoy unwrapping and putting up in December and not worry about taking down until spring. Something to get me through that time of year when most of us are wishing we were somewhere warm. Got that? Stirring cozy winter feelings while simultaneously reminding you of the tropics. This is how my Hawaiian quilt was born.
For those of you unfamiliar with the style - picture a snowflake, like you'd cut up in school appliqued on a background. What I love about these quilts is that they don't follow a strict pattern, it's a technique that allows the quilter to do their own thing. So in Hawaiian quilts you see turtles and pineapples and beautiful flowers cut into their intricate designs. Google it if you're interested. Or watch that god-awful Adam Sandler/Drew Barrymore Groundhog Day movie, I think one shows up in there. The quilting is traditionally done to mimic the edges of the applique, like water surrounding an island.
I wanted mine to look like a snowflake - a nod to this region where I still seem to find myself every damn winter. But what could I put in it that would be meaningful? What's my pineapple? My turtle? Um... well, I have these two kitties (that never smooch in real life).
And for my family, two hearts that made one.
That's needle-turn applique folks - if you want to see the process you'll have to YouTube it, because you'll never catch me doing it again. The quilting is atrocious - it took me two years to work up the nerve to do it and then I had no patience. But I'm going to appreciate that as an accurate reflection of me as a quilter - always happier in the piecing. The petals in the middle are for my love of fleurs. Here's the applique in its entirety:
In its rightful home: