With all the recent workshops and exhibitions, I haven’t had much time in the studio. Yet somehow the next Special Olympics piece is almost complete! This piece is inspired by a young athlete on the NYC Special Olympics gymnastics team who is unsure of his own abilities. Although physically capable of everything his teammates are doing and more, he resists trying anything new, afraid that he will fail or get hurt.
To make this piece inspired by his struggle, I created this piece called “Danger, Danger!” which takes the shape of a caution sign. To indicate the athlete’s constant questioning of his abilities, I used a yellow fabric made up of small question marks.
Once the piece was cut to size with some careful measuring (and yes, trigonometry came in handy here), I made chalk lines where the edges and exclamation mark would go. The next step was to layer the piece with batting, tulle, and backing. I wanted to cut out the exclamation mark so that only the tulle would show in that area, so I tried layering the tulle only behind that section. Unfortunately, the four layers of black tulle showed through the yellow fabric and made a ridge at the edge of the tulle, so I spread it across the whole piece and placed it under the batting.
It was then time to pin-baste and decide on a quilting design. After playing with a couple options, I decided to free-motion quilt spiral triangles. I’ve never tried this quilting design before, but once I got into the rhythm (and marked parallel lines on the piece as a guide), it was meditative and quite fun! The image on the right below shows the quilting lines on the back of the piece where it’s easier to see.
The next step was to carefully cut away the top fabric, batting and backing without cutting any of the tulle. Once that was accomplished, I added black bias tape around the exclamation mark and a black binding.
Now, I have to add a label and figure out a way to hang the piece. If you have any suggestions for hanging a triangle quilt, I’d love to hear them!