I don’t often jump on the Latest and Greatest Thing in QuiltLand, but this one called my name. It’s Jen Kingwell’s My Small World and was printed in the oh-so-elusive QuiltMania Spring issue 2015 (picture above is from the QuiltMania website). I don’t know why you are making it (there is a My Small World QAL on Instagram and other places), but I know why I am making it.
It’s because in the 1960s, when wearing white socks with your loafers was considered cool and women always wore pantyhose with their bare legs, I came here. Our family was on our way home from living for two years in Lima, Peru. It was in the days of Disneyland with tickets, and we seemed to have enough for our family of seven children to go on this ride. Since I had a broken leg, I went on it more than once.
The ride, first fabricated for the 1964 New York World’s Fair, was installed in California’s Disneyworld in 1966, which will make it fifty years old next year. I live about an hour from the original Disneyland, so it’s my patriotic duty to honor this institution, right? Of course we all know THAT song:
“Children of the World” was the working title of the attraction. Its tentative soundtrack, which can be heard on the album, featured the national anthems of each country represented throughout the ride all playing all at once, which resulted in disharmonic cacophony. Walt conducted a walk through of the attraction scale model with his staff songwriters Robert B. Sherman and Richard M. Sherman, saying, “I need one song that can be easily translated into many languages and be played as a round.” The Sherman Brothers then wrote “It’s a Small World (after all)” in the wake of the 1962 Cuban Missile Crisis, which influenced the song’s message of peace and brotherhood. When they first presented it to Walt, they played it as a slow ballad. Walt requested something more cheerful, so they sped up the tempo and sang in counterpoint. Walt was so delighted with the final result that he renamed the attraction “It’s a Small World” after the Sherman Brothers’ song.” (Wikipedia)
While I have no idea if Jen Kingwell was influenced by the smart geometrics, towers and shapes (Tokyo Disney, above), to me there is a clear connection.
Judging by the photos on Instagram, we all start here: cutting sky pieces. I did neutrals for a while, then started adding in whispy blues, just to make it more interesting, as I’d seen others do it. It’s that idea of collaboration, as expressed in my last blog post.
Section One’s Sky. I was listening to a book on Audible, that I finally had to turn up to 2x speed just to get through it. I’m not recommending it.
Now I’m back to Inspector Gamache, written by Louise Penny. I’m going to hate it when I get through reading this series!
Buildings and some sky. Now to start on the details. I found reading Susan’s entries on her PatchworknPlay blog was helpful, too.
I used some leftover leaves from the Pineapples and Crowns quilt to make this square.
Susan’s idea to start the tiny pinwheels by cutting two inch squares, then making HSTs, then on to the pinwheel was a good idea. I threw in some of my New York City fabric, with the words Radio City Hall to liven up this section.
It took me forever to figure out what text thing to put at the top of the building, but I went for this one, since Betsy is a childhood name. I also had fun fussy cutting a hot air balloon in the Sky Section for Section 2. You can see the bits of blue sky in the neutrals now. Here is the progress I’ve made so far:
And here’s my contribution to the Errata: In section 2, the center square for the churn dash is incorrect. It should measure 1 1/2″ no 2 1/2″. Having said that, I have enormous appreciation to Jen Kingwell for this pattern–it has a LOT of moving parts and to even get some sort of pattern down on paper is amazing.
In my real small world, I’ve taken a couple of trips since the semester finished.
The first one was to Phoenix to see my daughter’s husband graduate from Dental School. I think he had the oldest children of any of his fellow graduates there! They have happily moved to their new city, and he has started work already. But this week, they are on a trip to Disneyland to celebrate their achievement.
And to start the summer off with a bang, I also took a couple of trips through these two machines as a spot on my lungs showed up in my yearly X-ray. It is because of *this* that my oncologist checks everything. Twice. The diagnosis from these humming machines revealed it was nothing to worry about, although for three weeks I did — a lot. I couldn’t really talk about it at the time, so I’m glad it’s behind me.
However going through all that certainly made me feel like a basket case. No, I didn’t know about this when I started this quilt, but it certainly is appropriate! Now I should really get to the closets that need cleaning out, the papers that needs tossing. It’s nice to think about regular life again.
I’ve also been busy sewing up more Circles Blocks as I want to finish that quilt and get it quilted. I have one more to go, then I’ll have sixteen total. Block #13 will be up on the blog in a couple of weeks. Here they are stacked together:
Next block is coming on July 1st!