The kind folk at Paintbrush Studios asked me (some time ago) to give a demo at QuiltCon 2018. I set to wondering what I could teach in a short amount of time (20-30 minutes) that would be interesting. Shortly after they asked me, I visited Cinque Terra, Italy, and stood on a plaza in Riomaggiore, overlooking the sea (above).
We walked down the steps, and underneath the plaza was a passageway, the walls decorated with these tiles in all sizes. It was on the way to Via dell’amore (the Walk of Love).
When I returned home and started looking at my photos, I thought about all those mini charm packs we pick up everywhere, and how they could become something along the lines of this impromptu artwork in Riomaggiore.
So I got out my mini-charm pack from Paintbrush Studio Solids and started pairing up the colors, trying to make the duo sing together–have a little friction together–trying to get pairs that would play against each other.
I found a worksheet online that had a whole bunch of oddball shapes, and I began trying some.
I sent away for more mini-charm packs. Once I got started, I kept wanting to make more.
I carried around a little baggie of paired squares, and did them while watching TV, getting my hair colored and while in Urgent Care one bad flu season.
I loved watching my collection grow. I would do one shape for a while, then another. I used up bits and pieces of squares. I even tried some paper-piece-wrapped hexagons; I ended up not liking them so much because the charm of these squares was in their wobbliness, their wonkiness.
And then one day, I put them up on the wall with other, larger, squares–just like the Walk of Love passageway in Italy. And wouldn’t you know it–it was really looking fun.
I wasn’t finished, but what I hoped would happen, did. I took this photo and put it up on Instagram, using the SnapSeed app to expand the edges and add the text.
Next post: the finish and the details about my demos at QuiltCon.
17 thoughts on “Cinque Terra Tiles • Improv Applique (Part 1)”
I love these, so pretty
I love reading about where you get your inspiration from Elizabeth! These really do sparkle! I bet the finished quilt looks a treat!!
This turned out so great and the back story really completes the picture! Love how you’re always open to inspiration for quilts.
Great idea and one that is easy to do. Will have to try this myself as I love handwork and am always looking for something different and easy to do. Thanks Elizabeth.
I love it – oh yes, the happiness when everything is just right! – can’t wait to see the finished piece.
Having a bit of handwork is nice, and I love that you worked with charm packs. I look forward to seeing the finish. I hope your demos go well; I’ll be busy working so I hope you tell us how they go, too!
Those are so pretty. The inspiration site could not be better! You did a great job with all of the applique too.
What a fun project from beautiful inspiration.
It turned out beautifully. I’m looking forward to seeing you and your demo at QuiltCon.
Love what you did with your inspiration! I have seen that tile wall too, and took a pic, blew it up, and it hangs in my house!
Love where this is going. You’ve done a wonderful job interpreting the inspiration and embracing the wobbliness. Hard for me to be wobbly . . . although I sometimes feel that way in my old age.
What an exciting opportunity for you! And I love seeing how you were inspired. These appliqué tiles are perfect because they’re relatively simple, and so very portable. Your initial layout is looking great! I’m happy for you to be into such a worthwhile project – challenging yourself, educating others, and making a perfect memory of your trip. Just wonderful!
I absolutely love how your travels and your quilting intersect.
What a great idea from a great place for inspiration!