Taming the Borders and the Joy of Greenery

This year the Pantone colour was Greenery.  On a whim I entered the quilt competition and to my delight  won one of the prizes.  This quilt epitomises the clear bright May and early spring greens we had at the time of the competition deadline. I had started the quilt a few years before, never getting beyond a pile of wonky star blocks.  The competition gave me the impetus to get on and finish the top.  I was really pleased with the eleventh hour decision to add the blue border around the quilt.  This thin blue line really creates closure and provides a much needed edge to frame the overall composition.

The quilt is about to head off to Sandy Chandler (thequiltingcompany.co.uk) to work her long-arm magic.  I am very excited and cant wait to get it back again, attach the binding and hang it.

Quilt made by Anne Varley in Spring 2017 and entered into Pantone Greenery competition

This has been the UK August Bank holiday weekend and for once we have had a succession of warm sunny days reaching over 25-degrees. This clear light showed how a summer of rain has pushed the borders to tall leggy growth and the thugs in my garden needed a good hack back to allow autumn flowering herbaceous plants to come through and much valued fruit to be appreciated.

Pears hanging from their maiden branches
trimmed box hedges and a bit of bare earth a breath of fresh air after heavy covering with high summer border thugs

The box hedges also had a trim and a sense of order is temporarily restored before the late flush of rich October ombre of marmalade-coloured blooms before winter.

August Border in Garden cut back ready for the arrival of the annual, perennial, October-fest of marmalade blooms

We have heavy dews now and the mornings are tinged with red skies.  My early morning dog walks (coffee in hand) are truly special at this time of year. Much savoured and worth the early rise to appreciate.

August Sunrise

I also stop and take time to look over ripening produce.

Pumpkin turning orange in raised bed alongside nasturtiums (perched on an upside down hanging basket to protect from the damp soil)

During the evenings I was also putting together some borders on a quilt that falls into the ever expanding work-in-progress category.

This series of quilt borders focuses on appliquéd polygons, a double helix of 5/8th inch pentagon flowers.

Pentagon border drawing on range of green colours in my own garden

Looking out over my own garden and herbaceous borders this last year I have been inspired to use predominantly greens from the whole spectrum. Warm and cool, muddy and clear. With this in mind I headed to my scraps stash and started cutting out and constructing over 200 rosettes. A few fussy cut, but the majority just sewn together to show off the whole range of greens to their best advantage.  Some scraps were so small, but much loved, that I spliced them together, much as our 19th century quilting sisters had done in their creations; careful to match the patterns.  I am so excited with the overarching concept that I cant wait to see the full effect once I have sew the border together.

Pentagon flower using scraps of fabric from my stash with centre made from two very small pieces of treasured cloth
Beautiful and delicate very old fern in full growth

I am sure that they will form a strongly harmonious and balanced visual effect.  The tiny pops of colour accord with my own garden which I designed to (predominantly) showcase foliage, such as the old fern at my back door pictured above.  In my opinion, any greater presence of jewel colours would have drawn ones eye all round the quilt, not giving ones eye a place to rest and feel content with the overall quilt design.  I can’t wait to share this quilt with you next year!

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