Sunday, January 27, 2008

Shelburne Museum barn quilt in progress

This is a photo I took of the beautiful round red barn at the entrance to the Shelburne Museum in Vermont, where my family and I visited this summer. I loved this photo for its diagonal movement, rich textures, and the wonderful colors. It is a simple composition, yet these details make the image complex, and I find that my eye can linger on it for a long time and not be bored. I like the subtle curving of the barn, which is unexpected.

And this is a photo of the quilt I am making from the photo. I tried to replicate it as closely as possible, but brightened the colors a bit. It is about 14" x 19". This shot shows the quilt before any thread painting, which will add a lot of detail, highlights and shadows. All the pieces are fused down with Heat-n-Bond Lite, and it took me longer to make that stone wall out of fabric than I think it would have taken for me to make a real wall out of stone! Whew!

I find taking photos of my quilts while they are in progress a really good exercise. When you look at the piece smaller, from a distance, you see things you would miss looking at it from only a few feet away. For example, I can see now that I am going to need to add a lot of darker gray in the window to get the shadows right. I need to add darker shadows in the stone, as well. And some lighter highlights on the right side of the barn.

By the way, if you get a chance to visit the Shelburne Museum (about 20 minutes south of Burlington), go! It is fabulous in so many ways, great for kids, and they have excellent quilt exhibits, too.


  1. This barn of yours is so beautiful, both in real life and in your design.

    Last summer I made a quilt for my dad (a retired farmer) that incorporated nine different barns in the Upper NY area. I used a pattern, but did the fusing like you're doing. Then I thread painted the windows, roofs, doors, etc. It's a beautiful quilt too, and my dad loves it.

    I envy you working in the smaller size.....*S*

  2. Hi Susan! I just stumbled across your blog courtesy of the Quilt Designer's web ring, which I just joined... and had a wonderful time reading all of your posts. Love your work!

    Holly, also a SAQA member

  3. Susan, I absolutely LOVE the red barn quilt, even in the unfinished state! The graphic appeal is wonderful! Yes, it's brighter, but it works!
    Just found your blog from the webring because it shows on my stat counter that either you or someone else found me through your site. I'll be back to see how your quilt progresses.


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