Wednesday, March 14, 2012

I Don't "Swatch"

 Knitters will understand when I say that I don't like to "swatch" -- so much so that I can't recall the last time I did.

A swatch is a sample of knitting prepared before a project to ensure the knitter is able to achieve the correct gauge (stitches and rows per inch) with the yarn and needles he or she is using.

In the textile arts, a swatch is called a 'sample'.  I don't much like sampling, either, but it's becoming ingrained as part of my work in the City & Guilds program -- such that I actually sampled all the way along the process for my latest piece, the 12" square I'm contributing to the SAQA Western Canada Trunk Show, "Meet the Best of the West".  I've already posted a bit about my samples here and here.  Trust me, there have been more than these made in the past few weeks -- under duress because...did I mention I don't like to swatch?

BUT...I grudgingly have to admit that I think it's paid off.  There have been a few 'aha' moments, and I've even managed to learn not to berate myself over the failures -- just to be thankful they were made in the sample and not the finished piece.  Although it needs to be backed and labelled, the tough part is finished.  Ta DA!

"Mutt & Jeff"
Other Finished Objects this week include my final assignment for my Module 5 of the C&G, which I submitted to my tutor this afternoon.  It involved creating an Attic Window (yes, and tackling a  "Y" seam), and auditioning shapes to insert therein.  In the main, it was an exercise in colour/value (creating the window), technique (the "Y" seam), and design (proportion, scale, composition).

Empty window - 'right' side up

Empty window - 'wrong' side up
I was quite surprised by how easy it was to make this, based on the excellent instructions in the course book.

Next, I auditioned a couple of shapes.  Here's one example -- a lone bottle shape.  It looks lonely and dull -- and a bit over-sized for the window frame.

So I made it smaller and added a companion:

Neither of these samples are finished; to do that, I would fuse the shapes into place, stitch, sandwich and quilt -- but that wasn't the purpose of the exercise.  :-)  For now, it will sit on my design wall until called upon in some future assignment.

And then there's this:

It's a companion to this.  More to come...

1 comment:

Judy Warner said...

Hi Margaret
Great to catch up with all your work. I don't like swatches either! But, I also have found that sampling is a really good idea in art quilts. :) Mutt and Jeff turned out extremely well. It was worth the sampling!

I like your two bottles idea for your window - I am sure when the time is right, you will finish it.

That red piece is intriguing. Can't wait to see more.

Congrats on your acceptance to Focus on Fibre too. How wonderful!

take care,