I never thought I would make this kind of a quilt. The idea came from my son, who bought a new bed, and the quilt I made for him long ago was too small. His house is modern, with lots of glass and metal. He didn’t want a traditional bed quilt. He wanted a quilt with eyes. What? are you crazy?
More than a year ago I made a quilt with eyes that I named Eye Contact. I entered it into Vision 2020 curated by Australian quilt artist Brenda Gael Smith, but it didn’t get accepted. Instead Brenda chose my other quilt, Rainbow Iris.
I hesitated for a while , then I made the first eye block:
My calculations showed that I needed close to 200 blocks for a quilt that measured about 250×230 cm or 98×90 inches.
I started sewing mostly using scraps and leftovers from other quilts. My blocks were not of the same size, and I didn’t want them to be. The beginning was slow, I was making 4 or 6 blocks a day but later I was able to make 12 to 15 blocks a day:
My studio manager Albinas helped me to count the blocks and finally he said I had 200 of them:
All blocks placed in one bag looked so colorful!
I thought it may be boring to have a quilt with 200 eyes stearing at you all the time, day and night. The idea emerged to make two blocks with closed, maybe sleeping eyes:
I didn’t start sewing them together until I had all the blocks done. This way I was able to scatter colors across the quilt. I sewed together few rows of blocks and then started looking where the sleeping eyes should go.
It wasn’t very smart to sew blocks around them first like that:
Because my blocks were not of the same size, I had difficulty to joining eyes to the previously made part of the quilt:
After I passed that stage it was much easier to work, but still I had to make a lot of adjustments. I didn’t want the blocks to be lined up. At this point I already didn’t have room on the floor on my living room to spread the quilt:
Now the fun part- machine free hand quilting- began. I am lucky to have Janome sewing machine that has an opening allowing me to easily put through a king size quilt. I love machine quilting and Albinas does too:
Just the quilting took me 26 days to complete:
I decided not to add any border, just the narrow strip of aquamarine color binding:
I don’t have where to spread or hang the entire quilt. These are partial images of the finished quilt:
The quilt measures 241×221 cm or 95×88 inches. It shrank when quilting and triming to make it square.