Thursday, September 6, 2012

Zig-zagging down stairs

The contest this week was to make another one-yard "cheater" print, this time with a zig-zag design of some kind. I started off by browsing "zig zag quilts" on Pinterest and found this one I liked. I decided to use previously created designs as all the subdesigns. So, using the handy-dandy stats I gathered about which of my contest entries were the most popular, I decided to base it around the cake collage repeat, and change the colors of the other designs to go with it.

In fact, I already had that scheme in mind when I was creating the camping design, so it already uses colors sampled from the cake slices. Also included in their original forms are the dancing dinosaurs, family crests, sewing pattern, and Daft Punk cameos. Well, the dinosaurs and the crests didn't do that well in their contests, but they're some of my personal favorites and the colors went well already.

I produced newly colored versions of the Gemini astronauts, pitchers, the ginger (that was also used in Maren's quilt), seadragons, kites, and the programming languages from the baby hats (which were inspired by the ones in the baby book). I also re-used the military uniforms, but redesigned them slightly to be civilian suits so that the colors could be different.

The only design that was really new for this was a new version of the "hand-drawn" design - I wasn't satisfied with how the shapes flowed into each other, so I redrew it. Also for this usage it's just in two shades of green - I didn't add the other scattered colors.

I filled it out with some smaller-scale patterns I've used in a few places: the gingham/check that got used with the pie calendar, hipster piglet, and memory game; and the knit that showed up with the reversible bag and the bells.

So once I had those 16 designs, it was just a matter of pasting them into place.

Zig Zagging Cheater

The overall design is thirty-two inches square. I learned a hard lesson before when I made the reversible bag, which is a yard (36 by 42 inches) - my computer has a hard time handling more than just a couple layers with files that large. It got slower & slower as I was working on it, and ended up freezing entirely - while it was saving. Arrrrg! When I opened it back up, it had lost three or four of the bottom layers.  Alas! Also, that was very late at night on the last night to enter, so I just had to quickly redo it, and of course didn't have time to add any of the additional details I was hoping to.  So anyway, I worked on this design just four "zigs" at a time, and then combined it all into one flat file at the end. No freezes this time!

My entry came in 106 out of 216 with 96 votes. There were a bunch of really neat entries this week. This one really reminds me of Mary Englebreit. For a mostly straightforward take on the idea, I also liked this sea-themed one and this one with vintage graphics. With a little more of a twist, this one has pieced flowers and I really like the combination of prints and solids here. These zig-zag turtles make a nice fabric all on their own, and my favorite entry is this one which combines geometric prints with organic zig-zags. I also really like all of the top ten.

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