Pottery Shards and My New Quilt

The Crock shards that I found around my studio over the past couple of years.

I know the pottery shards that are sitting in the doorway of my studio have had an influence on the quilt I began working on today.

I found them in the yard over the past couple of years.  First the one with “Guy &” and later the one with “Edw“.  When I put the two together the name “Edward” was clear.  That inspired me to google the clues I had.

And that’s how I found out the Crock was made, not far away in Fort Edward by  G.S.Guy and Company between 1882 and 1892.

There are lots of pottery shards on old farms.  And I’ve had nice collections over the years.  But they have always seemed to make their way back to the earth.

Scraps of Guatemalan fabric

A few weeks ago when I was cleaning up my studio, I left out some scraps of woven Guatemalan fabric that I had.  When I laid them out on my floor, they reminded me of pottery shards.

I was tempted to fit them together like a puzzle. They’ve been on my floor since then in different configurations as I moved them around and tried to pair them with another piece of fabric.

I finally settled on a  blue and green spiral fabric that Donna sent me.

I wanted the Guatemalan fabric to stand out, but also blend and get a little lost in the fabric surrounding it.  So the colors had to work together, but I wanted the patterns to be the opposite of each other.   Since the Guatemalan fabric was geometric, I wanted the other fabric to be organic.

I was thinking of what it looks like when an ancient piece of pottery is pieced together and the missing pieces are filled in with unpainted pieces of clay.  Or what the shards look like when they’re in the ground surrounded by dirt.  Like positive and negative space.

But for my quilt, I wanted more play and ambiguity between the negative and positive space. I knew two of the right patterns and colors would move in a way a pattern and solid fabric wouldn’t.

After finally sewing the two fabrics together today, I got stuck.

So I took a break and went into the woods.  When I came back I had an idea about what I wanted to do next.

Back in my studio, I could see it clearly.  First a thin sold line of color then a wider pattern around it.

I got three of the five pieces to this stage, then couldn’t do anymore.  It’s a good place to leave it though.  I’ll be eager to get to my studio in the morning to figure out the other two and move on from there.

The five pieces of my quilt so far.

9 thoughts on “Pottery Shards and My New Quilt

  1. Maria, This is absolutely stunning. I see something like this in your work and I don’t really have the words. Suffice it to say it makes me happy to look at it. This will be an amazing piece of art.

  2. Wow wow wow. Those mid tones and jewel tones are sizzling here with synergy in your composition. Glad I surrendered that fabric. Woo hoo!

  3. Maria, I love these pieces! The whole connection with the broken pottery and the birds on the side! Really nice! I guess there is something about birds that I always connect with!

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