I got Emmy up and working a few days ago. Here’s a very short video showing her in action:
As you can see, the shafts are hanging up on each other – this was a known problem with the loom. On AVL’s advice, I’ve ordered shims for the lamms and pulleys, but they won’t arrive until tomorrow (I think). I also need to order reeds, extra heddles, and other bits and pieces. So I’m working on quilt design until they arrive.
I’ve now been through many iterations of the quilt design. You may recall that the original design looked like this:
I liked this initially, but after showing it to several people for critique, various people felt that the spirals were too “busy”, drawing attention away from the birds. On sober reflection, I agreed.
So, on the advice of some quilters, I tried the “Attic Windows” block next:
The faint outline shows the edges of the mattresss; this is a king-sized quilt with the head at the top.
This worked fairly well, but felt like it lacked tension. So I tried variations on the background:
The tan background didn’t work – the light, warm color drew attention away from the birds. The green, though, had potential – the only problem was that the sills of the window were too wide, making the birds hard to see. At the same time, the much narrower sills in the tan version produced a “window” that I thought was too small for the quilt – more like a prison window than an attic window!
So I compromised and made medium size sills:
I felt this worked the best.
Next I visited several quilting shops and bought some potential fabrics. I mocked up a square in each combination I wanted to test:
And – just for fun – I tried the spiral block as well:
This pretty much confirmed what I had seen in the computer mockups: the spirals were too busy, and the dark green background looked best with the “Attic Windows” block.
So I ordered twenty yards of the dark green fabric, ten yards for the front and ten for the back. They should arrive by the end of the week – meanwhile, I’ll cut and sew the fabric for the window part of the quilt.
I haven’t yet figured out what to do in the giant green border, but I’m thinking of doing an allover pattern, interrupted periodically by the outlines of birds, in a faintly contrasting thread. Too much contrast would draw attention away from the birds, but too little contrast would result in a green blob. I think maybe a medium to dark brown on the threads.
I also haven’t figured out how I’m going to do the border. I’ve been advised that a king size quilt (I’m planning on 116 x 100 inches) is almost impossible on a home machine, so I may either rent time on a longarm quilting machine or hire someone to do the quilting. But I figure I’ll cross that bridge once I get there.
And, finally, here is Fritz, playing with a favorite toy, one of my paper pirns. I love the way he practically trips over Tigress (hidden behind the drapes) at the end.