Purple Passion / Once upon a time…

Do you love lavender?

Are you mad about mauve?

Today is the third reveal day for Four in Art  – an Art Quilt Group, which aims to:Screen Shot 2016-04-18 at 22.12.25

“…to break out of the usual gridded experience and try a new concept, free of structure or preconception, moving the boundaries of our own skills forward in both concept and technique”

And this quarter I really did intend to break out and move boundaries with something arty and sophisticated… But our general theme for 2016 is Colour and the sub-theme for this quarter is Purple Passion. To look at this beautiful collection of  fabrics I have somehow acquired over the years, you would think the theme ‘purple passion’ should be right up my street…


To make a dress for when I’m old, perhaps?

…but actually it left me entirely at a loss. There have been a couple of times in my life when I have really liked purple but lately I seem to be right out of a purple phase and I couldn’t for the life of me think of anything purple that I felt passionate about.

I considered attempting something stylised in the way of a purple passion flower. It really is a stunning plant and there is an amazing variety to inspire on google images…

Or making some kind of illustration of the famous poem by Jenny Jones…

Uploaded on 4 Aug 2010, Jenny Joseph reads her poem ‘Warning’, Britain’s most popular post-war poem, according to poll conducted by the BBC in 1996. The second line of this poem inspired the formation of America’s Red Hat Society, the largest women’s social group in the world (which has over 70,000 members and almost 24,000 chapters in the US and 25 other countries) and encourages fun, friendship, freedom and fulfilment. Born in 1932, Jenny Joseph first published ‘Warning’ in 1961 in The Listener — when she was 29 — and later included it in her second collection, ROSE IN THE AFTERNOON (1974) and then in her SELECTED POEMS from Bloodaxe in 1992.


And time passed…

And the more I reflected on it the more I came to realise that if I had to choose a single thing I could really say has been my greatest passion throughout my life, it just has to be story. Whilst I love making things with fabric and yarn, I could live well enough without quilting or crochet but a world without stories seems to me like an unimaginably bleak and empty place. I wanted, however, to suggest story as an all encompassing category and not to include anything that would seem to signify any specific genre.

So the title of my quilt for this quarter is ‘Once upon a time…’ and a ‘story’, which follows is, I hope, indicated by the three circles (ellipses), which include words and a hint of illustration.


13 thoughts on “Purple Passion / Once upon a time…

  1. Betty Ayers

    Well said and you followed your passion: story! I just love the visual image and simple work on your mini. And as it revealed itself to me, the story became obvious with the three “rounds” – just perfect. I knew when I chose the subtheme – Purple Passion – it would spark a wide range of interpretations and yours is perfect!


  2. Catherine

    It’s so interesting seeing such totally different quilts! I love this deceptively simple idea, with the ellipses standing in for the words being actually made of words, and I particularly love your quilting which makes it beautiful on its own right.


  3. Rachel

    So great that you found a way to interpret your passion! A passion for story. The simplicity of this quilt really speaks to me. The way the thread flows across the piece with the various stitching is just so beautiful. Lovely!


  4. Susan

    How interesting! I was also considering lavender and the passion flower, while i searched for inspiration! You certainly nailed this one- graphic, simple and artistic!


  5. Elizabeth E.

    So I savored this post. Inch by inch.
    I listened to the whole poem, read so masterful and where I once thought it was trite, I now fell in love with it. Already I’m loving your quilt and I haven’t even seen it.
    Then the quilt. Simplicity is action, but with significance, the stories weaving through the air around us and behind us and through us, just as you say. We need to tell stories. We need to listen to stories. And perhaps, we should all wear a little purple. . . just for practice.
    Thanks for a lovely moment at my computer today. You are wonderful!


  6. Camilla

    What a great idea to encapsulate a story as passion. So simple and so rich. Purple was difficult for me too, but good to think about passion and the many things that may mean. Off to listen to your poem now.


  7. Carol

    I love this post. It’s like what my grandson says about my “deep thinking” Most posted pics of their purple blocks and they are pretty. But thinking about what your passion is and translating it into an art block is unique to this day’s group of posts. I love that. Thinking about passion and what you can’t live without…what would I say. I’ll have to think about that a little more.
    x, Carol


  8. soma @ whimsandfancies.com

    Such a lovely post! You probably already know that I feel exactly the same way about stories. A world without them would definitely be bleak and empty. Your Purple Passion represents the idea so artistically and the quilting is beautiful!!

    -Soma xx


  9. simone

    The lead up and story to your purple quilt are wonderful. I think it’s much easier to be creative when there’s a purpose and explication. The simplicity of the design and 3 added ellipses add a distinct balance to hand quilted waves.


  10. Pingback: Of flowers and fairgrounds… – Rainbow Hare

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