Saturday, 18 November 2017

Florence and Quilting

Now you would say there is no relationship to the two things; Florence and Quilting.  I just came back from a trip to Florence.  This was my second time to go there and it is more beautiful, intimate and enjoyable than I remembered.  As a quilter I looked up quilt shops before I went but never got to them; them being 2 shops only. 

What I did see was gorgeous architecture; beautiful shapes; breathtaking sculptures and tiny residential alleys with balconies and flowers.  On the Pont Vecchio were windows of sparkly jewels and silver and gold in sinuous shapes.  What does that have to do with quilting?  Well the use of colour is always something that can spark ideas; contrasts of light and shade help to make good quilts.  Architectural shapes and shapes in jewelry can spark quilting designs.  And window displays that played with colour and the sculptured clothes provided inspiration. 

One thing that is a recurring theme in Florence is the tile floors and they totally are squares, triangles, half square triangles, rectangles.  This is certainly a connection to quilting.  Quilting block components  have a long history even if they were not quilts but decorative features of homes and buildings.  Another connection is to art quilts done with mosaics.  These ideas were everywhere. 

In addition, the views of Florence from the opposite side of the river provided living landscape quilts.  There were displays of modern chrome shapes in the Boboli Gardens that reflected the surroundings and fractured the very shapes and the colours nearby.  Think abstract quilts. And think of the contrast of the surroundings; formal lawns, trees, buildings in soft colours all captured in the chrome sculptures of various shapes.

Our trip included the Cinque Terra where the villages are nestled into the valleys formed as the cliffs stretch from the top to the sea.  I have seen many quilts based on the vista of the hills and the houses clinging to the cliff sides.  How wonderful to see them come to life.  Here is a picture that might make a small quilt.

Here are some pictures which include shapes and colours and shadows and mosaics.  


 Quilting shapes

Landscape quilts

Yes, this is all mosaics.  
Shapes for quilting, shadows and light

Shape, shadow, colours, fractures

There is a relationship between Florence and quilting as there is in the things around us every day.

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