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not even the rain: a love poem | by Pam Geisel Art Quilts
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not even the rain: a love poem

“not even the rain: a love poem”

 

Made by Pam Geisel of For Quilts Sake in Yellow Springs, Ohio, Feb. 2011 for Project Quilting Season 2, Challenge 3, Be My Valentine.

 

19” x 26”

 

My creative process and how I made it:

 

First I started thinking about Valentines and ways people express their love to another person. I thought about love letters, and specifically classic love poems. I decided to include part of the poem “somewhere I have never travelled” by e.e. cummings, which my husband wrote in a love letter to me when we were dating.

 

somewhere i have never travelled, gladly beyond

any experience, your eyes have their silence:

in your most frail gesture are things which enclose me,

or which i cannot touch because they are too near

 

your slightest look easily will unclose me

though i have closed myself as fingers,

you open always petal by petal myself as Spring opens

(touching skilfully, misteriously) her first rose

 

or if your wish be to close me, i and

my life will shut very beautifully, suddenly,

as when the heart of this flower imagines

the snow carefully everywhere descending;

 

nothing we are to perceive in this world equals

the power of your intense fragility: whose texture

compels me with the colour of its countries,

rendering death and forever with each breathing

 

(i do not know what it is about you that closes

and opens; only something in me understands

the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses)

nobody, not even the rain, has such small hands

 

Next I came up with a few design ideas then went into my fabric stash to see what I had in green, blue and purple that made me think of romance. I found a piece of fabric that had 7 different floral and leaf images, so I decided to make a quilt that incorporated items that someone would keep to remind them of their love including the second and final stanza of the poem, some ribbons, heart-shaped beads and charms, a little key and a small bag with a pair of hearts inside.

 

I fussy-cut the floral and leaf fabric (number 7 is the label), printed the text that I wanted to add (the poem and text in two other places. I pieced a thin grayish-green inner border and a yellow/green/blue/tan batik for the outer borders.

 

The six pieces were sewn with a pillowcase binding and then top stitched around the edges. I did quilting stitch-in-the-ditch on both sides of the inner border then quilted around the flowers and leaves. I even added some hand quilting some of the leaves to give them definition. I wanted to use some fun fur to soften the edges and I wanted it along the outside and not on top of the quilt so I used a zigzag stitch to attach it. Then I added my embellishments. The final step was to use beads to connect the quilts both vertically and horizontally. (The heart-shaped bead on the second quilt on the right side is actually a navy blue, although it looks black in the photos). Rod hangs from a cream colored ribbon.

 

More closeup photos at:

www.flickr.com/photos/forquiltssake/

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Taken on January 1, 2006