Friday, September 11, 2009
SUMMER CHALLENGE 2008: RECYCLED MANDALA
The theme for last year's summer challenge was something in the "green" realm which also seemed to be a popular theme in quilting magazines. The main criteria was to use recycled fabrics and fibers within the challenge piece. Janet (the previous year's winner) presented the information and spirally-green and not-so-great fabric (of course!) to all interested participants at the June meeting.
I had been saving "chip bags" for awhile and had quite a good collection of them. I had seen some totes and purses made from them and thought that SOMEDAY (the famous Someday!) I would try making one too. I particularly liked the fact that I had chip bags from both Mexico and Canada which gave me three languages.
I love symmetry, and mandalas always attract my attention with their beauty, simplicity and symmetry. So I started cutting them up for some design work. I found them tedious to work with, so ended up carefully ironing on a fusible to the back, which helped in placing them and sewing them down. I realized that once a mistake is made with sewing, its hard to undo as the needle holes/perforations are left behind. Anyway, allof this fussiness took much of my interest in chip bags away, but I persisted and managed to complete the mandala.
For further embellishment, I cut out red aluminum circles from coke cans, hammered in two holes to make them buttons, and sewed them to the outside of the mandala. That was enough. Then the binding and I was finished. For a finale, all my saved chip bags went into the trash.
On the day of our first fall meeting, all challenges anonymously went onto the wall and we placed our votes. Norma, the winner, had a delightful flower display, with 6 different varieties and their botanical names. For example, one flower was made totally of the selvages showing the little circles of color from different fabrics and she titled it "selvagia veriganis" or something of the like. Clever and well done Norma!
My mandala sits in a box. I'll have to find a fitting place to hang it! Perhaps near my recycling area....