February 2008 TIF - Part I

February's Take it Further challenge concept is this question:

What are old enough to remember?
Well, for starters,
  • Playing with tinker toys, pick-up sticks, hoola-hoops, jacks, metal slinkies, clamp-on roller-skates that tightened with a key, and playing hopscotch and double dutch
  • A $0.10 weekly allowance, going to Expo '67 in Montreal, cigarette ads on black & white TV, the Friendly Giant, Mr. Dressup, Ed Sullivan, Lawrence Welk, Laugh-In, Archie Bunker, Saturday Night Live and Monty Python's Flying Circus.
  • Rotary telephones, writing term papers on a typewriter, polaroid cameras, lava lamps (the first time around), 8-track tapes and the day my grandparent's bought their first colour television set
  • The assassination of Martin Luther King, the Black Panthers, the Weathermen, Patty Hurst, the Mai Lai Massacre, the end of the Vietnam war, the trial of the Gang of Four, the impeachment of Richard Nixon, the Quebec October Crisis, the defeat of Pierre Trudeau, the defeat of Joe Clark and diethylstilbestrol
  • Bell-bottom pants, platform shoes and hip-huggers
  • Mary Poppins, the Beatles and Jefferson Airplane
  • When a healthy diet meant regular servings of Campbell's soup, Wonder Bread, reconstituted powdered milk, hot dogs, bologna, jello and cheez-whiz (Ugh!)
  • Coke in a glass bottle, candy cigarettes, hard rock candy, 5 cent candy bars, jaw-breakers and Mary Janes
As I thought about how to condense these memories into a concept that I could work with, I read this post in which Linda at Tango Musings says this about February's challenge:
Yesterday I bought supplies for one idea, but still don't know if this is one I want to do, after all, those of us of a certain age all remember the first moon landing. It doesn't feel original enough to work on something that is so much a part of all of our psyche.
And it struck me that I'd much prefer to focus on one thing, something personal and compelling, rather than try to find a way to encompass a whole slew of things from the pile of memories. Looking over the list I had made, it was the games that we played when I was a kid that strike me as something which belong to bygone era. Low-tech and simple, usually involving a rope, or a ball, or a deck of cards, we played them for hours on end, got up the next day and did it all over again. Hopscotch was one of these, and I thought it would lend itself fairly well to patchwork. I would try to improvise a hopscotch game from patchwork and then superimpose the shadow of a child playing on it. I did a few flickr searches to find some visual inspiration and pulled out these shots. Thank you to the photographers for permission to post them*.

*Click on a photo above to visit the photographer's flickr account

Here's what's happened so far:


Two preliminary sketches
Fabric picks including colours
from February's palette
Starting the patchwork...

Making a girl's shadow...

...with the dark brown sheer. I was
hoping that the sheer fabric would
mimic a shadow by darkening the
underlying fabric while still showing
what was underneath.
'Hopscotch' - 11 x 13"
However, the sheer fabric doesn't work quite the way I want it to. Many of the fabrics underneath are too dark and the image of the girl playing does not come across clearly enough.

My next step will be to try to place something else across the front, such as a gate or fence. I like the way the border looks a bit like a doorway or the space between two buildings, and I think I'd like to see some kind of barrier across the open area between the right and left border blocking out some of the quilt - like a barrier between the past and the present.

We're halfway through the month and I think I have time to finish this. That's the goal anyway. Now I'm going to do something that I haven't had time to do yet this month, take a look at what other people have come up with for this month's challenge.


Tanguera said...

I love where you are going with this. Your colours are stunning and the girl is very playful. I agree with your comment that she needs to be darker, but it is still wonderful.

Paula Hewitt said...

WOW! - I really like you quilts - both Jan and Feb TIF projects look great - I love the idea of the girls shadow in sheer fabric! inspired. I have been embroidering more than quilting lately (apart for the sandwich) _I think you have inspired my to get out my fabric and start sewing again!

Ruth said...

This is a wonderful start. I love the shadow idea.

Clevelandgirlie said...

Oh wow - what a great concept- the hopscotch board with the shadow of the girl. Darker - YES - as she will be the "spirit" of the piece. I too fondly remember playing hopscotch over, and over, and over again on the sidewalk of my grandmother's house. Such a sweet, simple time. Thanks for the memory - this is a great piece!!

neki desu said...

gosh i remember the same things!
i like your idea of the shadow.

neki desu

kay susan said...

I love your shadow idea. This is a really nice design. Have you tried an extra layer of sheer for the shadow to counteract the darker fabrics underneath?

Meg in Albuquerque said...

Games we played are a great idea, that was a thought that didn't even enter my mind. I think your girl looks great, but if the effect isn't quite what you wanted, try a dryer sheet, washed and dried and then spray a light layer of paint and then cut out the girl. You can layer them until you get the effect you want.

Gwen said...

Great concept, and beautifully executed, as well. I am going to have to experiment with fabric for collage, also. Though yours is so much better than anything I could come up with.

arlee said...

Does that bring back memories! Lovely conceptualization too :}