Hi there, hope you are all cosy and warm during this cold spell. I have to say that my thoughts have turned towards Spring and new projects and designs. In fact my sewing room is just brimming with colour. This week I took delivery of a collection of fabrics by Moda called 'Regent Street' and together with my beloved Moda Cross Weaves and Kona Cottons, I hope to put together some new quilt and embroidery patterns. These fabrics are just so delicious and I can hardly wait to get started, but by way of experiment, I have put together a few bundles of fat quarters that just melt together and look totally wonderful. The strong sherbet colours of the cross weaves hold the delicate patterns of the fine cotton lawn fabric together beautifully.
I love these strong Cross Weave fabrics for all kinds of sewing projects. They are great for bags and cushions as well as quilts and they hold embroidery firmly because of their weight. I only have a few bolts, but I can happily look at them every day and smile because the colours are divine. The Regent Street fabrics are much lighter and softer, reminiscent of Liberty fabrics and have a luxurious feel. I have big plans for both of them with a range of designs called 'Bloomsbury Squares' so please do keep an eye out. Meanwhile, pick up a pack of these fat quarters in my Etsy shop and let your imagination and needle make something wonderful.
Now for a new pattern and just the job for a cold and wintry day. When I lived in Russia, I was very lucky to be able to see some of the world famous Faberge Egg Collection. Some of the eggs are on permanent display in the Kremlin Palace Museum that is housed within the Kremlin walls. I was often able to walk down to Red Square and go and visit this museum and I did. While we there though, a visiting exhibition of some of the other eggs was staged and this was a fantastic opportunity to take a look at some of the other designs. I think I went three times in one week to see these and they formed such a lasting impression on me that I have often thought about using them for inspiration. I remember well too, that I had thought I wouldn't be that impressed and imagined that they would be rather gaudy and over the top. I couldn't have been more wrong. These beautifully crafted bejewelled eggs are amongst some of the most amazing treasures I have ever seen. They are all absolutely stunning and the detail in the designs is breathtaking. Added to this, a large dose of intrigue, revolution and imperial history and the story is irresistible.
Russians celebrate Easter with enthusiasm. It is the end of the long harsh winter and a time for rejoicing. Carl Faberge, a St. Petersburg jeweller, made the first egg in 1885 for Tsar Alexander 111 to give to his wife, the Empress Marie Feodorovna. It instantly became a royal tradition in the Imperial family and in total 50 eggs were made, the last in 1917. Only 43 are known to have survived the Russian Revolution and the Communist Regime that followed and they are scattered all over the world, owned by collectors and museums and Royalty. Each one is different and astonishing in it's own way.
I thought it might be a rather nice idea to follow in Carl Faberge's footsteps and each Easter, create an egg quilt block design that perhaps one day might turn into an epic quilt. Meanwhile, the patterns can be used for smaller, quicker projects that hail the arrival of Spring. My first choice was the 'Mosaic Egg'. I have never actually seen this one, seeing as it is in the Queen's Private Royal Collection in London, but the images of it, show a masterpiece of exquisite beauty. I felt as well that it was probably an easier subject for interpretation than some of the other eggs.
It is just so beautiful and I wondered how I could interpret this as a simple quilt pattern. I had alot of fun trying and here is the result.
You can find the pattern in my etsy shop as a downloadable pdf and the printed paper pattern and kits will be available soon. I decided to experiment a bit and here is a version in the ever popular Bonnie & Camille fabrics.
I am not sure it is quite up to Carl Faberge's standards, but it is fun and cheerful and will herald the arrival of Spring in just the same way as his eggs once did, long ago and far away.
Hope to see you next time for Block 2 of the Vintage Linen Revival Quilt!