Peppered Ikebana: Starting the Journey

For several years I have wanted to make a quilt based on the two Japanese arts of Sashiko and Ikebana.  As some of you know, I hold a fourth year certificate in Sogetsu School of Ikebana that I received in Japan decades ago and have continued to try to practice.  I also have studied the fine art of Sashiko not only by observing it in museums and other exhibits, but also I took a Sashiko workshop with Pepper Cory, quilt historian and hand quilter extraordinaire.

Melding these two great Japanese arts together should produce an interesting and beautiful wall quilt.  I have worked out a design in EQ7 for the pieced Sashiko embroidered background.  The picture below shows only place-holder Sashiko designs. I purchased a couple of books on Sashiko that have wonderful designs in them.  Here’s the background concept which I plan to piece in Peppered Cotton:

Peppered Ikebana background

The foreground will be an appliqued or embroidered or both flower arrangement, Sogetsu Ikebana style.  I will have to digitally or truly paint a vase applique.  The foreground arrangement may have to be done without a drawn out plan and may include some 3 dimensional stumpwork.  I haven’t made all the decisions on how this will play out.  This is a kind of design-as-I-go quilt.  I believe I will face it rather than bind the edges, but we’ll see.  Sew you just have to imagine that one.  I’m thinking of replicating a sunflower/broom arrangement that I won a ribbon on in Kanazawa Japan.  It was fun and happy.  Broom stick will bend like wire and you can sweep it around your arrangement in very interesting ways.  Now where is that sketch of that?  My teacher made me sketch every single flower arrangement I did while studying with her.

If you want, you can make one along with me.  I will be blogging this whole quilt.  This design is currently 54″ x 54″and I used one of the EQ7 predesigned layouts and just removed the outer border…I may adjust that a little.

Sew happy everyone!  Try something new and creative.