For as long as I can remember I’ve been in love with lighthouses. In “the Life Before,” I always looked forward to travelling past these amazing structures. All different shapes & sizes. I’ve been fortunate to see & visit lighthouses all along the west coast and many more on the east coast. My travels tend to gravitate towards staying on the ocean. So there too I’ve seen a variety of lighthouses. I may be biased but Canadian lighthouses are the best kind.
^– This pattern, by Susan Teece, was purchased on our 2015 Row x Row H2O Road Trip. It is one of several that I own but will only be the 2nd that I’ve completed. We all know that 2020 was a very long year and when 2021 rolled around I found myself looking for inspiration. I decided to work on something small and that turned out to be this lighthouse that was modelled after Amphitrite Lighthouse in Ucluelet. The other awesome thing was that I could pretend to be away on vacation.
I used grunge for the lighthouse as it reminded me of the plaster sides of Amphitrite. It was a whole lot of fun to cut out the trees. This applique was all one piece…next time the trees will be cut separately! The rocky foreshore came from previously cut 2 1/2″ squares although they did need re-cutting to two inches. I had this beautiful piece of spectrum fabric from Hoffman that was perfect for a foggy ocean background: Fly Home Ombre “Evening.” This is a fairly simple piece to put together. Applique the lighthouse and trees on the sky fabric. Stitch the ocean fabric on to create the whole background. Add the rocky shore and start to quilt it.
I had used free motion stitching to work with the trees. This entails feed dogs down. Well the feed dogs down stayed down and when you’re on a roll with lots of quilting ideas you cannot…you just cannot!! I went and rode my stationary bike for 45 minutes, ranted via text and then decided to bring out my 1983 Janome Memory 7 to do some outline quilting. She performed beautifully but my old brain has muscle memory that just won’t adjust. You know we get spoiled with our new machines with needle down & no need to use the fly wheel, knee lifter, larger throat area…first world problems I know. I got all the outlining and SID done and then exchanged machines to finish with the free motion quilting in the fog and ocean areas.
The original pattern didn’t call for orcas but I felt the need to have a couple of spy hoppers in this piece. I also quilted a couple of whales under the white water spouts. These two pictures also have a wee bit of snow on them as I wanted to show the true colours of this beautiful piece of bluegrass blue green “evening.” I also added some blue glass beads along the water lapping the shore. The light itself is a crystal from a chandelier. Another exchange happened so I could get the binding on. Good news was the Horizon went in on a Tuesday and came out on a Friday and all is well again.
Haven’t decided on which coast to choose the next lighthouse from but I’ll have time as I need to get working on some baby quilts.
Happy Quilting…Valerie Raye