Zen Garden 23" x 19" Cindy Grisdela 2011

“Zen Garden” is the third piece to be finished from my March project–30 quilt tops in one month. Read about the design process at Day 9.

These are not my usual colors, but this piece has a nice peaceful quality to it that I like. I tried several different backgrounds thinking it needed to be brighter, but I’m happy with this soft taupe color–it highlights the subtle colors in the top.

My framer stitches the quilt and the background fabric to a piece of mat board with large stitches and then stretches the whole piece over stretcher bars like those you see on an artist’s canvas. It hangs on the wall like a picture.

If you right-click on the image, you can see the pebbles, swirls and running water motifs that I stitched into the design. I use my home sewing machine and think of the needle like a pencil. All of the designs are stitched freehand, without any marking. It takes some practice, but it’s a very meditative process once you get the hang of it!

I’m finishing up the quilting on a commission this week, then I’ll be able to get back to quilting these tops from the project in March where I challenged myself to create 30 quilt tops in one month. They are all roughly 16″x20″ and pieced out of hand dyed fabric.