Appliqu Quilts That Tell a Story – Quilting Daily

When I first laid eyes on Dijanne Cevaal’s “Blue Travelers’ Blanket,” a rich example of appliqué quilting, I fell in love with it.

‘Travelers’ Blanket’ (detail), shows the hand
appliqué work of artist Dijanne Cevaal.
(Photos by Tony Summers)

First, I loved the story behind the piece, one of series of “Travelers’ Blankets” Dijanne has made. She was inspired by the Silk Road travelers, and imagined how they would record the patterns and textures that they saw on their journeys in stitches, sewing fragments on the blankets they used to keep warma visual and physical aide-mémoire.

Dijanne used a similar technique to appliqué scraps of hand-dyed fabrics onto “blankets.” Rather than use machine appliqué to attach the scraps, Dijanne takes the time to hand appliqué each square onto the blanket base using tiny straight stitches and embroidery floss. She also embellishes each scrap with simple embroidery stitches.

“I use many different stitches in these pieces and have expanded my repertoire to include variations of colonial knots, buttonhole stitch, and feather stitch. I look to embellish each piece of fabric I have appliquéd to give the whole piece a joie de vivre,” says Dijanne.



applique quilt by dijanne cevaal
‘Travelers’ Blanket,’ 35″ x 55″,
by Dijanne Cevaal.

Appliqué quilts like Dijanne’s represent, to me, what art quilting is all about: unpredictable, freeform, organic, and unique creativity. Is it any wonder this quilt graces the cover of Quilting Arts’ December/January 2013 issue?

Whether you like appliqué quilting, machine embroidery, surface design techniques, hand stitching and embroidery, or digital imagery, I can promise you that all the Quilting Arts issues in 2013 will offer inspiration and techniques from the most innovative and accomplished fiber artists on the planet.

You won’t want to miss a thing, so be sure to subscribe to Quilting Arts or renew your subscription now.

P.S. Dijanne says she finds stitching the appliqué scraps very meditative and stories come to her while she stitches. What do you think about when you stitch? Leave your answer below.

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