original photo

Original photo by Kathryn Robinson

Have you ever used a photo as inspiration for a quilt? I was lucky enough to see “The Dirty Dozen: Provence to Paris”, a special exhibit at the AQS QuiltWeek in Charleston, SC. This was a photo challenge of the Dirty Dozen Fiber Artists, an eclectic group of fiber artists in Melbourne, FL.  The challenge, “Welcome to Provence”, was based on a photo by member, Kathryn Robinson, of the courtyard of a 700 year-old farmhouse in Provence, France. Kathryn selected the photo for the array of elements it contained that could be used as inspiration. Members were not required to literally reproduce the photo but were free to use the shapes, colors, themes, or moods conveyed by the photo and to take off in whatever direction that inspired them. And take off they did!

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I took photos of the quilts to share with you. I am amazed at what part of the photo inspired each of these artists and the creative ways they interpreted that inspiration. Some are very literal and others are very much not so. Each one is delightful.

The Quilts

Red Window by Becky Stack

Becky found intrigue in the red window on the wall; she wondered what was on the other side. She used raw edge fused applique and free motion quilting.


AQS Charlteston

Steps, Windows and Doors by Jill Brown

When Jill saw the inspiration photo, what struck her were the steps, windows and doors. Using the colors and the shapes of those elements in the photo as inspiration, she created this fun piece. She used commercial fabrics woven together to make steps and her own fused glass to show the windows in the door at the top of the steps.


AQS Charleston

Welcome by Terri Drake

Terri picked up on the mood of the photo as inspiration. She thought the burst of color and fragrance of flowers would be a wonderful welcome home if you lived here. She used fabric painting, thread painting and applique.


AQS Charleston

The Pink Chair
by Gabriele DiTota

The stone wall is painted and the elements of the tree and the chair are created separately with paints inks and dyes, then appliqued in place.


Resonance of the Leaf Divine by Elizabeth King

The aging stone wall inspired Elizabeth. She used a variety of media to express her vision, including shells and crystals.


Melbourne, FL

Fragrant Climb
by Ellen Lindner

The scents and sights from the photo inspired Ellen, which she says brings back memories of a special time and place. She used a raw edge collage technique with fabrics, thread, batting, fusible web, and ink.


Enter Into the Magic
by Dij Pacarro

Dij loves the feeling of the home tucked away off the main street, so she highlighted the stairs and doorway leading to a hideaway. Made with fused raw edge collage with free motion quilting.


May in Provence
by Ruth Anne Parker

Raw edge applique with free motion quilting using hand dyed cheese cloth created the ambiance of this lovely quilt.


Welcome to Provence
by Kathryn Robinson

This soft and sweet quilt zeroed in on the portion of the steps with potted flowers and a vine growing over the edge. The background is cotton painted with ink and the rest of the image is fused layers of silk organza with free motion stitching.


Waiting by Laura Ruiz

Laura is waiting in this peaceful quilt to climb the stairs and see what lies beyond the red door. Maybe it’s a quilting studio complete with a Handi Quilter! Drawn and painted with Inktense pencils.

Are you ready to try your hand at using a photo as inspiration for your next quilt? I am!