Quilting Inspiration

Women’s Encyclopedia, Part 2

December 23, 2023


I shared a few of the quilts from the special exhibit, Women’s Encyclopedia by Galla Grotto, at Houston International Quilt Festival in a post a few weeks ago. You can see that post here. Because I was so impressed with these quilts, I want to share a few more of my favorites. I love them all! Galla uses wonderful color, amazing variety of quilting textures and a balance of quilting density that makes the pieces hang straight and true.

Goddess Mother

Goddess Mother
by Galla Grotto
Boussac, Nouvelle-Aquitaine, France

In her artist’s staement Galla says:

“The main female deity in most mythologies of the world, she is the mother of gods, the creator of men and animals. The universal mother is the most complete embodiment of female creativity. She is the nurturer, the protector who gives warmth and shelter, and the patroness of culture.”

Galla uses a lot of symbolism in her applique. But let’s focus on the quilting here. If you zoom in, you can see she makes great use of contrast. One section will have geometric quilting, like straight lines or zig-zag. And the adjacent section will have a more curvy, round pattern, like swirls or pebbles.

Detail of Goddess Mother


She also uses contrast in size. This part, below the left eye, shows a section of small pebbles. On either side are larger swirls and double loops. The eye perceives the swirls as larger and the brain registers that as contrast. But the lines within the swirls help to keep the density of the quilting very similar to the density of the pebbles. That similarity in density creates a nice even texture that makes the quilt hang flat. Genius!

detail of Goddess Mother


Parrot Is A Bird of Paradise

Parrot Is a Bird of Paradise by Galla Grotto of France

My favorite part of this quilt is the fabric she chose for the background. It is perfect! And not one that would be a first pick for most.

I also love the quilting on the background. Galla took elements from the fabric and ghost quilted that shape. She also used the principle of repetition by repeating the same shape in other places on the quilt.

An example of ghost quilting are these small flowers in the upper right. Can you find them in other places?

detail of Parrot is a Bird of Paradise

Outline Quilting

One technique that is universal in all of Galla’s quilting is that she outlines each element of the applique or fabric design. If you look closely at the photos in this post and the previous post, you’ll see she does a great job of emphasizing each shape with outline quilting. I believe that is it a universal quilting principle: stitch-in-the-ditch or outline quilting improves every quilt (unless you’re doing an edge-to-edge).

Happy Holidays!

We are in the holiday season as this post premieres. I want to extend my warmest holiday wishes to each and every one of you. It’s my heartfelt wish that you find some inspiration, education, and entertainment from my posts. Thanks for reading! Whether you’re snuggled under a quilt or surrounded by the company of loved ones, may the spirit of the holidays weave its magic into the fabric of your life.

Quilt Every Day!

by Mary Beth Krapil


Written by

December 23rd, 2023

I shared a few of the quilts from the special exhibit, Women’s Encyclopedia by Galla Grotto, at Houston International Quilt Festival in a post a few weeks ago. You can […]

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