Inspiration Song & Lyrics
When you’re stuck in a moment
And your spark has been stolen
This is our time to own it
So own it
Baby, we were born with
Fire & gold in our eyes
Uncomfortable in My Own Skin: Reclamation Project VI – Light
A beacon of hope
Shining light into darkness
Carried in my heart
When I was writing my post for the Reclamation Project V: Rainbow quilt, I was reminded of the path that I want to walk in life.
I forgot that the beauty of my work was that I [am] a light shining into the darkness and working to make things better. Looking for a beacon of hope and encouragement from everyone else, I forgot my own strength.
I also had a very powerful experience at about the same time. I was in a guided meditation, and I experienced a panic attack (Reclamation Project III: Lost). I was safely walked through it, and the entire time I was able to talk and calmly evaluate what was happening to me. Reflecting back on how quickly the panic attack was resolved by listening to my inner voice and trusting my instincts, body, and feeling safe in my surroundings leaves me feeling lighter and freer knowing I have new tools for the future.
Afterwards, we continued with the meditation. I constructed a series of mental images of a glowing light, that became a lit lantern, that then passed through me and left me with a sense of wholeness and well being. I immediately came home and searched the internet to find a grouping of images that resonated with the lit lantern I had conjured in my mind, not knowing exactly why I was doing it.
Once I had found the images, it was clear I needed to use them as an inspiration for another mini quilt. So I went to my sewing room, set the project I was working on aside, and stayed up late into the night to sew the lantern. I felt so compelled I knew I wouldn’t sleep until the idea was starting to become a reality.
Piecing the two sides of the lantern went quickly, and after building confidence in sewing Y Seams for the Lucent Quilt, tackling sewing the top to the lantern was not too hard. Feeling confident things were moving in the right direction, I saved the finishing of the quilt top for the next morning. 😉
Out of the images I had saved, I was especially drawn to the image of the lantern sitting on the snow and casting shadows along the ground. I worked improvisationally to piece the shadows and surrounding negative space for the lantern. My goal was for the three shadow lines to work back and point at a single location within the lantern. Again, a Y Seam was necessary along the bottom edge of the lantern, and a bit of faith that the idea would come together when I had only pieced a small portion and it was looking a bit odd.
I finished the quilt top just before I left for a long vacation. Knowing it was waiting on my return, and eager to get back and finish the quilt, I spent some time while I was away thinking about how I would quilt it. I want this mini quilt to help remind me of my own inner light and of the things that inspired and buoy my spirits, so I searched to find quotes that resonate with me and I think will help remind me about my inner light and the path I want to forge.
At the top of the quilt, it says:
Light gives of itself freely, filling all available space. It does not seek anything in return; it asks not whether you are friend or foe. It gives freely of itself and is not thereby diminished. -Michael Strassfeld
I especially love that quilting also fills all available space. 😉
On the left of the lantern, it says:
To send light into the darkness of men’s hearts – that is the duty of the artist. -Robert Schuman
And to the right of the lantern, I quilted:
Love is not consolation. It is light. -Nietzsche
For the lantern itself, I wanted the quilting to reflect a sense of pulsing, growth, expansiveness, and of course light. I started with my walking foot and outlined each panel and started some gentle arcs centered on the point the shadow lines converge. Then I came back and free motion quilted more organic lines to fill in.
I think the texture of the quilting appears best with the early morning sun glowing across the quilt at an angle. To fill the rest of the negative space around the lantern and quotes, I used a repeating swirl hook motif, which I think also doubles to look a bit like a candle flame.
The Be The Light Lantern mini quilt finished at 23-inches wide by 20-inches tall.
- Kona black (lantern), nightfall (shadows), marine (background / binding)
- 4 Denyse Schmidt solids for the yellow / orange glowing panels of the lantern
- 50wt Auriful 2130, 2220, 2692, and 2735
I like the feeling of fullness, peace, and hope that working on this mini quilt brought me, and it was certainly a quilt that I felt strongly compelled to create and finish. I am thankful for the Reclamation Project, and while I don’t exactly know what I will be creating next, I know the series is not quite finished.
Love, art, quilting, and freely giving. Those words and ideas are beacons for me, to help light and remind me of my path. What resonates the most with you and illuminates your world? Have you ever experience a strong compulsion to create something?