I took a class with Susan Cleveland at AQS-Paducah this year and it was excellent. Susan manages to be both pleasant and precise as a teacher and has many, many tricks for improving quilt making skills.
Thinking of Susan’s creativity and sense of humor, I decided to make my SAQA donation quilt a picture of ideas exploding out of her head.
Here’s the resulting piece:“Susan’s Head Explodes”, 12″ x 12″, a tribute to Susan Cleveland
Susan is known for (among other things) her binding techniques, prairie points, and Dresdens. All these involve her signature precision and attention to detail. I used some of her techniques in this little quilt and added several of my own. Here are some details.
First, the martini glass. Please note that I have no idea whether or not Susan drinks alcohol; I just couldn’t resist this use of a prairie point!
You can see my binding up close in this detail photo. I used a flange to accent the edge. The little spheres are wool balls cut in half, a technique I learned from Susan.
The red exclamation mark is made with Kraft-Tex to avoid any risk of fraying on such a small element.The flamingo is a plastic button! Following a suggestion from a reader (Elizabeth, in response to my Habitat House), I removed the shank and glued the button to the quilt.
For one of the prairie points, I put a clear spherical button inside to hold it open a little. This button was one of my happy finds in Paducah, so it deserves to be in the piece!
The wool blend felt used for batting was a suggestion in a recent book by Sue Bleiweiss. It worked quite well in terms of being stable and easy to use.
Name: Susan’s Head Explodes!
Designed and made by: me, with inspiration from Susan Cleveland
Finished size: 12″ x 12″
Materials include: Commercial cotton fabric, hand dyed fabric (Cherrywood), hand dyed embroidery thread (Artfabrik, Laura Wasilowski), Kraft-Tex (C&T), plastic buttons, commercial rick rack, wool felt balls, a polymer clay button, wool blend felt for batting, and various commercial threads.
Note: As always, the links in this post are for your convenience. They are not affiliate links.
Susan was at our guild for a presentation last month. So, I TOTALLY get your piece🙌🙌. What a riot😂😂😂.
I’m so glad you get it,
Mary! This is delightful, enchanting, quirky.
Thank you 😊
What an interesting make! I love all the different elements and methods you used. It reflects Susan very nicely (albeit that Susan may not drink alcohol 🙂 I hope she sees this post about “her” quilt. I met Susan many years ago (decades ago!) when she taught a binding workshop to Des Moines Area Quilter’s Guild. She has a great personality, and I enjoyed being with her. I’m glad you liked her workshop.
That is so awesome – I love the prairie point martini glass! What a wonderful riot of color and composition!
Thank you! The martini glass just had to be done 🙃