Creating Moonstruck — Initial Design

My quilt Moonstruck recently returned home after a long trip with the Rust-Tex Collection, including its debut at the Spring International Quilt Festival in Chicago (2010) and a visit to England for the Festival of Quilts (photo from the show below, Moonstruck is the blue and green one).


Moonstruck really did a lot of sightseeing in England, including a stop at Kensington Palace.

This is one of my favorite quilts, so I thought I’d document how I made it.

I created the quilt specifically for the Rust-Tex contest, hoping to get juried into the Collection.  I had a lot of fabric that I’d rust-dyed but hadn’t used, so I thought this would be the perfect reason to use the fabric.

Creating rust dyed fabric is pretty easy since any rust that comes into contact with fabric is going to stain the fabric.  I learned the techniques from Lois Jarvis’ Instructional CD which covers basic rust dyeing as well as using tannin to get a gray effect along with the rust colors.  Here’s a photo of some of the fabrics I started with for my quilt.


In thinking about the design of the quilt, I’d recently made Eccentric Circles (below) and I wanted to make another quilt using the same type of interlocking circles.

Using CorelDraw (a vector graphics program, similar to Adobe Illustrator) I started drawing different options using lots of circles.  Below are some of the options I came up with.


After some experiments, I decided to try using two sets of concentric circles centered on opposite sides of the design.  Below is a starting point with the two sets of concentric circles where the gray area represents the portion of the design that would become the quilt.

Using this as a starting point, I overlaid smaller circles to complete the design.  Below is the design that eventually became Moonstruck.

In the next post I’ll discuss going from this design to the final pattern for the quilt.

If you rest, you rust.
Helen Hayes

It’s better to burn out than it is to rust.
Neil Young

 Sloth, like rust, consumes faster than labor wears, while the used key is always bright.    Benjamin Franklin