Saturday, July 27, 2013

Ocean Waves

Given the title of this entry, my initial plan was to compose it while I was still on the other side of the Atlantic. As of late last night, I have been across the Atlantic and back, so the title still is fitting.

The image above reflects a block from the Ocean Waves quilt (yes, that's really the name of it) that I made for my son and his wife in celebration of their marriage last December. I was able to have the quilt top completed to show them at Christmas, however, the work of getting it quilted and having the binding put together took until just a few weeks ago.

The planning stages for this quilt actually began about a year ago when I knew that the engagement was pending. Once I learned from my son about his fiancee-to-be's favorite colors, I started considering designs for the quilt. I decided to use the Ocean Waves pattern because it would allow the opportunity to feature a number of greens and blues in a variety of different patterns. I actually had a lot of fun going to the quilt store and picking out the different colors, mostly batiks, that would be included.

The Ocean Waves pattern is one that dates back to about the mid-1800s. As you can see from this picture from the National Museum of American History's website, this is a pattern that lent itself well to using up multiple scraps of leftover fabric. 

The basic unit for this quilt is a block comprised of two large triangles and 24 smaller triangles that are sewn together. The resulting blocks are rotated to complete a larger 4-block unit that is repeated throughout the quilt. In comparing my photo at the top and the picture of the antique quilt, you can see that I elected to have the points of the triangles for each 4-block unit point inward rather than alternate the direction of the points. 

I obtained the pattern that I used from the web: Ocean Waves Quilt. I used fewer 4-block units than were illustrated in the pattern and also included a white inner border and a sawtooth half-square triangle outer border. I also liked that this pattern featured a different color for the large triangles rather than just white.

I am particularly grateful to the wonderful quilter who did the machine quilting work for me. Her work is absolutely exquisite as you can see from this close up photo. Her website is Speckled Hens Quilt Co.

In contemplating life's challenges and, I am so very grateful that we are not at the mercy of the waves of the oceans with their randomness and uncertainty. Even though we may feel tossed about by our present circumstances, we can rest confident in the One who commands the waves of the ocean and find peace in the storm. As James reminds us:
Consider it a great joy, my brothers, whenever you experience various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. …  But let him ask in faith without doubting. For the doubter is like the surging sea, driven and tossed by the wind.
James 1:2-3,6