Those who live at the ends of the earth stand in awe of your wonders. From where the sun rises to where it sets, you inspire shouts of joy. -Psalm 65:8
Hawaiian Crazy Quilt design by Megan Joy Chapman. Peruvian Walnut Custom Frame by Ray Strauss. Finished Piece measures 48″ square.
Last year I discovered two things. I love creating mixed media art, and I love creating mixed media art! Fabric, acrylic, bottle caps, bottles! I’ve become obsessed with texture and the infinite ways I can express an idea through media.
With my fashion and costume background, fabrics are a natural go-to for me. I have a ton of leftover scraps from previous projects and also from my days working at Seaside Music Theater in Daytona Beach. We produced countless costumes for many musicals and plays and the fabrics were often glitzy and fun. My sewing supervisor, Kim, was an avid quilter and saved discarded pieces for her quilts. She said she particularly liked crazy quilting “Cause it’s fast.”
One day Kim showed me how she crazy quilted and I loved that there was no measuring or patterning involved. She just delved into her project and started piecing together colorful shapes. “See,” Kim said, “Instant gratification.” But it sounded better when she said it because she was from Long Island with a definitive accent. She also wore cat-eye glasses, was about 5’11, blonde, and all legs. But more about Kim later.
Fast-forward to 2015 living in Hawaii (about twenty years later). I’m finally ready to decorate the walls of my newly remodeled home. I want something extravagant to set the tone throughout the house–something central, colorful, big. And something that reflects God’s majestic creation. So I decide to make my first crazy quilt using leftover remnants. You’d think for my first one I’d start small. But ohhh no. Not me. I went for it. The finished piece turned out to be a 48″ square! I know. Crazy right? But I did it, and it makes me smile when I look at it.
The whole process of stitching together a bunch of frayed uneven scraps and then creating something vibrant and beautiful with them, to me, is profoundly inspiring. As I saw the odd-shaped pieces begin to transform and then finally develop into a finished work, I had an epiphany of how God works in us. He takes the broken pieces of our lives, transforms them with His perfect love, and makes us completely whole in Him.
And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns. – Philippians 1:6
Remember Kim? She became a dear friend, mentor, and also led me to the Lord. She even crafted parts of my wedding gown in intricate crazy quilt designs. Looking back (if I know my Kim) she probably prayed over every piece.
But how masterful is God in all this? All those moons ago, when Kim was teaching me to crazy quilt, praying for me, God already knew the revelation I’d have when I made my first quilt many sunsets later! Now that’s something to shout about!
Yet God has made everything beautiful for its own time. He has planted eternity in the human heart, but even so, people cannot see the whole scope of God’s work from beginning to end. Ecclesiastes 3:11
Crazy Quilt Wedding Dress Pics
My boss at the costume shop patterned the bodice and long skirt. Kim did all the crazy quilting and constructed most of the separates. I designed everything, patterned the cape along with my husbands vest, and constructed some of the pieces in the collection.
For the reception I had a mini. It was the 90’s!
How to Crazy Quilt
For more info on crazy quilting go to: What are Crazy Quilts on Craftsy. The Craftsy website offers online classes with optional feedback from instructors. Or you can google Crazy Quilting and find many different websites and free video tutorials.