Thursday, February 5, 2009

Act Swiftly Awesome Pachyderm

I have about a zillion baby quilts in the queue right now including one based on the Wes Anderson film The Darjeeling Limited. Now, if you've seen that movie you know I need elephant fabric. In it's current iteration I'm making a medallion quilt and one of the borders will be of some elephant print. Yes, if I were SERIOUS I would applique those bad boys, but (A) I'm not serious, (B) it's a baby quilt, not Quilt National, (C) there's enough going on with other applique and piecing on this bad boy, (D) I'm aiming for a completion time this side of the recipient's graduation from college . . . I could go on.

Currently I'm torn between the smooth lines of the topmost print available at SuperBuzzy for $17.95 per yard and the sheer economics of the following print available at eQuilter for $6.71 per yard.

I could wait until Marimekko unleashes it's spring collection which includes the following large-scale elephants as noted at the Always Mod blog via True Up. It's WAY too big to use as a border, but maybe replace the current medallion center with it? Or use it as a back? Or not blow $44/yd fabric on some kid I hardly see once a year whose parents would probably be just as happy with a commercially made quilt from Pottery Barn Kids (shudder)?

My frugality aside, the elephants in the fabric from eQuilter do have more detail and personality in common with the elephants painted along the interior of the train than either the SuperBuzzy or the Marimekko elephants. And their scale is right on for a border at 1 3/4 inches. Now I just have to do the math to figure out how much fabric I need to order. Thanks for helping me work that out!

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Thalia said...

I know you are way beyond the decisions of this now, but I have to say, the first choice you posted is adorable. I don't know if it's the elephant silhouettes, the variations in trunks, or what, but I love it.

Sarah said...

I love that topmost print from SuperBuzzy, too. If I were making this for my own kid, I probably would have splurged on it.

If I were making this quilt to sell, I would probably use the SuperBuzzy fabric. I recently spent a day fussy cutting and piecing together elephants from the second print from eQuilter. If I were selling the quilt the cost of my time more than made up the difference in price between the fabrics. So the end product would be less expensive if I used the more expensive topmost SuperBuzzy fabric.

But I also have this weird thing about using fabric with large areas of white in quilts for kids. I feel like it will show every stain or speck of dirt that will inevitably be part of a baby quilt's life. I'd hate to give a parent something that they would feel guilty using for its intended purpose. So awesomeness, cost, and convenience aside, I would still think twice before using that print for this purpose. Maybe if I overdyed it with grey? Or if it were for an adult's version of the same pattern . . . though then it would be large enough that I'd want to blow the bank and make a border of giant Marimekko elephants.

Thalia said...

I think I'd overdye it with grey, or with yellow, to get bright yellow elephants on a green background.

True about the stains and specks - maybe that's why I love prints and fabrics with lots of white and light colors in them, but my "uniform" is black pants, dark shirt, black sweater. Hmm.