Quilters have an enduring appreciation for the simple elegance of leaves. I’m fascinated by the amazing varieties of leaf shapes — from simple curves to complex forms. To honor this bit of nature that surrounds us, I’ve begun a new pattern series, “Foliage”. My first patterns draw on trees that are indigenous to the Pacific Northwest, but have varieties common throughout North American.
The Bigleaf Maple (Acer macrophyllum) are part of the maple tree family that develop large, welcoming umbrellas of branches as they mature. The Bigleaf is distinctive for its leaves…..enormous floppy lobbed leaves that reach well over 12″ in size. In the fall, the leaves turn a rich, golden yellow color and wave like a multitude of flags in the breeze. Seldom do I make a pattern life-sized!
This bright red leaf is the Black Oak (Quercus kelloggii), another large shade tree native to the Pacific Northwest found in the Siskiyou Mountains of Central Oregon and along the Cascade Mountains along the Columbia River Gorge. This tree grows well in the burst and bust rainfall patterns of Oregon and Washington State. This leaf’s spikey shape is enhanced by the rich red fall color.
Its fun to see these leaf patterns come to life. The straight seam design captures the distinctive shape of each leaf. Using a variety of different patterned fabrics brings depth and dimension to the leaf, while the printed leaf background fabric lends a sense of the forest floor.