Thursday, February 7, 2013

Double Wedding Rings part 4: Collaged quilts !

One thing we love about quilt inspiration is that it can strike when you least expect it.  While contemplating this series, we came across the ingenious quilts of fiber artist Debby Schnabel. Debby's fabulous wedding ring quilts are made with raw-edge collage. She says: "This is a technique I came up with after several dismal attempts at the double wedding ring pattern. After staring at the modern pattern for a while, I thought, why wouldn’t this work?"

After the Wedding by Debby Schnabel at Debby Quilts

Debby Schnabel has worked in various types of fiber arts her whole life – from spinning and knitting, through cross stitch and needlepoint, rug hooking, and now quilting (her byline reads: "Quilting is NOT my life, but it comes close) !   For this quilt, Debby made a set of 12 inch background squares and little 2″ squares to form the “rings”; she pinned the squares in place to form the rings and then stitched the raw edges in place with a zig zag stitch.

Close-up, After the Wedding by Debby Schnabel at Debby Quilts

Debby says: "This is the first one I made.  After it was finished, I had the thought: 'After the Wedding.'  After the wedding, the reality of married life starts. Its kind of messy, from what I hear. So I decided to ‘mess up’ my double wedding ring quilt.  I ended up putting words on top of the sheer silk circles."   As shown above, the quilted words include "forgiveness" and "compromise"; for more examples, see this post. The spirals on the quilt are skinny strips of fabric which were zig zagged onto the quilt. Debby also added broderie perse flowers and bits of lace, "Because every wedding includes a bit of lace, doesn’t it?"

Double Wedding Ring by Debby Schnabel at Debby Quilts

Here is a Double Wedding Ring quilt done in a classic style, with colorful floral patches in pastels on a white background.  This reminds us of a traditional quilt from the 1930's, but look again:  this quilt is made with raw-edge collage. This is the quilt that Debby pieced during her carpal tunnel surgery; she says that it was a perfect recovery project. You can read about Debby's raw-edge collage methods, and get how-to tips, at Debby Quilts.

Jewel Tone Wedding Ring by Debby Schnabel at Debby Quilts

Here is a fantastic Double Wedding Ring Quilt done in bold and bright colors on a dark background. Debby explains: "I decided that these jewel tones went well with a beautiful large floral print that I had, and I cut those flowers out and fused them in place (even though I don’t like fusing that much!)"  She is in the process of creating a Rolling Stone quilt with raw-edge collage; see the work in progress at her February 6, 2013 post.

Housetop Quilt Project by Debby Schnabel at Debby Quilts

Last but not least, we are blown away by Debby Schnabel's Housetop Quilt Project, which was the subject of a gallery show this year (2013).  Inspired by the quilters of Gee's Bend, Debby created a series of contemporary housetop quilts and then quilted them with Biblical verses.  You can read the story here and see the whole collection at Debby's photostream on Flickr ; check out the glorious hand embroidery on many of the quilts.

Image credits:  Images are shown with the generous permission of Debby Schnabel. In addition to Debby Quilts, she offers diet and cooking tips at Debby Weighs In .


  1. Thank you for introducing me to Debby's work! WOW! How inspiring. Just finished going through her Flickr pictures. I like her modern way with the wedding ring pattern too. Very creative.

  2. I am not particularly a fan of fiber art but found these interesting.
    I have never seen any raw-edge applique other than shows and wonder if it is always just hung on a wall and never washed.

  3. Absolutely brilliant. And to respond to Julie's query, they grow more beautiful with each wash as the hard lines soften.
    Sharyn in Kalama

  4. Yes, the lighter colored one is one I use on my bed. It has been washed several times, and still looks as good as new. I also did a 'test' run before I started doing the zig zag DWR, and washed that test piece many times. It held up very well.

  5. This is nice blog and beautiful collection , I think that this blog is really interesting...and i love ur pictures!

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