Monday, April 11, 2016

Center of gravity on Art Quilts

I've never had to think about the center of gravity on a quilt before.  Normally quilts get hung from a rod through the sleeve and the person hanging the quilt can adjust the rod height so that the quilt is level.

Now that I'm making art quilts to be hung in a gallery setting and have been inserting boards with a center loop, I've noticed that the center of the quilt is not necessarily the center of gravity.  OK, I'll give you some examples of what that means.   If you take a yoga class and you have to stand on one leg, you'll gently compensate by shifting your weight, and center of gravity, towards the one leg on the ground.  Or if you've ever been in a boat and your husband is reaching out while netting a fish on one side, you try to move farther over on the other side to keep the boat from tipping over, which equalizes the weight in the boat.  OK, get it?  

The nests on the quilts are slightly heavier than the rest of the quilting materials.  If they're centered, no problem.  But if they're offset, problem.  One of my recent quilts had the nest all on one side and at the bottom.  So... problem.  As soon as it got hung up by the center loop, it tilted towards the nest. 

What it needed was a little weight on the other side to move that center of gravity back to the center.  My husband suggested some of his fishing lead and so I tried it.  

My husband's fishing led
 My husband cut a length of the lead from his stash.  I straightened it.  Then sewed it into a little muslin case that was 4" long and about 1" wide.

Encased in a muslin
 I put the quilt up on the hanger and placed the encased lead just where it needed to be to offset the nest and it's weight; thereby getting the center of gravity back in the center of the quilt.

Weight in the bag ready to stitch down
I hope this tip helps you on your art quilts!

1 comment:

  1. What a cool idea! Nice to be able to utilize your husband's fishing gear for a use other than fishing!--Terry