Joan Brailsford – Rhythm and Blues
The title came to me first, and rather than over-think it, I wanted to have fun with this piece, so I decided on a simple design. I worked the piece over the holiday period, and was feeling very laid back when I did it, so I wanted to reflect this feeling in the piece.
My husband plays guitar, and I wanted to include a representation of that. I chose fabric for the guitar which matched the colour of his own, and scaled down the dimensions exactly. The guitar is always propped up against a wall somewhere in our house, so I missed out the top of the neck, and set it off-centre to make the design more informal – as if someone had just laid it down and left the room.
The strings, frets and decoration are couched threads.
I wanted to set this against a simple background of blue, and since I think of the USA being the roots of this type of music, I wanted to hint at the Stars and Stripes. I therefore pieced strips of blue fabric of varying shades, and using simple running stitches in toning threads to quilt these, and a few star-shaped buttons to complete.
I know that the stripes and running stitches aren’t exactly straight, but I decided not to be too precious about this, because it echoes the easy way I felt when I was creating this piece, and the slightly ‘folksy’ way I think about Rhythm and Blues music.