I Sleep On the Bottom Bunk

I have been thinking a lot lately about how I want to start making quilts that are more than beautiful compositions of colour and design. I want them to have more meaning, to metaphorically say something about the world. (You know, how Luke Haynes pretty much has that whole industry sewn up). So that led me to consider my identity as a gay man. Surely there would be a wealth of political, sociological, and historical ideology I could mine for inspiration for this new, esoteric direction in my quilt making. As I was pondering these figurative concepts over a deep glass of cabernet sauvignon from the Silver Goon Bag region of the Box Hills, I let out a hearty chuckle. Fuck Luke Haynes and his metaphorical quilts of the world.* Instead, I decided I wanted to find out, quite literally, if my quilt were a gay man, what would it say?

In one swooping concept, I had managed to create the blue print for a quilt that not only addressed the homosexual ideologies I had considered, but also one that “said something.” So what would be the first thing my gay quilt would want to say? Oh sweeties, he didn’t even hesitate one bit, he was all finger snaps and look at me look at me look at me “I sleep on the bottom bunk.” Mmmkay?! At once simple, decisive and innocent, while also being absolutely subversive, ironic and with a heavy dose of cheeky wink and smile. (That’s a lot of things in one statement!) Some might think this quilt is destined for a bedroom shared by siblings, but if you know anything about the sex lives of gay men, well that might not seem so appropriate anymore.

I think this is hilarious. Who knew a quilt could be so … gay? Is it a bit #inapprops? Mmm, probably, but that’s exactly why it is important to me. Personally, I’d love to see more inappropriate quilts pop up (!), which is why this will be the first in a series. Oh, you know I’ve got plenty more things to say! Ow! The patchwork letters and font style were designed by me, and consist of 1″ finished squares and HSTs. I might explore appliqué in the future to speed things along, but for now, I like the innocent reference to traditional patchwork. This is also a fun way to bust some scraps!

Since these photos, I’ve created a backing, basted, and started free motion quilting this on my domestic Juki.  I’ll keep you updated on that progress, but you’ll probably see more of it on Instagram (molli_sparkles) until it is finished. For now, tell me, what would your {straight/LGBTI} quilt say?
*(Just in case any of you need a disclaimer [you probably shouldn’t be reading this blog, but], this is said out of satire. I have the utmost respect for Luke Haynes, the quilts he makes, and all of his successes.)

25 Responses

  1. Jen Barnard says:

    That's brilliant! I have no idea what mine would say though. You were very sneaky too, only showing anagrams on instagram to fool us.

  2. Jo says:

    I love it. Good on you. As for what mine would say. I have no idea. Will have to think about it. I had a good laugh….

  3. Lynley says:

    Awesome, well done. Sometimes things just need to be said … http://lynleyquilts.blogspot.com.au/2014/11/best-in-show.html

  4. Heather J says:

    Love it! The letters are a fabulous use of scraps.

  5. memmens says:

    Hey thought provoking stuff, I'm a bit black and white, this is me take it or leave it. So to be honest it had never crossed my mind that you could even have a gay or straight quilt, each is unique and individual, some much more so than others!
    Please could you blog daily so I have a 'thought for the day' or maybe actually once a week would be enough for my head!

  6. rappy says:

    Great quilt. Do you know Thomas Knauer? Every single quilt he makes completely blows my mind.

  7. Oh , you are such a cheeky minx. I do think this needs to be a two-sided quilt with a pieced back that says 'I'm the rooster'. You can flip it over every other week 😉
    My quilt would be terribly boring. It would say 'we already have four kids, leave me alone I need to sleep'. Doesn't quite have the same ring to it, does it?

  8. ~Diana says:

    I have a dark statement idea, but I don't want to be a downer, so I'd go with SIEZE THE MID-DAY~my motto in life. You crack me up Sparkles 🙂 maybe I'll make one up!

  9. Jayne says:

    That's what you were making! Why the hell not make a statement?! What I love about you is that you are not afraid to say what you mean and mean what you say! Refreshing change of pace! I've toyed with statement quilt ideas and usually come up with some 'deep' meaning like ~this is your world, shape it or someone else will. Then again a good 'f*ck' pillow has been on the list for a long time!

  10. Meig Heyburn says:

    I got a mini in a swap that says 'shut the fuck up' and it's my favorite thing ever. It hangs in my bedroom.

  11. Love this! I made my own LGBT statement quilt in a way, and it said "Marry Me, Babe?". I used to it propose to my girlfriend (who had already proposed to me a year before, but why shouldn't she get that big moment too?). We're getting married in October. So just waiting on the US Supreme Court to let us know if it will be legal or not. Which might require another statement quilt if their answer is "not".

  12. I think this is fantastic. I have kind of been soul searching in a different way recently and love how great it feels to make bold statements. My works have been in the mini quilt category, but I'm thinking that the size of this also gives it greater impact. Thanks so much, as always, for the wonderful food for thought and inspiration.

  13. Renee says:

    I love a good entender, so this is pretty awesome!! And yes it would be perfect on a bottom bunk bed in a kids room, hahaha. My quilt might say…"Aint nobody got time for that" or "fuck first" –have you seen the youtube video #fuckfirst? Worth checking out, he makes a good point 😉

  14. greeneggs says:

    Inappropriateness and quilts go together like … Whipped cream and handcuffs? Love this sooooo much.

  15. Ok. I love you. I would ask you to marry me but, well, you sleep on the bottom bunk. SO. I am newish to the quilting world, and there are times where I feel like I just don't fit in to the "quilt world" and reading your posts, I realize WHO CARES?! You are by far my most favorite! Thank you for always making me smile 🙂

  16. Mr. Briggs says:

    Love it! I have been mulling over similar quilt ideas, (and other fiber art ideas) for a bit now along these lines. I'm not sure if you are familiar with the blog Completely Cauchy, but one of my favorite statement quilts lies here. Just Google Completely Cauchy life as a picnic. This quilt and the story behind it had me in tears. I never knew a quilt could cause such an emotional stirring. Your quilt is stunning and I can't wait to see what else you have in mind for your series. "That was a mouthful!"

  17. Cnytz51 says:

    I do not really understand the "bottom bunk" connotation, but I do have friends whom I can ask. However, I love it that you have found a way to "bust out" into a new creative direction which is always good for the soul! My statement quilt would say, "Rock me, Baby, all night long!"

  18. Paula says:

    Love it on every level. Quilts are personal, they are from the heart and should always express soemthing about the maker. This quilt does that so perfectly and I can't wait to see how you finish it up. What would my quilt say ? Well I think it would be reversible with Do Not Disturb! and Make Mine a Large One!

  19. You know those "Baby on Board" signs people put in their car windows? Long before they were invented I had one that said "A woman's place is in control". That's what I'd put on a text quilt. Love the fabrics you've used in yours, and all that planning that must have gone into it.

  20. Sewmotion says:

    HIlarious, and inspirational! Thank you!

  21. Leanne says:

    There are a lot of strong views about words on quilts, and I am sure you will enjoy being part of the debate. I think a series would be wonderful!

  22. Donna says:

    I love your quilt and the concept behind it! Mine would probably say: Fabric Slut – You Know I Want It.

  23. SewPsyched! says:

    I cannot WAIT to see what's next!! XX! Woo!

  1. November 5, 2015

    […] full spool, and no, I didn’t get ripped off. You see, I started free motion quilting my I Sleep On the Bottom Bunk quilt! This is the first full quilt I’ve FMQ-ed myself, and while it’s not […]

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