June is the last month of spring and the entrance to summer. We celebrate Father’s Day on the third Sunday of the month, and perhaps you have made your dad a “manly” quilt to thank him for his role in your life. Barbequing becomes an essential part of our culinary practice and gardeners thrive as they plant and arrange their gardens. June is also the most popular month for weddings because of tradition, milder temperatures, and great flowers.
The birth flowers for June are the rose and the honeysuckle. Roses come in a myriad of colors, but I chose white for the roses in my quilt about time. A white rose is symbolic of purity, innocence and remembrance. Did you know that a single rose amplifies the meaning of that color rose? So a single white rose would imply very innocent or really pure and a single red bloom says “I really love you”.
To create the petals in the single white roses in my quilt, I had to select a variety of fabrics that would transition from light to dark. This meant that some of my white petals aren’t really white at all. Most of the petals are needle-turn appliquéd except for the tiny shapes in the center whorl, where I used the Apliquick method.
I also used a technique involving partial seams. Some of the petals have sections that appear to go over their neighbor in one spot but go under in another spot. By splitting the seam, it can do both!
The honeysuckle, found in shrubs or vines, has oval leaves and bell-shaped flowers that contain a small blue, red or black berry. It is symbolic of the “everlasting bonds of love”. What a challenge to portray this flower in fabric! All the petals were prepared using the Apliquick method; the berries were embroidered by hand.
Here is June in my quilt.
Sources vary on the birthstone for June, citing such gems as alexandrite, pearl or smoky quartz. Alexandrite is an exotic shade of green on the edges and a pinkish color in the middle, but has a unique feature where it changes to a reddish hue when exposed to light. It is named after the Russian Czar Alexander II and is very rare and very hard, therefore often substituted with green or pink tourmaline or smoky quartz. Smoky quartz is a translucent brown to black quartz, and has recently become a more popular choice for a June birthstone.
At this point, I haven’t entirely decided which gemstone to use in my quilt. I’m leaning towards the smoky quartz, since I think it will blend nicely with the white roses, but I will reserve final judgment until I see it all put together. It will be placed at the six o’clock position for the 6th hour, the 6th month, which means it is on a seam line between second and third quarters. Here is a mockup of a possible smoky quartz June birthstone.
The weather is warm and sunny and if you have children, they will be finishing up their school year. This may mean less time to complete projects, so may your days be productive while they last! May you be inspired by themes of celebration, love and appreciation this month.
I thank my God in all my remembrance of you.