icosahedron, bordered with cotton

While in Ottawa last week, I had a little peek at quilts in the curatorial wing of the Canadian Museum of History (formerly Museum of Civilization) in Gatineau — thank you, Forrest! — and my hands kept twitching. I wanted to make something! I wanted to work on my own quilt, which has been longer in the thinking stage than anything I’ve ever made. This is because of the long process of working out how to replicate the images I wanted to use. I’m much better at the doing than the planning. Strategies for this particular quilt have changed many times and so there hasn’t been much sewing — until yesterday, when I cut out and stitched the top and bottom borders on all the blocks. And this morning I’ve just finished the sides of the first block. It’s a model of Euclid’s icosahedron and I love how elegant it is. An icosahedron is a polyhedron with 20 equivalent equilateral triangle faces, 12 polyhedron vertices, and 30 polyhedron edges. In the Timaeus, Plato equated the polyhedra with elements and the icosahedron’s element is water. This block hasn’t been pressed so you can see the ruckles in this photograph. And the colours aren’t quite true. But I love the cotton, something from my quilter’s stash which I could never find the right use for, and I don’t have enough of it to line up the pattern at the corners perfectly. But every quilt is a a version of the Platonic ideal, I suppose, and maybe the next one will be better…

icosahedron block