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Uses Of Applique In Central And South America

Summary

My eye has now turned toward seeing applique in all its forms and a recent Panama Canal cruise to Central and South America left me delighted. Read about it!

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Uses Of Applique In Central And South America

Recently, falling in love with wool applique has made me more interested in the use of applique around the world. Applique is a word that came from the origin "to apply". We are told that the original use in quilting was to apply patches to clothing, quilts, etc. Applying patches in a decorative fashion sent applique down its more recent path.

Uses Of Applique In Central And South America

 

My eye has now turned toward seeing applique in all its forms and a recent Panama Canal cruise to Central and South America left me delighted. This photo was taken in a small bathroom in a shop in Las Bovedas in Old City of Cartagena. How can a quilter not be fascinated with the animals, people, plants, and countryside? The rush of people needing to use the bathroom didn’t give me time to study the stitches, so I snapped this photo with my phone. I love the use of stitches to define the hill and the ground under the chickens.

cartagENA

 

We also looked at a "mola" in the shops at Las Bovedas, but decided to wait for Panama, where this native craft originated. A mola is layers of fabric stitched together by hand. It can be used as a front or back panel in a blouse or other clothing. Overlapping of fabric is common and this mola has 4 layers of fabric in the rose-colored flower. The flower also includes some reverse applique with the center whole. I bought this piece from a woman that I watched work in the streets of Panama City. Her stitches are all the same with variations in size and color, except the whip stitch in the flower. This piece also has some lines drawn in the fabric with colored pencils which I think were supposed to be guides for her stitches.

mola

 

Quilters can use a mola as the center medallion of a quilt or wall-hanging. We saw purses and totes made with the mola as the central theme. The Museo del Canal Interoceanico de Panama had an exhibit on mola when we were there, but because the canal was the focus of our visit, we didn’t sneak off to see the mola. I wish I had!

These beautiful pieces of art take their inspiration from the everyday life of the people who live here. What would you put in your art?

 

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Glossary

Applique
Attaching individual pieces of fabric to a background to form a design.

Same As: Appliqué


See Also: Freezer Paper Applique, Needleturn Applique, Machine Applique, Reverse Applique, Shadow Applique
Reverse Applique
Designs made by sewing on a patch to the underside of a Block and then cutting away and turning under the edge of the top fabric.

See Also: Freezer Paper Applique, Needleturn Applique, Machine Applique, Shadow Applique, Applique
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