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Mr. K had a birthday recently. When asked for gift ideas, he claimed to have everything he needed, so I decided to make something inspired by him instead.

Mr. K is an art director with an illustration degree. When we met, I was fascinated by how he could turn a few lines into a recognizable person or thing in seconds. He sketched on napkins at dinner and on coasters in bars. He put on shows and drew for newspapers and magazines. One image of a local landmark, drawn more than 15 years ago, has become what I think of as iconic Mr. K – and it seemed like something I could render, in abstract and simplified form, in fabric.

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I think it came out pretty well. It’s not an exact copy, of course – more of an homage. Mr. K seemed pleased and said “I’ve been fabricked!”

I started by sketching (on the sly!) the basic shapes – the red triangle, the white sign, the dark blue sky, the yellow buildings and grey rooftop. Piecing was experimental, and I just moved fabric around until everything seemed in the right place. I used fewer sharp angles than in the illustration but I still wanted the Citgo triangle to pop out a little, and I wanted it slightly tilted, so I paper-pieced it and appliqued it onto the body of the quilt.

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I used the quilting to add details and movement – the angle of the rooftop, the windows in the buildings, the blur of the deep blue sky.

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I think this one is going in a frame. Maybe side by side? It seems appropriate. His and her art.

choc bread puddingP.S. It was a birthday, so there was dessert. And oh, what a dessert! Chocolate Bread Pudding. Sounds weird, looks a little lumpy, tastes divine. Top it with a little vanilla ice cream. It’s homey and decadent all at once. Try it.

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