Tuesday, 13 May 2014

Word of the Day: Antependium

Antependium was my new word in March....'to hang before' and most often used with a religious hanging.

You may have already seen this antependium on my facebook page www.facebook.com/mmm.quilts, but I thought I'd add a few more photos here, as I know not everyone uses facebook  (and I can see very good reasons not too...terrible time suck)

Here is the antependium on the frame (and you can maybe see the fabric roll on the left of the picture that I added this to the backing on the bottom of another quilt I was doing for the church, I've blogged about doing this before--efficiency and less fabric needed for the loading)

This antependium is attached to a music stand with velcro...and thus creates a beautiful place for the Ministers to place their notes/books/iPad, as opposed to the bare music stand.  The original plan had been to use magnets to attach the antependium, however, the music stands are non-magnetic, and, velcro is much friendlier to iPads, so it all worked out well in the end.

 I wanted it to look like rays of light coming from behind the cross, so left some unquilted channels and quilted densely around them with spirals.

In the cross itself I used a woodgrain meander and I quilted some clamshells along the bottom, to represent hills.

 The black panel at the top is where we attached the velcro, and it sits about 6" down on the music stand.  Sticky velcro on the music stand.
I love how it just seems to glow in the sunlight.

It's double batted, so the quilting really shows well, even from a distance.

The fabrics were all scraps from quilts made for members of the congregation, or the banners on the wall, so there's some continuity.  The piecing design is also the same as the wall banners, and very similar to the altar cloth.  I'll add some pictures of those too, so you can see the whole effect...there are 6 banners that hang on either side of the sanctuary.  First the left

 and the right.  I was very new to frame quilting, and quilted these on my 9" Husqvarna on a grace frame. 

 There are a ridiculous number of pieces in that 4" paper pieced cross..something like 28 I think.  I didn't piece that.    Actually, I didn't piece any of these hangings, only the quilting is mine.

I think I used the word antependium enough to have learned it well now :)  A successful vocabulary lesson.


  1. I just commented on someone else's post about how some quilters pack quilting in some areas and the rest looks puffy and then my next stop was here where you have used that method but made it into TRUE art. It is the loveliest altar piece I have ever seen. (Well, music podium hanging) I think some churches have guilds of women that traditionally take care of the altar cloths. I don't know what kind of church you did this for but it is really, really, beautiful.

  2. That is really beautiful Michelle! I especially love the addition of the rays. I think you have inspired me to try a double batt in my next hanging as well.