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A rock star and a village...

A rock star and a village...

Written by: 

The late, great David Bowie.


This is the quilt that graced the Moda booth at QuiltCon 2016 in Pasadena - and it might just have been the most photographed quilt at the show.  Young and old, quilters and folks just working the event, too many people to count stopped to take a picture of this quilt to share with family and friends, most of whom were fans of David Bowie.

Inspired by the image from the album Aladdin Sane, this quilt was designed by Holly Hickman, a graphic designer and artist-in-residence at Moda Fabrics as a tribute of one of her favorite rock stars.  While this isn't Holly's first quilt design, this is her first quilt reproducing an image of a real person.


No, Wilbur doesn't count.  Based on the horse in one of the prints from Erin Michael's wonderful Purebred collection, Holly created the "Wilbur" part of this quilt with Bella Solids.  While her design was then used to create a digital image, the original was made using the same layering applique technique.

But back to David...


Lissa took this picture of Holly working on the quilt top on the floor of the sample room.  Hands-on.  Though that the one eye on the right looks a little weird... just saying.

Based on the questions asked at QuiltCon, this is what everybody wanted to know about this quilt:

  • Yes, it was made after David Bowie passed away.  Holly had the idea for it about a week or so after he passed away.  The quilting at the bottom of the quilt includes - 1947-2016.
  • The background fabrics are all from Moda but they are not a single collection.  They include pieces from the following collections - Just a Speck & Behind the Scenes by Jen Kingwell, JOL by Wenche Wolff Hatling, Modern Backgrounds Ink by Zen Chic, Dapper by LUKE Haynes, Grunge by Basic Grey and Pure & Simple.
  • The face part of the image is made using several pieces from the Grunge collection by Basic Grey.
  • The quilt took about a month to complete - it was finished late Monday night, February 15th.  It was hand-carried to and from Pasadena.
  • The quilt measures approximately 60" x 60".
  • Yes, Holly had a some help completing the quilt.

In an Instagram post during QuiltCon, Holly expressed her appreciation to everyone who liked her quilt, and especially to her colleagues at Moda that helped her complete the quilt.

  • To Lissa Alexander - ModaLissa - who loved the idea and encouraged her to hurry up and get it done!  And who pieced the background in record-time
  • To Maggi Honeyman - who did the primary quilting
  • To Tammy Vonderschmitt - Tammy V - who added more quilting and pieced the coordinating pillows for the booth
  • To Chelair Etter - who coordinated everything and everyone, trimmed the quilted quilt, attached the binding and kept everyone sane and on-track during the process

Holly & David - SJMQT

Thank you to the San Jose Museum of Quilts & Textiles for this picture - they were the only ones capable of getting Holly to sit next to David long enough to get a picture of her with her quilt at QuiltCon.

It goes without saying that we're very proud of Holly and thrilled for her that her amazing quilt has been so well-received.


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