30 January 2014

New Work: Sea of Imagination

Signed, sealed, delivered… oh yeah!  I can finally share photos of the piece I've been working on for the past month.  Sea of Imagination was commissioned by the lovely folks at Yale New Haven Hospital, for their newly renovated Pediatric Specialty Center.  It's an expanded version of a baby quilt I made a few years ago called Braydon's Ocean.

(Sea of Imagination by K.Themel, 46"w x 59"h)

I am thrilled and honored to have been chosen for this project. Of course it's never fun to visit the hospital, especially if you need to bring your child. My goal was to create something colorful and cheerful, to amuse (or at least distract) parents and kids while they're in the waiting room.


When it comes to childhood fantasy worlds, I say "more is more".  More fish!  more colors!  I had a lot of fun adding the free motion stitching, too.  Swirling lines around and behind the fish give the impression of little currents.  A few strings of bubbles float toward the surface. I put a some surprises in there too, hoping to make this piece into a fun "I spy" game.  Can you find the kissing fish?  How many dolphins do you see?  Where is the fish that has spots like a giraffe?  Is that Nemo swimming up to touch the boat?


I have to say this has been one of the most enjoyable commissions I have done in a while. The people at Yale have been wonderful to work with.  I can't wait to see this and all the other artwork on display at One Long Wharf Drive.  The ribbon cutting ceremony will be Monday, February 10.





  1. Wonderful, Kate! I know many will find diversion and comfort when they see you colorful work at the new pediatric center. Well done!

    1. Thanks Diane! When I dropped of my quilt at the framer, I got a peek at Norma Schlager's "Emerald City" quilt, which is also on its way to Yale. I can't wait to see everything installed!

  2. It is terrific and it will be so much fun for kids and parents to look at. Are the fish fussy-cut from fish fabric? I think I recognize some fabric that I have. I can't wait to see our quilts installed. I don't know if they will be in the same building. Mine will be in the Maternal Fetal Medicine dept.

  3. Kate - this is so fun and full of energy! What a treat for the patients to dream of joining those fish and swimming free in the ocean.


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