While in Australia, I learned about waggas: the roughly made quilts which used deconstructed old clothing as batting. Chris Hussey told me that her mom used to make them (and yes, there are other definitions of waggas, involving old feed sacks).
When I returned home, I decided it was time to take apart my badly sun-faded, 30-year-old, rust-colored travel vest (from Banana Republic, back when they sold funkier clothes). I had worn this one on many trips, stuffing all those pockets..
I arranged the deconstructed vest sections to form a rough map of Australia - a wagga of Down Under :
Wagga Down Under (57"h x 59"w) This is an unwieldy monster of a map: little Tasmania (in the lower right corner) just throws off the whole balance of the composition. Looking back at it, I should have made a separate map for Tasmania, and moved up the bottom border. Oh well...
Now, do you see the strange little decorative thingies along the edges? My map has so much going on, I felt some explanation was called for. I did what mapmakers (cartographers) do - I added keys, like on this map of Massachusetts:
On this modern map (well, relatively modern, since we're all moving away from paper maps to GPS) you get a few basic keys (also called legends): plain boxes with rudimentary explanations. On older maps, they really dressed it all up. Highly ornate swirls, scrolls and even cherubs around the information, like these:
I took the information I wanted to share and photoshopped it inside vintage map key frames:
I bought a few of these jug covers at Australian markets, and a student gave me one. While I was waiting at one airport, I saw jug covers still being used! There are a few of them in the quilt.
There's the Banana Republic label from my vest. I used to love their clothes, before they went upscale-stylish. Tomorrow, the techniques and more detail pictures.