Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Update on a Snippet of new ideas

Blogger reader Susan asked a couple questions about last weeks post on this subject so I'll post the answers here.
The questions were about what kind of pencils to use and where one finds textile medium. I'll first note, I'm not an expert on this subject but can give a partial answer and more importantly give credit to and refer interested readers to the author of a book on this subject. The book... Quilts of a Different Color authored by Irena Bluhm. . I'll note here what pencils I used for the sample floral posted last week These KOH-I-NOOR pencils can be found at Michaels plus other places I'm sure. I'm certain other types of pencils will work, but I like the broad angle of the pencil tip on these as they are woodless... and I like using the side of the pencil to softly shadow. Fabric or textile medium can be found pretty much anywhere acrylic paints are sold.... The one you see here was found in an art store, but you would also find textile medium in an art or craft section at someplace like Michaels. Hope that helps. I can't wait to play with this technique.

Adapting For Quilting Patterns

Remember last week when I was talking about my ongoing search for reference sources for unique quilt line patterns. I found this piece of scrapbook paper that I thought would nicely translate to the wallpaper-like background for my Spanish Dancer quilt.
This is a very slow process... but I think it's gonna work.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Ashamed of myself in Apple Valley

I had greattttttt fun today with 20 quilters in Apple Valley... but we were sooooo busy, I took not one picture. What a great group of students though. thank you ladies!!!!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Where HAVE I been?

I'll tell ya but forgot to photograph this one. Finally getting all supplies, student handouts made, fabric pre cut, etc etc for Houston International took seemingly days ( really!) On Friday, I mailed 4 giant cardboard boxes ( 170 lbs.) to Houston so they'd have plenty of time to arrive (even if lost and found.. let's hope not lost). Teachers ( at least this one) get sick tummies over shipping so much stuff and hopeing it will be there upon arrival... in the right room, right place, so I can get the right box to the right classroom, in the right time.... and on and on. I'll be tracking UPS daily all week.
I'm pooped!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

A snippet of new ideas

If ink isn't for you, this might be. I visited a digitized Gammill longarm quilter friend of mine last week who has been playing with her digitized quilt patterns and colored pencils. Of course, I had to play so Cathy Farris gave me a lil sample of prequilted fabric.
Then I 'colored with colored pencils, followed by a careful application of textile medium. The medium is allowed to air dry.
Finally, the piece can be washed to soften the surface and release excess textile medium. The color remains and the fabric is soft. Pretty cool, eh?

See an update on this subject posted Sept 29th.

Quilting Ideas in fabric

So if home decorating departments can offer quilting ideas, surely fabric shops can help too.
Check out possibilities in some of these fabrics.. 2 separate fabric swatches in this photo.
And these...

And these too...
Well, my apologies.... you have now been exposed to my QLS (Quilt Line Search) disease. It's kinda fun to have tho.

While I was shopping...

Whenever I am out shopping for almost anything, I have uncontrollable antenna come out watching for possible quilt line patterns for art quilting. This time I was in a home dec. department.
... when I happened upon a textured oval platter...
with a truly spectacular textured pattern that will beautifully translate in art quilting.
Very Cool!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Almost all flowered!

Egads... Gardening the back side of this dress has become my life... Almost done with the florals tho.

Relearned learning no. 1. .. why do we do this to ourselves? I thought I'd try doing a few florals with only 2 values for dark and light (because I didn't have 3 values of thread in the same hue). I was unhappy with the way the 2 value work was going... so I had to do some shopping. Oh darn! :-)
Three values(dark, medium, light) seem to work better for me.

Sometimes adding a variegated will do the trick too.

Relearning No. 2 .. With such close stitch lines (one to another) use caution when stitching atop a previous stitch line as this creates greater stiffness in the overall project. I've done that some here and regret it. Oh well!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

A Flower a Day

One more floral on the embroidered dress of my Spanish Dancer.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Vines and Petals

This lady is becoming pretty heavy.... and ofcourse is a slow go. I've added colored thread atop the vines and leaves... at least most of 'em anyway. I've noted I don't always start with dark thread values... then adding lighter values. It all seems to me to depend on what makes more sense to retain a good flat quilted surface when done. Click on photos for detail view.

Instead of an apple a day, I may be quilting a flower a day.
Why so slow you ask? Partially because it's time to start packing supplies to ship for teaching at Houston next month.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

SLOW Dancin'

We are movin' on with the folk dance clothing of my dear Spanish Dancer. This background has a good bit of wispy, leafy vine-like embroidery so rather than trying to quilt ( the white fabric background) around it, I'm quilting over it and will come back with vine-like detail in green thread later. Much easier, and will look fine.

I'm using a 40 wt thread... 70 sharp needle to 'draw' with the thread.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Heavens Gate

This is the fourth 18 x 24 canvas my church has asked for. This image is in response to a sermon planned on "How do I get to Heaven?" The key to entry is hung right outside Heavens Gate... in fact...the gate is not locked. This should be the last canvas painting for a good while. Now, back to quilting!!!!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

A little overlapping of projects

At the same time I'm working on the 'Dancer', I'm working on a canvas painting project for my church lobby. The hands below are merely about asking questions and getting answers. Off to church to get this one hung before the next service.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Back To My Spanish Dancer

Remember the Portrait Piece I started quilting a couple weeks back? I'm soooo happy to be back at it. (Click on photos for detail views.)

First I added some ever so slightly darker thread values in the skin area.

Then some darker value greens in the dress area that in reality would be embroidered. I try to leave open areas for later addition of lighter values.

Finally lighter thread values.

This is gonna take a good piece of time to finish. PATIENCE!!!!!! " I'm talking to myself!"

Thursday, September 10, 2009


This friend gift block has been 'in progress' for months. I've been nonstop on this since yesterday afternoon. I can call this lady DONE today. Sort of wish I could keep her. This was a redwork pattern where I was given the okay to embellish as I wish. I just had to do the facial features in black and gray as requested by the 'to be' block owner. I like the result but had to give myself permission to free motion machine stitch some of the lavender and green in the hat. I think the machine stitching there looks more refined than a hand embroidery stitch would. Thank heavens for tear away stabilizer that once on the back side of the block permitted me to machine stitch on a single layer of cotton. I needed to get this finished so I can get back to some personal work. Click on photo for detail.
I knew there was a reason I bought all the beads long ago.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Yes I really have been painting

This is new for me.... I used to paint on paper(watercolor) now fabric... but my church figured out I knew how to paint and I'm doing canvases to support sermon series. It's actually pretty fun and causes me to experiment ( we love trying new stuff, don't we?!)
Mu church begins a new sermon series in 2 weeks all about asking questions about Jesus.Here are a couple canvasses done so far. These aren't intended to be fine art pieces.... somewhat graphic, simplified messages wherein the viewer fills in the blanks for themself. Remember all those rubbing plates so many of us bought? They make pretty good background "stamps' on canvas. The message on this first one... It's fine to ask questions.

Who ever heard of a purple Jesus? He seemed friendly this way.

This second on the power of love:

I'm enjoying incorporating some dimensional pieces.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Done and on it's way to Houston

Here's the final result, fully quilted, faced,labeled, and ready to mail. I seldom put borders on any longer.... I like the stand alone images without border distraction. I think I like this piece better than my original. Hope to see you at the Auction in Houston. Click on photo for closeup. (c)

Start the quilting engine

Here we go. I tried to get the basic linear stuff quilted in before I got goin' on the serious free motion stuff. The quilting pattern was originally patterned after a web search photo of a clear winged dragonfly where the dark black veins where clearly evident. Click photos for detail views.

The goal is to make the right and left sets of wings at least somewhat similar. Thats where the earlier marking is important
You'll notice how strongly the lime green thread contrasts next to the dark body.

Don't be afraid to ink over your thread to create needed dimension/ shadow realism

Headed for Auction

I'm so excited to get back to art quilting. This already painted piece will (once quilted) become a donated part of a silent auction at Houston International next month. If you are attending Houston this year, this auction is quite a remarkable event. I bought a piece by a well known artist last year for a very reasonable price. In any event, there will be dozens of well known artists pieces available but we all need get them finished and there within the week. So here goes. First to pin..... I can't count how many times in my early quilting days that I caught the loose edges of backing in the quilting stitches. So now I pin the loose edges to the batting too. Soooooo little time to save what could be hours of "unquilting"

I'm not much for marking my quilts, but for the intricate veined wings of a dragonfly, I at least pencil off major areas of pattern differences.