Friday, October 21, 2016

Goddess tears FMQ

I've been practicing Leah Day's FMQ design called goddess tears. It's McTavishing with a teardrop.

Another experiment here is using polar fleece as batting. As you can see it has enough nap to give a pretty good texture. The thin cotton batting I usually use doesn't have any more thickness than the fleece although the fleece has a closer tighter weave.


So far the only drawback is that I used a bright green with red stripes (something I would never wear) and the red shows through on the back which is a light color.

Go here to watch Leah show how to do this design. You will love it .


Tuesday, October 11, 2016

good morning glory!

Alida over at tweety loves quilting is having a blog hop this week where each blogger takes inspiration from some other work of art. It can be painting, sculpture, writing - whatever inspires or is admired. Go to her blog here for a list of all the other blogs and check them out. All so unique and oh so cool! Here is mine :

Good Morning Glory! 

My inspiration or "muse" is the fabulous Georgia O'Keeffe who among other styles is famous for her flower paintings that some say are ....... um, well let's say sexual in nature. She never  acknowledged this but then paintings are best left to the eye of the beholder and if said beholder sees vaginas and penises then that's up to them. I didn't try to recreate the suggestion of vaginas and penises though since obsessing over trying to make my flower sexual would probablly make me a little crazy so I went for the  close up factor and the lines of her work.

 Liking the white flowers she painted, a photo was taken of a morning glory in my backyard, then I cropped it to where there is just the white flower itself in close up.

  After tracing the lines from the printed out photo, reversing it and making my "map" I drew on freezer paper and made the flowing lines of the flower using as many shades of white that I could find.

I then colored in the yellowish part but decided that the yellow was to yellow and that white gray that was supposed to be shadow was to gray. But it was alread in there and I couldn't take it out so what to do?

Why just color over it of course!

white pastel oil crayons were used to lighten up both the yellow and the gray.

I wanted the stamens to stand out more so tried some pearl fabric paint - ok but a bit to shiny for my taste.

Also in the yellow part i shoose a light colored dull yellow and quilted close lines - that toned it down alot and made the stamens show up more.
You can see the difference here after whitening up the gray.

So don't forget to check out the talented quilters making art from fabric - you can click on the button on the top right of the sidebar to take you to the list.

Friday, October 7, 2016

Lotus bud



pattern/tutorial found in my Craftsy shop here or on Etsy here

The lotus has been a symbol of purity since before the time of the Buddha, and it blooms profusely in Buddhist art and literature. Its roots are in muddy water, but the lotus flower rises above the mud to bloom, clean and fragrant.

Had this background in my stash for years and finally found the right place for it.


This one I didn't quilt inside the bud except the bottom petals for a different look. Used sew batik's nuance line of gradient batiks in pink. Gives you all the values needed in one fabric.


This goes together pretty quick, using both freezer paper and fusible web.


We are in peak fall foliage here in Vermont and this is my backyard tree. Beautiful but I hate to see them all fall off leaving bare branches. Oh, well - such is the change of the seasons marking time.

Go outside today for a walk and enjoy the fall for winter will be here before you know it!

Next week I will be posting on Tuesday which is my day for the art on fabric blog hop - see the button on the right sidebar. I'm doing something Georgia O'keeffe like and am looking forward to seeing what the other bloggers are doing. Check it out on Tuesday!


Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Vermont Seasons Road Home Row Quilt and Giveaway

I am participating in a blog hop hosted by

where we each design a row depicting where we live and then make the pattern for the row and the best part is - you get it the patttern for free! And what's even better than a free pattern? 40 free patterns! Each of the 40 bloggers thru the month is giving her pattern away free ! Yes - FREE!
and what's more is each blog has a giveaway!

You do need an embroidery machine to use the CD however but if you are lucky enough to have one then this is the giveaway for you :-)

Just enter using Rafflecopter at the end of this post and then visit the other bloggers to enter even more giveaways. After you enter my giveaway go to visit the other 3 bloggers who share my day.
there is the West End Quilter from Manatoulin Island in Canada, Pamela Quilts in Oregon and
Quilt Fabrication from Silicon Valley CA

So on to my row
Vermont Seasons - 42"x12"

fusible raw edge applique / free motion quilting

I live in Vermont and one of the best things about living here is the changing of the seasons and the fact they are so different so I wanted my row to focus on that. So basically I just took one simple landscape pattern and used different fabrics to show the season and connecting them with the trees.
SUMMER - lush green colors - trees full of leaves
FALL - bright vibrant reds, oranges - trees full

WINTER - cold white and blue - bare tree limbs
SPRING - fresh light greens with tree foliage just starting

I could also see these being made as 4 seperate mini quilts to hang on the wall and be changed out for each season. You could finish each one by binding them using the easy triangle hanging method or do a facing - OR mount them on a stretched canvas using velcro on the back to make it easy to switch up every season. click on the links to bring you to a free turorial on each method.
This project is mostly raw edge or fusible applique. After fusing all the different elements in place you layer the backing and batting like anyother quilt and you applique everything down simply by your quilting process. That means lots of free motion quilting! Don't be scared of it! If you have never FMQ'ed then now is the time to learn. With this type of applique you are basically just going around each motif to hold in place. See the lines on the snow in winter? Just lines - you can do this!
You might want to try doing just one scene making a mini quilt to start. You have nothing to loose but some time and a small amount of fabric. Your quilting world will never be the same once you have learned to free motion quilt - all it takes is practice.
The pattern is available in my Craftsy shop - here.
now back to the giveaway

Friday, September 23, 2016

Applique using modpodge

I read about this on a blog last week and she called it crafted applique. There is a book out on the subject called crafted applique - new possibilities that gives you detailed instructions. If you really want to try this and do it right you might want to buy the book. I'm the type that likes to dive in and experiment so that's what I did.

First I "painted" the modgepodge on the back side of the fabric. Modgepodge is a white glue that dries fast and clear. It's used for decoupage.



I thought I was smart to lay the fabric on a large sheet of paper to protect my table. The glue went thru the fabric and stuck to the paper. Oooops! (Well that's not really what said but this is a family friendly blog)


So back to the drawing board, this time laying the fabric on plastic.




Some basic leaf shapes cut and laid on a background.

I'm not taking any chances that some of the glue is on the front so used parchment paper to iron and yes, it does stick to the background just like fusible. That makes it easy to quilt.


So her is is, quilted and finished. I made the stems small to see how it holds up under the machine needle. With fusible a small piece like this will shred under the needle but these stems held up nicely. The leaves felt somewhat stiff (as does fusible) so next step was to wash. The modpodge is water soluble so should wash out in the washing machine.


Here it is after washing. It felt softer so I think at least some of the glue washed out. This was put in with a load of clothes so I'm thinking soaking in hot water by itself probablly would do a better job of getting all the glue out and making it nice and soft. If I were to make a baby quilt or any quilt that was to be washed a lot I would probablly do the applique with a zig zag stitch. Most of my quilts are art quilts and aren't really washed so I just do the straight free motion. I wonder how zig zag free motion would work. Has anyone tried that? I would imagine it's slower to do but when making a mug rig or anything that will be washed straight stitch just doesn't do it.


As you can see here, my stitches didn't really hold up in the wash and caused the waves. Also to be fair, the background is flannel which I'm sure shrinks differently than the batik I used for the leaves.

All in all I like this technique especially for small bits. I will continue using my beloved fusible and freezer paper but will definately include the crafted applique technique into my "box of tricks"

Friday, September 16, 2016

Easy beach vacation mini quilt

I wrote a pattern for this beach mini geared toward the beginner. It's on sale for download on Etsy here or Craftsy here. These little art quilts are simple and each one can be so different that I'm on my 4th one and still enjoying it. Every time I go to the beach I'm always picking up something - a shell, some driftwood and this is a way to use them.


Here I used jute twine to hang on the stick. Sort of looks like fishing rope but now that I've said that, why didn't I use rope? There's always next time ;-)


This is a night one - check out those cool beads! Those squished up things on the left is supposed to be sea grass but I squished them to much maybe? I also should have used a more solid grass like color.

Live and learn. I show how to make the sea grass in my pattern as well.


And an easy way to attach shells. (Thanks to an idea I saw on Cathy Perlmutter's blog) her blog is called Gefilte quilts and it is a favorite. She has an amazing sense of humor and has had me rolling a few times :-)



This one is WIP. Quilting is done and I couched on some yarn and crocheted it so some strands hang down like flowers or vines. I'm really liking this. Reminds me of my vacation in Maine last spring. There was a stone wall like that at my hotel next to the beach, so there I am all beautiful with flowing dress with the wind in my hair and a glow on my cheek. Of course in reality it was April and cold so it was more like sweatpants, jacket hat and gloves but this is my quilt, my fantasy. She was originally a fairy and I know this sounds like I am the evil wicked witch of fairyland, but I cut off her wings and now she is a mere mortal.

Any way go check out the pattern - it's only 6 bucks!


Friday, September 9, 2016

Beach sand


I took this photo while walking on the beach at ausable point on lake Champlain a few weeks ago.

Love the colors and feel so had to try to make a quilt.


I sketched it out on the shiny side of freezer paper. Using a sketch and wash pencil. This kind of pencil can be used to draw on just about anything and sketching on the shiny side saved me a step of doing it on paper then tracing to the freezer paper.



Used the freezer paper as my pattern for applique pieces, clipping corners and folding under. That one piece was bigger than my fabric so had to piece it in two parts. I'm hoping it will blend in enough not to notice.


The pinkish piece above is #1 which is the water and I tried to break it up with some light blue tule. Not sure if I like it or not but worth a shot.

Since I wanted to add paint I wanted to sew together all the pieces before adding batting and back so sewed a straight line on the turned under edges. This was not the way to go. I should have used a buttonhole stitch or some sort of zig zag. If I were to do this again I would probablly try to piece it since the curves are not severe. It would look so much better. Note to self ;-)


Bouncing on some white paint with an old paint brush helps a lot. I like it. Also brushed on some sandy looking paint.


That's as far as I've gotten as of this morning so will hopefully show you the finish next week.

BTW - the road home row along starts this week. A whole bunch of bloggers are designing a quilt row each having something to do with where they live. There are people from all over the US and the world so should be interesting. There are also giveaways so check it out. It started this week and goes all month. I am participating and my day is Sept 29th.