Friday, December 28, 2018

Start your art cards

I asked Santa for a pack of start your art cards and he delivered. They are a deck of cards that on each one has a small quick creative exercise. Lyric Kinard came up with these and she teaches design principles for textile artists. My eyes start to glaze over when reading about elements of design and all that but she makes it fun. You can check them out here.
She encourages you to make bad art - don’t worry about how it comes out, the whole point is making you think about design and how it works. This is right up my alley, learn and have fun - win, wn!

I’ve done 2 cards so far

Ha!ha! Crazy
 And this one, which took some thinking 

The only way you can fail doing these exercises is not to do them at all. Your loss for not trying.  
Now go out there and make some Bad Art!

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Bowl cozy dyi

 I’m making some of the bowl cozies that you have seen or maybe made but if you haven’t made any and are planning to, here are a few tips. There are lots of videos and tutorials online on how so I won’t go into that. Just a few things I learned when making mine.

First use a batting that is pretty stiff  if you can.(100% cotton) I use a thin batting that is soft for my quilts and that doesn’t work very well. I suppose you could double it but I had some on hand that fit the bill. I’m sorry I can’t tell you what kind. The label only says 100% cotton and I’ve had it awhile.

Cut the batting an inch smaller than the fabric. I used a ten inch square and 9” batting. Sew just on the edge of the batting so there is no bulk at the seams. Clip corners.
 Clip your darts.  Speaking of darts, if you like a deep soup mug instead of a bowl make your darts a generous 2” long to make the cozy deeper.
 Give yourself a good 4” to turn.  Be sure to push out the corners with a chopstick or something like it once you turn it inside out.
 Wonder clips work great for holding the opening closed.
If you are giving as a gift, make a card to go with it that tells the recipient how to use it and that it’s washable. 

If you don’t have one of these you should make one for yourself. They really are handy. If you have made them and know what kind of batting you’ve found to be the best, please comment and let us know.


Friday, December 7, 2018

Evil labyrinth quilt

I’m trying to make a smaller version of the labyrinth quilt. I’m sure you’ve seen it, it’s a pattern quite popular made by Christopher Florence and is written to be an 84” by 84” size quilt. I didn’t want such a large quilt so I cut all the measurements in half and went to town.

I cut out all the million pieces and labeled them with sticky’s. All ready all this organization is scary and out of my normal routine. But oh yeah! I can do this easy peasy at least that is what I have heard about this quilt.
 Ha! Well after much adjusting and fixing the first five blocks went together .
 Only a couple times did I have to break out this tool of torture and woe. 

 Now the next 4 blocks almost did me in. The tool of torture ripped many a screaming seam. ( or was that me screaming) but I digress.
 I’m finally at this point so the end it near. See those white strips? They are only 5/8” wide before sewing so not much room for error and I am not a precise quilter so error I am doing much of. 

I may not be precise and perfect but I make up for it in determination and I WILL conquer the demons in this labyrinth. I am quilter! Hear me roar!

Stay tuned 😁

Friday, November 30, 2018

How to make a fabric ornament

 These folded fabric ornaments are really quite easy and your friends will think you slaved for hours to make them. ( shhhh .... we won’t tell anyone)
 Take two fabrics that go together, place them right sides together and after drawing a circle using a bowl or plate ( this one is 7 or 8 inches) cut out the circle.
With right sides together sew around the edge of the circle leaving a couple inches for turning

 Turn inside out, press and topstitch along the edge being careful to fold in the opening so the topstitching goes over it.
 Fold the circle in half and find the center.
 With needle and thread sew the middle of the circle right at the top by just going in and out with your needle 3 or 4 time.
 Bring the center of the other side in and tack that down the same way. Then the opposite side from that - do the same. 
 Sew a few stitches on the side to end the thread work and cut the thread off.
 You end up with this. Now you just fold down those corners trying to make them look the same.
It helps to look at the back and try to get all 4 corners with the same amount of  overlap.
 Now sew on a bauble of some kind in the middle and a hanging string.

Enjoy and Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

natures shades of gray

sorry about the strange format here but for some
reason the right side and top of what I write 
is not showing up so I have to get it all on one side
and lower. 
(If anyone knows how to fix this issue -
 please let me know) this just started .
I am using blogge- anyway, on to 

Natures Shades of Gray

 Welcome to the art to fabric blog hop where we pick an artist
 and use them as inspiration for a quilt.
This time the theme is my favorite color which
 at the moment is grey. 

The artist I chose is one of my all time favorites -
 Andy Goldsworthy. He goes out in nature and makes art from it.
 He uses stones, sticks. leaves among other things and does
 truly incredible art with them.
check out some of his work here - you will be amazed.
 This is one of his pieces 
- he built a slate "canvas" and inserted rocks in a cairns formation 
(which if you know me at all you know I have a thing for them)

this is my fabric art version
and this is how I made it

after sketching out the plan

 the rocks were drawn in with pencil on white fabric

 then with black thread, I quilted
 and quilted
 and quilted some more. -

 it took a long time but micro quilting the background 
slate really made the rocks pop out. Worth the effort for sure.
Everything was shaded with ink-tense watercolor pencils
 and then trimmed and the edges were done with a facing.
 hand couching in some "moss"
 a pop of yellow (a bee button)

Last but not least, a background with some grey tones chosen 
and cut to the size of a blank art canvas. Then the wall is stitched
 by hand to the background and then that is stapled to the canvas.

I really love how this came out and want to thank Aida
for creating this challenge and blog hop and you for visiting. 
Check out the other quilt artists that are posting today and all week.

Thursday, November 1, 2018

Sticks and stones

This is my first try at modern quilting. I like the straight lines I see in a lot of modern quilts and watched a Craftsy class that showed how. It’s really quite freeing and fun.  Something about slicing thru fabric with no ruler at random feels really good. I added the rock stacks because , well I like them.
This will be a curtain covering the window in my front door that is old and has no insulation. 

I ran out of batting and used flannel which was a mistake because it s heavily quilted and you can’t really see all that work but live and learn. And I got in some good practice.

Friday, October 12, 2018

Blue heron quilt

 I’m not thrilled about how he came out but it was really fun experimenting with the hairy fabric for his body. Where I went wrong is the pattern honestly. I cropped a photo and now see it would have been better either left whole of cropped higher up showing less body. It just seems not in proportion somehow. Oh well, live and learn. Anyway here are some pics of making him.

 But first a closeup.

 The pattern made from a photo I got online from a free to use public domain site

 polyester fabric that was whith with long hair like stuff that I painted with a thinned out paint. Here it’s wet

 Here it’s dry - pretty light but different shades which is how a heron is colored. So perfect!

 Laying out the pieces after fusible has been applied and paper removed. See thru white fabric over the pattern for a base.

 Quilting the moon!

 Beak before shading


 Originally the part around the eye was that lighter color. That was cut out of fabric but I thought it looked to much like a mask once it was on there. To small so I took a blue sharpie and colored in to make it bigger. But then it was to light.

 Nothing some light blue thread can’t fix.

To me my favorite part of art quilting (well next to picking out the fabrics, and maybe the free motion part) is getting into a corner - a mistake or a how can I do that? And figuring out how to fix it or do it. It’s like a puzzle. 

What’s your favorite part of quilting?

Friday, September 21, 2018

Dragon fly

Finally something finished to show you! 

I used shiny poly fabrics which were fine to work with but wanted to try zig zag free motion and boy my janome did not like that! The thread kept shredding. I tried different needles, different threads, tension - you name it. Finally using a 90/14 embroidery needle seemed to work the best. One of the things I tried was putting the feed dogs down (which I don’t normally do for free motion and never had any issues) but I thought I would try it and the janome 6600 that I have wouldn’t let me put the feed dogs down while doing the zig zag. It kept telling me I had the darning foot on and how dare you zig zag with your darning foot on! 

Has anyone else done free motion zig zag with feed dogs down with a janome?