Monday, June 12, 2017

Design Steps for an Art Quilt

  This is the inspiration photo for one of my recent art quilts. I am making a series of art quilts of people showing "attitude", and this photo grabbed my attention immediately. I love the posture that she has, the way her eyes look at the camera, and of course her wonderful sense of fashion. She is very sure of herself!

For this series I am doing some pieces in a portrait fashion, and others on a whole cloth where I paint the image and the background on one piece of fabric. Portrait pieces have the image mounted on a separate background. For this one, I decided a portrait style was more suitable.  My plan is to create the image of the girl separately and then place it on a background that serves as a frame for the image.

My first step is to make a line drawing of the girl. I traced over the photo and got the major shapes and lines. Then I enlarged it to a full size print out at my local FedEx Office. They have a large format printer in their self service area. I have become good friends with that printer and know how to get my enlargements done without waiting for someone to help me. What a time saver!!!

This image is about 2' x 3 '.

I use the enlarged drawing as a template for the parts of the piece. By parts I mean individual clothing pieces and body parts.  I used to cut out freezer paper templates for the various parts, but not any more. I simply place the enlarged drawing on my light pad, place the fabric over the drawing, and pencil in the outline of the part on the fabric. Then I cut out the piece and paint on it to modify as needed.

I trace the outline of the image on a piece of muslin too. I mount the various parts on the muslin as I complete them. Here is the muslin I used for this piece:

The muslin serves as a connector to keep all the parts together, and it helps to prevent the background colors from being seen through the image. I use a muslin that has a tea stained color, light brownish. That color is good at preventing background color from coming through, and it add a bit of warmth to the top colors.

I'll show the making of the clothing next. It was fun finding the crazy color combinations that she was wearing in the photo.

Thanks for visiting my blog!

Monday, June 5, 2017

Another Great Attitude!

I have been working on a series of art quilts depicting people showing "attitude". I'm always on the look out for people standing in a pose that says something about confidence, sassiness, or "I've got something on my mind".  I try to get a picture if I can right then and there.

Another one of my sources for photos of people with attitude is from friends and family.  I spotted the photo shown below on a friends Facebook page.  The friend is the Mother of the little girl shown. I love the combination of clothes and confidence shown by the little girl in her "look". I got permission from my friend to use her photo, and I have made an art quilt inspired by it.  I'm going to show the making of this art quilt in my next few posts. For today, however, I'm just going to show the photo that inspired me.

Thanks for visiting my blog!

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Flying Geese Quilt Show - This Weekend!!!

The Flying Geese Quilt Show is this weekend! I belong to this guild and am always proud to have my quilts displayed at it. They have many fun things at the show, like vendors, auctions, raffles, and of course, quilts.  One of my favorites is the boutique. It is a wonderful little place to buy one of a kind items. They are high quality hand crafted items. You will find great gifts for your loved ones, and for you too!  This year I made some note cards for the boutique.  I show one of them below.

The show is Saturday June 3rd, 10 am to 4 pm, and Sunday June 4th, 10 am to 3:30pm.
The show is at Soka University (1 University Drive, Aliso Viejo, CA).  $10 entry for both days. Free parking.

 I hope you have a chance to make it to the show! I really think you'll enjoy it!

Thanks for visiting my blog!

Monday, May 15, 2017

Covering Hangars

In my last post I showed you how I used a piece of trim on an art quilt. Today I'm going to show you another use for trim. I happen to have a great deal of lace and other trims as a result of inheriting my Mom's collection. Mom was a very creative person and had plenty of supplies for her various hobbies and clothes making. I am always looking for ways to use some of this supply.

One of my pet peeves is when my clothes slip off the hangar. I have purchased some hangars that are coated to prevent that, but why not make my own?

I found that if I wrapped lace around wire or plastic hangars the lace did a fantastic job holding the clothes on the hangars.

Here is some of the lace I used.

To the right you see the finished hangars. I just did a tight wrap, starting at the base of the hook. I went around the body of the hangar and then up around the hook and back to the base. I put a dab of glue at the end point, and tied on a piece of ribbon.

These are very useful in my closet, keeping my clothes off the floor! They look cute to me, as well. Thanks for visiting my blog!

Monday, May 8, 2017

Bird of the Night - Trim

  The upper and lower parts of this art quilt are separated by a piece of trim. It is the long series of circles you see above the leaves. This pieces was originally white, and I painted it to match my design. I'm going to show you how I changed the color on that trim.

This is the way the top looked before the trim was put on.

I didn't care for the way the stem of the flower just ended. I needed an element to fix that. I pulled out my various trims and found one that was essentially a string of circles stitched together.

This  is the trim, all piled up. It is next to a piece of yarn that is a pale yellow green color. I wanted to make the trim the same color as the yarn. I pulled out my inks and other paints, mixed a few colors and found something that would get me to my desired color. These are the colors I used:

Here is a photo of the test painting process:

I painted the trim on top of a "white on white" fabric, figuring I'd get a painted fabric out of the process as well. That turned out to be a good idea because I always have leftover paint.

Here is the trim drying:

I was very happy with the color I got. I stitched the trim to the top using a clear, monopoly thread. I used a basting glue to hold it in place while I stitched so it didn't shift around.

I cut the trim in a couple of places to leave a gap where the leaves popped up above it. I was careful to completely cover the end of the flower stem.

Overall I'm happy with the way that turned out.

Thanks for visiting my blog!

Monday, May 1, 2017

Come to see me at the Beyond the Edge reception!

Beyond the Edge Fiber Artist's "Expressions in Fiber Art" reception is this Friday. I hope you can be there!  Here are the vitals: Center Gallery - 250 East Center Street, Anaheim, CA. 5 - 6:30 pm. 714-765-4311.

Friday, April 28, 2017

Stitching the Background

I'm going to use this post to show how I quilted the background on my Bird of the Night piece. This is a detail that shows a little bit of the stitching that I used near the interface of the lower leaf area and the upper flower head area. I used horizontal lines around the leaves and switched to stitches in different directions above the leaves. I wanted a separation between the two areas and used directional change to help with that.

I did the parallel lines using free-motion stitches. They are not perfectly aligned and straight, but that did not make a difference in the overall look I was going for.

Since I used a black fabric, it's difficult to see the stitches.  I used my photo editing software and lightened/increased contrast on a couple of photos to help with the visibility of the stitching. Here are some other background stitching areas that are a little easier to see:

     I'm not sure if you can tell, but I used a dark blue thread instead of black. It still reads as black on the fabric, but when you are stitching, that slight amount of color difference allowed me to see what I was doing a little more easily.

I parallel stitched in varying directions all over the background. I avoided any horizontal parallel lines in the flower area because that stitch direction was used on the bottom only.

That's all I have to say about that! Next time I'll talk about the trim I used between the leaves and flower.

Thanks for visiting my blog!