Category Archives: art quilt

There was a Crooked House Cat

The little House Cat quilt is finished or is it? The peanut gallery is having a problem with the fact that is isn’t straight, well, specifically that the hanging tabs are different lengths. What do you think?

My thought with this piece was that the cat was sitting on fleece pad/blanket (green fabric) and it’s not straight or perfect so when I added the border, I just went with the shape.

I do have ideas for how I could make the hanging tag appear even but I’m not sure I’ll go there…maybe after you tell me your thoughts.

I’m really happy with the hanger though. It’s made from my paper clay version of catnip leaves on the left, and on the right, part of a cat toy; I added more feathers, yarn, and a piece of reclaimed jewelry.

My kitty, Kona, donated two more eye brow hairs and I’m pleased with the face.

I’ve been accused of slacking on my labels, oh well, here’s this one (just fused on). As I mentioned in an earlier post – After ripping out her first eyes I knew where the label was going, and it did.

This piece is approximately 16″ wide (the hanging dowel) by approximately 17″ tall, and may be for sale.

The weather here has been cool with even a little rain today, which we really need. So the kitty “resort” hasn’t gone outside and even though there was sun yesterday, somebody wasn’t a bit happy about not being able to go “outside” into the resort!

I had a studio dog by my side (usually laying on my feet) for over eight years and she never demanded what this cat does, LOL!

Look for a fabric giveaway/sweepstakes announcement next post. Until then I hope you enjoy the season and stay safe.

Changing Ways

I laugh when I think back to the days when I would only work on one project at a time, start to finish, and they were usually pretty big size (quilt) projects. Now I’m usually working on at least three projects at a time. Maybe it’s because I’m older and there are so many things I still want to try.

I was hoping to have this one finished but some days just don’t go as planned, I’m guessing you know what I’m talking about.

This is the mini landscape in a leaf that I designed a while ago. The sky and water are my hand painted fabric, the other pieces are commercial fabrics. Below are some of the process steps. As I worked on this I thought about how I would be so much more comfortable doing all of it by hand – the applique, even the quilting. I have always felt happier, more in control, doing hand applique and quilting. All of my early miniature landscape were made by hand, and ti’s the way I have taught mini fabric landscapes to students. But now that changes day to day and I’ve had to change my ways; raw edge fusing, machine quilting and sewing have allow me a better chance of getting projects done in my lifetime!

To begin – The little landscape pieces were positioned on Wonder Under, pressed and the leaf cut out. Usually I would remove the paper and then cut it out but in this case it was easier for me to cut it out with the backing paper still on the back.

I measured and cut freezer paper about the size of the finished quilt and pressed it onto the black background fabric. Next I positioned and held a cardstock leaf pattern on the freezer paper and drew around it, then I extended the landscape lines out from the edge of the leaf. I numbered them from furthest back to the most foreground piece.

I cut them apart and removed the pattern and freezer paper. Next I pressed/fused the leaf in place on the the background fabric. and ironed the freezer paper pieces in order, back in place (like a puzzle), leaving a little gap; a bit of trimming was required so there would be a gap. BTW – This could be the makings for “stained glass” style quilt too.

Then I used a Chaco liner and drew in the gaps. I drew quilting lines for the sky, and then wiped them away, and tried a few more times until I found a design I liked.

Here the leaf, sky, and landscape extension lines have all been quilted – blue thread for the sky and a gray for the landscape. I started to close quilt using color thread within the extension sections, out from the landscape elements and sky, but it was not a good day for that…

Early on I knew it wasn’t a good day for me to be quilting. But instead of quitting for the day like I should have, I ripped out colored thread quilting and grabbed black thread. I’m thinking about dry brush painting some of the outside edges of the black quilting. I’ll have to think on that after I finish all of the black quilting… we’ll see!

Reminder – Next post I’ll be announcing the Leaf Decorated Box winner.

As winter and the holiday seasons approach I hope you will be safe and find some time just for you.

That’s Interesting

“That’s interesting” is sometimes the comment my Mister gives when looking at my art. He has been incredibly supportive through all these years of my art making, but sometimes when he doesn’t “get it,” or care for the art piece, he knows how to be diplomatic.

I found it very interesting that because the subject of my House Cat piece is familiar (our cat modeled), everyone here decided to chime in as to what I could or should do to make it better. They had valid observations and suggestions but got a big “NO, it’s done” from me.

And here’s why – After I finished quilting and thread painting a bit more, I decided not to bind it but to face it, primarily because the piece is odd shaped. But after I trimmed it I noticed one of the eyes was fraying… one of the eyes I tried to free-motion outline to get the fabric to stay down only to cause a lot of thread build up.

I never could cover the raw edge, so out came the seam ripper, scissors, lint roller, and hours later both eyes were removed.

Now with the thread removed there was quite the perforated eye shape in the fabric, both the front and back. I figured the only thing I could do was hand embroider the eyes. I would have liked to have added more embroidery but between the floss and quilt sandwich I couldn’t get the needle through any longer. I thought about painting more reflection in the eyes, but – NO, I’m done!

New embroidered eyes.

But of course I had to add more thread painting and whiskers.

And whiskers.

Initially I made whiskers by burning felt and stretching it and painting gesso on them, but in the end I used my cat’s found whiskers and eyebrows (I’d been saving). I’m still waiting for a couple more eyebrows. I haven’t decided yet, if that is clever or gross!

I love those clips!

I’ve been looking at it too long and see all that could be better but it has been a fun project; from painting the fabrics to making the pattern, and stitching it…and as always I learned a lot. When I have the hanging dowel ready I’ll share a photo of the finished piece.

REMINDER – I have a giveaway going on; if you are interesting in entering but haven’t yet, please check out last weeks blog post for details. Be sure to tell me you want to be entered (in the comments of that post), so I’ll know you want to be entered.

A Fix and Giveaway

This little piece has been on my design wall unfinished for a while. It was a cut of a larger piece of hand painted fabric that I free motion quilted just for fun. I can’t even remember if I filmed while I was quilting it. I couldn’t figure out how to finish it, to fix it until a few days ago.

I’m happy to say I fixed it and you can see what I did here…

The November giveaway, sweepstakes item is this little leaf decorated box. It’s hard pressed paper and only the top is decorated. I used painted (mop-up) fabric leaves, a couple papers, burned matches, grave vine, and gold paint spatters. It measures 6 1/2″ x 4″ x 2 5/8″ tall. It could be used as is or it could be painted, papered, or embellished in a multitude of other ways. But there’s more… I’ll be putting a little something extra inside the box.

If you are interested in a chance to win the leaf box with surprise inside just follow the rules below. The winner’s name will be announced on my December 1, 2021 blog post.

Sweepstakes/giveaway begins November 10, 2021 and ends at 9pm (Pacific Time) November 28, 2021.

To enter: You must live in the US only (no international entries). One entry per person. Leave a comment that you would like to win the leaf box with surprise, and include your first and last name (or last initial).

I’ll use a random drawer and announce the winner on my Dec 1 blog post. Winner will email me their mailing information and I will mail the ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­leaf box with surprise ASAP. If I don’t hear from the winner within five days of drawing date, I will run another random draw. Good luck!

It’s November!

It’s interesting to me how time can seem to go by slowly and other times so quickly.

I was exciting to be trying some new things (for me anyway) on the gel print plate. I made one print and for some reason decided to clean my plate; nothing would work, I mean nothing! So after hours of trying I grabbed my sewing machine oil (I didn’t have baby oil), and first trying a wipe but later switched to a dish cloth, I was able to get it pretty much clean. I sure hope it still works when I try more.

Here is the print – Jacquard Textile Color on cheesecloth. For it being a quickie, I’m happy with it.

So time got away from me and I couldn’t print anymore, for now.

I’ll share a few more of my older quilts, apologies for some of the photo quality.

Simple Miniature Snowscape before it was quilted. I altered the water fabric with paint
Hand appliqued and quilted, with hand painted sky. On the design wall, bad photo.

When I look at that landscape now I wonder how the water could look like that when it was hand quilted. Maybe it just looks worse in the photo. If my hand quilting wasn’t up to my standards, I would un-quilt, I did it a lot.

Rose for a challenge, it had to include one of the purple fabrics (I think the one next to the darkest). I beached and over painted the petal edges. I really like the background.

Hand appliqued and quilted.
Made early on in my sky and water painting exploration.
Hand appliqued and quilted. That was great poppy fabric. Hand painted sky.
Remember watercolor quilts, I made a few. Machine pieced, hand quilted.

I feel fortunate that I starting making quilts long ago, I think really the best years. From traditional to modern and everything in-between I have had the best time exploring, learning, and finding more ways to play with fabric. I hope you enjoyed this little quilt show and if you have any questions please leave a comment, thanks.

I’ll be announcing another giveaway/sweepstakes soon, so I hope you’ll check back again. Stay Safe and quilt away!

Quick Quilting

I added a border and started quilting the cat on a mat. It’s raw edge fused and made from painted fabric, I wrote about it here.

I decided to not make the piece a square rectangle but to follow the edge of the green mat. I may just look like a bad job instead of intentional, we’ll see. I plan to do my traditional butted corner binding. I have a ways to go but I’m having fun.

It’s interesting how sometimes we don’t notice certain things when we are face to face with a piece but look at it on the computer and oh, now I see it clearly. I don’t like the smile, but she’s not finished yet! More to come.

Rock, Paper, Fabric, Glass

I remember someone being perplexed by quilters because we take fabric, cut it up, then put it back together again. It’s not just quilters; so much of art is cutting something up and reassembling it.

Paper – My daughter recently gave me some of her (dry) wet palette and wipe-up papers. I paper collaged this little bird. The wing was a piece of painted paper from my stash and the only part I may work on a bit more.

wet palette and paper towel papers
Cut paper collage bird

Designing and cutting up fabric continues to be my favorite activity.

This art quilt was made many years ago. I designed it for a San Diego Quilt Show challenge – The multi-color fabric had to be used in the quilt; it won first place, and though I hadn’t thought about selling it, I was approached by a couple, at the show, and they bought it, then commissioned two more art quilts from me.

Night Trails Original design, hand appliqued and quilted.

I absolutely love mosaic and went through my mosaic making period but after a few years I realized fabric is more forgiving, lighter weight, and safer!

Palm tree mosaic mirror
Abstract mosaic extension to our front porch.

And finally, I get to the “Rock,” which actually began as Gator Board to go around my roadrunner on painted fabric. I wrote about finding this piece of painted fabric in a previous post and that I had an idea for an unusual finish.

Roadrunner at Red Rock. My daughter drew the original roadrunner but I slightly altered it.

I have to admit to being very pleased with the roadrunner piece. I think I succeeded in finishing this art quilt in an unusual way! It is wired for hanging.

Have you cut anything up lately and put it back together?

Reminder – Next post I’ll announce the giveaway winners from the August post.

Sharing and Giveaway

I’m part of a (primarily) local quilter’s email newsletter started and run by a friend (done out of the goodness of her heart and to keep up her typing/computer skills). There are over 800 people on her list and she allows us to advertise our used quilt/sewing related items, as well as, list newsletters from guilds and individuals, news of our classes, art sales, blog posts, and videos. She hasn’t been able to send out the newsletter for some time. Many of the people who would get my blog post through her aren’t getting them now, so… I’m telling you this because if you are interested in winning a giveaway item/s your odds are a lot better right now, it’s also a good reason to subscribe to my blog, and not miss a notification!

There are five items in the giveaway. Please read and follow all of the instructions below. Note that actual item colors may be different than they appear here and none of these items are washable.

First up (1.) Balance and the Brass Ring (8″ x 10″) is made using hand dyed fabric (fused), painted and burnt lutradur, some free-motion stitching (no-binding edge), rings (which may or may not actually be brass), and a few embroidery stitches.

2. Stamped and Lutradur Leaves (14″ x 14″) started as a painted piece of fabric, then pressed a real leaf in gold paint and then in black, which didn’t work very well, next I stitched and free-motion quilted it. I made the leaves long ago and I kept pulling them out, looking at them, and putting them away again (know how that goes?). They’re made from painted and melted lutradur and are just hand stitched on (knots show on back – what was I thinking!), they could easily be removed if you wanted to bind the piece or add it to another project.

3. Reflections (7.25″ x 10″) Painted pole wrapped and hand painted (copper metallic) wholecloth. This piece was made for a challenge and the company mounted it onto black mat board for display, using a single piece of tape across the top edge, it could be removed from the mat board but it doesn’t have a hanging sleeve so I’m leaving it on the board, (it is labeled).

4. Torrey Pines postcard/mini art quilt. Made on Timtex, it is hand painted sky fabric with free-motion quilting and satin stitch edge. It has a white fabric back.

5. Flower Sampler (approximately 9″ x 10.25″) is just a little piece of painted fabric with flowers made using Neocolor II wax pastels. A few years ago I shared the how-to video, here it is again.

Here is another way I have used Lutradur…

Giveaway Instruction/Rules –

Sweepstakes/giveaway begins August 25, 2021 and ends at 9pm (Pacific Time) September 4, 2021.

To enter: You must live in the US only (no international entries). One entry per person. *NOTE: (If applicable) If your name is drawn as the first winner it will be removed for the second drawing.  *If there are more prizes than entrants your name may be drawn more than once.

Leave a comment stating which item/s (1 – 5) you would like to win and include your first and last name (or last initial).

On September 4, 2021 I’ll use a random drawer and announce the winner/s on my next blog post. Winner/s will email me (fiberdesignsbyann@gmail.com) their mailing information and I will mail the ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­item/s ASAP. If I don’t hear from the winner within five days of drawing date, I will run another random draw. Good luck!

Painting Fur Fabric

Even with temperatures here around 90­° I found out that (homemade) texture paste takes a long time to dry and when rushed it cracks. The texture paste is going on my roadrunner piece, which won’t be done this week, so…

In the meantime I started something new… I was filming a How-to paint fur fabric tutorial but it went wrong so I just finished painting the fabric. On the left was the first layer, the fabric was painted damp so the paint really moved and lightened. I knew it wasn’t enough and a couple days later I painted it again, this time with dry brushes.

Using a photo of our cat, Kona, I made a pattern. The plan was to use only the painted fur fabric, I ended up adding a piece of hand painted green fabric for the blanket and the eyes.

There were a few changes to the pattern as I built the piece and I took plenty of artistic liberty. This is what is left of the fabric, I think there’s probably another animal in there, maybe a hamster or guinea pig!

Close-up

Part of me wants to just leave it as is, though I haven’t fused the pupils because I’m thinking about painting them or maybe I’ll stitch the heck out of it and fill them with thread.

Next week I’ll announce another giveaway, so stay tuned. Thanks for stopping by.

Surface Show

I hoped to have my roadrunner piece finished but between the designing, cutting, and next drying time, it’s going to take longer than I thought it would.

So, I’m sharing some pieces here, I’ve used different painting techniques on them. I’m sure I have shared some of them in the past but I think they are a nice reminder of what we can do when starting with white fabric. They could be done on printed fabric or painted fabric, again. I may not be completely sure what techniques I used on some but I’m sharing as much as I can remember.

Starting with the sweet one…

Chocolate Sauce and Wrappers. I pulled a thinned pint color, with a cheap brush, onto dry fabric and then wet the fabric and did a wash. The “chocolate sauce” was probably done with an eye dropper and then tilted. I hand painted little white highlights to give more dimension. The wrappers are metallic painted fusible in silver and gold.

Clothespin resist painted not dyed. I remember this being really fun to make!

I used the clothespin resist in this abstract that I then over painted. I remember starting to quilt it and not liking where I was going, so I think I put it away or maybe I cut it up! I probably should have just stretched it on a canvas.

Detail from Fallen

For Fallen I used real leaves for stamps and a credit card for the lines. I think I used a pointed round paint brush for the dots. This was a fun one to quilt.

Fallen one from my Photograph on Fiber series.

Detail of Above Lake Cuyamaca

In previous post I shared the how-to quilt and then paint the border. I painted the sky and water and I think the quilting worked well for the ripples in a lake.

Detail Drift and Flow

Drift and Flow has wool batting. I quilted the heck out of this piece on my domestic sewing machine; the last piece I did before getting my sit-down quilting machine. I’m glad the quilting shows in the photo because the black thread on black fabric is difficult to see in person. The black and gray on the right (above) is pole wrapped (same piece as the larger on the left below), and I was thrilled with the results, particularly in the gray area. It looked like hanging leaves. The square (ish) pieces were made by throwing paint down while thinking of sciencey things. The curvy lines are satin stitched and the gold drips are metallic paint tilted to let run and then the piece was cut into four squares.

Dwell detail… Dwell is a painted wholecloth and my most favorite quilt, ever.

Dwell back, this is the quilting that runs the width of the lower back. Sadly, it doesn’t show on the front.
There are simple embroidered “steps” leading down from the silk.

The background fabric was stretched on a frame and painted. The windmills are made from a handmade stencil, the brick rectangles are purchased hand dyed silk, and the gold frames are painted fusible. The binding fabric was painted especially to continue the colors from the main cloth.

I hope you enjoyed this little quilt show and the these pieces have given you some ideas for techniques you may want to try.