Tag Archives: quilting

Looking Up, Birds, and Winners

Things are looking up around here, for one reason, we are finally having our ancient furnace, it’s in the attic, replaced. We haven’t used it in several years and though we don’t have horribly cold winters, I’m cold if it’s below 75° and the hands don’t work well with they’re chilly. Space heaters have helped but our old kitty and I are ready for the warmth!

You may remember the cut collage bird I made a while ago using my daughter’s (dry) wet palette papers (mostly). The green wing needed help so I used some of my painted papers. I like it better now and it will probably end up on a notecard.

I started celebrating my birthday early; my (adult) kids surprised me with this box of Aurifil thread. It’s so pretty I haven’t even opened the plastic wrap yet!

I’m working on a project for a private class I’ve been asked to teach. I’m planning on including a stamp in the project so I’ve cut more rubber stamps and one is a little hummingbird. I decided to use this stamp in another project made especially for this giveaway announcement post.

I filmed some of the free-motion quilting for this hummingbird project but haven’t had time to edit it yet. Here are some images of the process and the almost finished piece. I haven’t decided exactly how I’ll finish it for hanging.

The photos are taken with my phone so sorry they’re not the best.

I started with a piece of Timtex cut to about 6″ x 7″ and “mop-up” painted paper towels I’ve been saving.

I placed a whole piece (one ply) of paper towel over the Timtex and tore other paper towel up then arranged it in an abstract floral design.

I set that aside and used black textile paint for the hummingbird on a piece of silk organza. Stamping outline stamps on silk organza is a hit or miss… without stabilizer organza wiggles! I knew I’d be quilting over it so it was no big deal that it didn’t turn out the best.

So that the hummer would be about where I wanted it, I center and laid the organza on top of the paper towel pieces and placed silk pins at the tip of the wing, tail, and the beak. Then I removed the Timtex/paper towel piece and dabbed paint on the stamp, lined up the silk pins with the stamp and laid the organza on top, and sort of burnished it with a little piece of parchment. Hindsight – press organza to freezer paper and then stamp down onto the fabric as usual. Sorry if that is difficult to understand, I think I’ll have to video it if I do it again.

I let the paint dry for a few minutes, then clipped the organza to the Timtex so I could free-motion quilt, starting with the hummingbird. Below is the free-motion quilting finished.

I put black felt behind it and didn’t like it at all so changed to blue (it’s actually more turquoise than it looks in photo). I tried to straighten and trim up the organza but since I’m still not sure where this is going I left it longer on the side. This felt didn’t look good without the organza over it (too bright).

I added a little embroidery around the edge of the Timtex with French knots at each corner. I think I want to add more. I’ll take better photos when it is finished.

Now the sweepstakes/`giveaway – I’d like to thank all who commented and because only two of you entered the hummingbird notecard set giveaway, I have decided to give Joy and Karen each a set of Hummingbird notecards. Whether you keep them or give them away, I hope you enjoy them as much as I enjoyed making them. Please email your mailing address to me (even if you have in the past).

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.

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!

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.

Focus

I’m working on another project for Visions Art Museum Stir Crazy Member Challenge. I like to make a How-to video to go along with the project, it’ll be out in October and I’ll share it then.

I had a slight mishap in the studio (roller cart tipped over when a caster came unscrewed). My (adult and honest) daughter was trying to move through my studio yesterday and proclaimed “This studio is a disaster!” I can’t argue with her, but I’m working on it… It could have been so much worse.

I also got new eyeglasses which are wrong, and so I’m waiting for new, new glasses. Needless to say, my focus has been all over the place!

I did find this piece of fabric while looking for another piece of fabric. I don’t remember painting it and I don’t remember where the top water and/or sky ended up either, but I liked it enough to hold on to it.

I quilted a roadrunner on it; the original drawing was by my daughter but I altered it slightly, and I’m going to quilt it a bit more.

I have an idea for a unusual finish, hopefully it works out, I’ll share it in a future post.

Resist, Free-Motion, and the Winners

I decide to put a few items for sale in my website Shop. It’s not a proper store but for now it’ll do. If interested see the drop down menu on the Shop tab and please realize that there are many items for sale on my site galleries. Let me know if you would like information about any piece. As time permits I’ll add more items, at least until I decide if I’ll be making a different shop.

I must admit I’m excited about finding ways to use the cardboard resist fabrics I recently made and want to make more. I free-motion quilted one piece and here is the video and resulting piece.

And the winners for the July fabric giveaway packets are… Karen G. wins the white, blue, red fabric pieces and Deborah F will receive the lavender and watermelon pieces. Congratulations and be sure to email your mailing info to me.

I can hardly believe July is almost over, I hope you are well and as always, thanks for stopping by.

Memory Lane Landscapes

More fun findings… While going through my studio file cabinet I discovered photos and pieces from my miniature landscape class and earlier. The photos were from long ago, before digital photos, I sure wish I had better photos some of these pieces. I’m so happy for digital now!

I can see now every little thing that I would do differently in these pieces.

I like how this piece has a little waterfall step down. You may be able to tell that I used the back side of the fabric in that area of the water. Now I would add little rocks on the drop edge and foamy, splashy water around them. The border inset was a small floral fabric with the perfect colors. I like how the border turned out.

Private collection. I can’t remember the title and wasn’t keeping good enough records at the time.

These are from my early class demonstrations showing how one simple line pattern could look very different just by the use of different fabrics. The students always proved me right and I loved seeing what they came up with.

Same pattern, different place and time of day.

I found magazines too. Those two works are the same pattern that I used in my very first miniature landscape, which was published in Miniature Quilts Magazine in 1997. Do you remember that magazine? I guess it went out of business years ago.

Distant Clearing
Had to laugh – “…all of the fabrics available…” Nothing like the fabrics made today AND now I like mixing paint for my landscapes and more!

When he wasn’t working in jets and helicopters (for 37 years), my late dad was a woodworker, an artist, and a frame maker. He always supported me in my art. I remember struggling with the shore/water line in the piece below. He watched as I tried several pieces. These days I would just paint the perfect fabric. When I finally found a fabric that worked for me, he was as excited as I was, so I gifted the quilt to him AND…

… no surprise, he framed it. I never recommend putting quilts under glass unless the glass is spaced away from the fabric. This may have had glare-free glass, I can’t remember (and can’t tell from this shot). I don’t remember him asking how it should be treated, he just framed away.

The last thing I’ll share from the file cabinet dig was a manila folder containing this cut out landscape laying on a piece of felt. The plan would have been for a very narrow seam allowances tucked under, and I would hand applique them. I’m sure I was using it to demonstrate shadow and light and line and distance. As much as I like it I would change things now… For one thing, the light wall in the center distance would have narrower and closer together lines, tilting lower on the right. That would help push the wall back farther and add better direction. I do love the contrast BUT the foreground land and water should be darker still. Paint would do it!

This was just drawn after looking a many photos.

I’m beginning to think that opening that file cabinet was like opening Pandora’s box!

Reminder: June 14 is the deadline to enter for a chance to win a piece of hand painted fabric. Thanks to those of you commented to enter.

Also, I’m working on a piece for my upcoming Photos in Fiber/mixed media Art blog post (TBD) and have some wonderful pieces, made by others, to share.

Until next time, thanks for stopping by.

A Little Furry Fun

I’ll start by letting you know that I’ll be announcing another giveaway next week. May got away from me!

Long ago I asked my daughter created cards that I would sell at our local quilt show. She helped me work the show for years when I was the registrar, and when I held other positions for that show.

We had a Blue Point Siamese kitty around that time and her name was Measha (loud “e”), she was with us for almost 18 years.

She was leash trained and very smart… as you can see. Why walk when you can ride.

She inspired some of my daughter’s cards and my some of my quilts.

Card
I made two of these quilts for my kid’s bed, Measha helped during the binding.
Card

This was a small art quilt top, hand painted with commercial fabric sash and border. I wish I had a better photo but it was ages ago and it sold. I never found out if/how it was finished. I call it Mouse on Swiss with a Siamese Chaser.

Art quilt top

We like dogs too…

Card
Very small art quilt by Ann

I hope you’ll stop by next week to see what artistic finds I’ll be giving away!

Starting Point

There’s always a starting point and in quilt making it often begins with a main fabric. When I was working on my Photograph on Fiber series, rather than start with a main fabric and grab other fabrics to coordinate with it, my starting point was an actual photograph. I would decide if I’d be echoing the photo or extending the background out from it. I’d think about fabrics and how I could paint, stitch, and maybe add applique as well.

This is an example of echoing the photo. Title: Leaf

This series is comprised of photographs that have been applied to plexiglass and mounted on spacers 3/4″ above the fabric/fiber background and through a board, then wired for hanging.

Most of the photographs were taken by son who thought I was nuts when I told him I wanted to use his actual photographs (not printed on fabric) in my fiber art. I had to make a tiny prototype for him to “get” it. And then he really got it!

This is an example of extending out from the photograph. Title: Awaiting Occupation (Private collection)

Photograph of the very textural Rex Begonia.

Photograph by C.B. Scott

The commercial fabrics in Rex Begonia are the black border, the black and white swirls background, and dotted fabric which I added paint to.

Rex Begonia
Rex Begonia detail

Many of the pieces were exhibited in a number of venues, including a solo show at VAM in 2013. I was asked over and over about the process and so decided to developed a way to make a Photograph on Fiber piece without the plexiglass; a much more doable project and one that I could teach. The photo is still above the fabric/fiber but, in this much easier process, the piece is placed in a frame, (sort of a shallow shadow box but not as deep), and the photo is mounted but doesn’t touch the glass.

This photo, taken by my cousin, was the starting point for the three (wip) pieces below. Notice that there are actually more options than only echoing and extending, all to showcase the photo.

Original photograph Rose Window
Rose Window 1 wip

Two commercial fabrics and painted cheesecloth leaves make this the easiest and quickest design. the photo is actually about 3/4″ above the red fabric. The detail below shows the finished quilting, which also held the leaves on (they are squished from being in storage).

Rose Window 1 detail

The piece below was a wip when photographed, using fabric where the frame would be. All of the fabrics are commercial, the roses and leaves have been “clever cut” (think fussy cut). Again, very easy, just more time consuming. I stitched the thorns using free motion quilting. I didn’t quilt the rose heads but looking at it now I think they need it.

Rose Window 2 wip
Rose Window 2 detail

The final piece has roses and leaves that are made from eco-felt (sheets), the cut pieces have been burned around the edges. The stems are made from a grape vine wreath (soaked, straightened, dried, and stitched on). Nothing touches the glass. It also has commercial (Stonehenge by Northcott) fabrics that I’ve quilted.

Rose Window 3

The detail photo was taken using my phone and the piece is behind glass, it’s not very good but it shows a bit of the dimension and some of the burnt edges.

Rose Window 3 detail

The Photograph on Fiber series photographs were applied to the plexi by me, using a special double sided film and a hand turn, cold roller laminator. After about nineteen pieces it got to be too stressful for me so I paid a professional company to apply the photographs, which of course, added to the cost/price. From inception to finish each piece involved many, many hours, and though I loved making them, (the plexiglass) Photograph on Fiber series had to come to an end. I’m very pleased that a few pieces are in private collections and some of the remaining pieces are for sale. Most of the pieces may be seen on my website under the Photograph on Fiber tab.

My son still send photos that make me want to keep going and making them definitely pushed me as an artist, but there is no more wall space in my home, and storing them a way seems a crime. Maybe some day I’ll teach the framed version of Photographs on Fiber class live.

Have you used your photographs in your art/memory quilts or mixed media projects? If you have and would be willing, I’d love to share some of your photographs and fiber/fabric art, here on my blog. Just send me an email with a photo/s of the piece/s and a bit about them. If you have a blog or website be sure to include it so I can link to it. Please note the photos used in your art must be yours or used with permission.

Snow Bunny

First Responders and a Winner

Visions Art Museum had a Call for Entries with the theme First Responders. This exhibit will be online only and I haven’t heard yet if my piece has been selected, I’m sharing it here.

I had many ideas but I got a late start so I went with the simplest one. It’s only about 15″ square, which was doable for me even though I’m rusty. The first image I shared on my previous post, it is fused without the vessel. If you follow me on Instagram you may already know what the surprise vessel is.

The quilt sandwiched and the vessel being auditioned in this quick shot with poor lighting.

I had the idea of using a mask for the vase/vessel long before the main design. In making the vessel I discovered that a (too) hot iron would melt the mask more than I had anticipated. Thankfully, I had it sandwiched between parchment paper. I actually like the “aged” look it gave the mask. I removed one ear strap and used the other as the bottom edge and feet. I used embroidery floss with a close blanket stitch around it for a bit more interest.

I free motion quilted/thread played, echoing the flowers and greens, and wrote “Thank you First Responders.” The writing is subtle, I didn’t want it to be the first thing the viewer noticed. I quilted green in the center of the yellow flowers later.

I make tiny double layered binding with butted corners, it’s not fast but it is still my favorite way to finish any quilt. Knowing that my hand is not 100% yet I didn’t want to try to stitch through my usual painted fabric so I used a softer, thinner fabric (white muslin, I think) and painted two pieces.

Wet binding fabrics.

Another favorite thing is to “break” the binding where the quilt design has an obvious break – in this quilt it is between the table top and the main design. I got the fabric wet and used an old vinyl shower curtain under it. I laid and smoothed the fabric out and then painted it; one to contrast with the main area piece and the other to mostly match the wood-look table top. Then I crunched the wet fabrics lengthwise to give some added interest.

I rush dried this pieces, which means I let them be for a short time and then heat set before rinsing them out with water to remove any paint, then squeezed as much moisture out and ironed them completely dry. They really lightened up.

Dry and ready to be made into binding.

The vessel was stitched on after the binding was finished.

I always add side binding first then leave a one inch hang over on the top and bottom binding edges, which gets trimmed down. The already cut fabric pieces I painted were almost too short, so in this photo I was just checking by laying them in place… Machine stitched the side bindings first. I love those clips, they hold the binding for the hand stitching with no more pin stabs!

I’m please with the finished piece which I’ve titled – Mask for Them. The exhibit should be online beginning May 3, 2021, with or without my piece I’m sure it will be a great exhibit. VAM has wonderful online shows, events, and activities.

Thanks to those of you who entered for a chance to win the Painted Tree fabric… Congratulations to Karen G, you are the winner! Please email your mailing information.

I hope you’ll stop by again for more fiber/mixed media art and a May giveaway.