Art with Fabric Blog Hop–Landscape with Birds

I have always loved the artist, Paul Klee, so when Alida invited me to join the Art with Fabric Blog Hop, I jumped at the chance.  Alida asked us to choose ‘a’ work of art to inspire our textile creations.  I couldn’t choose just one!!

Instead, I chose two pieces by Paul Klee:

The first is titled, “Landscape with Yellow Birds,” and the second is “Fire in the Evening Sky.”(Museum of Modern Art, New York).  Of course, one can’t have two without three so I found a poem on Jill Berry Design‘s blog which really spoke to me about hope.

LANDSCAPE WITH YELLOW BIRDS
Shuntaro Tanikawa (1931-    )

there are birds
so there is sky
there is sky
so there are balloons
there are balloons
so children are running
children are running
so there is laughter
there is laughter
so there is sadness
so there is prayer
and ground for kneeling
there is ground
so water is flowing
and there’s today and tomorrow
there is a yellow bird
so with all colors forms and movements
there is the world

Paul Klee’s ‘Fire in the Evening Sky’  inspired me to construct my landscape with horizontal lines.  Our beautiful sunsets over the Mississippi river this summer gave me a color scheme.  My birds are drawn from the ‘Birds in Air” block:

birds-in-air

I inserted triangle birds into my landscape–red, for the cardinals which visit my yard, and a yellow bird to add color and hope.

 

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I chose a quilting design which also used horizontal lines and triangles.  In addition, I drew yellow and red birds with big stitch hand quilting.  Finally, I added some random big stitch quilting lines to add spark and interest.

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I used pearl cotton thread and a chenille needle to do my ‘big stitches’.  I also used a thimble–which, in my opinion, is necessary when doing any type of hand quilting.

Please visit the other bloggers up today:

Bea @ beaquilter (http://www.beaquilter.com/)

Heather @ heatherquilts (http://www.heatherquilts.blogspot.com/)

On the longarm today…Swoon

I feel like I should be putting one hand on my forehead and one on my heart as I sink gracefully onto a fainting couch.  But, no, it isn’t that kind of a swoon, the quilt on my longarm today is made using the pattern, Swoon, by Camille Roskelley.  It is a wonderful pattern which is well written and easy to make.  There are many ways to quilt a Swoon quilt top and for, me, that is one of the challenges–because I want to try them all!!  For this quilt, I chose a block pattern from One Song Needle Arts which would lay nicely in the block, emphasizing the different segments of the block, and yet be a cohesive design.  I always try to add ways which cause a viewer to look at a quilt and find interest from across the room, from closer, and then from closer still.  One way to do that is to lay a quilting design on top of the quilt so that it doesn’t follow the piecing exactly, but it emphasizes it.

As I design a quilt layout, I look for designs which repeat motifs found in the fabric, in the piecing and/or in the applique.  For the Swoon quilt I noticed that several fabrics had circles, and that several had flowers.  I chose to combine several different flowers by Anita Shackelford for the sashing.

I was very pleased with the way that the quilting turned out.

Now is a great time to get started on Christmas gift piecing.  I can guarantee that any quilt sent to me for quilting in August will be quilted before Christmas (custom or edge to edge).

Have a great quilting adventure!!

lovelliquilts.wordpress.com

Matching Fabrics to Create an Invisible Seam Tutorial

Can you find the seam in the picture above the headline?  I made this quilt, top and back. for a client who wanted a fun quilted bed topper for the holidays.  When I saw the fabric she chose I thought that it would look jarring to have a seam down the center with mismatched dots and deer.  However, the method I use to match seams, i.e. lots of pins, would not work with this many dots or the tiny deer.  Can you imagine two pins per dot?  Ouch!!  I brought out my trusty glue stick instead.  I was in a rush so I used the glue stick which I had on hand, an off brand.  I have since found that Elmer’s Washable School Glue works better, and washes out easily (it is a starch product).  I do not have a relationship with Elmer, I love their product, and it is a great time of year to stock up with back-to-school sales.

Step one:  Gather tools.   I use washable glue, stick or liquid, pins, seam gauge, iron.

IMG_0587Matching Fabrics

Step two:  Press a seam line.  I used a seam gauge to ensure that the seam would be straight.  (I removed the selvage from the seam allowance after sewing).

Step three:  Place the fabric which has not been pressed right side up on your ironing board then place the pressed fabric right side up on top.  Move the pressed fabric so that the print motifs on the fold match the motifs on the unpressed fabric. I pinned the fabric using pins straight up and down into my ironing board to secure the fabric while I glued it in place.  I found that the glue stick was more likely to distort the fabric than a liquid glue.  Heat set the glue with a hot iron.IMG_0588Matching FabricsIMG_0590Matching Fabrics

Step four:  Once the seam is glued and heat set I am ready to sew.  I unfold the fabric so that the right sides are together and sew along the fold where my iron created a crease.

IMG_0592Matching Fabrics

Correct lighting is essential–with some fabrics I might have to adjust the light falling on my sewing area so that I can see the crease, I experiment until I can see.

Here are the finished seams, selvages removed and pressed, the red arrows point to the seams:

IMG_0597Matching Fabrics IMG_0591

No deer were beheaded in the making of the quilt!!

Lovelli Signature

Modern T-shirt Quilt

Hello,  do you remember me?  I know I’ve been gone for awhile, but I am back now.  I plan on getting caught up with lots of ideas and enthusiasm for quilts and sewing!  My camera is full of the projects which I plan on blogging about and I just need to sit down and write.  School will be starting soon here in the United States and the weather will be getting colder.  My youngest will be starting his senior year in high school (where did all the time go?).  It is time to plan his ‘graduation’ t-shirt quilt.  I have been faithfully collecting the out-grown t-shirts in a box under my longarm.  Over the next few months I will walk you thru my T-shirt quilt creation process.

Step one:  Collect T-shirts.  When my niece was a senior, several years ago, I offered to make a quilt for her.  Her mom and grandmother gave me a series of t-shirts from her high school theater productions (they brought over a stack of neatly laundered and ironed t-shirts!).  Collecting t-shirts around a theme helps to make the quilt more cohesive.  Themes can be narrow, e.g. marathons, baseball, theater, band, scouts, etc., or they can be broad, e.g. school activities, family vacations, etc.  Sometimes I just collect them around a color, or I just empty the collecting bin.

IMG_0631Jessica Quilt

Step two:  Cut, fuse, and trim the t-shirts.  First, I cut the front of the t-shirt away from the back and roughly trim it so that there is at least an inch or two away from the design.  At this point I can tell if all of the t-shirts will trim down to the same size (rare) or multiple sizes (the norm).  Then I fuse the t-shirts onto French fuse (tricot fusible) or a light weight fusible interfacing.  If I use the tricot fusible I make sure that stretchiest direction of the fusible is fused to the least stretchy direction of the t-shirt. Thus, making the t-shirt less stretchy in all directions.  Lastly, I trim the t-shirts to their finished size plus 1/2 in (seam allowance).

Step three:  Edit.  I decide which t-shirts will appear on the front of the quilt, and if I have too many, which will appear on the back of the quilt.  At this point, I interview the recipient–which t-shirts are the most important? what designs do they like:  traditional, modern, regular, irregular; what colors do they like? etc.  I like to place their name on the front of the quilt in some way, either with a t-shirt, appliqued or embroidered.

IMG_0630Jessica Quilt

Step four:  Design.  My niece wanted a ‘modern’ quilt with grays/blacks as the background.  I used google to search ‘modern design’ and found images of modern designs.  I thought that this type of design would be perfect for my niece.  I designed each block in EQ7 and then arranged them in a quilt.  I made sure that the quilt was going to be the right size for her college dormitory (extra long twin)

T shirt for Jessica

Step five:  Piece the quilt top and the back.  Using my EQ7 design, I cut background fabric and pieced together the blocks of the quilt.  The back of the quilt is a good place to put leftover blocks and fabric.

IMG_0624Jessica Quilt

Step six:  Quilt as desired.  I always keep in mind that these quilts are loved and laundered frequently.  I like to quilt them at least every inch and use good thread so that they will stand up to all of the love–these are probably not the quilts to use heirloom custom quilting on.  My oldest son’s t-shirt quilt, which was tied, not quilted made it through 4 years of college…barely.

Step seven:  Bind.  Make sure that your binding is sturdy and sewn on well because it is the part of the quilt which gets the most use.

Step eight:  Label.  Unfortunately, my photo does not show my writing on the label, but it is there–my name, the date made, place made and why I made the quilt.

IMG_0626Jessica Quilt

Step nine:  Give it to the happy recipient.

IMG_0623Jessica Quilt

I look forward to working on my son’s t-shirt quilt with you.  Do you have a bin of t-shirts ready for a quilt?

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Quilt Design a Day–Getting back in the groove

My designs slowed down in September and October.  I wasn’t able to design every day, but I am getting back in the swing in November.  With these 30 designs I have earned my “150 day badge” with Quilt Design a Day.

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Experiencing ‘quilter’s block’ is no fun!  I think that most of the block was due to an increase in family obligations, septic issues (yuk) and the inspiration pictures we were using on Qdad were getting stale (I lost count of the photos of the same geode, lol).  Our Qdad leader, Anne Sullivan, switched us over to member contributed photos.  Every day I am excited about the design inspiration and the palettes which go along with them.  My turn to post photos will come right after Christmas.  I am exited about some new projects in the months to come and, hopefully, some blog hops with the irrepressible Madame Samm.  Please stay with me on my journey.