I love the fact that some very brave fabric artists threw caution to the wind and took quilting to a new level. There are so many ways available now for us to use fabric and to even make it more custom; even dye your own fabric.
While I love to gaze over quilts that are made the traditional way, the perfection it takes to put one together makes me grit my teeth and grasp for air. I respect the work that goes into a complicated pattern with perfect stitching but for me, I don’t feel that bubble of excitement that I get from tossing around ideas and then using the information from the tutorials and books to make it happen.
I just read a book that Alisa Burke wrote and watched her DVD called Sew Wild. I am sure her ways aren’t for everyone but for me it’s very freeing. I can’t wait to try out some of her ideas, maybe even try my hand at fabric painting.
I think it’s fabric artists like Alisa that have helped bring the quilting world into the frontline of art and helped put some sizzle into the craft and through the internet we can see both kinds of quilts; traditional and rule breaking quilts. Thirty years ago our quilts sat on shelves or hopefully were used by friends and family but now they are display for the world to see and enjoy.
The quilting industry has grown in response to fabric artists involvement. New fabrics, threads, sewing machines, books, magazines, classes and ways to market these items have blossomed and brought employment to people who are earning money in a craft they love.
I am so glad there is room for all types of quilters. It’s brought me hours of enjoyment; I have learned how to play with fabrics and look forward to going into my dining room studio every day.
I have been anxious to try out some techniques I learned on Interweave and Craftsy.com So here I go. I started out by choosing and cutting out layers of perfused fabric.
Fusing to wool felt.
Quilted background. Fusing fish and pond plants.
Tomorrow applique stitching and hopefully embellishments. I can see I need work on my camera skills.
Just a touch of yellow.
Have you ever really thought about why you like that cute little yellow house on the corner or the one yellow plant in your garden that catches your eye every day?
I think it’s because it makes you happy. My mom did her whole bedroom in yellow. Overdone, I thought. Yellow wallpaper, yellow bedspread and she even had orange and yellow shag carpeting throughout the entire house. Crazy! But, she loved it and I am starting to see why.
I have noticed that when I add just a touch of yellow, it makes the quilt come alive and draws your eye in.
The sun gives us light and warmth and life. The same applies as we create a quilt. Of course not all quilts would look good with splashes of yellow but a highlight of some sort will set a quilt apart from the rest. It could be the color red or orange or a special pattern that accentuates the color contrasts.
Okay, I admit, I am a little color crazy. Probably over the top but it cheers me up. Blame it on my mother. She was unique, colorful and would wear just about any color or style. She had eyeglasses that flared up at the corner, with rhinestones. I miss my crazy mom. She had Alzheimer’s the 20 years of her life but everybody still loved her. She looked for the good in people and people saw the good in her. I hope I am just like her.
My mom is 2nd in from right.
As I was searching for tutorials on bindings, I ran across a few websites that did not want their information copied in any form and it caused me to look at the copy write laws in regards to exactly how it applies to the art craft industry.
The U.S. copyright code rules can be located at: http://www.copyright.gov/title17
If you buy a pattern, make the project from the pattern and then sell it, you probably are infringing on copywriting laws. You can copy projects for your own use or to give as gifts but you cannot sell them. They need to be your own work, coming entirely from your own inspiration.
So get ideas from patterns but don’t copy unless you have permission from the owner or it is a copy write free or it’s public domain. Patterns issued before 1923 are generally considered public domain.
Most artists don’t have a problem with coming up with their own ideas and inspiration; that’s what make this craft so enjoyable. Coming up with new ideas. The best part of a project is when that spark lights and you start jotting down that inspired thought. As beginners, we need to glean through the tutorials and projects to get the structural “how to make it” ideas and then learn to combine those thoughts into your own creation.
Where do you get your best inspiration from?
No, this is not an episode from Star Trek. I am actually going to do some work on my wonky quilt that I started several months ago.
I purchased a Janome DC2010 and can’t wait to trying out the “needle down” feature. My other machine does not have this wonderful option so I am hoping this will make stitching in the ditch on this wonky quilt a lot easier. I am thinking about using some of the embroidery stitches to enhance the flowers.
I am going to bind it in some kind of bright fabric; can’t decide on which color. Anybody have any ideas? Turquoise, hot pink, chartreuse? Toss them my way if you do.
As I am researching websites to learn the Art of Quilt Making, I find a website I love and then forget what it was called or why I liked it so much. I hope to expand this list and use it to help me find that special tutorial or cute little store that I use for special items. Hope it helps other beginners like me get started on their quilting journey also.
For FREE tutorials that teach you how to quilt, plus wonderful fabrics and daily deals; https://www.missouriquiltco.com/
To SELL your handmade items: http://www.etsy.com/
For Beginner Quilters FREE tutorials: http://www.qnntv.com/videoscategory/quilty/
Mother and Daughter quilting team with great help for beginner Art Quilters: fonsandporter.com/
For Quilting, Art Quilting and other Craft classes (cost run from $19 to $39) These classes are lengthy videos that you can back to anytime to see. You can ask questions and the instructors post answers. You are also able to take notes at crucial points and revisit them any time. craftsy.com/
Free tutorial for Confetti technique by Gail Hunt: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8X67xrvKOek&noredirect=1
500 Art Quilts published by Lark Crafts: Excellent book for inspiration. Beautiful photos of 500 quilts
Fabric Art workshop by Susan Stein: Many art quilting techniques and materials to explore.
The Complete Photo Guide to Art Quilting by Stein: Detailed instructions for all types of art quilting.
Painting with Fabric by Jeanine Malaney: This is the technique that I use. Great photos and good instructions for this technique.
This is the older version 5/24/13.
Next, I will be glue basting the appliques and then machine quilting the background.
This is the updated version 6/2/13.
I painted in waves with acrylic paint and attached the leaves with a zigzag stitch.
I need to decide on the free motion technique that I will use. My confidence is flying right out the window in this area but since I am trying to not take my art so seriously, I will consider this a practice piece and forge ahead.
TIPS FROM ME;
To enlarge small art quilts; use borders and extend stitching or applique onto border.
For small art quilts: Instead of making a sleeve, I use D Rings. Hand stitch the D ring’s straight edge to the backing at top left and right and use the curved edge of the D ring to slide onto nail. I found a pack of 50 for $12.95 from Country Brook Design Inc. on Amazon.com.
TIPS from www.aliceinstitches.com
Washing Fabric: Fold long lengths of fabric into arm-length sections and safety pin along the top before pre washing to eliminate tangling in washing machine.
When arranging fabrics by value, squint to see if a fabric jumps out at you. It’s easier to spot a piece that is out of place.
To display your work in progress for getting a better perspective; cover your design wall with felt, flannel or pellon fleece.
Chain piecing: Use a scrap of fabric as a starter when chain piecing.
Pin Basting your quilt layers together: Use #2 safety pins. Start from the center of your project and work out any wrinkles that form along the way.
Use clean pizza box lids for storing blocks or cut pieces of fabric. (I use cardboard for separating my fused pieces. J)
Run your needle and thread through a fresh dryer sheet to eliminate tangling in your thread. (I have also heard that dryer sheets are good for getting fusing material off your iron) J
Put batting in dryer for 15 to 20 minutes before layering it with your quilt. It takes out wrinkles and will be easier to use.
Misty Fuse is an ultra thin fusible product that is easy to quilt through and won’t add bulk.
This gorgeous art quilt is a wonderful example of good color choices, balance and quilting in just the right places. Check out her website for more great examples of quilting. Check out her tutorials at bekahdu handmade wordpress.