Sunday, November 30, 2014

Art Quilts Around the World: Flight of Fancy

This quilt was made for my Facebook group Art Quilts Around The Qorld. This two month challenge was called "Flight of Fancy" and I was inspired by the various birds that flock to the birdfeeder outside of my sewing studio window. I particularly love cardinals because of their color and striking color contrast to the winter snow.
I couldn't resist making this a portrait quilt as well as fitting this challenge into another challenge I needed to have completed by December 8, 2014. That challenge was an embellishment challenge for my local quilt guild Northwoods Quilters. This challenge required a button, which was given to all participants, a fabric yo-yo and any other embellishment we wanted to use. I am not a yo-yo type of person but it was a challenge so I went for it!!
I chose to keep the portrait part of the project in a monochromatic blue to represent the cold weather and blue is a color that recedes into the background. The red cardinal then becomes the focal point because red is a stand out color.
The yo-yo was created from a piece of awesome hand dyed velvet which indirectly became the girl's hat "flower" with a button for the flower center. The button I was assigned was a unfinished wood button which I painted light blue and glittered which became the girl's coat button, No other embellishments were added to the girl except the white fabric paint reflection in her eye.

The cardinal was raw edged fused appliqued and it still needed some zing so I cut six feathers from a red batik and double fused them together to make three feathers. I stitched down the center and cut ruffly feathers with my shears. I then machine stitched them to the cardinal along the same stitching line with the same thread color. After the feathers were stitched down I fluffed them up to get them more of a 3D appearance.
The cardinal got a bit of red glitter nail polish on it's body and white fabric paint for the eye. Any more embellishments seemed unnecessary.
The local embellishment challenge will be on display with the other guild member's quilts in January 2015 at Spies Public Library in Menominee, MI. I can't wait to see the results as well as the online results from the original challenge at Today is the day for the reveal.
I feel it is a nice representation of a fancy bird NOT in flight!!

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Scarlet: Portrait Quilt with a 12 Month Block Exchange

This quilt started as a 12 month block exchange in 2013 at Pine Street Quilts where I work. The fabric was a line of fabric that was digitally printed and I liked the color combination of red orange and turquoise. The line hasn't been a big seller at the shop but I liked it. I sat on it almost a year then decided to add a portrait quilt to the center with the blocks around the outside. I love star blocks and was somewhat disappointed by the blocks I received from the ladies in the block exchange. I ended up with doubles of the same block twice-there are a gadzillion of blocks and I got the same ones! So I pouted a few months then decided to actually make a quilt with the blocks. I used a great batik that tied the colors together as well as added depth to the quilt. By adding the small sashing between the blocks this made the center 25" square.

 I used a few of the fabrics in the block exchange and a whole lot of batiks! There are four hair fabrics, two dress fabrics and the cool background fabric. I stitched the hair with a contrasting color which is not my norm. I wanted to have an outline effect. I purchased an attachment to create circles while in Chicago at the IQF14-Chicago show in June and used this for the turquoise background. Subtle but it did a better job than if I had marked it and just stitched it. The attachment was a bit pricey but I feel it was worth it. I have a Viking Sapphire sewing machine.
I embellished the hair with some orange wool that I couched to the front bangs. Then I had this great orange/pink/green cording which I also couched to the hair. Then some orange glitter nail polish.
The eyelids received some blue glitter nail polish and the mouth and eyes had some fabric paint to enhance the look.
The background has a few turquoise rhinestones and the inner corners of the sashing got some peach colored felt flowers with orange rhinestones in the intersections.
That left the earring. I tried shopping for a ready made earring in the right color and size which didn't happen. I ended up finding three separate things (small sequin, bead and large sequins) to make my own earring which I hand stitched to the ear area.
I named this quilt Scarlet because her hair is scarlet color and I like color names. she looks like Jessica Rabbit the cartoon vixen!!