Color (Purple) challenge quilt completed

imageI finished the color challenge quilt for our quilt guild.  In a previous post I talked about the challenge and how I made the 3-d flowers for the quilt.  For the challenge, we had to pick our favorite color and use 9 charm squares from Pepper Cory’s Brushstrokes fabric charm pack.  imageOne of my favorite colors is purple so I made purple flowers and used a purple fabric for the binding.  For the background, I made a collage of cream colored fabric and then stitched the fabric shapes to the batting and backing by using decorative machine stitches.  I used about 38 different stitches for the background.  It was fun playing with the decorative stitches. I used free motion quilting of a flower design to quilt the background before adding the trellis, vines and flowers to the quilt.

I had planned to place flowers on a vine over the background but it needed a structure for the vines instead to the vines just free floating on the background.  imageSo I designed a trellis using black fabric that the vines and flowers could be placed on. I used a blanket stitch to attach the trellis to the background. For the vines, imageI couched green yarn using a zig zag stitch and matching thread.  The picture to the left shows an earlier design with large flowers at the bottom of the quilt which I later removed from the design. Most of the flowers are purple but I added some orange and white flowers for accent and pops of color.  I used free motion quilting to attach the flowers to the vines.   I had a lot of fun making this quilt and trying out different ideas and designs before completing the project. The finished size is about 40″ x 18″.  Keep having fun sewing and quilting.  Donnaimage

Acrylic Painting class #2 – painting

imageWeek #2: This week I transferred my buoys photo to newsprint using a grid system.  I placed my photo in a plastic sleeve that had one inch grid lines.  Then I placed a newsprint grid (with the same number of grid squares as the smaller photo grid) under the blank newsprint (16″ x 20″).  Using a pencil I sketched out the buoys onto the newsprint.  Using a 6b pencil, I traced the same design on the back side of my newsprint (I taped the newsprint to a window so I could see the design to trace it.).  Usually the next step would be to put the design on the canvas.  But since I had some sky in the background of the my photo, the instructor thought it would be better to paint the background first and then place the pencil design over the painted sky.     imageIt took some time to mix the paint to get the right shades of blue for the sky background.  My instructor let me use one of her wide brushes which helped to paint the background.  At home I added the pencil line design to the blue sky canvas.  I didn’t take a picture since it is hard to see the pencil lines on the sky blue background.  So now I am ready for my next class.  Keep having fun sewing and quilting.  Donna

Acrylic Painting Class – week #1

dscn5876(This is the original photo that inspired my project using buoys.)           I decided to take an acrylic painting class for beginners at the local art center in my town.  I am hoping the class helps me to learn more about shading, mixing colors (tints and shades), and light source in an art piece.  I want to make my quilts look more realistic by adding shading and light using fabric to a quilted piece.  I also want to learn more about painting fabric – how to use different brushes and diluting the paint to get different effects.  My art instructor is very nice and encouraging – she is a retired middle school/ high school art teacher.  I started the class last week. Week#1: we learned about art elements, design, and color (tints, shades, and color wheel).  Then the instructor looked at the photos that we brought to the class to decide if the photos would work for our first painting.  I am using the picture of buoys from a trip to Cape Cod.  I tried using this photo for a thread painting class in New Mexico a few years ago.  But that instructor had the class use canvas as the base instead of batting so the quilt did not lay flat.   imageHere is my second try of making the buoys using fabric – I haven’t thread painted this quilt yet.  I really like my photo of the buoys.

Mary  used photoshop to eliminate some of the distracting things in the background of the photo. image So I am starting on another “Buoys” project and hope to be successful.  The art instructor discussed how to transfer our photos to newsprint that was the size of our canvas (16″ x 20″) using a grid method.  Week #2 will be the transfer of our drawings to the canvas and then we start to paint. Looking forward to painting next week. Keep having fun sewing and painting.  Donna

Quilted Binding Kit

image     I was looking for gift ideas on pinterest.  I have to watch my time on pinterest because I can spend lots of time looking and lose track of time.  But I did find this binding kit tutorial which would make a great gift for a quilting or sewing friend.  I used scraps from my box of sewing novelty fabric and was able to find enough coordinating fabrics.   imageThis bag was easy to make in an afternoon.  There was even a video on sewing the zipper – super easy method.  I did make a few changes to the pattern to save time and to use some of rolls of ribbon that I have.   I used ribbon for the thread holder and ribbon to tie the bag closed.   I see more binding bags in my future – super cute gift.  Have fun sewing and quilting. Donna

Folded Holiday Wreath

image            It’s September and time to get going on the holiday projects.  This wreath pattern is constructed like the Leaf topper pattern except you use squares rather than leaf shapes.  It is important to pick out fabrics with enough contrast so that you see the design. image The wreath can be hung on a door or used for a centerpiece.  A walking foot was helpful to sew through all the layers to make the wreath shape.  Hope you have started working on your holiday gifts.  I have a few gifts made but I definitely need to get going on my projects.  Have fun sewing and quilting.  Donna

More progress on my color wheel circle quilt

imageI finished another 7 squares for my color wheel circle quilt.  Now I have about 26 squares so I am going to decide on a layout so I can start assembling the quilt.  I played with free motion quilting using thread scraps for the center of a flower.  I used my free motion couching foot to add yarn to a square. imageI used the color wheel to help decide what colors to add to the circle in a square blocks.  I “fuzzy cut” some fish shapes and added yarn for one square.  I also played with lettering in one of the blocks – “Make Art”.   This project has been lots of fun to experiment with new techniques on small blocks. imageimage I felt like I was making little square postcards since I treated each square as a mini-quilt.  Next I have to figure out a layout for the blocks and add some more embellishments. I have a few ideas.  Keep having fun sewing and quilting.  Donna

Pretty Little Planet – Sew Beachy

At the 2016 Mid-Atlantic quilt show, Donna and I both took a class from Laura Wasilowski called Pretty Little Planets.     Donna’s piece has already been posted and you can find it here.

We all used Laura’s beautiful hand dyed fabric and we “free cut” our little masterpieces.   Every one is the class was entirely different.   Since we live at the coast, I decided to do a beachy themed one that I’ve now titled “Sew Beachy”.  The techniques used were fusible machine appliqué with hand stitched embellishments and free motion quilting.  Decorative rotary cutters and pinking sheers we also used.

Small Planet

“Sew Beachy”

If you ever get a change to take one of Laura’s classes…… DO!   She is a great teacher and she had us laughing most of the time.  What a blast!   Oh…  and I am now an official graduate of the Chicago School of Fusing!

Happy Stitch’,


Ps… another UFO off my list!   I’m rocking and rolling now.