Portfolio of older work

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Rehash Dinner in Shanghai

Okay here is my February Concept for Interpret This!  For more detail about the quilt please check it out over at Interpret This!  Overall I am quite pleased with it but would love to hear your evaluation of what worked for you and what did not.  Like someone was blogging about recently--it is not "intuition" but a lifetime of learning that makes us good artists.

Just like last time, feel free to make good or bad comments on any part.  Here are some of my thoughts to get you started.

1.  My husband does not care for the bead work on the gold spirals in the background. What do you think? (I promise not to take offense if you side with him or gloat to him if you side with me. Well, maybe only gloat a little.)

2.  This is the first quilt that I have ever put on stretcher bars.  Does it work?  What other type of finishing would you suggest?

3.  I really like quilting like Kay had on her January Concept piece but I worry that a lot of quilting in the background will draw attention away from the fore ground.  Is there enough quilting on this piece?  Any suggestions about how I could have beefed up the quilting and still made it secondary to the overall design?

4.  I know that I tend to have a fairly spare touch with embellishment and have tried to push it a bit more here.  What do you think?  Any visions of additional embellishments come to you as you look at my piece?

5.  Any overall comments on the strength or weakness of the design?


  1. Judith, I think the overall design of this is excellent. Beautiful color and composition. The stretcher bars seem to have worked fine--they do make something look less quilt-like and more like non-fiber art. A faced finish instead of binding gives a less quilty look too and is easy to do. The beads in the swirls seem fine to me :) They aren't really very prominent, at least in the picture, just adding some richness. Quilting: I don't know. The quilting you have doesn't really show. Maybe circular lines echoing the plate would have worked. Quilting designs are a tough call for me too, so I don't have much to suggest. As far as embellishment goes, there could have been more "food" on the plate. That's the only change I can see. Good job on this.

  2. Hi Judith,

    I really liked your interpretation piece this month. I thought the composition was particularly striking with the elements placed well. I also thought the color scheme was inviting and well done.

    The size of the plate in proportion to the food seems a bit out of sync. I might suggest more noodles and maybe something leafy to fill out the circle a bit more.

    My other comment is about the workmanship--it's difficult to see from a picture--but the spot where the gimp braid and the applique of the plate's edge meet doesn't appear to be very smooth. I might have chosen a flat gold braid (or a strip of lame fused down) so that the connection between the two isn't so abrupt. Having the gimp stand up and then having to "do" something with the raw edge at the plate is always tricky. Unless you do it perfectly, it just doesn't look neat. Appliquing circles is tough too; so you are combining two difficult techniques right at the viewer's eye level. I guess I might have left the bottom gimp since it doesn't intersect with the plate and had the top line something flat so the plate looks like it is sitting on the trim instead of the trim up high. Does this make any sense?

    I don't think this piece needs any more quilting and I definitely like the beads. The stretching is fine too.
    A very nice piece overall!

  3. I like the composition and colors too, and think the stretcher bars are interesting--in a good way. I especially like the minimalist feel about it and don't think it needs "more." On the quilting, I think outline-quilting the edges of the spirals and continuing the design through the plate, as if it was not there, would be one way to go. I think the beads are fine, but probably not necessary. Overall, I think it is a successful piece.

  4. Your composition is good. I see the color and expanse of your wall beyond its borders as part of it. Consequently, your choice of mounting it on stretcher bars for a clean finish works. Getting the corners tucked and folded to the back can be tricky. I've found that judicious trimming plus using a flat metal edge to hold the folds in place while "upholstering" helps to eliminate bulk. I'll post some photos on the "Interpret This" flicker site.

    As for the beads, I suspect the piece would still be good without them. Although, they carry through a repeat of the embellishments on your wonderful "plate ornaments".

    Your choice for minimum quilting works on this piece. A quilted pattern would've changed the textures and focal points significantly. Plus, it's evenly distributed ... another prime consideration.

    Debra's point about the gold trim at the edge of plate is major. My eye keeps coming back to focus on that one imperfection. Also, there are ways to finish edges other than the satin stitch which has a tendency to stretch a line because it's stiff and solid. Couching a trim would've given a smoother finish to the plate edge. If it were mine, I would be tempted to couch a fine gold or a shiny white thick thread to the outside edge of the satin-stitching around the plate. This would also cover the "fix" of the where gold lines on the table meet the plate.

    I would love to see this piece hanging on your walls. To see the richness and textures with my own eyes.

  5. I just thought of one more comment about quilting designs. If you use fine thread in a matching color, the quilting is less prominent and doesn't compete with the foreground as much. Diane Gaudynski uses fine silk thread for her machine quilting sometimes, and I guess it would work for hand quilting too. You probably know this, but it just occurred to me as something no one had mentioned.


Thanks for reading and please share your thoughts on my work or a link to see your great stuff!