Portfolio of older work

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

A peek at Roots and some Dyed Work

Here is a picture of Roots, my April Reveal for Interpret This!  For more pictures and information about the art quilt, please checkout the blog over there. The one thing I will tell you here is that I am mega impressed with myself.  Okay, the quilt is not perfect and I can find lots of faults in it but I am so excited that it used to be just a plain piece of white fabric.  I designed it.  I dyed it.  I carved a lino stamp.  I printed it. I embroidered.  I quilted.  I thread painted.  I whatever.  It used to be a plain piece of white cloth and now it is an art quilt.  And I did it all myself.   Isn't that just way too cool?

Anyway, on to the reason I started writing this post.  I have been doing some other printing and dyeing the last few weeks.  Here are a couple of the pieces I like the most. ( Like, do you really want to see my failures??)

This piece is a late spring snow dye.  A couple of weeks ago on a Saturday morning it was supposed to rain.  Well, it snowed instead.  Big, huge, wet flakes.  The ground was too warm for them to stick but our cars ended up with about an 1.5 inches on them. " Ah HAH!"  I said, my last chance of the season to snow dye.  I quickly got my wicker laundry basket, put a piece of white fabric in the bottom, covered it with snow, and ran to get my dyes.  Then it occurred to me that I really should have wet the fabric with a soda solution or all the dye in the world would not help.  Hmm... what to do.  Not enough snow to dump and start over.   I mixed a little soda water with a little dye, squirted it all on the snow, and hoped for the best.  I think it turned out pretty well!

This piece stared out as a jar dye project but I did not add enough dye. Way too much white.  So then I folded it and placed some triangle resist shapes on it and overdyed it.  Better but nothing special.  After printing my Roots lino for my Interpret This challenge, I used the leftover dye to print a wooden trivet I had bought for 50 cents.  Ahh...  now I think the fabric is starting to show some promise.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Down the Rabbit Hole finished

I am slow but I finally got my two Down the Rabbit Hole with Bea challenge pieces finished.  I think they were worth finishing!  The last clue was for us to turn, our altered, embellished, cut apart and put back together pieces of 7x9 inch fabric into a 3-D vessel of some kind.

Here is the a picture of the first  altered, embelllished, and reorganized fabric before shaping.

Here are two pictures of the finished vessel.  It is too delicate to really hold much of anything so I can't figure out a use for it but then, art doesn't have to be functional, does it?  Sometimes looking pretty is enough. 

I do think I might try this 5 step blind process again using more of my hand dyed fabric.  I think it is lovely way to show it off!

My second piece of fabric turned into a Kleenex holder. That is functional but I think I like my pretty vessel best.

Monday, April 19, 2010

My books!

Did I tell you that my friend, Barb, asked for some of my hand dyed fabric for the cover of her hardbound book?  Here is a picture of the finished book.

There is a funny story about the book.  When Barbra was sewing and gluing the signatures together she needed some end papers and just grabbed a couple of teal papers out of her stash.  She didn't think deeply about the choice.  The same weekend she was doing that, I happened to be in Portland so, naturally, I stopped by Artists and Craftmen to see what was on sale.  Lo and behold, they had my dyes for sale!  I bought several new colors including teal.  When I got home, I tried the new dyes in a new jar dyeing technique I had wanted to try.  Well, without any planning the teals match perfectly.  We couldn't have done it intentionally! 

Barbra was making the book for her art class.  The teacher commented that after seeing "all this purple excitement" on the outside, to open it up and see the secondary color on the inside was "pretty wonderful" which is high praise.

Barbra is paying me for my fabric by making me a little book.  Here are some pictures of her little books that are currently in an juried art show.  First two pics of the books opened up and then one book closed.  I put a quarter beside it so you could judge the scale.  They are little books!

Upcoming art shows for me

My "Dinner in Shanghai" will be hanging in the Central Maine Artist Gallery during the month of July.  I am kinda excited about that.  My Art Quilt Guild is putting on a show and "Dinner in Shanghai" will be one of about 30 textile pieces that will be hung.  The art gallery owner is quite excited about the show.  He says it is the first textile art he has presented.

Pictures of Happy Village and Washed are both in my last post.
I also have permission to make some postcards for sale in the gallery. The Happy Village I made at the Art Quilt Guild meeting will be part of that offering. Also the second one I made at my Friendly Ties Guild meeting.  Perhaps some of my snow dyed or jar dyed fabric will end up as postcards too.  I need to buy some cellophane sleeves for the postcards before I sell them.  This will count as my very first attempt at selling my art.

"Washed" will be hanging in the Maine State Quilt show the 4th weekend in July.  It needs to have a perimeter of 100" which is larger than I originally planned for the piece.  I was happy making a small piece but now it will grow to 30" by 25" to fit the size requirements.  Question--how many washers can be sewn onto a piece of fabric before it rips from the weight?  LOL  I do plan to make washers of other materials for the piece.  Over the weekend I tried to make some from a lovely foil wrapping off a spiral sliced ham.  Unfortunately the foil melted when I tried to fuse it.  I haven't given up.  I think the next technique will be to try the glue for foiling techniques.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Art Quilt Guild Projects

I attended my first meeting of the local Art Quilt Guild on Saturday.  What a great bunch of ladies!  Since I can't show you the piece I am working on for my April Reveal on Interpret This!  I thought I would show you a couple of things I am working on for the Art Quilt group. 
This is my Happy Village.  Sally taught us how to make them.  It is 4 1/2 by 6 1/2 inches.  Mine is not finished yet--it needs a few more roofs and windows, a netting laid over the top, then quilting around all the raw edges.  I think I will make mine into a post card.  I am not in love with this attempt.  I think I put too many buildings in and didn't leave enough room for the roofs, windows, trees, etc.  I do like it enough to try a second attempt. Anyone interested in a tutorial on how to make a Happy Village?

The guild challenge is to create an art quilt using something from the hardware store.  I am using multiple-size washers.  I am embroidering them in pastel varigated thread.  The color does not show very well but it is subtle.  When finished it will hang in the Maine State Quilt Show in July.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Down the Rabbit Hole with Bea Clue 3

Our assignment from Bea was to cut apart our stitched (week 2) altered (week 1) cloth into at least 6 pieces and then to sew them back together in a shape that was not a rectangle.  The clue also encouraged us to be creative in our cutting. So, I was.  Here are my cuts:

Cutting in odd shapes made it difficult to put them back together into any regular shape so I gave that up and decided to have fun.  I certainly hope the shapes will work for Clues #4 and #5.

April's Guild Swap

I belong to the local quilting guild.  This year our challenge was to trade little brown bags containing 3 fat quarters and a note about the type of quilts we like and to use that fabric and information to create a quilt no larger than 18" square.  I got Audrey who is a new quilter. She likes autumn colors/earth tones although her favorite seasons are spring and summer. She likes patterns such as plaids, tweeds, and houndstooth but she HATES large flower prints.  She is a new enough quilter that she still prefers traditional patterns.  Here is the little quilt that I have finished for her.
The quilt turned out a little big--19"--but I think it is close enough to the size requirement to work.  I used a Schnibbles Pattern from Miss Rosie's named Short Story.  I will include the pattern in the exchange when I give the quilt back to Audrey. The white line in the border is machine embroidery that echos the square shape.  I quilted in the diagonal to increase the feel of being set on point.  Nothing is ever perfect but I do think this turned out well.