Thursday, August 9, 2018

The Wild Composite!

As usual, your art work is stunning. With just 7 quilters the layout was fairly straight forward this time.

Color and flowers dominate [really dominate] the top row.  The shapes set the stage for the second row - vertical in the middle, flanked by the remaining two horizontals, and the colors blend well. The "Pac-Man" character in Dee's quilt had to be on the left to "eat" his way [and take your eye] into the middle of the composite.

Alice, Thank You for placing the back of your quilt on black. See how it stands out in contrast and fills in the space surrounding the white space and compliments the bottom row and the vivid colors in your quilt. It pulls it all nicely together - top to bottom.

Teresa, the color in the titles is taken [cloned] from the color in your flower petals. Dee, the color in the Mavens title is cloned from the triangle in "Pac Man."

Another outstanding and creative beginning.


Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Gail’s Wild Sunflowers

I’m a big fan of Andrea Brokenshire.  I was fortunate to take a week long class with
 her last year in Schulenberg Texas.   This is the 2nd quilt I have completed using
her method of painting on silk charmeuse with a freezer paper pattern.  The original
photo was taken by our own Teresa Schlabach.   Pro Chem transparent textile paints
on silk charmeuse.  I hope to do more of these.  

Monday, July 16, 2018

Teresa's Wild Quilt: Wild Flowers in Canada

I couldn’t help but to thread stitch this beautiful flower.  The colors are wild and I added Angelina fibers in the center.  It is printed on Satin and stitched with polyester and metallic threads.  

Note from Alice:  I posted this for Teresa.  She was having major problems with her computer.  So she sent me the photo and the explanation.  I have to confess that for the first time ever I had problems getting this gorgeous photo to upload.  But patience is a virtue, and I kept trying and trying and finally, it worked!  And how delighted I am that it did!

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Judy's- Wild Whimsical Quilt

Wild took me on a wild ride because when I heard the word I thought I was going to do wild hair with wildlife in it. I just couldn't get that idea worked out. Next it was wild fabric. Another no go because it was just a mess. Next the actual word WILD made with different fabrics that would portray animals. Nope, just not me.

I tried scrunching up cheesecloth on top of fabric to make it interesting. Sigh, nothing would work on it.
I drew branches thinking the wild nature of the tree branches would be nice. Again that was just a mess.
This is a photo of some of the fabrics I pulled out trying to figure out how I was going to make a Wild quilt. A lot of them actually made it into the quilt. If you go to my Facebook page Wrapped In Quilts you can see a tour of these fabrics along with an explanation of my thoughts.

The story that goes with this quilt is that I love to hike in the mountains and the trees are so beautiful with their leaves waving. To be out in nature can be a serene, healing place, but it can also be a wild place.  I've been surprised in the woods with snakes, wild pigs, and deer. 
I made the hills look like leaves in color and quilting but it was too similar to what I made last time with the blue mountains. I had a scrap of wavy fabric that was left over from a birthday banner I made and laid it on the mountains which made me smile. So the whimsical waves on the mountains were added to the quilt to make it fun.

Andrea's Wild quilt

Wild Rabbits Running Wild
Whole cloth on cotton, snow-dyed cotton, mono-print, silk-screen and thermofax screen.

Originally I was designing a wild flower-themed quilt, using Queen Anne's Lace ( daucus carota ) wild carrot.  I took lots of photos as the plant is "in season" now and growing everywhere except in my yard where it would be very welcome.  Then, while running errands about a month ago, I was driving home on a road I have driven hundreds of times, but this particular time noticed a sign that changed the creative process in an instant ( I love when that happens! ): SLOW WILDLIFE XING.
This sign is either new or has been there for years and I never paid attention to it.  As I have had the word "wild" on my mind, the sign caught my eye and imagination with an idea that was much more motivating to me than the wildflower concept.  I immediately "saw" giant wild rabbits leaping back and forth across the road.  Like Queen Anne's Lace, rabbits are very much in season now.  I can pull into my driveway most evenings and see at least three munching away on my plants!

I did know that what ever the design, I wanted to include mono-printed imagery using my gelatin plate.  The background started off being just an experiment with a hand cut mylar stencil applying the paint on the plate in various ways using non-rabbit colors for fun.  The more I played and layered the image, the more I liked the result and thought, "what if" I allowed myself to use this experimental piece as the "real thing"?  So I proceeded by layering more imagery using silk screen and thermofax screen methods, and was quite pleased with the result.  When I was ready to add the binding, I thought I would just use white fabric, but happened to have a piece of snow-dyed fabric out for another project, looked at it and realized that it had all of the colors that I used in the quilt and it blended rather nicely.  I then "auditioned" the white, which was too stark.  Another one go those unplanned moments that worked!

Dee's Wild Color Wheel

 Wild Color Wheel 

Would you just look at this colorful mess?  My color wheel exploded!  Thanks to unpredictable Yellow going wild.  Yellow is always causing so much trouble.  She knows how beautiful and irresistible she is and she flaunts it.  She has taken over several of my projects; I don’t like to admit that she ruined them, but you have to keep Yellow on a tight rein because a little goes a long way.

This project happened in stages.  I did the zen doodles with black scribble paint one session.  It sat for a few months then I fused on the color wheel, except my yellow fabric ended up with the fusible on the wrong side so I had no yellow.  It was sat for another month and then with pens and pencils I began coloring in the doodles.  It seemed that Yellow took off on a tangent of her own.  Then the last stage, which happened to be on July 4th, I added a few flowers to Yellow and quilted the doodles.  The outside edges are bound with a zigzag stitch.  I had so much fun making this piece!  This was all about playing and having fun with simple tools.

This also looks like PacMan; so we could say that PacMan went wild in my studio, eating up all the fabric.

Alice's Wild Quilt: Killing Two Birds with One Stone

My quilt and fabric designer hero is Kaffe Fassett.  Therefore, it’s hard to throw out even a small scrap of fabric left over from any of the quilts I’ve made using them.  Recently I’ve been working on a “Mile a Minute” quilt which is a marvelous way to use even tiny scraps.  I won’t try to explain this process here, but anyone interested can Google that name and learn about these quilts. (I first learned about the process about 18 years ago!)

As this quilt started to come together, I stood back and looked at the blocks on my design wall.   I actually said aloud,  “This quilt is totally wild!” 

Wild!  Ah ha, a light-bulb moment!  I could turn several of these blocks into my Wild quilt for Material Mavens!  In truth, I had been struggling to come up with a vision for this MM theme.

And so was born my Wild quilt, using four of the Mile-a-Minute blocks.  I could easily spare them; the quilt has now a total of 56 six inch blocks!  I chose four of the blocks I was the most fond of, sewed them together, sandwiched them with batting and another piece of KF fabric. For its quilting I hand-embroidered a simple running stitch with a variegated perle cotton.  The binding on the quilt was left over from one of the many KF quilts I’ve made in the last few years.  My little MM quilt uses about 20-25 different scraps of various sizes; and that’s not counting the backing and the binding!  The large quilt uses scores more. When it’s done, I’ll send all you Mavens a photo of it.

This has been a “killing two birds with one stone” project for me, and I am delighted with both little and big quilts.  AND with the “Mile-a-Minute” process, that I urge you to learn all about!

Here the corner is folded back to show the quilt's backing.  I've used
this gold Paperweights fabric in many quilts!



From the moment we got our new "WILD" Challenge, I knew exactly what I wanted to do !

And then.....   As I was completing the requirements for my "Master Gardener Certification" through Texas A&M University, I had what we sometimes call an "Ah-Ha" moment !   What could be more perfect than a simple rendition of the beautiful "WILD" Texas Sunflowers that adorn our highways, fields, and gardens !     The Texas Sunflowers are abundant; they don't need any special  gardening care, and they're just about as wild, independent and "sassy" as can be !

I found this beautiful Sunflower fabric in one of our local shops, and knew right away it was the perfect jumping off point for my "Wild" quilt.   All of the design elements were free-motion quilted using Madeira Monofilament thread.   I free-motioned quilted the background area and echo-stitched around all of the petals to give the quilt more texture.

And then the beads !    Using three different varieties of beads, I hand stitched each bead to the center of the flower.  The beads represent the seeds that Sunflowers produce... those same seeds we love to eat as snacks !

Hope y'all enjoy this brief description.    And before posting and signing off...…
I'd like to thank Alice, our Fearless Leader, who coached me and with great patience and kindness posted all of the pictures of my quilts for the last several reveals as I struggled with the drastic switch from a McIntosh platform to a PC.   

I'm still very slow with all this computer "stuff" and it took my husband and me a chunk of time to get the pictures out of the camera, get them onto my computer, and then find the picture(s) in a not-so-very-intuitive location on the computer !  Obviously, I need to continue reading "Windows 10 for Dummies"!        

Peace and blessings to all  šŸ˜ 

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Blues Composite

The Blues Composite
As usual, I place all the quilts on one page and push my chair back and hope for my own “reveal.” HHMMM, the Thesaurus said I could use the gambler’s word “tell.” After some reflection [Does that word bring back memories?] 

I made my first move, this time with Row Three and placed Teresa’s eye-catching Blue Hibiscus right in the middle of the row and all the rest just seemed to fall into place. 

Next, the blues and horizontals and verticals just seemed to fit into Row Two.  Notice how the shape of Rita’s vertical, Judy’s horizontal, and Andrea’s vertical nicely frame the top of Teresa’s quilt. And the colors compliment also. The orange streak in Andrea’s quilt does a great job leading the eye into the Geraniums and break up the blue.

Row Three: The odd spacing around Teresa’s quilt allowed adequate room for the composite title and the date of this last Reveal for Round Two.

Row One: I did think this theme would bring out more “New Orleans.” And then Janis Joplin appears, front and center, the lady who dared to be different. With all that “blue” near the top, Alice and Kathy tucked in nicely. So, yes, the top of this composite was “revealed” about color. But you did not disappoint, color and creative subjects – wow!

Row Four: Gail’s face [What a transition – Janis to Barbie?] balanced well with Row One, then the Birds framed the Barbie. AAHH, yes, Blue Birds and blue eyes, who would have thought? A creative quilter, that’s who.

Row Five: Then Sara and Jane complete the composite. Notice how the color, subject and rendition of each quilt, from top to bottom, lead your eye around this composite.  A wonderful and creative way to end Round Two. 

Note from Alice:  As usual, Randy Schormann created the composite and then wrote the explanation of why he put each quilt where he did.  Once again, thanks to Randy from all of the Material Mavens!

Monday, April 16, 2018

Jane’s Blues Deconstructed

When I first started Jane Dunnewold’s Mastery of the Art Cloth course, she gave us an assignment to make four quilts. It was a color assignment. I chose blue. I also chose to work with textile paints. This quilt was about hue. We could use any color that read “blue” from blue green to blue violet on the color wheel including different values. 
It was fascinating to discover how the underlayers affected the color of the transparent paints. 
I mounted it on felt with Mistyfuse and machine quilted it. 
The background fabric was dyed with blue #400.

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Kathy's "BLUES"


The first thing that came to my mind was the 35 years I lived in Anchorage, Alaska, and the oh-so-beautiful summer flowers, especially the Alaska State Flower, the "Forget Me Not !"   They're stunning in their color(s) and their simplicity.   Think of the conditions they have to endure just to produce the leaves and flowers !  And then I thought of the awesome Texas Bluebonnets that are in full bloom right now, and how absolutely gorgeous those flowers are !

I actually have some fabric from Anchorage that depicts the Forget Me Not Flowers, and very reluctantly cut that fabric to make the kind of wild and crazy flowers on my quilt.   [When you see the quilt in person, it'll be fun to see how quickly (or not !) you can find the Forget Me Nots!]

All the flowers were cut from blue-ish toned fabrics.   I fused 2 layers of compatible fabrics together (Heat and Bond Light), then sort of randomly set the flowers on my base "quilt" and began machine stitching the fabricated flowers on to that quilt.  I trimmed the flowers, partially cut each flower into 8 "petals", and then hand-washed the entire quilt.  I wanted to get all those petals separated, and add texture to the petals at the same time.   After that, I added two colors of blue fabric squares (made from netting !) to add some pizazz and texture.

The backing fabric is Royal Blue fabric with Gold stars, and was chosen in honor of the Alaska State Flag, and the song that we sing with much pride.     I end my narrative with the lyrics to this incredibly beautiful tribute to the Greatland - ALASKA !

Eight stars of gold on a field of blue,
Alaska's flag, may it mean to you,
The blue of the sea, the evening sky,
The mountain lakes and the flowers nearby,
The gold of the early sourdough's dreams,
The precious gold of the hills and streams,
The brilliant stars in the northern sky,
The "Bear," the "Dipper," and shining high,
The great North Star with its steady light,
O'er land and sea a beacon bright,
Alaska's flag to Alaskans dear,
The simple flag of a last frontier.

Judy- Mountain Blues

 I struggled with "Blues". There was the natural jazz one, but that wasn't something that I was familiar enough with in my life. I thought of indigo blues which could be done by dying fabric. As I pondered the indigo blue route, the idea of using blue jeans to create a scene really appealed to me.     Recycling and working monochromatic were calling me. Next was the design. Hmmm. Abstract would work. A simple flower and other easy designs popped in and out of my head. When the mountains came in I grabbed it. The first time I saw mountains was in the 1970's. They were the Smoky mountains and they made my heart sing. We lived near the Teton mountains in the 1980's for a short while and drove all over to absorb the majesty of the Rocky mountains. We have continued to head to the mountains and experience their awesomeness.

The small mountain on the right side of the scene, which is the nice royal blue, was cut from the inside of a back pocket. It hadn't faded and I needed that color value. I layered the pieces and needed some contrast so that I could see each mountain. You can decide if those are rivers or clouds in the mountains. Next I fused the edges down and I was ready to quilt.

When I started quilting I did the mountains first. They just needed some simple echo quilting to keep your eye moving across them.  The sky got straight lines to keep it clean. I am working with a ruler to get straight lines quilted and it is working quite well. After that was completed I felt that there needed to be something in the sky to give it some interest and a sun wasn't it, so I quilted a design that looks like some of my doodles.

Enjoy the beauty of the mountains!

Dee's Blues Quilt: Southern Comfort

Theme:  Blues

Title:  Southern Comfort

Dee Stewart Merrell

Janis Joplin and blues;  nothing else says blues like Janis and her raspy voice and gutsy lyrics.  She is such an icon to the world of music and blues.

I wanted to make this piece as vivid, raw and honest as Janis and her vocals.  The image was transferred to fabric using Citrasol and filled in with fiber inks. Raw-edged fabric strips were glued in place then stitched/quilted.  It is mounted on an 11 x   14" canvas frame.

Teresa's Blues in Nature

I found this blue hibiscus at a botanical garden here in Arkansas.  I have never seen one before or since.  I photographed it, printed it on satin, stitched it with polyester threads, and embellished it with tulle and Angelina fibers.  It is one of a series I have been working on and will actually put it on a wooden frame and make it a 'gallery' wrap style piece of art.  I loved all the different colors of blue and the range of purples that also came into play.  It almost looks like a sea urchin.  It is a very modern looking piece to me. - Teresa Schlabach

Andrea's Blues Quilt

With My Complements

mono-print, hand dyed cotton
11" x 14"

I knew that I wanted to work with shades of blue and because of two recent online classes with Linda Germain, Printmaking Without a Press ( ) decided to print a panel on a gelatin plate ( gelatin, glycerin & water ), to use as the focus of my quilt.  A geranium plant sacrificed a few leaves for the stencils.  Only two different blue paints were used but mixed with either white or black to create more shades.  Although I was pleased with mono-printed fabric, when assembling the panel with a few hand-dyed pieces, could see that it very much needed to be "spiced" up, so decided that adding a bit of it's complement might work, which made a big difference.

geranium leaves on gelatin plate

Sara's Blue Quilt

Even though blue ia my favorite color, this was a tricky theme for me as my brain kept going into the imagery of a spiral of a dark blue depression. I didn't want to go there in my mind or on my quilt! I even thought of making an all orange quilt and titling it stare and look at a white wall but decided that would be pushing things. My husband and I were chatting over his plans for building out new office space and we were both excited about BLUEprints. I have tried to vary what techniques I use for the quilts I've made in these challenges. Since my first Material Mavens quilt was created with thread painting, I decide to revisit thread as a way to create imagery for the last quilt in the series.

My husband printed our blue print in reverse onto newsprint. (Here is the right-side up image)

I spray basted it to the back of a piece of blue fabric and transferred the design by stitching through the newsprint using white bobbin thread. I then  removed the paper and placed the fabric on a layer of batting and thickened the lines using free motion stitching on top of the previously stitched bobbin thread.I found out pretty quickly that the batting was not enough stabilization to keep the fabric from distorting so I  placed the fabric and batting into an embroidery hoop. After my stitching was done I added another piece of batting and a backing and stitched diagonal lines through the whole quilt using monofilament thread. The edges are finished with a facing.

Gail’s Favorite Shade of Blue

While pondering ideas for a blue quilt I began thinking of
my favorite shade of blue and somehow this led to the
1960’s blue eyeshadow!  Who doesn’t remember and love that?
Down the rabbit hole I went where my first Barbie arrived to join 
me in my reverie wearing my favorite shade of eye shadow.  A quilt
block from 20 years ago joined us and became my challenge quilt!
I had fun free motion quilting my old friend with micro stippling 
for the face.  I’ve always wanted to try that along with echo quilting 
Miss Barbie Millicent Roberts!  See I’m such a fan I knew her entire
name.   My brother once won a radio call in contest after asking me
her full name!   I still have my Barbie although someone cut her ponytail 
off.  Barbie is not safe in a house full of brothers!  However I’m still
searching for the elusive blue eye shadow! Hoping I’m still around when 
it comes back in style!

Tricia's Blue Birds

I know we are hoping for spring but I just had to create this piece. We are experiencing our new home and landscape. Every year  at our old home we have tried to attract blue birds. This year with advice from a friend we bought blue bird pellet food in hopes of attracting the blue birds to our new home. We are successful in getting them to the feeders. Now we just hope they will nest in one of our boxes.  This was created from a photograph I took after one of the March snow storms.

I used fusibles and free motion quilting. I collages the fabrics to create the snow.

Rita's Quilt: Blues, Blues, Fly Away!

Knowing I was not going to continue this journey, I completed my Blues quilt in the week after the last reveal.  This final quilt is a statement of my mixed feelings.  It was a relief to have finished this leg of the journey and to know I have arrived at my destination.  But it was also a bit sad to have finished, as well.  Somewhat like reading a wonderful novel and being distressed that it had to end.  

All fabrics are blue in homage to the sadness I was feeling and yet knowing that feeling was going to take wing and fly to new challenges as the butterflies illustrate.  Thank you, dear friends, for all the wonderful compliments you have showered on me during these two rounds.  I will still be a Maven in spirit and will continue to follow your wonderful fabric art.

The idea for this quilt came from a commercial pattern, for a full-size quilt in the modern style.  I took the illustration, miniaturized and modified it and then added the triangles turning into butterflies.  Everything is raw-edge fused applique.  The quilting was done by stitching around the triangles.

[Posted by Alice because of the on-going "issues" that Rita has had with Blogger!]

Alice's Quilt: String-Pieced Blues

I’ve always wanted to make a string-pieced quilt, and so I decided that this last quilt for Round Two would be a good time to try this technique.  And what could be better than string-pieced Kaffe Fassett fabrics?  Perhaps some of you Mavens and other friends know about my passion for his designs and his fabrics.  And I keep every scrap of his fabric left over from my larger quilt projects.

So then I started looking through my KF scraps.  And guess what?  Very few of these were predominantly blue.  Blue is present, but mostly it’s mixed in with many other colors.  Also among them, there were few “true blues,” though lots of purplish-blue and greenish-blue.  But those, I decided, would just have to do. Too, with a quilt this small, I could do lots of fussy cutting.  So that’s what I did—snipping out sections from my scraps with various versions of blue.

After the cutting and then the piecing was done, I hand-embroidered a running stitch alongside each of the “strings” or strips of fabric, using a variegated Perle cotton thread.  I backed the quilt with a Kaffe Fassett leaf pattern fabric, and I bound it with leftover binding from another KF quilt.