Saturday, October 31, 2009

Blast Off

This project began as an FFF Challenge. The theme was space.

I spent days looking at marvelous photos from the Hubble Telescope. However, as much as I was in awe of the photos, nothing spoke to me. Finally I hit upon this theme = going into outer space.

I wanted to use dyes, but my past experience had been just painting the dyes on a piece of cloth laying on a table. It didn't work as I had envisioned. Lots of flow across the table; very little control. Therefore, my first step was to make an adjustable frame on which to secure my fabric. I recycled wood from some old frames I had used when I lived in apartments and moved a lot. These were very flexible, but no longer needed. I think the photo explains it very well.

Old side rails from my portable shelves

Side rails recycled into a frame for dying and painting

I lightly sketched my rocket, platform, and buildings as seen from across a bit of water. I used a textile maker in gray as I only wanted a little bit to show threw the 'dust from the blast off'. Then I applied dyes. It took several layers of dye to get what I wanted. Then I began with the paints. I ironed between layers to preserve what I had already done. Previously, I had skipped this step. Not happy when the colors moved. I learned from that mistake.

Sketch on stretched fabric on frame

Dyed with painting started

When I was satisfied, I added an inner border of a very soft brown and an outer border of a dark purplish-blue. I spent two days interviewing borders. I was very invested in this step. I thought the brown was perfect. Fortunately, I had just barely enough to do a 1\4” border. Then I started quilting. That took a while. I messed up on the inner border, but tried for days to save it.

I was in love with these borders. Hard to cut them off.

FINALLY, I realized the borders had to go. This was hard. It was after reading from the Quiltart list that I knew I had to do it. I don't remember who, but someone said something that has stuck. It was similar to , 'If you are in love with one piece of fabric maybe that is what needs to go.' I sure wanted those borders. Cutting them off lost 7” in both horizontal and vertical directions, plus I was in love with both fabrics. However, as it turns out, cutting them off was absolutely necessary to achieve the final result. I know it is not perfect However, it is the best I've quilted so far. I darkened the details to better show the quilting. The full art quilt is truer to the actual colors.

BLAST OFF 17" x 37.5"

Blast Off darkened detail 1

Blast Off darkened detail 2

My name, Ann E. Ruthsdottir, machine embroidered on the front.
It actually is hard to see because the color blends in so well.
However, it would be quite a job to take it off.
I had to lighten the photo in order to see my name.

Comments welcomed and appreciated.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Quilting year 2 in review

Last year about this time I posted a photo review of the first year of my blog. Now I'm summing up in photos the results of my quilting efforts from October 2008 through September 2009. I was surprised at the volume since I had not accomplished much of what I wanted to do. Much of my stimulus came from being a part of the Fast Friday Fabric Challenge [FFFC]. The challenges spurred me on to try something new. I really learned a lot. Of course I'm still just beginning; learning every week. As you will see, many of my projects are very practical. I guess that is part of my nature. However, isn't it more to make practical things artistically, instead of something purely functional.
If you want more details about any of the photos, please look over the lists on the right panel.

My first quilt of the 'blog year'. 

Nana was my mother's mother.  Although she died when I was 11, I still have very warm and wonderful memories of her.

Following are my insulation projects = keeping warm in the winter.

Kitchen insulating shade down = keeping the cold out.

Morning room original drapery over a blanket and insulating shade.

Bath insulating shade.  It made a BIG difference.

The next 4 quilts were done for the Alzheimer's Initiative; all are titled
"The Changing Face of Alzheimer's"

Annie's "My World in Black and White" entries.

"Mom"  = memories of The Farm

Ballet Trio

Ballerina On Stage.  One panel from the 'trio quilt'.
This became my blog title background.

       Cellar door storage

Following are some lap quilts I did in response to a need in our community. 

This is in response to "The Poe Challenge"

Quoth the Raven

Responses to various challenges + one for my Mom

Catch a Falling Star

Beauty is in the Eye of the Beholder

Fabric Interrupted

On Point

Quilting practice

heavily quilted yoke [my first attempt at a quilted garment]

My contribution to the "Little Gems" fundraiser in Birmingham, England.

Beach Girl

Following is a series of prints I did after making a doily into a printing tool.

These next prints are using nature's tools as a print object.

Soft green  fern [print from a real fern, stitched in gold]

Golden fern [multi print from a real fern, stitched in gold]

Dancing limes [metallic print from half a lime]

Thread saving container [helps keep it off the floor]

Airline travel purse [back]

Airline travel 'purse' [front]

Coccyx cushion [folding for travel]

Fidget Quilt

I hope you have enjoyed this summary.  Please think about doing the same on your blog.