As a novice photographer, I have discovered that some of my favorite captured images have both an interesting foreground and background. Over the last several months I have been playing with the same concept in quilting and am anxious to see where other people take it.
In March I would like my Bee Mates (#beesewcial on IG) and any other interested folks (#inspiredbybeesewcial on IG) to make the equivalent of two 12×12 inch blocks (loosely defined as I am good with wonky shapes and strange sizes) exploring the idea of layers (components that appear to be in the foreground and components that appear to be in the background) in your block design using the colors of this peeling paint image by Richman as a guide. There are several ways to do this and you are welcome to look at my feed on IG to see what I have done but honestly I am most interested to see where YOU take it. Please bring at least two “layers” to your design but you may add more. For consistency in a quilt, I ask that you use specific colors in the foreground and others in the background. With the Kona Color Card as a guide and following the Richman picture:
Background: (Turquoise/Blues) Cyan, Breakers, Capri, Robin Egg or similar with or without traces of black
Foreground/Middleground: (Oranges/Greys/White) School Bus, Carrot, Flame, Ash, Medium Grey or similar and traces of Papaya, White
If you choose a Medium layer/layers use the foreground colors leaving the blues and turquoise colors only for the “back”
Note: If you have studied Albers, you will know that the cool blues will “want” to read background and the warm oranges foreground. Color choices themselves help us define layers. Because of this I am setting the color layer choices opposite of what they physically are on the picture.
Feel Free to check my Pinterest Board for image ideas that inspire me:Pinterest: Discover and save creative ideas
Don’t forget to tag your makes with the #beesewcial tag for my bee mates and #inspiredbybeesewcial for anyone else who wants to play along
In two days I start back to work again after a month off. I have logged many hours doing continuing education for Dayjob, baked almost every variety of pumpkin muffin/scone/cookie you can imagine and of course have been creating.
In a month:
Pattern Play (I replicated the Tate Museum flooring pattern using a modification of Latifah Saafir’s Glam Clam Pattern in bag form. For fun I added a knit pillow of my design to match my previously finished quilt top with buttons covered with treasured Umbrella Prints fabric):
Bag Design (repurposing photos I had taken on canvas)
Block Making (for my Bee Sewcial group and shown with a minimini quilt made by Stephanie Ruyle).
Minimalist Design Play with Leather Scraps
Anatomical Stitch Sketching
Quilt Finishing (with amazing quilting by Jessie Ziegler)
Self Portrait Work In Process (with my first bias strip quilt using scrubs on hospital sheets)
My creative and family life are feeling extra rich after this sweet time. Grateful
I am halfway into a month off of work and ironically as I rush around trying to fit the rest of life in I find myself more stressed then relaxed? That soooo is not what vacation is about right?
Inspired by the book “Slow Stitch” by Claire Wellesley-Smith, I decided to slow things down a bit with handwork. I have always found peace in knitting and excitement in sewing (excitement in sewing?? Haha! I’m sure that sounds so funny if you are not a maker.) It turns out at least for me that sewing can be relaxing if you do handwork in little bites.
I started the process by cutting up some ill fitting jeans and doing reverse shibori with bleach on the pieces in various folding patterns. Holy Cow, what a fun easy, quick process that was. All my future jeans are destined for bleach jobs.
Every night as I have been sitting and watching movies with my husband (such a rarity during the rest of the year), I have been devising and stitching up new little patterns with bits of felted wool, recycled leather and silk floss. The shibori Os called for some Xs so a theme took hold.
I wasn’t quite sure what was to become of this concoction but finally settled on a bag I have been dreaming up. It called for a leather border with mitered corners and to add more interest (and help attach it to my extra firm pellon interfacing) I machine embroidered with invisible thread even more Xs and Os. I used the back of a vintage feedback for the inner part of the bag.
This thing is VERY impractical with silly little pockets on the inside that don’t hold much but I am in love with it as an art piece. And as with most of the makes I love, it is destined for someone else worthy. I think they will get the wonkyness of it. I hope so.
I’ve been perfecting my skills lately at the game “How Can I Make That Into A Bag/Quilt/Mini Art Piece.” Are you familiar with my favorite game?
My Pieces and their sources of inspiration in picture order:
-The Doctor is In Second Edition: A new bag design I made up out of cotton, wool and leather inspired by one of the quilts featured in soon to be release book by Heather Jones. (Quilt Local: Finding Inspiration in the Everyday (with 40 Projects): Heather Jones: 9781617691768: Amazon.com: Books)
-Stitch Sketching everything I can imagine including a drawing of feet by the Louise Bourgeoise. Uneven tension never looked so good.
-A Baby Quilt Top using the Glam Clam pattern ( Glam Clam Quilt (8″) by Latifah Saafir – Crafts ) I adapted to look like flooring in the Tate Museum.
I am also really enjoying the black and white #beesewcial and #inspiredbybeesewcial blocks following the guidelines set out in my last blog post many of you are displaying on Instagram. Keep them coming!!
Lastly, although I was quite looking forward to a deadline-free September, a wonderful opportunity came up this week and it looks like I will be designing a piece for an art exhibit in Seattle. My mind is swimming with ideas. Time to focus and make.
A couple of weeks ago I celebrated 1000 followers on Instagram by giving away a custom made bag of their liking to a follower and a friend they tagged. I picked by random two delightful and talented sewists Valerie (Between Quilts) and Nicole (Mama Love Quilts). Go check them out they are lovely!
In any case, I wanted to make something extra special for them that reflected their friendship with some connection using designs of my own. By lucky coincidence, a pack of beautiful Marimekko fabric I bought on sale and some new leather I picked up were available and sent me easily into creative mode.
Nicole had highlighted a previous bag I made out of recycled orange and white leather so I ran with that idea, this time using new white and blue leather with a bit of the Marimekko Pink Unikko print. I hadn’t written down the dimensions of my previous bag so I winged it (wung it?) as I tend to do. The leather this go around, probably because it was new, was a little stiffer then my previous attempt but I am pretty pleased with the results.
For the second design, I chose the same Unikko print but this time on the outside of the bag along with some dark blue suede in what I call my Mini Museum pattern.
I made inset zippers for both bags and had fun fancying both up with metal feet and pull tabs for the zippers.
I think these gals who I now consider friends genuinely liked their bags and honestly I LOVED making them. This whole virtual world can feel like a weird online dating game sometimes and I hate that some people know me more by what I make and my tagline rather then by face and up close interaction but I guess this is the new world and no question I have made some amazing friends here. If you are interested in seeing even MORE of my pictures and are not already tired of me, you can find me on Instagram here: Hillary (@entropyalwayswinsblog) • Instagram photos and videos
My May Bee Sewcial Block came together last week as well. When Marci gave us our assignment (Bee Sewcial | Flickr – Photo Sharing!) for the month to work on a village block, I kept thinking of San Francisco from Marin County looking across the Bay. That image informed my weird shaped block. It is fairly literal though totally improv. I hope it works for her quilt.