Wednesday, October 29, 2014

More fabric dyeing - low water immersion variety this time

LOVE getting packages in the mail, like a little bit of the holidays all year round. Monday when we came home from spending the day with the members of the Shining Tides Quilt Guild in Mattapoisett, MA, a package full of fabrics was waiting on the porch. Couldn't wait to open them to see the results of the low immersion dyeing that Beverly and I completed last. I'd had to leave them with her as we ran out of time and I was just itching to see how they came out - GLORIOUS would be my word for them. Here they are... Enjoy!

This first one is an ice dye.



These threewerepinched into pleats, then arranged in a tray in a serpentine shape, liquid dye squeezed onto them, then the fabric was gently pressed to distribute the dyes and increase the chances of some interesting color interaction.




Dyes were sprayed onto this one... think this is a very cool one...


These next two were made by twisting the fabric using a pencil eraser as the twister. Forming the circular shape took a little help when it got to be too much for the eraser. Once the circular shape was set,  liquid dyes were squeezed onto the fabric working from the center out, then the fabric was pressed to distribute the dyes and to create the color interplay.



Well, that's it for now. Busy designing quilts in my head that would make best use of these beauties. Will keep you posted.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Fabric Dyeing 101 - for me anyway...

Spent 2 days with my dear friend and frequent mentor Beverly in her dye studio in VA. We created some beautiful fabrics and I learned so much about the process, the experimentation and the fun of it.
Here are some of my results. I used regular PFD and some sateen, not sure if you'll be able to tell but I'll describe how each one was created. We used ProChem's MX Fiber Reactive dyes on 100% cotton.

These two are folded, pressed between small wooden boards, then clamped to provide a mechanical resist...




These four are sewn to fit tightly on a PVC pipe, then crinkled onto the pipe and placed in a dye bath while squished on the pole, no over-wrapping was involved. The wider, non patterned area on the last ones provides some matching fabric.



 

These two are fat quarters that were wrapped diagonally on the PVC pipe, then squished down to create the ripples. The bottom one was also dyed the day before with non-soda ash prep so that the colors washed out a bit and are softer.



These three are fat quarters wrapped and squished onto thick marine rope. This is my favorite fabric result.





These fat quarters were bunched then wrapped in tulle and rubber banded before going in the dye bath.





These two long quarters were dyed without a soda ash dip, dried, then stitched and scrunched onto PVC pipes before they went into their second dye bath.




This last fat quarter surprised us with how well it came out. Whiffle balls were covered with fabric, then tightly rubber banded before going into the dye bath.



A lot of fun! What I hadn't realized was how much preparation of the fabric was needed before the fabric got near the dye bath.

We also did some ice, tray and coil dyeing. They're coming in the mail as we ran out of time - can't wait to see them.

Very pleased with the results and ready to tackle more dyeing as well as more fun techniques in my new dye studio in the basement. Have the used restaurant sink and the used washer all installed, ready to get going - such fun!!!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Amazing Exhibit of Quilts at Washington's DAR Museum

In MD visiting friends and made a trip into the city today to see the antique quilt exhibit at the DAR Museum, right near the White House. Titled "Eye on Elegance" the exhibit features amazing applique, Broderie Perse style and Album style quilts from Maryland and Virginia from the 1800's. The exhibit runs through September 2015, so you have plenty of time to visit! And, it's free...


Here are a few, many with extensive trapunto (boutis) and teeny tiny hand quilting stitches.



This delectable mountain one was hard to walk away from, just mind boggling.






Traveling to VA tomorrow to stay with a judge friend. We'll be spending some serious time dyeing fabric, including pole wrapping of all varieties. She's even asked me to bring some heavy chains which Bob kindly donated from his garage collection, he's still shaking his head. Can't wait to see what we're going to do to that!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Tribute to Yoga - Rebecca's quilt


Just finished up quilting Rebecca's quilt, an original design, each block fun to explore. I need to ask her the meaning of each motif when she comes by to pick it up.



She selected the digital pattern "Mermaid Fingers" for the quilting, a great choice. It supports her modern quilt theme and gives her block motif format some visual movement as well as a bit of whimsy.

Some close-ups of the blocks... Enjoy!





Monday, October 6, 2014

Sandy's Beautiful Applique Quilt - Complete

Just finished Sandy's big and beautiful applique quilt. Two weeks and two cones of Superior So Fine later, I'm very pleased with the way it came out.




When I design the quilting on a quilt this large and detailed, I take a full view picture of it, print it up in black and white in 8" x 11", then design the major design areas on an overlay of tissue paper .

SID around all the applique took about 2 days but is a step that I strong believe gives the applique the emphasis is deserves. I also stitch within the applique in matching thread ,as I'm not a fan of the shine of  monofilament, to give the applique further dimension.






Here's a close-up of "Sherry's Swirls", a fill pattern designed by Sherry Rogers Harrison before her Inklique days, that I remembered from years ago. She was kind enough of draw it out on her phone for me and send it along when I bugger her about it.

Added some  pearls to the McTavishing in this area for more variety for the quilt and for me.



All the background fills and feathers were stitched out freehand.




Hope you've enjoyed these pixs of Sandy's quilt. Can't wait for her to come see it .


Monday, September 29, 2014

Coming along... slowly - Sandy's Beautiful Applique quilt

Been working on a customer quilt for a week now and it's coming along... slowly. Besides its massive size - king and its exquisite applique - its just BIG!

So far.. all the applique has been stitched around and the quilting areas within the HUGE negative spaces are divided up, so now I'm on to the fill. Which is simple, but very time and thread consuming.

The bobbins are full - about 20 of them - and I'll putter along on it for the week and probably then some.

It will be in the Quilters by the Sea show in Middletown, RI the weekend of the 18th, 19th.











And, with the exception of the straight lines and a few of the shapes, everything else is free hand.




Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Rising Star Quilters of Lexington, MA

Bob and I enjoyed out trip up to Lexington, Ma yesterday afternoon. The trees are turning and the bright, sunny day made for beautiful views.




We got to Lexington early to find the guild meeting site, then drove into the village of Lexington to find some dinner. The Panera's was closed due to a lack of hot water so found another restaurant on Yelp, Vine Brook Tavern, right around the corner and had a yummy dinner there, (they even had GF pasta) then off to the guild hall to set-up. We've never had so much help schlepping all our stuff in - Bob does tend to bring a whole lot to sell... so set-up went very quickly.




My Power Point lecture on "You be the Judge" went well, they loved the trunk show of about 35 of my quilts, then had a chance to visit with many of the guild members to discuss my work. The guild's annual show is the weekend of October 24, 25 and I think it will be well worth the trip, here's their website for more info www.risingstarquilters.org. They had to change the show's location recently, always a nightmare for a guild and they seem to be handling the change well.





I'm always amazed by guild's that have annual shows. I've always wondered if having that annual routine is actually easier than the every other year scramble of my two guilds, food for thought.

Everything is finally unpacked and back in place, now to get back to quilting Sandy's very large applique quilt. Still working on the SID around all the applique, very time consuming but so very worth it for the final impact this quilt deserves,it's a beauty and I should have it ready to show you by the end of the next week!