Monday, July 29, 2013

Ocean Complete

I've got the ocean fabrics selected and in place, lots of different fabrics blended together, and lines of wave foam in white to give movement. All the white will be covered in white cheesecloth for texture, and free motion stitching for motion. I've finished some other details too. The kayaker, and the golden lab with the tennis ball.
I was waiting, until the water was finished, so I could make sure I had contrast and they showed up against the waves. I also added some reflections in the water, to the girl and boy on the left, and I'm adding shadows and reflections to the other figures as well. I still have to add the hills on the right horizon, and a few final details, then I'll be ready to quilt. Yea! Progress!

Monday, July 22, 2013

Ocean Waves

I have been working on my beach scene again, I have to get it done. Choosing ocean fabric was not easy as I have quiet an assortment of blue water fabric. I pulled out the appropriate fabrics, and arranged them by value and color, from gray blue, to clear blue and a bit of blue green. Trying to work out a value placement, the lighter grayer blues in the distance, changing to blue green at the left, and then the brighter blues closer to the shore. These values seam to be working out, but I want to put it back on my design wall to really look at it.
I am working on my dining room table right now, to have the length and be able to reach it all. I am doing raw edge applique, so a little dab of glue stick with a toothpick, along all the edges, is holding everything in place. The black dots are LOTS of straight pins, until I get the glue in place. All the white areas of foam will have cheesecloth bunched on it, with free motion stitching to create lots of texture. Bits of angelina fibers will add sparkle and reflections and clear glass beads will look like bubbles. It will look very different when it is done.
The sky is a long piece of hand dyed blue that I made specially for this project, it has bits of purple in it too, and wasn't quiet long enough, so I needed to piece it, wisps of blue are feathered along the join to camouflage it. I will probably add more of the wisps for contrast and texture in the sky, although, does the sky NEED texture?

Monday, July 15, 2013

The Last One!

I did it!! I finished the last "Dear Jane" block, #G-6 the star in a star, even tho the tag says G8. It had tiny pieces, but it really wasn't that difficult to sew. I had more problems with some of the other blocks, that had diamond shapes, or inset squares. I don't think I'm going to do the triangles for the border right now, I do have other things to do. I will get out a sheet and lay them all out on the living room floor, so I can see if I want to keep them in order, or swap some of the blocks around, for balance or contrast. Deciding on the fabric to use for the sashing will be the next challenge, and getting them all sewn together. Again, rejoice, I AM DONE!! There are a total of 169 4 1/2" blocks, and 3478 pieces, so far. With the border triangles, Jane used 5602 pieces, and proudly embroidered it on the signature corner, with the date 1863. Going through all my blocks and counting the pieces, I found two duplicates, a waste of effort, and one that was missing, so I quickly made it up, an easy checker board pattern. DONE!

Tricky Jane Blocks

I have finished 10 more Dear Jane blocks, some of the ones I had skipped because they were difficult, or had too many small parts. I was right! Some of them were very difficult, odd angles, and weird sewing steps, and small pieces, but I kept at it. I did find enough fabric, probably not the best choices for some of the blocks, contrast has been a problem. Most of my fabric is mid range colors, and my solids are pastel or medium values, so I had to vary colors to improve contrast. Only one more to go, the star with a small "Ohio Star" in the center.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Dear Jane Update

After all the work on the "River" piece, I needed a break from the intense quilting, so I worked on my "Dear Jane" blocks. Just straight sewing on the sewing machine, with bits of hand applique. The blocks are all made from vintage fabric that I have collected from garage sales, and antique shops. I managed to do at least two a day for a week, and only have 8 more to do. Of course they are the most difficult ones, that I skipped before, and now have to make myself do them. I am having trouble finding enough large pieces of fabric, most of what I have is small scraps, and I have used a lot of it already. I am trying not to duplicate the fabrics, but I did on several of the blocks. There are a total of 169 blocks, so I've done about 160, 5" blocks. The next question is, do I want to make the 52 pieced and applique triangles for the border? After looking at the patterns, most of them can be done in paper piecing techniques, as they are odd shapes to fit in a long triangle. The paper piecing would make them quicker and easier, but still a lot of work.
I would love to be able to say, "I have done them all" but it's a lot more work, and I'm not sure I have enough larger scraps to make them. Re-reading the "Dear Jane" book, I noticed she finished her quilt in 1863, so 2013 would be the 150th anniversary, it would be neat to finish mine this year. I would have to do 2 triangles a week for the next 6 months, or 4 a week for the next 3 months. Am I Crazy??? I do have other things to do. I always knew this would be a long term project, a few blocks at a time, now is not the time to get fanatical about it, just because of the date. I have one Oregon friend who has all the blocks and about half the triangles done, and my California friend is getting close to 100 blocks done. maybe I should talk to them about inspiration.

Elkton Festival

Saturday members of the Fyber Cafe group went to Elkton for an art & music event to raise money for the school music program. We set up a display booth of our art work, and also helped kids paint and draw on "Festival Flags" For more details see the Fyber Cafe blog, link on the right hand panel.
We also displayed seven of our "River Runs Through It" pieces, and gave out info on our group. I put out some of my wall hangings for sale, but mostly for display. I did sell one "Gelatin Printed" 8 x 10, with hand beading and 3-d Flowers. We had a nice day, they had lots of great music, and the kids loved doing the flags, our booth was busy all day.