Monday, November 26, 2007

Journal Quilt Project: Week 2

Well, here I am in the early part of the week again for my Journal Quilt Project. This is week 2's offering, and is another 8x8 piece. I think I may stick with this size (though I'm not commmitting myself) - it's big enough to do a variety of stuff, without being intimidatingly large. This week, I decided to use some of the fabric I got for my birthday and which I (uncharacteristically) have already started making into blocks - as I was looking at the four fabrics I suddenly realised they would go nicely with some of the rust-dyed fabric that Anna recently sent me as part of her little art challenge/giveaway, and that I could do a piece for her at the same time.

The nice thing about a journal quiltlet like this is that you can take some shortcuts if you like, as it won't ever need to be washed etc - I didn't piece the fabric, just fused it down (the rust dyed fabric is the centre piece), and then added the black "leading". Then I just free motion quilted over the whole piece. I decided it was very autumnal this week - both these fabrics and the weather, so I did some leaves on the piece (and yes, I AM very pleased that the leaf at the bottom on the reddish fabric turned out to have such a nice shape - usually the ones that show look terrible and the good ones are on the fabric which goes best with the thread). Meanwhile, I fused some snippets of the fabric to another piece of rust-dyed fabric - originally, they were going to be leaf-shaped, but I can't cut freehand shapes very well, so I decided to go with something a little more free-form. I also FMQ'd leaves onto this piece, which is a postcard (4x6).

The next step was to add some texture, so I rummaged around in my drawers of bits and came up with "silk scrunchies" which are something funky I picked up from The Thread Studio at the Knit and Stitch Show (if you are a fan of the Thread Studio - or even if you have never heard of it - you should also check out Dale's blog, which is great), and which I haven't used yet - I couched some of these down on each piece, on the larger one, making a few bends to emulate leaf shapes. Then, more leaves - some skeleton leaves, plain and some which I had which were half gold. On the postcard, I've sewn them down quite thoroughly, extending from the spine, etc, as they have to survive being mailed; on the journal piece, I have just stitched down the spine, so they actually flap up a little, which gives the piece some texture as well. And then, beading. Anna had included some funky aluminium beads she made, and coincidentally I got some wire and beads in the right colours as part of a little inspiration pack from Lana on my birthday, so I beaded some wires and threaded them in and out of the two pieces. Finished the edges with some black, sprayed the whole thing with some Moon Shadow Mist, just to add a little hint of gold.

Several people asked or commented about labelling them or keeping information with them - what I've decided to do is simply write on the back. The first two quiltlets, I've simply backed with card (as a last step before binding/edging), so this is easy enough to do (both of the first two are constructed with a pelmet vilene base with fabric on top - this is a thin, rigid construction, like most of my postcards, rather than a more puffy, quilty construction, so paper works well on the back. This is one of my favourite ways to work with small pieces.). In future, I may back with fabric on occasions, but hey, I have fabric pens, I can put them to good use!

Right, and since we've got all autumnal, here's my finished cross-stitch autumn sampler. I'm really pleased to have finished two cross-stitches this autumn - this is thanks to my new strategy - small pieces with lots of open space! I have now started the NOEL piece I got for my birthday, and will alternate working on that with working on my other, ongoing Christmas piece - which probably means neither of them will be done before Christmas, LOL, but I can't let the season go by without working on the angels piece (photo later, when I dig it out and give it a press).

And finally, two things in the post of interest today - two blocks from Adrienne for the Orange swap (she sent me an extra, as she was making two for all the others - isn't that sweet?) and this postcard from Caroline, for the theme Strips and Stripes - great idea Caroline, I laughed aloud when I first saw it.


Helen in the UK said...

You've been very productive as usual! LOVE that strips and stripe PC - great interpretation of the theme :)

Karol-Ann said...

Lovely leaves and colours! These are going to be good!!!

Julie said...

I'll second that, busy, busy! I really like the journal quilt on the left. It is absolutely beautiful, lovely colours and great composition.

atet said...

Love the new journal quilt (and the matching postcard)! The lines made me laugh as well -- what a wonderful interpretation!