After I finished quilting “All Decked Out” I decided to try another way to sew on an edge facing. Most methods leave you with lumpy corners. However, Jean Wells gives a way to face your quilt in her book, “Journey to Inspired Art Quilting,” that keeps extra fabric out of the corners.
You sew together the ends of 2 to 3 inch strips to form a frame that you sew onto the edges of your quilt. The tricky part is getting the frame to match the dimensions exactly.
After you sew around the edges you turn back 1/4 inch on the loose part of the frame. To make this easier, you leave 1/4 inch unsewn on the strip joining seams. You then turn the facing, press the edge a lot, and hand sew the facing down.
As the picture above shows, I did a lot of quilting, which doesn’t show that much on the front.
For those of you who don’t remember this quilt, it’s one of two I created from squares of surface design experiments. The center is an embroidered paint stick rubbing of a glass salad plate. The salmon colored squares are sun prints from crocheted doilies. The blue with white swoops and dots I made in by screen printing with thickened dye. The multi-color sort of pink-purple squares are fabric created from scraps, cheesecloth, and stencil prints. The solid pinkish squares are hand dyed fabrics. The border is made from a Spoonflower printed photo of my deck, run through a filter and done as a mirror image. I did throw in some Marcia Derse fabric in four squares.
I quilted it with variegated 40 weight cotton thread, sort of following the curves of the swoops.
This post is linked to Off The Wall Friday.
Used denim from pants, skirts, shirts, etc., isn’t the most likely medium for art, but Korean artist Choi So Young can see whole urban landscapes in it. He (or she, websites differ) is especially clever in using the bits most textile artists don’t use – the belt loops, pockets, seams, pocket liners, labels, and buttons. The pieces are best described as collages. I believe acrylic paint is also used.
Hong Kong Soho Street, 2013
London Street At Night, 2010
After The Snow 2, 2011
After The Snow, 2010
Other work by her/him is at artnet. So far my searches haven’t found any biographical data, except for year of birth (1980,) education, and residence (Korea.) I’d love to see a video of the artist at work, but while my YouTube search found some bizarre stuff, it turned up no artists.
Ian Berry is another artist who works with denim, often in portraits. I wrote about his work here.
My last procrastination to avoid my canal project was a scrappy stars quilt. The canal project is onto its next phase, so I can stop making excuses now. Meanwhile, I have yet another top to quilt. I don’t think I thought my diversion through to its logical end.
As I’ve done before, I pulled out my scrap strips bins to create lots of strip squares, which I then cut into two triangles. Many of the light colored squares were made from scrap bags I bought at the Sew Batik sewing expo booth. I just don’t use light fabrics enough to have a good stockpile of light strips.
I paired the triangles in mostly light/dark combinations, with a few all light ones, and had fun creating stars with them. I was inspired by a quilt posted on Pinterest. It was made by Stash Lab Quilts, and is brighter than mine.
I had made a rough drawing of my layout, but found that getting the light triangles to flow together really drove the composition. I guess I know who or what is really in charge. That’s right, color and value.
I’m linking up to Nina-Marie’s Off The Wall Friday.
I think weaving could tie with quilting as the most under recognized art medium. Both are usually considered crafts. I suspect the only “name” weavers most art lovers know are Sheila Hicks and Anni Albers.
So, I was humbled when I came across the work of Richard Landis and realized I’m just as uninformed as other art lovers. From what I saw on the Cooper Hewitt website about Landis’ recent Color Decoded exhibit, Landis works combine color, rectangles and squares, and double weaving. The double weave is crucial to the new colors Landis creates. What’s double weave? It’s “a four-element weaving technique using two sets of warp and two sets of weft to produce two interwoven cloths, one over the other.” Essentially you weave two pieces at the same time, interconnecting them at intervals.
Textile Cathedral (detail)
[Landis’] drawings demonstrate how Landis would calculate and visualize every permutation possible within a defined set of colors. While the actual weaving could be completed in days, it sometimes took Landis a month or more to work out the full range of tones and hues on paper, design the geometric pattern, and prepare the loom to weave the cloth. Using his preferred weave structure—double-cloth—Landis would simultaneously weave two parallel planes of fabric, a technique that allowed for the creation of the multicolored complex patterning of his textiles. (taken from https://www.cooperhewitt.org/channel/color-decoded/)
Textile, Red and Green
Textile, Cluster, 1979
Textile, Fourth Dimension (detail)
The short video on the Cooper Hewitt website shows 87 year old Landis dressed in khaki pants and a long sleeve button down shirt, not your standard arty wardrobe. He and my husband must shop from the same catalog.
I’d love to share more information about Landis and examples of his work, but he doesn’t have much of a internet presence. You can see all the work in the Color Decoded exhibition here.
Many art quilters make a pilgrimage to the Crow barn outside Reynoldsburg, Ohio, to study with Nancy Crow for a week or two. Work by Crow and some of her students, as featured in an exhibit called Color Improvisations 2 that’s now touring, will give you an idea of Crow’s style. I’ve not had the nerve, or cash, for the experience, but I think Julie Fei-Fan Balzer’s blog posts give me a good idea of what’s involved.
Julie is a whirling dervish of a multi-media artist. She paints, does art journaling, hosts the “Make It Artsy” show on PBS Create TV, designs stencils, shows how to make your own stamps, blogs copiously about her work and her trips, and has taken up quilting. She leans toward the modern style, no surprise.
Julie has graciously given me permission to reblog her two posts about her experiences. Please check out all her posts at Balzer Designs. Her week one post is below. You can also check out her five lessons from the Crow Barn here, and her “rear view mirror” view in her podcast. (It’s at the beginning.)
Now I’ll turn this over to Julie.
Atrium of Cleveland Museum of Art
The Cleveland Museum of Art is now showing the much heralded Yayoi Kusama‘s Infinity Mirrors, so I wanted to see what all the fuss was about. I joined many, many others who shelled out $30 to stand in lines for an opportunity to spend about 30 seconds in each mirrored box.
I have no photos of the box interiors because I spent my brief time taking in the effects. However, this exhibit description contains a photo of “The Souls of Millions of Light Years Away,” as well as other exhibit items. It is indeed all done with mirrors.
Besides those marquee items, the exhibit spans other work by Kusama from the 1960s to the present. Some of her more recent work shows further evolution of her trademark polka dots.
What great ideas for quilt borders!
One of my favorite pieces was “Flower” (1975,) in part because of the reflections off the glass that protects this collage. I think it goes well with the exhibit’s theme.
I also saw dots on other items displayed at the museum, especially these two pottery pieces from the central Andes, made sometime between 600 and 1000 AD.
Despite my preoccupation with canals, I made a few non-related pieces in June and July. Both are improv based and on the small side.
The first is “Primary Directive,” which I showed before. It’s now quilted and faced.
The detail shot shows I quilted it mostly with straight lines, with a few zigzags thrown in.
Once I began sorting a long neglected bag of scraps culled at a workshop, I decided to go raw – raw edges that is. “Mining Copper” is the result. I layered fusible fleece onto muslin and sewed down strips and bits of fabric with machine decorative stitches. Then I sewed on some ribbons and mylar I had deformed with an iron and painted. Finally, I sewed and tied on zinc washers I had painted a while ago. The resulting color scheme led me to the name.
I’m linking up to Nina-Marie’s Off The Wall Friday.