Aren't we all craving signs of spring right about now? I know I am. Heck, I'd be happy to go right to summer!
Back at Quilting Arts headquarters in Massachusetts, spring is slow to arrive. In fact, we can have snow as late as May. But everyone on the staff knows that once we get that first warm breezy day and I come into work with open-toed shoes, there is no going back to boots for me, regardless of what the calendar or the weather says.
As I write this, the wind chill is in single digits, so my toes are still under wraps. But I'm looking for signs of spring, and as trend forecasting is traditional one, I'm going to try to hurry Mother Nature along with my own spring trend sightings from the world of fiber art and quilting supplies.
For example, one of my personal signs of spring is donning a skirt to go with those open-toe shoes. And this year, I might even make a skirt or two myself, as I'm noticing a big trend toward flirty A-line and pencil skirts that use quilting and mixed-media techniques in their design.
Textile designer Allison Willoughby was one of the first contemporary artists to use a skirt as a fiber art canvas with her book 49 Sensational Skirts: Creative Embellishment Ideas for One-of-a-Kind Designs. There's a terrific profile of Allison and several embellished shirt options by other designers in the current issue of Stitch, if you want to be inspired to make your own unique and arty apparel. There's info on how to get a free appliqué pattern or two in the issue, as well.
Another trend I see in fiber art this spring is actually the continuation of a trend: contemporary patchwork. Evidence: Young and not-so-young stitchers are sporting patchwork headbands, totes, belts, and more, while Malka Dubrawsky's Fresh Quilting is selling like daffodils on a winter's day and the Japanese-styled Quilting Line and Color: Techniques and Designs for Abstract Quilts is very popular too. (Psst! Something exciting on this trend is coming from us in the coming weeks. So stay tuned!)
Quilt supplies that help you take new approaches to old techniques for surface design is another ongoing trend. My favorite example of this is deColourant, a heat-activated product that lets you discharge dye fabric without chemicals or mess. I've been using it with stencils, brushes, and stamps to get all kinds of interesting, unique contemporary fabric effects. In fact, I love using stencils in non-traditional ways, as patterns for sun prints, for example. And I'm addicted the new moldable stamps that you heat, press into a found object, use as a stamp, and then heat again to start over.
If you're into these trends, you'll find hundreds of books and quilting supplies online at the Quilting Daily store, and right now everything is 15% off.
So, those are my picks for spring fiber art and quilting trends. What about yours? Are you seeing any other trends that you like? Any trends you're bucking or that you wish would go away? What are you quilt-related signs of spring? Join the discussion below.