I'd love to tell you that I am already working on my handmade holiday gifts, but honestly, it's not happening. I do like to give gifts with handmade elements like quilting and embroidery, but this year, I'll have to streamline those efforts if I'm going to get it all done.
My studio time is precious. When I get a chance to play with my fabrics and thread, I want to get a lot accomplished with few interruptions.
One of the differences between art quilting and traditional quilting as that in art quilting, thread is almost always part of the design. The choice of thread in machine embroidery, in particular, can affect the look of the quilt.
A note from Vivika: Today our topic is mixing fiber art with wet media (specifically watercolor) to use in surface design. So, I called in my mixed-media colleague Cate Prato, Editor of Cloth Paper Scissors Today, to serve as guest blogger. Take it away, Cate!
Idle hands were frowned upon in my house when I was growing up. There was always something to do. If I wanted to watch TV (and I wanted to watch TV!), I had to be doing something productive at the same time. So I would sit down with either knitting or embroidery, and watch to my heart's content.
In this free eBook, Free-Motion Machine Quilting Techniques: 81 Tips for Free-Motion Quilting, Thread Sketching and Quilting Motifs, three highly respected quilt artists, Frieda Anderson, Robbi Joy Eklow, and Susan Brubaker Knapp share their knowledge and expertise for successful free‑motion quilting and thread sketching.
Fiber artist Deborah Boschert and I share a love of hand embroidery. Although hand embroidery stitches are often associated with antique and vintage textiles, Deborah uses classic embroidery stitches to add interest and texture to her contemporary quilts and fabric collages.
Guess what? Santa came a bit early to me this year, dropping a box of freshly printed copies of The Best of Quilting Arts: Your Ultimate Resource for Art Quilt Techniques and Inspiration on my doorstep.
Sometimes I think I'm finished with a quilt. I've surface designed it, free-motion stitched it, maybe even appliquéd it. But it still looks a little flat. It needs a little . . . something.
We often advise artists to practice, practice, practice if they want to improve their machine embroidery skills. But practice doesn't have to make perfect. In fact, I recently spent time with two artists who embrace imperfections in their machine embroidery designs.
Last week, my colleague, friend, and co-conspirator Helen Gregory took over the reins as Editorial Director for Interweave's Quilt, Paper, and Sewing Group.
I usually have a variety of quilting designs kicking around in my head at any given time. But often, when I finally get around to actually designing a quilt, I draw a blank. Sometimes I'm overwhelmed by fabric and surface design choices. Other times, I just don't know where to start.
Choosing the right machine quilting pattern for your piece is as important as the thread and fabric selections.
I've been using digital photos as a basis for my quilt designs for quite some time now. Digital technology has improved so much, too.