Embellishing with flea market finds.

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Top 25 Contributor
Posts 235
on 4 Mar 2011 8:26 AM

I love going to flea markets and antique stores to find unique embellishments and I consider them part of my fiber arts treasure trove.  So I'm wondering, what is the best embellishment you've ever found at a flea market or an antique store?

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Posts 914
Muppin wrote
on 4 Mar 2011 9:18 AM

I love antique stores too, Ellen.  I especially love to look for vintage lace.  Doilies and old hankies are a favorite of mine to dye and use in some of my work!  I also look for old buttons, especially shell or mother of pearl ones.  I know these are pretty traditional, I'd love to hear of some unusual finds that people use too!

Cheryl / Muppin

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createandsew wrote
on 13 Mar 2011 8:07 AM

I like to collect old (flea market) and new pieces of lace.  Is there an idea depot or  websites that might have ideas of incorporating them into contemporary style embellishing?  I know about Crazy Quilting but would like some more modern fabric art suggestions,


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Posts 38
CarolineA wrote
on 14 Mar 2011 4:41 PM

Have you checked out the Cloth Paper Scissors community? many of the members there incorporate found treasures into their work, and there are articles and how-to's there. also, if you google Mixed Media Textiles or "Art Quilt" then check the images, you can quickly find blogs and instructions - its much easier than having to plough through pages and pages of unrelated listings.

My best find? An antique gold button, its only 9 carat and hallmarked, but somehow got missed by all the eagle eyes at my local thrift shop. Its waiting for something special.

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Posts 247
ckquilter wrote
on 16 Mar 2011 7:11 PM

hi rae

this is a crazy quilt idea - but with a twist.

i print a photo onto fabric. but i alter it to sepia tones first. then crazy patch around it  - but only with white and cream fabrics and trims/

laces. then finish around the edge of the picture with white or cream braid (i use an arched top shape around the picture - rather than

rectangle or oval - but those would work also.)  i start/stop the braid near the lower side of the picture - whichever side is less interesting.

then add dimensional embellishments to cover the start point. i like white or cream silk flowers, lace, and ribbon and bead dangles.

one of the pictures i am using is my grandmothers wedding picture - she is holding a single white rose. so those get embellished

with a white rose from my niece's wedding reception.          the back of the quilts get labeled with a hand printed label - and i do the

printing on one of my grandmothers handkerchiefs - given to me when she passed away.       so some of your pretties could be used

as labels for the back of special quilts.


as an alternative, for my nephews, they get their picture done in color. and then instead of white/ivory and lacy flowers; i crazy patch with

denim from old jeans. make the patches fairly large, and use the seams and pockets to add interest. you could color some of your

finds, and use those for the seams. and i use blue andwhite, and red white and blue trims and buttons to embellish.


they make very special, personalized gifts - with lots of meaning to both the giver and the receiver.

happy art quilting                     ckquilter

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Nona Simons wrote
on 19 Mar 2011 6:12 PM

I went to your blog and website and saw your work.  It is awesome!  I bet you will be a successful professional quilter in the future.  Sorry my signature is so long.  I misunderstood the set up part of this site and will have to change it.  Thank you for sharing your beautiful creations.


Top 25 Contributor
Posts 235
on 8 Apr 2011 9:58 AM

Great responses! Now that the weather's getting warmer, I'm certainly in flea market mode!

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