Autumnal WILD Flowers

Well, some of my WILD flowers I like more than others. I found the perfect frame for this 16"X20" and I LOVE how it looks! I am in the process of getting the rest of my work framed. It really 'classes' it up!


Night time Wild flowers

Here is the silver gray rendition of the Wild Flowers series, Under the Gibbous Moon. The flowers consist of 2-3 layers in various sizes, the smallest centers being comprised of thick metallic thread. Leaves are from the several shades of silver gray thread also. New to this series is 'grass'. I used my long rectangle cardboard form, stitched two lines 1/2" apart down the center of it, as well as all around the perimeter, then sliced it right down the center. I have 11 more wild flower bases ready to quilt, all in the WILD colorway.


Mini-WILD Flowers

I had several people interested in the large WILD Flowers, but one of them preferred, 'just a taste' rather than the entire buffet...so, I made a mini-WILD Flower. There will be several more minis, as I have had so much fun making the flowers I have a miniature Mount Rainier pile of them ready to use!

Hand dyed background. Free motion embroidery leaves. Hand wrapped, machine 'quilted' flowers and grass. 11"x14" artist canvas mounted, ready to hang.


Poinsettia 'leaf' Applique'

Tree Skirt with poinsettias appliqued.

Here is another 'leaf' you may play with. I used the same basic method covered in my Leaves 101 tutorial ( http://quilts-artfromtheheart.blogspot.com/2012/05/leaves-101-tutorial.html ) and similar to my 'daisy flowers'. http://quilts-artfromtheheart.blogspot.com/2011/07/how-to-build-flower-101.html
Because you are using the rinse away backing to sew on, you must link the center's yellow portions a little, but the method is great-it allows air space around each one, just like the real plant. This one is rather large as it will be one among many in a larger piece of work, but you could 'whip up' miniatures in no time to mount on pin backs. The Holiday bazaars are coming soon! Get to it! :?}

WILD Flowers completed!

     In an earlier blog I gave a tutorial on making these wild flowers. I have now completed this piece and am madly making tons more flowers, as there seems to be more demands for it! Yeah!
     I am working on more of the wild variety, but have also started a silver gray color scheme, and a naturalistic yellows/browns theme to mimic sunflowers.
An important follow up I am going to add to the tutorial is the 'learned the difficult way' information regarding the background. Choose your background colors and size, piece, quilt and bind it, THEN place your flowers, stems and leaves onto it. I used masking tape to hold all the fluff and stuff aside while I struggled to quilt, which made it doable, but still difficult!
I will post a picture soon of the sunflower or gray theme, as I have come up with a further embellishment-little flower as center of big flower. Way cool!



I have been keenly interested in the felting/embellishing field day going on throughout the quilt art world. I drove a friend's felting machine for just a moment, but it was enough to help me decide I want to do the slow, old fashioned way of felting/embellishing, by hand. I want to be able to arrange and poke and arrange and poke, adjust, add, stab it some more...this is the result of my first attempt. Nothing to send home to Mom, but it is as fun as I thought it might be to do! I plan to take classes while in the UK, and come back a pro. :?}

Spring Green REALLY done...

Spring Green, when you last saw it, had an inefficient stick stuck through the hanging sleeve. The new owner requested that the 'soft' wall hanging be made into a 'hard' one. I achieved that by extending the mountains into the borders and mounting the entire piece on foam core, covering the raw edges on the back with a large piece of spring greens batik. I like this so much better! It truly looks complete now...

Last Vestige

 This was started during my very fun, creative, restive Art Camp week. Just finished it yesterday. I had to be in the proper mood to make design decisions...I loved creating the quilting; free motion/no pattern/leafy leafy. The gold background is one of my hand dyes, the tree is of commercial fabric. The leaves are the ones I tutorialed on this blog. I cropped the photo too closely to show, but there is traditional French binding around the perimeter, except in the root area of the tree. I left that 'raw'.


Contemporary Geometrics

"What Box?"
 I don't do geometrics! Well...at least I didn't before this past few months. Batiks and hand dyes = impactful wall art.
Green Leaves
Rust Leaves


WILD Flowers 101

WILD Flowers tutorial-another free motion embroidery play!

Pick your palette. Light, medium, dark works well. Any kind of thread. Variegated is fun to use on the 'bubble quilting'!

Choose your shape(s). Sturdy cardboard (cereal boxes, cardboard that comes in stacks of scrap booking paper, packaging-my rectangle shape below came from the box my surge protector came in) or strong paper plates. I cut one paper plate circle, then re-sized and stitched it back together to get the egg shape. Flatten the ends for easier wrapping! Circles are difficult to wrap-the thread wants to slip and slide. Place double sided tape around the perimeter to help tame it. Don't try for precision wrapping on circles, unless you want the huge hump of crossed threads in the center of your flower. Slightly sloppy disperses the threads and is easier to 'nail down' in the 'quilting' stage. Squares and rectangles are the easiest shapes to wrap, so they are a good shape to start with for practice.
The larger the window, the larger the finished shape. The wider the border, the wider the finished fringe. (you can always trim it down shorter when finished)

First wrap, North to South. I usually choose the darkest thread.

Second wrap, East to West, same dark thread.
Repeat the wrapping process with the second color, North-South, East-West. (I usually choose the lightest shade) The more you wrap, the thicker the fringe and shape. Wrap to taste, or as long as your patience holds! :?}

*Be sure and set your machine up for free motion embroidery. Feed dogs down, less tension, less pressure foot, hopping/embroidery foot.

Begin by sewing a straight stitch around the window's perimeter to initially secure the threads. I have now changed to the third thread, 'star of the show'. If you struggle with threads tangling in the hopper foot, just place a piece of clear 'Solvy' on top of the thread to keep your foot free to move and not tangle up.

Begin the decorative stitching in the window. I like to use 'bubbles', but there are no rules, just the need to 'link' all the threads together to make 'whole cloth' when released from the cardboard frame.

Bubbles completed.

Time to snip all the threads free from the frame, releasing the fringe.

Fringe released, piece complete. Begin again-it's addictive!
WILD Flowers-work in progress. I am creating the stems by wrapping various fabrics around cotton rope. I free motion embroidered the leaves in all kinds of colors and variegated threads. I am auditioning borders. PLAY! IMPORTANT UPDATE
Choose your background colors and size, piece, quilt and bind it, THEN place your flowers, stems and leaves onto it. So much easier than trying to work around all that fluffy stuff, stems and leaves! :?}


Iris completed

La Couleur Pourpre is complete, made its debut at the Chelan Art Show. I have finished some other things as well, but just haven't been home to photograph and download. I will try and do so this coming week.


Morning Glory aka...

Now that I have used the skill saw to cut a thin piece of plywood to size, put a layer of batting on the front of that plywood, glued and stapled blue, then green, hand-dyed fabric on top of that, then placed the quilt, then applied some more flowers in the border with a grand finale' of a few hand stitched stems, Husband has changed his mind about the 'Elvis velvet painting'.  He now proclaims, "That'll sell!"   :?}


Now what?

Morning Glory quilted...but now what?
 I quilted and quilted this piece, "go with the flow" style, so it is a very busy sky. I used some variegated threads. It all just disappears from a distance, which is good! The foreground flowers are supposed to be the stars of the show...
The quilting 'saved' this piece as far as my husband is concerned. He voices his opinion of my work when I ask him to. Morning Glory got the harshest verdict yet-velvet Elvis painting! But now he says it is okay... :?}  My current dilemma is, how am I going to 'frame' it after I bind the edges?  It is 42" wide!

Auditioning Twigs

This twig does not 'do it'! I may have to 'string it up'! (sold)
 What did I ever do before pc's and digital instant gratification? My design wall is a great help in designing and finalizing my work, but I need that one step further away that pix from the camera give me.
This twig works...but it needs some bling dangling on the left!


From 'placemat' to art!

 I finally am getting around to transforming my Four Seasons from 'placemats' (a gentleman customer wanted to know if that is what they were) into wall art. Summer Blues got willow branches tied with yellow grosgrain ribbons and stretched with 'spider webs' to join it to the frame (invisible thread artfully placed). Sold.
 Winter Silence got willow branches and snow ball wire to simulate falling snow. The picture tells me I may have gone overboard with the snow... I can fix that! I will add Fall and Spring as soon as they are finished, which is almost! Available for sale.


Viking-less Handwork

My 38 year old Viking died 2 1/2 weeks ago. Second motor I have burned out on the poor overworked machine! There are ongoing withdrawal symptoms occurring...
I am cranky, as the company I ordered the new motor from took 11 days to ship, not bothering to email me that it wasn't in stock and would take more than the 5-7 days promised on their site.
I am weepy because when the motor finally did arrive, it was the wrong one! I would have loved to be really cranky at the company-but the dufuss onus landed on moi...I had ordered the wrong one!
I have trouble focusing on what art work can be done by hand, as I keep looking over at the gutted carcass of my Viking siting on the kitchen table. The Eldredge is a sturdy little fellow, but does not do zig-zag, so my options of sewing are limited.
But, this has had a bright side. In my search for projects I can do until my new motor comes I re-watched Gilda Baron's landscape technique and went at the 4 special panels I had purposefully dyed for this. So, here is step one in the progression of playing with paint, sequins, beads, cardboard, bubblewrap and non-skid drawer lining.
I have added beads and sequins to the blue panel, variegated pink French knots and yellow seed beads to the pink panel. I chopped up my well-loved purple silk shirt, using the buttons and silk as petals and flower centers. I am leaning toward leaving the orange panel as-is. Once I get my Viking running I will free-motion some more stems, do a little machine lace for bushes, then quilt the living daylights out of the skies. Hurry motor, hurry!


"Bead" necklace

Colouricious's "Mom", Jamie, keeps sending out interesting newsletters suggesting, "Try this!" "Look at this!" I usually try everything once, as you never know when your next 'bestest' genre may crop up... When the bead necklace was featured the other day I ran out to the shed and whipped one up. Only fun kids and crazy ladies like me would actually wear this! Really fun and bright! Thanks, Jamie~  ( I didn't have large beads-so I raided my childhood stash of marbles!)  Colouricious' link can be found to the right on my blog home page.


This is still 'rough draft' form, but I wanted to show you a before picture. I already love it, so the finished piece should be a winner! The rocky basalt upheavals near Riverside, WA are incredibly interesting. The lava must have kept building up before shoving the mound forward, then repeating. The 'lava' was created with dryer lint. First I sprayed basting spray on the batting, mushed, arranged and placed the 'basalt', then sprayed that with basting spray. Next I used sand paper to make water color pencil dust, brown and black, sprayed it with water to blend, and let it dry. I had strip pieced the gradation sky and field/foliage. I like the linear sky, but the fields needed breaking up. The plan is to satin stitch everything down, once my beloved Viking gets his motor installed. STILL waiting for it to arrive!



A while back I  posted a picture of the yo yo barrettes I am making. Tonight I made 'Darla' to display those barrettes. I sandwiched 4 layers of warm and natural batting between two face shaped cotton fabric, sewing just crescent shapes for the eyes (as if they were closed) and then an O for the mouth.  The camera makes it look like I shaped the whole face! Fun!
For the hair, I took two shades of orange yarn, braided them and applied them to Darla's head with hand stitching. She looks stunning with all her clips in! :?}

Last of the slashing work

 My beloved Viking sewing machine died last week. I have ordered a new motor, but meanwhile I am sewing on a circa 1890's Eldredge. We are talking straight ahead straight stitch and that is it. But that is enough to do the slash work sewing!


Ebb tide