Sunday, October 31, 2010

The Blogger's Quilt Festival Is On!

"Wallflowers: #5"  ©2010  Diane Evans  (Private Collection)
It’s that time of year when Amy of Amy’s Creative Side begins her Blogger’s Quilt Festival.  This event is always so much fun – we all have the chance to view each other's favorite pieces and to share the stories behind our creations.
My entry is an art quilt that I made last year entitled “Wallflowers: #5.”  I’m especially proud of this little quilt, since it was juried into the 2009 National Small Art Quilt Works Exhibition at The Main Street Gallery in Groton, NY, and was subsequently sold by the gallery.  It was made with fabrics that were hand-dyed by Judy Robertson, and the piece is machine appliqu├ęd and machine quilted with Sulky rayon threads.  I’m always happy when I’m putting flowers in my creations – if they won’t grow in my garden (and they don’t), at least I can put them up on the wall.  They don’t need watering, either.
Do visit Amy’s site and take a look at all the fiber artistry on display there – you’ll find it’s a real “treat” (pun intended).


Sunday, October 17, 2010

"Looking For Space"

"Looking For Space" ©2010 Diane Evans  24" x 40"
Twelve years ago, I made my first set of Flying Geese in a curve; I learned the technique in my very first class at Quilting By The Lake with Caryl Bryer Fallert.  I was so proud of those geese -- I held onto them for years, waiting for the right project to come along so I could incorporate the little fellas into an art quilt.
Fast-forward to 2009: my fiber arts group, ARTAA, was invited to present an exhibition at the annual Adirondack Fabric & Fiber Arts Festival, and we chose the theme, “Flight.”  My inspiration had arrived -- I couldn’t wait to get started.
The idea of creating a kite-shaped quilt had been percolating in my mind for quite a while, so I worked out a design that would use the Flying Geese pieces and also fit the parameters we had set, which required the finished piece to be 24” wide, with no restriction on length.
I decided to use Caryl’s method of piecing:
1)  templates are cut from freezer paper and ironed to the back of the fabric
2)  each piece is cut out, leaving a ¼-inch seam allowance
3)  the seam allowance is folded over the template and ironed in place with the assistance of spray starch
4)  the pieces are joined with a fine zigzag stitch using invisible thread
The tricky part is deciding which pieces will be stitched over their neighbors; you fold the seam allowance to the back on an OVER piece, and you leave the seam allowance sticking outward on an UNDER piece.  This method definitely engages both halves of the brain – I found myself trying to think like an engineer.
In a future post, I plan to share the binding technique I came up with for creating a mitered corner that is smaller than 90° -- a REAL test of my construction abilities.
And I’m curious to know: did I win a prize for taking 12 years to complete a wall quilt?? What’s the longest amount of time you’ve ever worked on a piece???  Do share!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

More Happenin' things

©2009 Diane Evans  Our House  14” x 20”
If you live or plan to vacation near Los Alamos, New Mexico, stop by the Fuller Lodge Art Center between October 1 and November 13 to view their “Fall Fiber and Fashion Show”.  This exhibit is the art center’s salute to the fall season and features works in all media.  Contributing artists were invited to “play with form and function in fiber, or to design, create, and display their own fashions.”  The show will feature wall art and sculpture, as well as jewelry, scarves, handbags, and hats.
I feel most fortunate to have had four of my wall quilts juried into this wonderful show; you can see these pieces, along with the works of the other exhibitors, on the art center’s web site here.  This promises to be an exhibition of exciting and diverse art – I hope you can visit. I'm unable to see the show myself, so if you go, please be sure to tell me all about it  -- my quilts travel to more places than I do . . .


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