Summer SHIMMER – completed!

MarveLes Art StudiosBlogs 6 Comments

This is what I began with.  My first piece of shibori-styled, hand-dyed fabric, made in the glorious summer-hot days!

 These are the threads I chose to create Summer Shimmer:  YLI threads in three styles: Candlelight, Pearl Crown Rayon, and Designer 6, all wonderful textures of thick threads from YLI.  I also used GLITTER and Rainbows tri-lobal polyester from Superior Threads.

And I also chose a bit of Angelina fibers and Textiva film in golden tones for a reflective feel, which makes me think of the fun of a pool with a bunch of kids laughing, jumping around and splashing! See posts here and  here.

I cut it into long, curvy pieces, and placed them where I wanted them on my quilt top, before I began quilting.  (It’s really alot easier that way!)  I added additional angelina fibers, too. 

 The picture above was when I hung the piece in my dining room to evaluate.  Hmmm… I’m likin’ it … still – it needs ‘something more.’ Back to the machine! Add the GLITTER thread in a darker, turquoise blue.  Binding is already on it, too, at this point.  But I knew that I could still add thread play without any buckling or warping… so I DID.  Can you see the difference in the picture below?  A matter of personal preference… but I did some MORE!

The next picture is without the Glitter thread… 

And then… after adding a bit more of the Glitter thread.

I think I’m on the right track – it fits in with the summertime images I had as my inspiration when I began with the piece.  
Sometimes.. it just takes a few days for me to figure it out… and not being in a hurry is a big advantage.  Getting it “just right” — like “The Three Bears” children’s story with the beds…chairs, and porridge. 
And I think this piece is just right now!

I found that after playing with it on the wall, I really liked the versatility of it hanging either vertically or horizontally.  My favorite is the horizontal, which evokes childhood memories of playing at the pool, laughing, screaming, splashing, taking swimming lessons… the beautiful cool, aqua blue water, and then later in the afternoons… the heat waves from the hot prairie sun as we dried off! The pool was very much a sanctuary for myself, my brothers and sister, and some peace of mind for my Mom.  She saved to buy our family season passes, and made sure we knew how to swim.  As a single mom, at least for those few summer months, she knew we were well occupied, having fun, and safe at the pool.

I think the Glitter added that ‘fine bit of detail and movement that really appeals to me, personally.  There is a point in free motion quilting, when you may be a bit disappointed with your threadplay, and think it’s not going as well as you’d hoped.   That is exactly where you should be, as you progress in getting to know more in the quilting process.  You will find with your stitching, when more is needed, and when it’s time to stop! It’s really a matter of the time spent free motion quilting, I think.  I’m figuring it out more as I quilt… more!  As I continue to learn, I’ve also realized how much there is to just loving the learning process, itself.  It’s not just about the finished quilt piece. It’s really part of a larger journey.

Let me be transparent with you all here, regarding the photo above, with the yellow and blue curly-q’s.  I’m not sure I’m crazy about the blue ones… perhaps I went too far. Or perhaps I could have chosen a different motif… I don’t regret it, it’s just part of the fun of exploring, trying new things… and stretching yourself beyond what is comfortable!  Be adventurous… be something of a risk-taker! I’m glad I did, as I’ve discovered more about what I like.

But I sure do really dig the overall look, and feel, and the happy SUMMER memories this evokes for me.  It gives me great joy!

 I dig the binding, too.  It is a commercial batik… and I think it most excellently ties in with the feel of the quilt—it’s colors, it’s movement, enhancing the overall quilting style, yet defines the space and shows off the lovely curving edges that emulate that pool-like quality I was going for.  It’s a darker color value in the same color family, and finishes nicely (in my opinion!). Most importantly – it makes me happy when I look at it. 

Begin! Choose something you love, whether it’s the fabrics, a pattern, threads, quilting, motifs, or all! Be inspired. Love what you do. In teaching, I encourage students to do just that.  Just begin!

So this is how it is hanging right now.  I will make hanging sleeves for this piece so it can either way. 

Which way do you like it best?  Hanging vertically or horizontally?

Note: picture above was taken before I added the additional Glitter thread.

Comments 6

  1. What Fun!
    It makes me happy and it also makes me want to get busy!
    Thanks for the view…
    LuAnn in Oregon

  2. I so get the pool feeling! My mom did the same thing–gotta love the Chester pool babysitting service. It isn't like that now. I love this piece and you make it look so easy. Good job

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