You'd think after 30 years of quilting, I'd have learned every clever way to sew together fabric, right?! Apparently not. This week, I'm here at Marc Adams School of Woodworking taking a Stitched Mosaics class from Timna Tarr. Wow! Am I having fun! I'm not sure what is more amusing...learning a new process of translating a favorite photo into an art quilt or being surrounded by a bunch of people who have no idea what quilting is beyond that its something that goes on a bed. Let's just say that the ladies in my class have been taking some time to re-educate the woodworkers in the other classes this week.
The process seems deceptively easy. Blow up your favorite photo, grid it out into 2" squares, chose fabrics to match the photo, and sew them all together. No problem right?! Welllllll, there is a bit more to it than that. Timna has taught us all the skill of prepared turn under machine applique using Best Press starch which is useful in all sorts of applications. Here though, we used it to do the blocks that had more than one color in them. Plus the whole process is a great exercise in value and color! It's enough to make your head spin!! It all adds up to a week of a lot of thinking, sewing, and Advil.
So here is the play by play...
Day 1: This is what I'm trying to make
This is where I was the first day....
Day 2: I spent the day getting a lot of the background sewn together ....started working on Tessa's hair, worked out the issues with her lace dress using the backside of light flower fabrics and started getting her hair together. (sorry it's blurry - the florescent lights threw off my camera)
Day 3: Finally tried the machine applique process...only had to do the block over 3 times to get it right! I did work out a system where I would prepare several blocks that needed to be applique and then sew them all at once which worked out nicely. The right side came together nicely and I found just the right fabric for the Queen Anne Lace Flowers...an RJR snowflake fabric!