Friday, September 28, 2012

Making a Luna Moth

I decided I needed a Luna Moth to dress up something I've been working on.

So I got out my new paints and a drawing I made and painted up some wings.

But I made a mistake.  Instead of four fronts and four backs, I made eight fronts.  And they don't all match up.

I stitched the top wings together -- they were close enough that the matching problem wasn't a big deal after a little more paint. But the bottom ones weren't so close.   So I used the backs inside out.  I figured I could add more paint later.  It was close enough that I didn't bother.

 For the moth body, I had these little tubes from the doggie clean-up bags that I have been saving -- I didn't know what for, but they seemed to be the right size for a beading project or something.

I wanted something soft and fuzzy and discovered this yarn (purchased at a close-out sale!) in my stash.  I ran a bead of glue down each side and wound the yarn around the tube.

Then I thought that the wings looked a little flat, so I stuffed them with a bit of wool batting through the convenient opening I had left in each one.

I machine stitched each wing closed and added a few lines of stitching to mimic veins.  

I haven't quite figured out how to attach the wings to the body, but I will worry about that when I assemble the whole piece.

I'm linking up with Nina Marie at Off The Wall Fridays (here)

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Hummer Progress

I finished the painting part of my interpretation of Statia Dougherty's wonderful hummingbird photo.

I really like these paints from Prochem.  They behave like Setacolors (long my faves), but I think the colors might be brighter and more intense.  They're cheaper too and since I can no longer obtain Setacolors locally, I have to do mail order.  The only thing I don't like is the little jars they come in.  I made a bit of a mess pouring them on my palette.

I wanted the hummer to stand out from the rest of the quilt, so I added wool batting and stabilizer (I used DecorBond by Pellon).  Then I added thread.  I used 50 weight Aurifil.

For Beth: here is the back side of the bird after adding the thread.  No, I didn't trim the threads very well.

I left a bit of the stabilizer extending beyond the edge of the bird so that it would get caught in the quilting and make the bird stable.

And here is the finished hummingbird before I layered and quilted the rest. 

Friday, September 21, 2012

Playing With New Paints

I recently ordered a starter kit of fabric paints from Prochemical and Dye (here).  Since I finished the quilting on the hibisci, I rewarded myself with a little paint play.

I got permission to use this wonderful photo from my old friend Statia Dougherty.  There is a wonderful yellow glow behind the leaves, so I masked off  the hummingbird and the branches and painted the background with lemon yellow mixed with extender medium.  Then I went over that with some greens mixed with extender.

Here is painting so far with the mask removed.  You can see the photo I'm using for inspiration at the top of this picture.

I had a couple of tiny jars of Prochem paint that were given to me some time ago and I added them to my color wheel along with the jars in the starter kit.  I can see that I'm going to need more extender immediately.

I'm linking up with Nina Marie at Off the Wall Fridays (here).

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Finished Quilting, But Oh Woe is the Thread

I finished up the quilting on the four hibiscus series quilts.  I will feature them individually in photos after they're bound.  I used mostly Aurifil threads -- the 50 weight spools -- for the leaves, flowers and beetle.

I had a lot of trouble with the background quilting.  I used some thicker threads and had skipped stitches, broken needles, and nests on the backside.  Not to mention the fraying -- arrrrggghhh!

I tried a series of different needles -- some worked better than others -- none was great.  The best was the 90/14 topstitch needle.  With a bit of silicon dripped over the eye.

But I still had trouble with fraying.  And I used threads from both YLI and Superior.

I've used the Superior King Tut a lot for quilting and this spool has been in my stash for a while -- it's not really old, but it's not brand new.  I was a bit horrified to see this little glob of fiber when I opened up the top to see what the spool was doing.  My LQS was happy to replace it, but they didn't have any in this same color; so it's on order and I just finished up using the rest of this spool... after I cut out the wee glob.

And here are the backsides of two of them.  I was sick of shopping in my stash and trying to decide which of my precious fabrics would be ok to "waste" on the back of my quilts.  So I went to my local Mega Fabric and Junk Store and purchased a bolt of inexpensive cotton that was a bit thicker than the stuff I use for piecing and my experiments.  I used a coupon, so it was pretty cheap.  I dyed the whole thing with leftover dyes and wound it back on the cardboard.  So now I have some special backing fabric that won't be "wasted" on the back.  And all that color hides anything I might want to keep quiet.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Three (mostly) Done, One to go

I've been  working on my hibiscus series.

This is the one that was painted with acrylic inks.   I used a cotton batt and cotton threads.

This was painted with thickened Procion dyes.  I used a wool batt for this one and cotton threads.

This was painted with Setacolor fabric paints and uses a wool batt and cotton threads.  I haven't finished the quilting here -- there will be more on the flower to highlight the petals.

And for Beth (who blogs here and to whom I owe a really long email) -- here is the backside of the acrylic ink piece.

I stupidly used a piece of white fabric -- it also features little white stars-- and so every stitch (and every mistake) shows.  I have had a lot of trouble with the thicker threads breaking.  I switched to a different type of needle late this afternoon and it was better.  Not great, but better.  I'll post about my needle troubles later.

I'll also post a picture of the backsides of the others -- but this will require a separate blog post, 'cause there's a secret back there...

My design wall looks the same as it did last time I linked up with Judy's blog, so I'm sharing these instead.  Click here to see some other people's design walls.