Monday, October 12, 2015

Guest Blog – A Unique Wedding Present

I have a guest blogger today. Kathy Lajeunesse is a colleague and friend. We quickly found out that we had a common interest in art and textiles. Here is her blog:

While I consider myself creative, I do not consider myself much of a quilter with my one and only quilt project still unfinished after 15 years!  Recently though, my interest in quilting has been piqued in two ways.

The original wedding invitation
Every 3 to 4 weeks, I am inspired by Andrée when she brings in her latest quilt project to work. As her readers know, she is prolific turning out a quilt a month and often more. Secondly, last April I attended a show of the Ottawa Out of the Box Fibre artists, and I was blown away by the talent in that group and in particular by the beautiful landscapes made by several members. So in May, when the following invitation arrived in my mailbox for my niece’s wedding (designed by her fiancée) – I took the leap of faith that I could interpret the image and create a unique wedding gift for the happy couple.
Pastel colour palette
Pastel colour palette 
I decided to stay with the pastel palette. I began by surveying scraps of material in my own sparse inventory. I found a few fabrics, but needed more. I made a visit to Fabricland to match some more colours. With a few supplies gathered, I took them into work and received some advice from Andrée on how to proceed. She also shared a few written resources and off I went!

The background was pieced together in a morning and then I worked away at the details of adding embroidered trees, and appliqueing the barn into place over the next month or so. 

Embroidered Trees and Appliqued Barn
Embroidered trees and appliqued barn
Andrée offered to quilt the piece, and I took her up on the offer.  Following that, I added a few very fine sequins to decorate the roadside, and bound the edges.

The Groom and Bride on Bicycles
The groom and bride on bicycles 
Early on, I had decided that I would applique the cyclists on as a last step, although I was not sure exactly how that was going to play out. I surfed the web to see if I could buy some tiny bikes, but everything I found was too big.  In the end, I formed the figures and bicycle frames out of modelling clay and the wheels were made from rubber washers.  The bride and groom’s clothes were cut and sewn on VERY carefully – the wedding dress was made from raw silk left over from my own wedding dress sewn some 20 years ago!  Black felt was easy to work with for the groom. The last touch was to sew a message on the back.

I was pretty excited to present my finished wall hanging to my niece and her fiancée.  They loved it.

Quilt label
What I learned:
  • I love the creative process; OK, I already knew that.  Even if you don’t actually know how you are going to do something in the beginning, have faith in the creative process.
  • Material puckers if you don’t measure well.
  • My 40 year old sewing machine works just fine!
  • Purchasing material is addictive.
  • I can complete my unfinished quilt if I parcel a little time here and there.  That is my next project!
A unique wedding present
A unique wedding present
I`ve linked Kathy`s guest post to the following parties. Join in the fun and see what everyone is up to!


  1. Ooooh! Your quilt is lovely! What a special gift!

  2. Kathy, What a lyrical piece of art! Barbara B.


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