Thursday, June 27, 2024

Prayer Flags on Free Motion Mavericks

Welcome! I hope that you're having a great week 🌞 The weather has been all over the place but I've enjoyed stitching in my backyard as much as possible. Let's get on with the fun stuff 😎

Prayer Flag production

Last week I showed you the "Thanks" Prayer Flag (see Related links below). Here are the rest - in various states of completion.

"Joie" Prayer Flag - completed and hanging outside in my backyard

I took this picture earlier in the day yesterday and left it outside. It's rained in the evening but since it's going to be outside for the rest of the summer, I guess it got it's first dunking.

"Paix" (Peace) Prayer Flag - ready to be dyed

The "Paix" (Peace) Prayer Flag was bundled up with a big iron nail that came from the land around Arbor Gallery, as well as other small rusty pieces. 

"Paix" (Peace) Prayer Flag - bundled up for dying

This time I used 4 black tea bags and found a taller glass container to let it sit. It was outside in partial sun for the last two days. This morning I removed the bundle and squeezed some of the liquid. It's now drying in the back yard. Since it's now rather cool, it could take a couple of days. I'll bring it in if there's any rain!

"Paix" (Peace) Prayer Flag - in the
very strong black tea solution

"Paix" (Peace) Prayer Flag bundle drying outside this morning

Did you notice that wonderful antique metal milk can in the background? My artist friend Lyne painted it for me. I just absolutely love it! I've been wanting to take picture to post for a while but need to get the background plants looking their best....yeah, one day! This is the Spring side. I'll show you the other side later this summer 😍. Thanks Lyne!!!

Here is my last Prayer Flag  "Health". It's for Health of body, mind and soul.

The "Health" Prayer Flag just needs embellishment and a tea bath

To Do List

Sorry for repeating myself but here's what's left to do! 😊 I will be installing the work on July 3rd July 2nd (in 2 weeks less than 1 week) and I still have lots of work left to do. 
  • "Raining Pink Petals"
    • Stitch the bunny and butterflies in place
    • Prepare the dowel for hanging
    • Create a label
  • "Essence of Leaves"
    • Finish FMQ the background ✔
    • Fix the hanging sleeve ✔ and prepare the dowel for hanging
    • Create a label
  • Create one more fence art piece called "Squirrel!" 
  • "Thanks" Prayer Flag and Create 3 or 4 more Prayer Flags ✔
    • Finish embroidering and embellishing "Health" 
    • Dry and clean up the rust from "Paix" (Peace)
    • Dye and dry "Health"
    • Prepare for hanging once they are all done
    • Create a label for the series
  • Outdoor hanging sculpture
    • Make another fluffy blue cloud
    • Make one or more birds

What I learned
  • I've been putting quite a few hours slow stitching the Prayer Flags. I've worked it in a series so that they all have roughly the same size and feature some of the same fabric and embellishment.
  • I'm finding it hard to make the "Health" Prayer Flag different. I've just been inspired... I'm going to add empty tea bags to the piece and depict body, mind and soul. I just thought of this while I was preparing the post. 😁
  • I've figured out how to make the other fluffy blue cloud more efficiently. We'll see where that takes me.
  • I finished the FMQ (Free Motion Quilting) on the Essence of Leaves garden fence piece. I love it and will soon take an outdoor picture to share.
  • I've prepared all of the written information that was required for the exhibition and had to make a few decisions. So, my garden fence pieces now have a theme - they are Seasonal. 
  • "Raining Pink Petals" represents Spring, "Essence of Leaves" is Fall while "Squirrel!" will be Summer.
  • I'm basing my "Squirrel!" garden fence piece on the hoop that I made during a workshop with Bethany Duffy through Stitch Club (August 2022). You will probably recognize it!
  • I taught the journal making playdate on Monday for Out of the Box (OOTB). It was a hot, busy but fun time! I'm looking forward to sharing pictures if the participants send me pictures.
My inspiration for a second Squirrel! piece 😊

Related links
Linking parties
I'll be linking up to many fun linking parties. Why not check them out and remember to link up below.

Free Motion Mavericks

Welcome to Week 487 of Free Motion Mavericks. Thank you for linking up! Here are the projects from last week that included FMQ, ruler work or walking foot quilting. 

Kat of Scrap Box Quilts finished another baby quilt, this one based on a panel. It's so cute 😊. She FMQ around the quilt and the shapes.

Kat made up this cute baby panel quilt

Sally of Painted Thread participated in the 2 Colours Mystery Quilt Challenge with Joanne the Canuck Quilter. She adapted the quilt to make a headboard for her mother's bed. What a job! She stitched around the stars and straight-lines along the stripes to quilt it, then made a headboard and attached it! If you want more details, check out Sally's post!

Sally's 2 Colours Mystery Quilt 

Here is the finished headboard on the bed!

It's now your turn!

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter

Thursday, June 20, 2024

Outdoor art pieces coming along on Free Motion Mavericks

Hi and welcome to week 486 of Free Motion Mavericks. I'm staying away from the heat and humidity by being productive in my studio. The garden will have to fend for itself for the week 🌞 while I make more garden art for Fibre 15's upcoming show.

Raining Pink Petals

My first fence art piece is finished and looked rather nice in the backyard for its photo shoot. 😊

Raining Pink Petals fence art piece ✔

There wasn't much left to do to finish this piece except to add more petals on the sides. I looked through my fabric and found a perfect bunny and 4 butterflies to add to the piece. I used fusible web to attach them. I will be adding at least one or two invisible stitches in each of them before the installation. I'm creating a list below of all that's left to do to finalize these pieces for the installation.

Essence of Leaves

I've created another fence art piece using one of Connie's Textile Art fabric pieces that I bought last year. I mentioned her work in May when I bought more of her fabric at Fibre Fling 2024. I asked Connie how she had created this piece. She replied "I think I sun printed the lighter coloured ones and then used textile paint to stamp/print the darker coloured ones.  All done at the family cottage with leaves growing there.  I also used coarse salt on it."

Essence of Leaves

I attached the fabric to the outdoor woven fabric that I've used for all of my fence art pieces. I then FMQ the darker leaves and then the lighter ghost leaves. It still needs a little more stitching but I want to keep the emphasis on the leaves. I'm thinking of echoing the leaves in an orange thread that matches the background.

Our show's theme is "Impermanence". I named this piece Essence of Leaves since we can only capture the essence of the leaf in our art since they are impermanent.

Prayer Flags

I made the first of a series of Prayer Flags that will hang in the trees surrounding Arbor Gallery. A new workshop in the Stitch Club peaked my interest. I haven't had much time to participate in the last few months but this one came at the perfect time. The workshop to make a stitched and dyed sampler with Deb Cooper, is perfect for creating my Prayer Flags.

"Thanks" Prayer Flag dyed in tea

I made this first sampler using mostly white and off-white fabric. In the image below, I've placed the original fabric next to the dyed piece. I used a variety of thread - white #8 and #12 perle cotton, beige perle cotton, white linen cotton as well as white cotton sewing thread. I included a commercial fabric that had a white background with black lines. It's really interesting to see how the fabrics have taken, or not taken, the tea dye.

Dyed fabric with the original fabrics and thread

I embroidered the work "Thanks" on the t-shirt fabric on the right (two fabrics from the stick). I've added colour by threading through the back stitch. If you're wondering about the stick in the photo above... I learned a new technique - you stitch around a stick, remove the stick and voilà! It makes for very cool thread rings. In this case, I added some fluffy yarn (acrylic I suspect since it didn't take the dye) to create texture.

Prayer Flag - "Thanks"

Outdoor Hanging Sculpture - In The Sky

The hanging sculpture is looking good. I attached the Suns and Clouds to a branch. I painted Golden GAC-400, a textile stiffener, to the edges of the sun. What a difference it made. Hopefully it will be ok in the rain.

Applying some GAC-400 to stiffen the edges of the sun

Sunset with the fabric stiffener

As I put the sculpture together, I realised that my instincts were correct. My pretty cloud is too small. I will make another fluffy blue cloud to attach to the one already made.

Need to add to the fluffy blue cloud

After the cloud, all that remains is to make a bird(s) on the branch below. I thought of using one of my tamarack geese as a model, but they really do look like geese. Next to the geese, I found a beautiful soapstone bird. I'll use that as a model to make one or more birds out of wire and fabric.

Soapstone bird to use as a model

To Do List

The installation deadline is July 3rd (in 2 weeks) and I have lots of work left to do. I hope you don't mind if I keep a running tab of what needs to be done here. 😊
  • Raining Pink Petals
    • Stitch the bunny and butterflies in place
    • Prepare the dowel for hanging
    • Create a label
  • Essence of Leaves
    • Finish FMQ the background
    • Fix the hanging sleeve and prepare the dowel for hanging
    • Create a label
  • "Thanks" Prayer Flag
    • Prepare for hanging once the others are done
    • Create a label for the series
  • Create one more fence art piece called Squirrel! 
  • Create 3 or 4 more Prayer Flags
  • Outdoor hanging sculpture
    • Make another fluffy blue cloud
    • Make one or more birds
What I learned
  • I have so many pieces on the go that it was really good to spend the time figuring out what is left to do.
  • Most of the work is not too daunting. I have an idea and a title (Squirrel!) for the third fence art  - I just need to figure out how to do it (i.e. appliqué, FMQ, etc.) It will be something simple and fun.
  • The birds make me a little nervous but now that I've found my model, I'll find the YouTube video and get going!
  • I've had a lot of fun with stitching and dying with tea. I'm going to experiment with other types of tea to see what effects I can get. The stitching takes a while but it's relaxing and I can do that easily in the evenings.
  • I started a piece in Alaska that I was going to use as a prayer flag. For some reason, I kept hesitating. I finally figured out that our theme, "Impermanence" just didn't go with the very solid mountains of Alaska. I guess in the grand scheme of things everything is impermanent but I thought that it was stretching it. Besides, I couldn't make 3 or 4 more like it - it's just too time consuming. I'll share it with you, as soon as it's done.
  • As well, I'll be facilitating a journal making playdate for OOTB on Monday. I'm looking forward to it, but it is making things busy 😊
Related links
Linking parties

Free Motion Mavericks

It was a busy week! Thanks for linking up. Here are the projects from last week that included FMQ, ruler work or walking foot quilting. 

Kat of Scrap Box Quilts has finished her Dino quilt. She quilted it with lots of wavy lines - it will make a great toddler play quilt. 😃

Kat's great Dino play quilt

Frédérique finished another donation baby quilt. She used her very cute llama fabric and quilted it using a template to make the Pearl and Squares stitching in the sashing. Isn't it lovely? Lightly quilting and pretty 😍
Llamas Baby Quilt by Frédérique

It's now your turn!

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter

Friday, June 14, 2024

Alaska and a Quilt Show on Free Motion Mavericks

Hi and welcome! I'm back after a week away. Alaska was gorgeous but I caught a cold - so I've been resting to be ready to volunteer at our Quilt Show tomorrow. 

Alaska Wonders

Here are just a few highlights. The best part by far was a trip to the Alaska Rainforest Sanctuary and Totem Park, outside of Ketchikan. We did see a mama black bear across the river!

Stunning forest - so much to learn!

My favourite totem pole tells the story of how
nets were created for fishing

My daughter's hand next to a cub's
scratch mark on the tree

In Skagway, we visited the lovely town and the Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park. My daughter had done her homework and gave us a great mini tour of part of the town. I found the local quilt shop, Rushin' Tailor's Quilt Alaska and got a few Alaskan goodies. More on that in another post!

Two important figures of the area!

A gold miner and his dog

One of the most photographed buildings in 
Skagway - covered with driftwood! 

At Icy Straight Point, we learned that most of the population was in Juneau for Celebrations 2024. So, when we got to Juneau, we visited the Artists Market, one of the dancing venues and the amazing Northwest Coast Juried Art Show and Competition. What a treat to be able to attend these events. 

Native Artists Market at
Celebrations 2024
Dancing during Celebrations 2024

As you can imagine, I took enough photos of mountains and water to create art for a lifetime 😊 This first image is the inspiration for my in-progress piece. It's almost finished since it's a prayer flag for the upcoming outdoor exhibit. I'll share it with you as soon as it's done!

A classic view of the mountains - inspiration
for my Sea and Mountain prayer flag

Lovely sun on the water

Before I left, I was working on a Kawandi style mini quilt for the 2024 Table Scraps Challenge. I finished it on the ship but wasn't able to post it on time for the party, but here it is! I learned Kawandi style quilting from Jen Strauser during  Making Zen. It looks easy but it'll take much more than one mini quilt to master this technique - but what fun! 😍

I was unable to link up to the May party (pink) but since there's also some blue in the mini quilt, I'm linking up to June's 2024 Table Scraps Challenge. Here's a new picture.

Linking up to June's 2024 Table Scraps Challenge

Finished Kawandi style mini quilt

Almost finished the Kawandi style mini quilt

Making my first Kawandi style mini quilt

New Perle Cotton that I got for Mother's Day and brought with me!

As I mentioned, the Common Thread Quilt Guild is hosting their quilt show this Friday and Saturday in Ottawa. I entered Stéphane's Version 2.0 Quilt - I can't wait to take pictures since it will be hanging beautifully at the show. I'll be adding a couple of pictures here, so if you're not seeing Version 2.0 below, come back soon!

Version 2.0 and me!

Version 2.0 at the CTQG Show

What I learned
  • Travelling is fun, but also exhausting! We had a good time and visiting Alaska was lovely.
  • I'm glad that I was able to go to a quilt shop - there are many quilt shops in Alaska, what with the tourists and the long winters!
  • It was amazing to finally experience the midnight sun 🌞Dusk was around 11pm and dawn around 4am, but it was never dark. We could tell by the time we left Ketchikan that the night was getting darker.
  • I'm sure that I caught my cold on the planes between Ottawa and Anchorage. At least there was a lot of time to rest between ports.
  • I loved learning Kawandi style quilting. It's simple but not easy to do well. I hope to practice this technique and use it in my art work.
  • I had a great time on the ship working on my Sea and Mountain prayer flag. I'm looking forward to finishing it this weekend or early next week.
  • I have a LOT of work left to do on my outdoor art pieces. Many have been started but nothing finished yet!
  • I spent Friday at the quilt show - what wonderful quilts of all sizes and styles. We have very talented members! I was so thrilled to see Version 2.0 hanging properly. Mom would be proud!
Related links
Linking parties

Free Motion Mavericks

Welcome to week 485 of Free Motion Mavericks! It was a very productive week! Thanks for linking up. Here are the projects from last week that included FMQ, ruler work or walking foot quilting. 

Vicki of Vicki's Crafts and Quilting made a lovely gingham runner. You can see the lovely FMQ below!

Vicki's green gingham runner

Kat at Scrapbox Quilts made a second quilt to see how much quicker it would be using three fabrics instead of scrappy - turns out it's much faster! She quilted it with orange peel and backed it with a lovely fleece for the cuddle factor!

Kat's lovely cuddly quilt with orange peel FMQ

Denise of The Quiltery has outdone herself again! What a beauty 😍 Her Saint Paddy quilt, made with Island Batik fabric is really stunning! This was her Sew Along quilt. Denise quilted it with a FMQ loopty loop quilt design on her longarm.

Denise's Saint Paddy Quilt

Gail of Quilting Gail has finished her 2 colour mystery quilt. What a beauty that she FMQ meandered all over! 

Gail's finish of the 2 Colour Mystery Quilt

It's now your turn!

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter