Wednesday, July 30, 2008

and another quilt

Why work on only one quilt, when you can also work on two quilts at the same time :-). The theme for the coming Bunbury (Australia) show is: A piece of paradise. With this show it is compulsary that you use the fabric they send you in your quilt. This year the chosen fabric is the rose print you can see in this picture:

Not really my favourite type of fabric, but I have an idea for this theme so the fabric will find it's place. This is how the quilt looks now:
Not much to be seen:-). I will not post more pictures of the quilt, well maybe a detailed one, but not the whole quilt. The show is in spring 2009. After that I will show you what I made.

Monday, July 28, 2008

new black and white quilt

I started working on a new quilt yesterday. Starting point is a picture of aspen which I took while I was in Minnesota.
As you know I love black and white fabrics, so I decided to make this quilt in those colors. The next step was to dye a gradation of black which resulted into these colors:

I cut the fabric into irregular shapes and placed them on top of the batting. Then I cut the shapes of the trees out of plain white fabric and fused everything together. On this picture the quilt is on top of my tables, therefore the angle is not correct but you get an idea how it looks now:

Sunday, July 27, 2008

quilties swap

I participated in Lenna Andrew's brown and robin egg blue quilties swap and this is what the mail brought me yesterday. These 4 lovely quilties are made by Val Duncan, Kara Klein, SaraEllen Davis and Andrea Millington. I find it always amazing how everybody interpretates and uses the colors in their own way. If you want to join in one of Lenna's swaps go to her site and check. She regularly opens new swaps. And I better start working because I am also participating in her Shades of Sunshine (yellow/orange/red) swap and I have not yet started working on those quilties.

Friday, July 25, 2008

two more journal quilts

For my journal quilt group I had gotten behind in making a monthly journal quilt so this week I had to do some catching up. This is the quilt I made for July:

I quilted the silhouet of the seed pods of the Lunaria annua (Judaspenning in Dutch and Honesty or Moneyplant in English) on a piece of handdyed fabric. The real seed pods I glued in between two sheets of mica. These mica sheets were glued on top of the quilt. Title of this journal quilt is: Trapped.
And this is what I made for June. I attended the Shibori Symposium in Minneapolis so it was suitable that I picked shibori as my theme for this month. The background is made from different sizes of strips from one shibori dyed piece of fabric. On fabric I printed names of a number of different Arashi shibori types. These I fused and stitched to the background. Some additional quilting was added.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

title has been found

Thanks to the input of Kathryn a title for the white quilt has been found. She send me an email with several suggestions and I have decided to go for: Treasures in the Sand. I can now make the label and than the quilt is completely finished.
Kathryn I loved the names you sent me. Whenever I am stuck will you help me again?

Tuesday, July 22, 2008


The last couple of months I have been working on and off on this quilt. Now it is finished, only I still need a title. The quilt is made from white dupioni silk, hand made paper, bark, elk teeth and rattle snake bones. A collection of all kind of white stuff. Some words came to my mind which gives an impression of what I am after, but a definite title is not yet there. I have been playing with the words: white, desert, remains, sand dunes. The title ideas are at the moment: 'Bleached out in the desert' and 'White desert' and 'Remains of former life'. I still feel that the proper title is not among them. If you have an idea for a striking title, please let me know.

Sunday, July 20, 2008


I came across some left over strips from my Start quilt when I was cleaning my studio. Throwing fabric away is difficult for me so I started sewing them together. When finished I had a strip which was longer dan an A4 (11,5"). I am a member of Afier - the Dutch journal quilts group - and in this group we all make a monthly journal quilt. For some reason I had gotten behind this year, but this strip of pieced fabric gave me the idea for my May quilt. You see the result here. I cut the strip so that it had wavy lines and stitched it in between white fabric. The quilting lines follow the same wavy lines. Simple but effective. The two round circles at the right are buttons which I glued on top of it. Finding a title for a quilt is quiet often the hardest thing. For this quilt I came up with the title: Scraps. I admit not very original, but it was the starting point for this journal quilt :-).

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

White swans, black swans

The present theme for the Dutch challenge group 'De Uitdaging' is music and the theme for the English sistergroup is a person you admire. This quiltlet combines both themes. For music I picked a Dutch children's song called 'Witte zwanen, zwarte zwanen' (in English: White swans, black swans) and for the person I admire I picked Escher. The lyrics of the song are printed on fabric and fused to the background. Maybe I will give the fabric a light color as you hardly see the parts of the white swans who are in front of it. The swans are cut out of black and white fabric and also fused to the background.
The quiltlet is almost finished. I am waiting for a mold for a Victorian key. A sentence in the song is about England is closed and the key is broken. With clay I will make a key and 'break' it before I bake it.
Size of the quilt is 20"x20" or 50x50 cm.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Shibori + question about inspiration

Today I have more pictures of shibori but first I will answer Judi's question. In a comment she asked where I got the ideas for my quilts. That depends what I want to do. Sometimes I let my mind wonder and follow the leads it gives me. Sometimes it might be an item that I see and my mind makes a click and I have found an idea.
If I am working with a theme, I often use Google as an inspiration source. Type in the word and look at the images you get. Other times I let my mind wonder around the word of the theme. And follow the route my mind takes. For instance I am at the moment working on a quilt with the theme 'Music'.

This is a very broad theme, so out of the many types of music you have, I picked children's songs. Google lead me to a site which had an alphabetical list of children's songs. Out of these I picked 2 songs which sounded attractive to me. In Dutch the titles are: 'Alle eendjes zwemmen in het water' en 'Witte zwanen, zwarte zwanen'. I don't know whether these songs are known in English as well, but Iif I translate them the titles are something like: 'All the ducks are swimming in the water' and 'White swans, black swans'.

The next step was looking at pictures of ducks and swans (again using Google). This lead me to a picture of Escher Moebius of birds. Seeing this picture I knew I had found the idea for my music quilt. These tessellations of birds in combination with the sheet music of White swans, black swans are the two elements I will be using.

Okay, it is now time for some more shibori pictures:

For above picture I folded the fabric lengthwise in 2, than I folded it again roughly at 1/3. I wrapped the fabric diagonally across a pole.

This fabric was wrapped around a 4" pole and wrinkled diagonally. Rubber bands were tied at the beginning and the end of the piece. Because of the dark edges at the right side and the top you can see that part of the fabric was open to the full exposure of the dyebath.

On this blue fabric I had used masking tape before I wrapped it diagonally around a 2" pole using cotton cord to keep it in it's place. After this I pushed the fabric down. You can see that part of the fabric was overlapping because there are 2 squares in each other at the left where the dye had more difficulty penetrating.

This green fabric was wrapped diagonally around a 2" pole. When I pushed it down, I gave it a twist.

This is an unusual piece of fabric. It was made in two sessions. The first layer was done while using inactive procion dyes on a not presoaked fabric using a foambrush. I used yellow and red and the fabric really looked orange. This was left to dry.
The next day I wrapped the fabric diagonally around a 1,5" pole. After the 2nd dyebath the orange had disappeared and only this pale yellow remained.
It was the first time that I did this kind of underpainting and I have to experiment more to see whether other colors respond the same way if you don't use soda ash.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Start is finished

A bit of a strange title for this post :-), but what I wanted to say is that the quiltlet with the theme Start is completed. Here is a picture of it. In reality the knitting is a bit more turquoise than the picture shows. From the needles the yarn goes over the quilt and ends in a little ball hanging under the quilt. It is not a masterpiece, but I had fun making it and that counts too.
Okay, that is one commitment down, now there are only 7 or so more to be done.

Sunday, July 06, 2008


Today I show you some of the fabrics I dyed while I attended the Shibori Symposium in Minneapolis last month. All of these pieces are arashi shibori, each one has its own twist to it.

This piece was made by using a stitching tube of fabric. The stitching line was about 3"away from the edge of the fabric. After the fabric was pushed this down over a 4" pole these 'flaps' were dyed solidly while the other part of the fabric got the shibori pattern as it was crunched down.
The purple fabric also started out as a stitched tube. In this case the tube was much larger than the pole (1,5") required. This extra fabric was pleated while the tube around the pole was wrapped with cotton thread. The pleats got less dye than the other parts of the fabric creating this leave type of shapes on the final piece.

Instead of a pole you can also do arashi shibori over a thick rope. For this piece I used a rope about 0,5"-0,75" thick. The rope has its own pattern contrary to a pvc pipe and this shows in the final result. The dry fabric was wrapped diagonally over the rope with a cotton thread, pushed down and tied at the edges.

This fabric is the result of multiple layers of shibori. It started as a stitched tube pushed down over a 4" pvc tube. This was dyed blue. As you can see the stripes run horizontally. Before I continued with the second dye bath I first removed the stitching which had formed the tube. The second layer was created by first folding the fabric. The left part was closest to the pvc tube. You can see that the color there is lighter than at the right side. This time I wrapped the fabric diagonally across the 4" pole using a cotton thread and pushed it down. In this sample the second dye bath was green. By using 2 colors of dye it is easier to see how the fabric was created.
More pictures of different variations will come later.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

nested round robin

Yesterday I was writing a list of the quilt commitments I have for the coming months and I ended up with a total of 8. That is the reason that you will see a range of different quilts as I am working on several at the same time.
This is a picture of the nested round robin we are doing with my dyeing group. Nested in this case means that the top does not leave my house. Every month we get a notice saying the colors which have to be used and the technique. Because of my vacation I still had to do June so I worked on both months tasks today. For the June row we had to use triangles in monochromatic colors while white/grey/black could be added. I had only dyed one medium value colorwheel and as I had no idea what dye powders I had used, I had to change the rules a bit. As color for the row I picked black and I fused random cut triangles on top of it. For July the challenge was to use a twisted ribbon with split complementary colors. I could have chosen to do a traditional twisted ribbon block, but I like to work more freestyle so that was not an option for me. I cut two ribbons out of fabric and fused them on top of the background fabric. On purpose I placed this twisted ribbon in only one corner. Size of the quilt till now is 18"x18".

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Start + Minnesota quilt

As I mentioned in my previous posting I started working on my Start quiltlet. The background is now pieced as you can see in this picture. The quilt is now a sandwich (I used my favourite Fusible Hobbs) and is ready to be quilted.

When I was in Minnesota my friend Kelly suggested that we should make a quilt to memorate this holiday. And as we are both always in for a challenge we decided that we would start with one piece, divide this into two and both of us would continue working on it after the holiday. The pictures you see here are the beginning steps. Background fabric is a piece of fabric which we rust dyed. The Starbuck symbol (we both love their coffee and frappucino) was made from a darkgreen batik - I bought lots of batiks when I was there - , covered with gauze and fused with Misty Fuse to the background fabric.

The next step was a drastic one :-). With a rotary cutter Kelly divided the quilt into two pieces and this is how the quilt looks now. We both have samples of the different types of fabric dyeing/painting we did which will be added and some other additions. Size of the quilt before cutting was approximately 16"x16". How big the results will be is not yet known, but I will keep you posted.