Monday, December 14, 2015

Concept to Quilt: Implementing Your Ideas





Scene: You're relaxed--just falling asleep, and the images are flashing through your head. Some people might hear music, but my movie is a total run of images and color. One catches you, and you think, "I better not forget that." 

Action: You roll over to grab your sketchbook that's always on your nightstand, and rough it out. You've recorded it because #1. It might not come again, and #2. It might ask someone else.


I've spent months reading everything I could find on creativity. Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert, (author of Eat, Pray, Love), was excellent. You might feel a few of her ideas border on corny or hokey, but it's an excellent read to consume in bites. Many ideas confirmed ones I've held, but this thought about an idea looking for someone to bring it to life was very interesting. 

Do you know that several inventions have been developed across the world at the same time without all parties being aware of the other? Who invented the light bulb? The answer may surprise you. 

I was talking to my friend, Beth, from Cooking Up Quilts the other day about this new direction I seemed to be pulled. I told her about the idea that was literally hounding me. She got quiet, and then said she had had nearly the same idea just recently, but with a slight modification. I'm not sure if her sketch was exactly mine, but we were close. The idea was out there for sure! I had to make it.




What do you do with your ideas?

I started by enlarging my notebook sketch on the printer. Then I taped it to the table, and covered it with freezer paper. I followed the same general lines, but extended it to about 18" x 30". I wasn't sure how this was going to work out.





I cut each piece out in sections, and ironed alternating bands onto scraps of Kona cotton. I started carefully by aligning the pattern with the grain of fabric, but by the end it was willy-nilly. 




When I tried to iron them to the fusible web, I learned the value of labelling each section! It was chaotic. I also have a lot to learn about fusible web.



Each section was arranged on top of a foundation piece of Kona cotton, and I covered the whole piece with a large piece of parchment paper to protect my iron. I had a mess going with bits of fusible web stuck to the top side of pieces, too. When it was time to remove the freezer paper templates, a few bits of the fusible web had bonded with the paper, etc., etc. It was careful trimming, and lots of deep breathing.



There were some pieces that refused to bond, and it wasn't as precise as I would have have liked, but this was an experimental piece. I was okay with the imperfections. 


Two scrap batting layers were used. A cotton on the bottom, and a poly-cotton blend on top to add puff and texture to the quilting. I'd never done that, but I'd read about it. I used Aurifil Invisible Thread to tack down all the vertical lines, then moved to the curves. In full disclosure, I was still messing with pieces that didn't want to bond. I tried my iron while the piece was in the longarm, and finally resorted to an Elmer's Glue Stick. Remember, it's all an experiment.



My HQ curved rulers got used for the first time, and you can see how that double batting layer is working. 

There are many things I don't know how to do. You may have approached this project differently, and I would appreciate any of your ideas. 

On the subject of creativity, and bringing our ideas to life: If it scares me a little, I'm on the right path. 

Follow me on Instagram as PINKDOXIES. I hashtag these creative projects under #bravequilter #pinkdoxies. No guarantees on how this will turn out, but the process may lead us both to grow in another direction. Share your experiments!

21 comments:

  1. Good for you! It's great that you don't mind being a bit scared but are prepared to jump in and play around with your ideas to see how you can make them work. I love this idea.

    ReplyDelete
  2. How happy Iam that you show your beautiful quilt on the Show and Tell Monday!!tank you from Bambi and hug!!

    ReplyDelete
  3. It's great! Glad you were able to get your vision onto paper and then into a project.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I saw your little snippet on IG today and was hoping to get a chance to get a more comprehensive view. Looks like a successful experiment. Has a bit of a Dr. Seuss flavor.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I saw this on Instagram and thought how in the world did she make that? Thanks for sharing about that process a bit. And how very cool that you and Beth were on the same wave length! I will have to check out the books you suggested.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I didn't know you had a long arm machine! Did you just get it recently? Color me JEALOUS :-)

    I love your concept and I love how your "experimental" piece is turning out. Did you cut up both the black and white fabrics, or just the black fabric?

    ReplyDelete
  7. How cool is that! This post was so inspiring!

    ReplyDelete
  8. I like the way you expanded the design into a rectangle! If you want to enjoy working with fusibles, I suggest The Applique Pressing Sheet by Bear Threads -- about $18 -- but lasts forever (I've had mine for at least 15 years) and well worth the money since it eliminates many of the issues you experienced!! Good investment for sure!!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Very cool. Hope you share the quilting in a future post. Like you, I will grab my notebook to jot down ideas before they escape.

    ReplyDelete
  10. This post was well-timed for me. I have been taking photos of different patterns I see - windows, houses,woodwork, nature. I see quilts all the time in these images but havent made the hop to the next step. Youre creative process of jumping in, taking a chance, mixing up different ways to go about it, has given me courage to get started. Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
  11. So my vision ended up looking nothing like yours - and I love them both! It's so much fun to play and experiment and it's very inspiring for me to see what you do each week. This piece is wonderful Julie!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Not bad at all especially for an experiment. I think you are going in the right direction. What fusible web did you use?

    ReplyDelete
  13. I have a Teflon sheet that I use for fusible web and it is fanTAStic. Really enjoy following your journey from in your head (oh that is ME often just before falling asleep, or on my daily walks) to on the Avanté. Oh, YES, I do know about the "universal consciousness" that is out there waiting for creative souls to tap into!!... authors, artists, songwriters, and on and on have written of their experiences when certain things 'wrote or drew themselves'. The whole facing fears thing...yep yep,it leads to growth, right, and you are sure putting on weight ;-)

    ReplyDelete
  14. Your work is amazing! I absolutely love your idea and how you've brought it to life. I've had an idea rolling around my head for about 4 months, but haven't acted on it. I didn't really think anything about it until you made the comment about an idea choosing you. Now I am feeling prompted to do something about my idea before someone else does! Thank you for the motivation!

    ReplyDelete
  15. Impressive work! Thanks for sharing the path of your creation. I look forward to seeing your work on instagram. P.S. I found you via Christine Slaughter To-Do Tuesday

    ReplyDelete
  16. nice to see the process, not just the product.

    ReplyDelete
  17. What fun to play with your own idea! I've only once had a quilt brainstorm/midnight idea, and I have it sketched out...one of these days, I will take the time to see if I can turn it into reality. Love how your quilting looks on your frame!

    ReplyDelete
  18. Beautiful work! It is always neat to have an idea and then create it!

    ReplyDelete
  19. So neat to see your process, and thanks for linking up to Building Blocks Tuesday!

    ReplyDelete

It's always enlightening to hear your thoughts or suggestions. I try to respond in a timely manner, but admit life is very full here! I will return comments online if it's of general interest, but offline if a personal response is more appropriate. Give me a shout with anything urgent at julie@pinkdoxies.com, and I'll try to get right back with you. While I believe in free speech, spamming will not be tolerated, and as in all our interactions, speak kindly.

If you want to be certain of a personal reply, leave your email or email me privately. Many people are not even aware when they have become a no-reply blogger. Yes, I know it's frustrating for us all.

Julie