Wednesday, March 2, 2011

From Fallen Oak Leaves to Art Quilts

Last fall I spent some time picking up fallen oak leaves and acorns in Salmon Arm and I had a great time experimenting with the various ways these could be incorporated into art quilts.

I love working with hand-dyed fabrics and this beautiful light sage green piece is one that I'd saved for quite a while before the right project came along for it. I love the way that I was able to create a circle of oak leaves by rubbing the real leaves with dye sticks and then creating organza leaves from the same shapes and layering them in the centre of the quilt.

The stitching is a combination of hand embroidered seed stitches, with varying combinations of brown and green in the threads, and free motion machine quilting. The finishing touch is some beautiful hand-dyed and hand-spun yarn from a friend . . . with some of the acorns threaded onto the yarn. There are just a few clear beads stitched onto the quilt. Approximately 18" square.

Click on the images to enlarge them to see more detail.

The photo of the second quilt made in this manner is actually done on a piece of commercial batik and the leaves are arranged in such a way that the stitching around them created a bit of a heart shape . . . the pale gold colours have just a touch of rust and they swirl with a bit of bluish-grey to create a beautiful backdrop for the leaves. Approximately 16" x 20".

I will be teaching this as a workshop at Sun Peaks Resort in July 2011.