Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Strings and watercolor

Is your body clock reset yet?  Am I the only one who struggles with the time change?  It always take me about 5 days to get back to a routine when it happens.  Anyway, I never got around to sharing those questions and answers from last week.  So here is a short recap.

Can you use the gridded interfacing for a larger quilt, like a lap size?  Will it be too bulky or heavy?
  Yes, the gridded interfacing that I use for my wall hangings will work for a larger size too.  It does add a tiny bit of weight but not even to really be noticeable.  It is the same  weight of interfacing used in clothing.   I used a light weight clothing interfacing when I made Wonder of Color that used 2 1/2" squares.  It ended up about 48" by 55", and made the sewing all those squares a breeze.

Where do you get your patterns for your watercolor quilts?
   Out of my head, usually!  Most of the wall hangings focus on a light source and the rest of the quilt goes from there.  I may add applique or thread painting for a focal point.

   For large lap quilts, I usually use a strip piecing technique of some sort.  One example is the braid I used in Through My Wall.  Although this one is only 45" by 45", it could be made much larger by making more of the  braid strips  and making them longer .
   The piecing is a simple braid.  I used all floral fabrics and paid attention to the placement of each one to achieve the blending.  It is the interplay of  fabric  value that makes this appear so different from a normal braid quilt.

   So, watercolor quilts are not really limited to just using the small squares.  Use strips and there are lots of basic quilt patterns that can be adapted to get the look of a watercolor quilt.
   This is my latest watercolor project to use up a pile / huge stack of floral fabric strips.  The idea is adapted from the book, Awash With Color by Judy Turner.  I am using mostly  2" by 6 1/2" strips with a few narrower ones thrown in.  7 or 8 strips will give me a section long enough to trim to a  6" by 10 1/2" block.   Some sections are light, some are dark to medium, others are light to medium, etc.
   This has sort of turned into my "leader/ender" project for sewing between other things.  I have created stacks of the pieces that are sorted by value to be sewn together.  Notice the red plastic viewer beside them.  That is a tool to check for value by eliminating the color.....I view the stack or block thru it and I can then see just the value-- darkness or lightness--of the block.

  This project would work great with string strips of different sizes.....and not just for florals.  Think batiks especially....they would be great done this way.

     And a final question about Faceted Jewels----the quilt in my banner.
  Is there a pattern for the string quilt in your banner?   Will you be making another one?
    No pattern, but I did put the "road map" for coloring your own on the Patterns page.   On the Tutorials page you can find links to my posts about how I made this string quilt.
    Yes, I am planning to work on another string quilt this summer, just because those string baskets are full!  So if you want to sew along, get prepared.  I am thinking in June.
Thanks for the questions.....happy stitching.


Janet O. said...

You are so good to take the time to share what you have learned through your experience. You have such a knack for the beautiful watercolor quilts.

Exuberant Color said...

I always love your posts about watercolor quilts!

Sheila said...

I love watercolor quilts. Your's are beautiful.
I look forward to June.

Dana Gaffney said...

Seeing that braid again has me looking at my florals, I've always loved that quilt and thanks to you I did go buy some new neutrals :).

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