Thursday, September 11, 2008

Fresh Fish

I've been taking a journal quilt class at Colorful Quilts and Textiles for about six months now. The class meets once a month for nine months and is taught by the talented Susan Stein, owner of the shop. The purpose of the class is to learn a new fiber arts technique each month, go home and play around with that technique and hopefully create a small quilt block. Some of the techniques we've learned in class have been mono printing, fusing angelina fibers, sun printing, fused fabric beads, misty fuse sandwiches and coloring with Shiva paint sticks. I've tried to push myself to experiment with all of the techniques, even the ones I'm not quite sure about. There have been times that I've procrastinated until the day before class to experiment because the technique didn't initially inspire me. Surprisingly, some of those last minute creative sessions resulted in a few of my favorite quilts. Here's a couple of quilts that I've recently made:

Fresh Fish

The techniques we learned in class were photo transfers on fabric and rubber stamping on fabric. All of my quilts are 8 1/2 x 11 inches and start with cotton batting fused to a sheet of peltex (a heavy weight interfacing). The table cloth is stamped with red paint using a stamp that I made from an eraser. I took photos of one of my plates and silverware and printed them on fabric sheets. The neon fish is a sign from the public market in Seattle and was printed on fabric as well. The big gyotaku fish stamp is made by the very cool Fred Mullett. I love his stamps! After stamping the fish on fabric, I thought it needed some bling so I embroidered the fins and added a sequin to the eye. I satin stitched around the edge and stuffed it with polyfil. I glued the fish to the plate and that was it! I hung the quilt in my kitchen and have enjoyed looking at it, but I thought it needed a companion piece which leads to....

Sushi Bar

We made fabric beads in class last month so I decided to try making some sushi beads at home. To make the guts of the sushi I rolled up scrap pieces of felted wool into round cylinders about two inches long. To make the rice I wrapped white wool yarn around a piece of cardboard and ironed a piece of fusible web to it. I cut the yarn off the cardboard and cut them into two inch strips. I wrapped the rice around the guts and fused it in place. I used a dark green piece of fabric for the seaweed, wrapped it around the rice and fused it in place. The sushi logs were about two inches long so I cut them into half inch pieces with sharp scissors. I painted gloss medium around the edges so they'd look shiny and then glued the sushi to the lime green fabric plate. I have some leftover sushi and I think I might make some magnets for my refrigerator.

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