Quilts and Other Stuff from Frances

Here’s to a free Sunday Afternoon!!!

It was nice to realize that, after Church this morning, we didn’t have any plans for the day, so Michael hit the deck to catch a bit of sun and I ran to my studio and grabbed the paints that I had bought this past week.

The first project was to get the border fabric ready for the Sunflower Quilt. I had bought a really cool abstract sunflower stamp and was planning to use it to spruce up the border fabric for the quilt.

My first problem was getting the stamp mounted…..the first piece of wood that I cut was slightly bowed and wouldn’t print properly. So, instead of making a trip to the store, I found an old stamp that I never use and mounted the new one on the top side of the old stamp….two for one!!!

I then started playing with paints, starting out with a brown Setacolor. It seemed to disappear into the fabric too much, so I decided to play with mixing my own colors (thanks to Maggi for suggesting this in the previous comments). I had read that you could mix all of the Jacquard water based dyes, so I started with Brown Dynaflow, added Copper Lumiere and then a small amount of the original brown Setacolor. I was mixing these in an old butter container and was trying to figure out what to mix them with. The light bulb went off and I grabbed a straw to mix with.

Then I used the straw to drip spots of the paint onto the shiny side of Freezer Paper and used a sponge brush to pick up the paint and transfer it to the stamp.

Here is the fabric with just a portion of it printed.

There were a few spots that I felt needed to be filled in a bit, so I got out the sponges that I use when I am doing a faux surface on my walls, and used it to fill in some more.

Here is the finished product (click on it to see the stamping)…..I am really excited about using it in my quilt!!!!

Now, I had this small amount of mixed up paint and I really did not want to throw it away, so I decided to take Melody Johnson’s advice and quilt worrying about the rules of dyeing and to just play!!!!

I wet a fat quarter of PFD (Prepared For Dyeing) fabric and put it into a bowl. I then added a small amount of water to the dyes and poured them over the fabric.

After the fabric was well saturated, I took it outside, laid it out relatively flat and sprinkled Kosher Salt over the top. For the next 30 minutes I went out every 5 minutes and checked on the progress. It was fun to watch the color pool around the salt to achieve a mottled effect.

Here is the final result, after heat setting and washing again. It will be a great addition to my “Lights” section of the stash.

I still had some afternoon left, so I wanted to plan and play with the quilting that I was going to do on the sunflowers. I didn’t want to practice on the real piece, so I copied part of the image onto a piece of fabric, made my quilt sandwich and started quilting.

I learned a few things with this practice……. first of all, I dont have to be really concerned about the design of the sunflowers….they seem to take care of themselves.

Secondly, I realized that it is going to take more than one line of stitching to make the sunflowers stand out……it is actually going to take 3, 4 or 5 times around them…..and with more than one color of thread. SO, I have decided to do some thread work on the piece before I sandwich it to quilt.

Anyway, it promises to be a fun piece to work on and I can’t wait to get started!!!! But, it may have to wait a week or so because we have friends from Australia coming for a week-long visit starting Tuesday.

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