Monday, February 06, 2012

QAWM: Starting a New Work

Where do ideas for new work come from? Almost anywhere, but lately for me, especially from online.
Thanks to Pinterest, my crack habit, I have collected inspirational ideas and am sharing them with you. I love the simplicity of this piece by  Judy Rush.  I am often inspired by just the layout of the design.
Different, and cool.
Pinned Image
Pinned Image

I pinned this color scheme onto My Inspiration Board on Pinterest. So fresh, Springy and yummy. This color combination would look great in almost any room in my house. (I usually think ahead to hanging an art quilt in an environment).
Pinned Image

And then there is this quilt, Ferns and Tulips, which I just mentioned the other day. I like the fern shapes here and would like to continue making more in this vein... sort of like working in a series, only way different.

OK, armed with inspiration, I am faced with first finding the fabric to match, sorta, my chosen color scheme above. I have lots to pick through after all these years of  fusing my dyed fabrics.

I don't have exactly the same super-coordinated colors as my swatch pile above, but I DO already have some pre-stripped pieces, which makes my work leap ahead right at the start. These fused striped pieces are from previous ideas that never came to be. To fuse striped fabrics, cut strips and overlap the edges and lightly fuse together (in case you should change your mind later). Remember to do this on the release paper from the Wonder-Under or on an applique, or teflon pressing sheet.

Then to find some greens which I will cut for the ferns. I am going to encourage you to cut without a drawing or a template or a pattern. It is easier than you think and lots more arty. Note: there is no paper on the back of any of these fabrics. It was removed ages ago.
I used the rotary cutter to cut the main long oval, and scissor to shape the stem end. I am beginning with the ferns because they are the quilt's theme and I will build the rest from there.

To cut the veins, first use your handy sliver of soap to mark the center line, which may or may not change as you cut. Then with small sharp scissors, snip, snip, snip, and return to cut away from the rib space to reveal the fern.
After completing the fern shapes, I will decide on placement and then begin to develop the composition.


  1. Celeste Wegner9:52 AM

    Love the detail on how to make these shapes - so simple.

    I do have another question about finishing off the last quilt you did. The fused quilt top was fused to the batting. Would you even fuse the quilt backing to the batting? The last quilt project I did I had a hard time with the background machine quilting without the backing wanting to bunch up and making tucks, etc. I plan you use the binding style you sent me the link for. So I wonder if it would be easier to top machine quilt if I had the backing fused to the batting?

  2. I mostly use batik fabrics. How permanent is the Wonder Under on them?

  3. Thanks for showing how you do the fern leaves, I think that will be fun to do!

  4. Free cutting rocks. I love your ferns.

    Pinterest is crack for me too.

  5. I like so much your job congratulations ♥

  6. I have been silently following along and had already decided on using a fern in my composition. How appropriate.

  7. I'm so pleased that you are doing the fern leaves as I so admire them! And tulips is such a nice flower to do this time of year. It's been very dull and dark in Chicagoland this winter...

  8. I am so enjoying this series of instructions. I am awed by your creations and talent and hoping some of it rubs off through this process. LOL

  9. I finally finished my first QAWM piece. You can see it on my blog ( and I will post it in the Flickr group.

    Now, that I have gone through the process. I was wondering what you do about quilting to the edge. Do you go off the edge? Start right on the edge if you need to, or start a little bit inside the edge?

    I did the pillowcase method and noticed when I pressed it slightly more to the back, there is always somewhere where there is extra fabric that will create a tuck when quilting. Do you just ignore that? Or do you not have that problem?

    I was just thinking about doing my next QAWM piece using leaves. So I'm already on the same wavelength.

  10. I love the tulips! They are my favorites and it's nice to see them in such a wonderful quilt. Your colors are always inspiring and are happy and uplifting. Thanks for sharing.


So nice of you to drop by. I love your comments, and if you would really like a reply, please email me at fibermania at g mail dot com