Monday, February 4, 2013

If Napoleon Was a Tree - Technical Post

 I thought I'd do a separate post about the more technical side of how I put together my recent art quilt.
 The fabric was the most important part (obviously). I needed something in the right color range and pattern that would read as wood.  I found a perfect fat quarter piece at the LQS.
 I do love my batiks!
 I conveniently had a bowl that measured 12" across, so I traced that and cut out my circle shape.
 I marked the center and then in four places across, I marked off every 1/8 inch.
 I knew it would be difficult to see and sew the center spiral, so I went ahead and drew it out, connecting the marks.  Why a spiral?  Especially since a tree has rings?  Well, I wasn't going to stop and start and bury threads for 48+ circles, therefore a spiral = non-stop sewing.
 At this point I had a backing, layer of interfacing, black felt, another layer of interfacing, batting and then my fabric.  It was too thick.  I could barely close the safety pins, so I suspected that the quilting might not go well.
 I took out the batting, basted it, and ready to choose thread.
 Four choices.  I ended up using the Aurifil (at top).  No big surprise there.
 I started quilting the spiral.  I realized when I got to about this point, I was going to have to draw in more of the lines.
 So I did.
 Back to the quilting.
 The back.  I think I mentioned in the last post, but really, if I had known how good the back would look, I totally would have used a wood color there, too.  It would have practically been reversible.
 I used a satin stitch on the edge of the fabric after all the lines were quilted.  I then trimmed the back fabric up to the satin stitch.  I tried to cut the felt in a 'bark like' edge.
 Here's the finished top - before tags.  Mr. Riley thought it was a real piece of wood lying on the table, and liked it.
 The back. 
As for the tags, they are just two layers of white cotton fabric with a layer of Wonder Under in between.  I used a Pigma Pen to write the dates.  Confession:  They are not exactly permanent.  I am really happy with the whole aspect of the art quilt - but I wasn't sure that I would want the Napoleon aspect of it permanent - so if/when I'm ready, the tags can be removed without damaging the quilt.
 My inspiration photo.
You can go to my previous post about this quilt HERE.

Our next Theme is Fire.  I think I already know what I'm going to do!
 Reveal date is May 1.

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