Friday, December 4, 2015

Week in Review 2015 - 12/04

Tips, Thoughts and Techniques:

Deconstructed Sunrise #3
Details can be found on my website.
Ta da!

You may recall from my last post that Deconstructed Sunrise #3 was nearly destroyed when I gave it its post construction soak in preparation for blocking. Here is the proof that I was able to salvage it from the nightmare of running dye. Didn't the facing come out perfectly? What you are seeing is the actual quilt and not a cropped photo.  I can't believe how nicely it squared up. Thank you to  Kathleen Loomis for your excellent tutorial on facing.

My husband and I traveled back east for Thanksgiving with our extended family. We returned home this past weekend to the usual catch up work. Plus it is December. This means Christmas is around the corner and life has a way of adding chaos and crisis just when you find yourself in a time crunch. What "C" is missing? Calm. This is why I make it a point to allow and/or schedule calm moments into every day.

I titled this free motion quilting motif
Loosing My Marbles
The mad pace to finish Deconstructed Sunrise #3 in order to submit it to a call for entry has left me desperate for another "C" - casual studio time. This is precisely what I have opted to focus on until I feel balanced again.

My plan before our travels waste attend to the following:

1)   Deconstructed Sunrise #3 (Due November 30, 2015) - Done!!!

Snowflakes and Leaves
Tsukineko ink experiment
a) Stitch down the facing - Done!
b) Prepare the Call for Entry photographs - Done!
c) Submit my entry - Done!

2) Free motion quilting practice. - Done!

3) Post the number of days I have worked in my studio in 2015 - 100.5/126

4) Perform a random act of kindness - Done!

5) Tsukineko Ink Experiments - Done!

Fellow quilt artist, blogger and friend Judy Warner and I each bought a set of Tsukineko Inks this year. The appeal is that they are water based, blend with each other to make new colors, are permanent after being heat set, and do not alter the feel of the fabric. Rather than have yet another enticing supply languish in the closet we knew we needed to experiment in order to work them into our repertoire. To motivate ourselves, we have decided to share our experiments with our readers and since we follow each other's blogs, with each other. 

Butterflies in the Grass
Tsukineko ink experiment
Note that I used a thermofax screen as my butterfly stencil.
The ink/shaving cream blend was gone
from the stencil immediately after I
immersed the screen in tepid water.

In this series of experiments I blended ink with shaving cream (helps thicken the ink so that it is less likely to bleed into the fabric.) I built up a background "wash" by adding alternating drops of red and blue ink. In between adding the drops I would paint the fabric with the current concoction. This way the color got gradually deeper in value and went from violet hues to a more reddish purple. Once the background was heat set I added a layer of stenciled prints. Heat set the first stencil prints and then added the final layer.

Tsukineko ink experiment
The background fabric is one of
my hand dyed fabrics. You might be able
to distinguish the glowing yellow butterflies
if you click on the image.

In the snowflake/leaf fabric the two different valued leaves were achieved just like the background. First I printed the paler leaves, then I added more blue to the "left over" ink and shaving cream mix and printed the darker leaves. I had minimal bleeding problems until the final stencil (blades of grass.) I'm not sure if it was the weight of the stencil (very light) or the fact that I was using up the final tablespoon of ink and shaving cream mix which naturally had more ink to shaving cream than the original ratio.

My plan for this coming week and possibly the rest of December is to take a break from designing and making a new quilt and instead find time for play and calm by focusing on the following:

1)   Deconstructed Sunrise #3 - Add sleeves and label

2) Free motion quilting practice.

3) Post the number of days I have worked in my studio in 2015

4) Experiment with Tsukineko ink

5) Perform a random act of kindness

I am now linking up to two blogs on Fridays. The first is Nina Marie's Off the Wall Fridays and the second is Free Motion Mavericks.


  1. Gwyned, I love your Tsukineko ink experiments!

  2. Your facing really is great! Half the time my corners poke out funny on facing. I'll definitely have to check out Kathleen Loomis's tutorial. And I also like the shaving cream/ink combo. I do a lot of screen printing, but the paint is always paint, with all that entails. Your prints are so precise and delicate and I love the idea of not changing the feel of the fabric. I'll have to give it a try.

  3. Thank you for the link about the facing. I am going to check it out now. I can always use tips on facing they can be challenging. I also love your ink experiments I bought a couple small bottles but have yet to try them. Deconstructed sunrise is a masterpiece

  4. I've had a set of those inks for a very long time, I think they've aged enough so that I can get them out and play. Thanks for the inspiration.

  5. Experimenting is so much fun! I would definitely call your experiments successful.

  6. Your facings are perfect. I have used Kathy's tutorial, too. Beautiful work all around!

  7. Oh my, you have been productive.....the sunset piece is truly fabulous.....

  8. Hello Gwyned,

    Fabulous, gorgeous finish, and triply gratifying for you after the screaming horrors with the dye. Add another C, just chill for Christmas. You deserve it.

    The marbles are great, so realistic!

    Thank you for linking up with Free Motion Mavericks!

    Love, Muv