Sunday, February 2, 2014

The misfits

The Misfits 12" X 20"
Made in a day... almost. Remember the other post when I said I was delayed putting stuff away by the fun bits and pieces I found? ( read about it here!)  
There were some painted flower petals. These three petals didn't match. When something doesn't work, add more! I added more color with pens and colored pencils til they were integrated.
(Please click on pic to enlarge)

 Then because the brown fabric was laying there from the piece added to Klimt, I used it as a stem.
The big achievement was in cutting a piece of this beautiful background fabric out of yardage, just for this project. I cut real fabric just because it looked pretty laying with the flower. No dithering. It was just lying on the table, not put away yet, and looked good so I cut it.That's not like me.

 When I made a trade piece for blogger Linda Cline (read about it here) I made an extra print of the quote about creativity, mixed it with another quote and a stamp of leaves,  and since it was also laying on the table, it was collaged with the other bits and it looked fine with this misfits piece.
I wanted to make something, all these pieces lying near each other, so I thought, what if I put them together??

I did all the stitching during the quilting phase of the exercise. Two flower petals were heavily painted muslin scraps and the center one was from a piece of some kind of silky fabric I bought at a yard sale long ago. The fabric felt like slinky drapery fabric and cost about 2 dollars for 3 yards so I got it to see how it painted and took dye. It is really fun, wicks the color around like a race car driver running around a track.
I scrunched it up, and began quilting a hot pink rayon thread in striations, scrunch, sew, scrunch, sew.
I sewed many colors of threads on the petals, in organic repeating lines, just loving the reflective quality of the rayon building up. I did not try to cover the edges, just sewed up to the edges. See picture below.

When it came  time to quilt the background I knew I wanted straight intersecting lines. I love Art Deco style.
I got out the quarter inch masking tape to lay down lines and quilted next to them. Careful! Don't quilt over them, it is a bear to get out from under the thread!
Remove them as soon as possible as they are sticky.  I sometimes cut down painter's tape into thin strips to use like this.
After quilting the lines, I went back and quilted extra lines using the originals as a guide.
There are leaves quilted in next to the stem in several color threads, there are pebbles also.
There are just some fabrics that you wish you had all the yardage in the world. Why oh why didn't I get two or three yards of this!?! It's gold with what appears to be gold leaf on it. It probably cost $12 a yard, and I go for variety thinking, I won't need a big piece. I WANT a big piece now that I cut into this.

So the lessons here were
> don't put stuff away, because they will go together into cool art
> decide fast because dithering leads to ufo's
> you can make something beautiful with misfit pieces that someone smart would have thrown away
> if it has gold on it, buy a big piece

Hope you enjoyed the show! I enjoyed the making of it, and it's going to hang in the studio reminding me to just make it!


  1. This is beautiful! What a great reminder to just make it!

  2. Totally Amazing! I L-O-V-E it!

  3. thank you for sharing your beautiful artwork, I enjoyed reading how it came to be :)

  4. Thanks for sharing your insights -- like the "no dithering" strategy!!

  5. Sometimes things are just meant to come together--and this one came together beautifully. Aaaaah, yes, gold and glittery and shiny--buy lots!

  6. "if it has gold on it, buy a big piece." So true :) Love how this turned out.

  7. WOnderful tutorial and a fantastic finished piece of art. Cheers Glenda Australia.

  8. Hi LeeAnna!
    Love the flower!
    Like the lessons! Misfit pieces can also be translated to working in a garden! Decide fast! Go with your gut feeling! It's art! Fun!
    If you want to make the tape less sticky, stick it on/peel it off your jeans a few times.
    Take care,

  9. Beautiful piece! And great tips, especially not dithering.

  10. This one looked like such an artistic adventure!!! Thanks for sharing the inspired me to get more play in with my quilting. :)

  11. Beautiful flower! The whole looks like an oil painting to me!

  12. It is a good reminder of what we can create just by doing it... very inspiring post!

  13. Love your life lessons!! Very creative.