Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Tepeyac (Barbara's quilt)

20 x 27

I named this piece "Tepeyac" after the hill where the Virgin of Guadalupe appeared to Juan Diego in 1531 in what is now Mexico City. Tepeyac was the site of the temple of the goddess Tonanzin and it is the current location of the Basilica of the Virgin.

I finished my Madonna quilt today in what must be record time for me. I'm usually a dawdler, but I was inspired by Debra's dedication in completing "Continue" in such a short period of time.

I scrapped the bottom of the bead bowl for this one.
I embroidered over the skull motifs in this fabric, and put sequins over the eyes

Some of the skeleton limbs were beaded. I did a bit of seam embellishment.

A student gave me this beaded lizard bracelet. I knew I wanted to use it in a quilt from the beginning.

This has been a very gratifying project. I found myself thinking about it and planning it even when I wasn't working on it.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007


50 x 40 inches
cotton fabrics, lace, trims, charms, transfer
machine pieced and embroidered
Entry in the art gallery show: Perspectives: Any way you look at it
Dedicated to my son, William Hurter

Now it is time to wait & see if it is chosen for the show! It's been a whirlwind experience, to say the least.

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Floral Spray (Barbara)

I have attached my quilt top to two thin layers of flannel for stability, and I'm adding embellishments through all layers. I may add some leaves to distinguish it more clearly from the background, but this is the basic design of the floral spray at the feet of the Virgin.
The little skull beads were on a bracelet I bought in Mexico. I'm slowly incorporating them into little quilts. I really wish I'd bought more. The yellow and blue yo-yos in the picture have been stitched to form petals with a few overcast stitches.
The little angel button is reminiscent of the angel who is often depicted at the Virgin's feet. It, and most of the rose buttons, were in a bag with some cross-stitch pieces I recently got at the thrift store. The ivory satin roses were also a thrift store item. I think they came with some embroidery floss. The pearl buttons are vintage and have been in my stash awhile.

I'm making progress on the embellishment. I'm beading the Virgin's robe and aura. This is the most fun part.

Almost done! (Debra)

Yesterday's sewing frenzy put my piece well into the "almost finished" category! I am not quilting this piece. It has been heavily interfaced with either machine embroidery stabilizer under the CQ blocks or with Decor Bond in the other areas. It will be firm when it is totally done. I may do a little tack stitch in a few places but it should be ready to go without it.
I did the broderie perse last night. I had not tried any machine applique on my Janome. Boy, what a dream! I can see more of that technique showing up in future work. The floral print was a Tracy Porter print. I used invisible thread for the overcasting. Today I will add a few machine embroidered monarch butterflies in amongst the leaves and flowers.
The bottom corners will be red/orange 4" CQ blocks; unless I find they are too time-consuming to make. The 5" ones in the main section of the piece were about 20 minutes per block.
I am not quite sure what to do at the top. Wes even got into the spirit of pulling fabrics last night as candidates! What do you think should happen at the top? I have until 3:00 tomorrow afternoon to get my CD with the image to the post office for my Aug 1st postmark.
Any suggestions for a name? The theme of the show is Perspectives: Any way you look at it

Monday, July 30, 2007

Sunday's Work (Debra)

Sunday found me hard at work in the Studio. I foresee another long day of work today. August 1st looms around the corner. I would hate to miss the deadline; especially since I have gotten so "into" this piece. It has been a delight from the very beginning and although, there is plenty to do, it is not a strain doing it. You know how some projects just will never end? This doesn't feel like that kind of project.

I had to laugh at Allie's comment! Yes, Will would love this piece. He was quite fond of skeletons.

My plan is for the little madonna and Will's panels to be loose. Today I will finish embellishing them and close the back. Then, I can sew the sections of the top half together. I started playing with the idea of a table last night. I pulled out all my old doilies (and yes, I auditioned the yellow ones, Barbara, but they were too bright) and actually like the effect. It shows nicer in person. Then, I started playing with adding the lace to the broderie perse panel(s). We'll see how that plays out.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Slow and Steady (Barbara)

I'm not on a deadline like Debra, but I've got my Virgin positioned and stitched down, and I'm working on the floral spray that will be at her feet. I'm working with my small yo-yo stash, and adding leaves and petals to the backs so that they'll stand out from the background more.
I seem to work on the floor quite a bit, so I get a lot of volunteer design help. Today Louie was my advisor.

Saturday's Results (Debra)

Yesterday morning I had an idea all scoped out for my design. It, unfortunately, meant making more crazy quilt blocks - like 8 more and some fillers. I was able to get all of that done and size up the cross yesterday. The crazy quilt blocks are 5".

I want the cross to look like it is sitting on a table. I came across this brown piece of fabric while doing pillows last week and had it out on my sewing table. It reminded me of lace so I hope it will give the feeling of a tablecloth or a shawl across a table. I will add some leaf embroidery across the bottom of autumn leaves.

The two sections under the cross will have the Madonna and my son's roadside cross picture as separate pieces that will attach to the cross. On either side of the cross section of the wallhanging I'll have the flowers growing. Butterflies will be embroidered amongst the leaves and flowers, which are going to be my first broderie perse.

This whole piece is very thrilling to work on--it is allowing me to use my encyclopedic head of quilt/sewing techniques to accomplish a goal. I am also venturing more into the machine embroidery as an integral part of the process, which is a place I want my machine embroidery to go.

OK, it's off to the Studio for another day of sewing.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Sewing Begins (Debra)

I rarely work in the Studio after dinner but last night was an exception. I worked until 10:30 while Wes watched some guy movie on TV. When I turned off the lights I felt I had accomplished a significant amount of work in a short time.

The minute my head hit the pillow the solution to my piece presented itself. Today I'll investigate that idea. My goal is to have all the piecing done today. Embellishing tomorrow and finish up by Monday. Pictures on the CD & in the mail Tuesday--a day before the deadline.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Synchronicity (Barbara's Project)

It's pure coincidence that Debra and I are both working on Madonnas again. She sent me a note to ask about the Day of the Dead, and I showed her this new Madonna quilt that I've begun on the same topic. I knew I wasn't done with the Madonnas when I finished the fourth in my series, and I'm glad that Debra has another one in her as well.

We started the Madonna series before we got so heavily into crazy quilting, and now I feel well-armed to really embellish the heck out this piece. I think it will be a memorial quilt, but I'm still waiting for it to tell me.

Debra, I really love that Virgin of Guadalupe panel you're using. I should've bought some when I had the chance. I do, however, have a ton left of the one I'm using.

Day of the Dead (Debra)

Very preliminary work on a Day of the Dead piece for an upcoming juried art show at Union Street Art Gallery in Park Forest, IL. If accepted it will hang with other work exemplifying the theme: Perspective: Any Way You Look at It. My interpretation of the theme deals with Death. This work will be submitted with an earlier work I did about my son Will's death.

The deadline for postmarked CDS is August 1st so I really have to make decisions and move forward quickly with this piece. I envision plenty of handwork and may have to seriously evaluate the time involved in order to get it done.

These Day of the Dead fabrics are from Alexander Henry.