Thursday, July 14, 2016

Ella and the LaConner Quilt Fest

 "Ella" is my most recent FINISHED quilt.  It is based on a photo my daughter took in the French Quarter in New Orleans this spring.  Though the photo was in color, I was attracted to the high contrast between the brilliantly sunlit areas and deep shadows. (It didn't hurt that the subject is my granddaughter.)  I decided to make the composition in black and white to emphasize the value range, and to make the background solid black to further emphasize the value range.

The piece is raw edge appliqued and free motion quilted with "invisiible" mono-poly thread from Superior Thread on my new Bernina 770QE.  if you opt for clear thread, make sure it is not the cheaper nylon thread, because  nylon will melt when touched with a hot iron.  Mono-poly does not, and it also works well in the bobbin.  Mono-poly thread is a bit stretchy, so when loading a bobbin, it helps to fill the bobbin more slowly than usual if your machine allows for that.

I used a wool batting, and that caused a few problems.  The batting "bearded" ever so slightly, but with all that black, every little tuft of white pulled up by the needle really showed.  Some tufts  I could push back into the fabric with the point of a seam ripper, others I had to disguise with a black Sharpie Marker.  There's always something challenging, huh?

I have applied to show "Ella" at the LaConner Quilt and Fiber Art Festival this fall, but have not yet heard if she's been accepted--letters go out the first week or so of August.

I've shown several quilts at the festival over the years, and really like this small, folksy show that draws amazing entries from quilters all over the world.

I also like having a reason to go to LaConner, which is one of Washington's many cute little, 1800's vintage waterfront towns.   Sipping a cup of good coffee, looking at great quilts, and shopping for hand dyes from the show vendors, plus a swing through the local fabric shop, makes for a pretty perfect day.

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