Thursday, December 29, 2011

Keepsake Quilts Made With Kids Clothing

"Baby Boy Blue", 31" x 25" 

I've made several T-shirt quilts and was thinking about making some quilts using baby and kids clothing. Since I don't have kids I asked my sister if she had some clothes that her kids have outgrown. I don't think I told her what I was going to do with them. 


So I made some samples quilts. I made one using 6 pieces of clothing her son wore. Just like his Daddy he wore lots of polo shirts and seemed to favor a blue and yellow color combination. I quilted over the shirts but I made sure that all of the pockets were left accessible.

"Sweet Pea", 27" x 32"

The pink one had 6 pieces of clothes her daughter had worn. The four shirts, the light purple row under "Big Sister" was from a pant leg and the wide strip in the middle with the flowers and cherries was the bottom of a dress that my sister loved.

Most of the embroidered parts were already on the clothing. I did cut out a few fun pieces that were on the sleeves and made them into patches that were appliqued in other places. 

"I've Been Very, Very Good", 25" x 25"

And there were even a few pieces of clothing that both kids wore for Christmas, so I thought it would be fun to make a Christmas-themed quilt.

With some of the tops that had snaps I left them so the snaps could be opened and left a secret message inside.

So guess what I gave my sister and brother-in-law for Christmas this year? Three quilts made with the clothes their kids had worn.

Like the T-shirt quilts, all the clothing was stabilized before it was cut and pieced together. The borders and bindings were made with cotton fabrics and pieced by machine. The quilts were machine quilted and all have hanging sleeves.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Found Art / Found Objects

I've always been a little confused by the term "found art" or "found object" as part of the description of materials used in a quilt. I love to embellish my quilts and have often used items that others might describe as "found objects." Do they still count as a 'found object' if I got the item from my "possible art supplies stash" or bought the item at a store?

According to the traditional definition, found objects used in art are "objects which has not been designed for an artistic purpose, but which exists for another purpose."

So the drain cover in "After the Rain" is a found object, as is the barbed wire I made to use in the "Blue Bird" quilt in the Feather series, and also the key I used in "not even the rain: a love poem."

And the photo of the little Santa? Found it in a book that was checked out from the library. I have no idea who drew it but it would be the literal definition of "found art."

Hope your holidays are filled with surprises and maybe even found art.