Sunday, February 7, 2016

String Theory - Project Quilting

"String Theory," 16 x 16,made for Project Quilting, Season 7, Challenge 3: All About That Thread, Feb. 2016 in Yellow Springs, Ohio

Challenge recap for  "All About That Thread":
In honor of one of Project Quilting's long term sponsors, Aurifil, the inspiration for this week's challenge is THREAD.
Thread is obviously important for quilting. You use it for piecing and appliqueing a quilt top. You use it for the quilting. Plus adding the binding, sleeves and labels. Other than the quilting, it's usually not even visible.
I had a ton of ideas for making a quilt that features thread:
  • Making a whole quilt, which doesn't have any piecing or applique on the top and is just quilting. While these are lovely, I don't think my quilting skills (or patience) are up for this. 
  • Doing thread painting, where you use the sewing machine to apply stitches almost as if it's paint. I've done some of this before but haven't really enjoyed the process. It works well for feathers so I was thinking of making an owl or a rooster.
  • Making something like Ana Teresa Barboza's embroidery work where the thread hangs outside of the frame of the image. Not sure how this is even done, and somehow I don't think what I'd make would look like this.
  • The thread art where you wrap thread around nails in a board to create a design. But how to do this on fabric?
Wednesday evening I finally decided that I wanted to do something like the thread art, but using buttons with a shank (instead of holes on top) and wrapping thread around them. In order to do this, I needed some buttons so as I was driving to the store, the whole layout popped into my head.

The store only had 3 packs of cardigan buttons so I bought all three. Having a total of 30 buttons meant I could have 15 buttons on each side. If each button is 1" apart and we allow for room at the top and bottom, my piece would be 16" x 16".

I found a lovely piece of black marbled fabric and another that was a black on black tone and pieced them along with a multi-colored batik strip. I didn't want the batik strip going all the way to the edges so I pieced some black fabric on either side of it.

I made the quilt sandwich using some black batting. I haven't used it before and sometimes found I wasn't sure where the edge of the quilt top was when I was quilting. I quilted some random lines on angles.

I bound the quilt then used a white colored pencil to mark where the buttons will go, then added the buttons.

Instead of thread I used embroider floss in the colors of the batik strip. Instead of wrapping the thread around the buttons, I threaded the floss and went through the hole in the button shanks.

Unlike the thread art with the nails in the wood, this wasn't stiff. After I was finished I cut open the backing behind the thread and added a piece of thick fusible interfacing. If I did this again, I'd add that part during the sandwiching process.

The last thing I did was couch a piece of variegated yarn just inside the binding.

More about Sting Theory

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Click on any of the photos to see larger images.

To read more about Project Quilting, go here.

To see other entries for this challenge, visit the All About That Thread link up.


Mel said...

I love your original interpretation and design for the Thread theme! Sew clever and beautiful!!! Thanks for sharing your process!

Carla said...

We were in the same mind set. I instantly though of string art, too. Your concept is excellent and the button idea so creative. Great art piece.

Sharon said...

What a GREAT idea! Very unique!

JM in Toronto said...

Very creative, Pam!

Janet Hartje said...

Great instructions for how you did this. It is very dramatic with the colors you chose. I like this a lot.