Since last posting about my mini art quilt series on fire, I have made two more fire themed mini-art quilts, both using digital images. As I have mentioned before, my art quilting group is working through the Art Quilt Workbook by Jane Davila and Elin Waterson. After we discuss a chapter, our homework for the next meeting is to make 9″ x 12″ art quilt on that chapter’s topic. Each of our mini art quilts are tied together by a common theme. My theme is fire and my most recent mini-quilts cover photography and collage.
Photography Mini Quilt
I had never transferred a digital image to fabric before and decided to give it a try for this quilt. I took a photo of lit candles (keeping with the fire theme), edited the photo – making it black and white, and used iron on transfer paper to transfer the photo to fabric. The process was fairly easy. I put the transfer paper in the printer, reversed the image and printed it on the transfer sheet. Then, I ironed the sheet to the fabric. The image transferred crisply and, from what I understand, it is waterproof. But, the surface of the fabric was covered with a thick plastic-y coating from the iron on sheet. It drastically changed the fabric, in a bad way. However, I finished the mini-quilt by thread painting the flames and then free-motion quilting the background. I liked how the thread painting made the flames pop, but overall was very dissatisfied with this project. That iron on sheet gave it a shiny plastic look.
Collage Mini Quilt
The second mini quilt was for the collage chapter – using collage techniques in art quilting. Because my last attempt to use a digital image was a failure, I decided to try printing an image on fabric another way. This time I ironed a high thread count cotton (pimatex) to a piece of freezer paper. I found a free stock photo of a campfire and printed the image directly on the fabric backed with freezer paper. I was very happy with how this image came out…..until I accidentally dripped water on it. The photo was crisp, a bit lighter than the original digital images….but my ink is not waterproof. When my iron spluttered on the fabric, it left drip-marks on the image….right during my final ironing of the piece, too….sigh. I was really glad this was just a skill building exercise and not a piece I had been working on a long time!
For the collage, I was going for a rustic logs on a fire vibe. I tore strips of fabric and criss-crossed them under small rectangular panels of fabric. While designing, I was not sure what colors I was going to use and didn’t want fusible to affect how the fabric tore and frayed, so I laid everything out and then affixed fabric with 505 temporary adhesive and a glue stick before sewing. I used straight stitch to attach each strip of fabric, sewing each layer on, one at a time. Then, I free motion quilted the small piece, mainly following the organic lines in the fabric.
I am pretty happy with how this one came out (other than those drips!)