Monday, June 24, 2013

My June Crazy Quilt Block

Here is my June 2013 Crazy Quilt Block. I am so proud of this one. I think I might be getting the hang of this art- finally!
I love every attempt I make when learning a new technique. Even mistakes can be lovely. I really love taking on a new challenge.

I often see something in my head, but it comes out very different in real life. The bird on this sampler is certainly an example of that!

I am a great admirer of Sandey Mavor and of course, I had an idea to add a bird to my sampler, but wasn't quite sure how to start.

Mine was a bit of a flop! However, only in comparison to one of the most talented embroiderers I know! I still loved mine and Sandey Mavor- she is a stump work genius, an inspiration and a very kind a lovely person as well. I am trying hard to get back to stitching a bird for applique. I am getting better but I have a ways to go.

I tend to jump head first into something new. I allow a bit of me to become a part of something from someone else. The final pieces are always a sign of growth and experimentation. I don't care if they are imperfect. I love that about the new "handmade". It fits me and it invites exploration. What more can you ask from art?

Well, in my quest for a better Crazy Quilt Block, I am finding these elements to important choices in creating a good block.

Create a great Fabric Family
Although random color and fabric choices can be great, I think the best blocks are made from colors and textures that get along comfortably. No one is fighting for top standing. They all speak well to each other and of each other. No one is shouting, or grabbing the spotlight. They enhance each other.
Good fabric colors can be like a group of people who will live together for a very long time. Fabrics are like family.

Here is a beautiful block by Gerry Krueger from the blog- Olderrose
I urge you to take a little time to visit her blog. She is a very talented fiber artist who has many beautiful pieces to admire and inspire.

Colors don't have to be alike, they just need to like each other. Here is a wonderful example of a block with many colors used in a beautiful way. Perhaps its that most of the colors are of the same intensity, or that the stitching and embellishments tie them all together. Allie in Stitches is another amazing blog, you just must visit!

Never underestimate the power of Pretty Stuff.

A true gatherer of great and beautiful stuff is Susan Elliot of Plays with Needles fame.
Her blocks are not overly stitched. She creates a lovely conversation between things and stitches. Her charms and trinkets get along so well with her stitching and tell a wonderful story.
Here is Breakfast at Tiffany's.

and January Reflections

Use Awesome Materials.

I can't emphasize this enough. I used to be a bargain hunter. I am sad that I denied myself for so long the joy of working with beautiful fabrics, tools that work and make the job easier and exciting beads, buttons, tidbits and trinkets that take your breath away.
I would love to recommend a wonderful shop on Etsy where I get my silks. Its Chad Quilt. Nancy is so wonderful to work with and she has been so generous with her expertise. Because of her, I purchased silk dyes and I am having a ball playing with custom dyed ribbon for my creations. She also makes beautiful quilts as well.
Look at this beautiful antique aqua silk dupioni. It is a dream to work with.
Here is one of Nancy's quilts. You can find it here-

Of course, there is that "Certain Something" that is so very important to any project. Its hard to put a name on it. Perhaps it is a spirit or soul that stirs something deep inside of us. Maybe it a sense of humor. Perhaps it is a peaceful, or joyful feeling we get when we see something beautiful. It inspires us to try something new. I don't know how to include that in a tutorial. I can't label only one or two artists who possess the ability to create these kinds of things time and time again. We all have an artist or a type of art that speaks to us. Perhaps you are an inspiration to someone else. I am always so very happy when someone tell me that I inspired them to try a new craft, or that they were moved to bring out supplies from storage. I can think of no greater compliment!

To see some of my favorite artists, check out the list of blogs I follow and admire. Its a long list!

Jump In!
Above all else, don't just admire the works of others and wonder if you are capable of learning how to do it. Just do it! Watch a video, read a tutorial. Just allow yourself the time to play the the ability to possibly fail along the way. That is how we learn. We accept the possibility of imperfections. We learn to love our personal viewpoint.
Most importantly- once a vision, or an image is processed by your brain, is attempted by your hand, and is created with your spirit, it is yours. Your work will not look like anothers as long as you embrace the unique way you approach your art.

Share what you do. Post pictures on your blog, on Pinterest, on websites, on Flicker, etc. You never know who you will inspire!

You can find so many beautiful Crazy Quilt Blocks on the CQJP13 Website.

Have fun!


Createology said...

I truly admire Crazy Quilting. Your block is divine. I do follow Susan and Gerri and am amazed at how beautiful their works are. Blissful Stitching Dear...

margaret said...

lots to follow up from your blog this time and some very useful things you have shared with us today.

Anonymous said...

You have shown us some beautiful quilt blocks with lots of ideas. thank you!

Bev said...

You are so modest! Your work is CRAZY GREAT! I'd love to be 1/4 as good as you are!

Cheery wave from

Unknown said...

I think your bird looks wonderful! I love Salley Mavor too - if you ever get a chance to take a class from her - do it! She's really nice and such fun.

Octogen-Brian said...

Just love your block. Thank you for sharing all your inspiration. I can't wait to start some new blocks using all the lace and goodies I have collected. I am unable to use them on the blocks I am submitting for the challenge as I chose to focus on African blocks to showcase our beautiful country. No lace and few flowers...Love your bird.
cheers from Cape Town - Fay