Thursday, October 22, 2015

Two of my "in progress" art quilts

I cannot believe my favorite upholstery store is going out of business!!  This store was a hidden gem for me.  When one first enters this shop it seems pretty small, then there are swing doors to the second part of the store.  The first room housed most of the upholstery, the second room had mainly trims and tassels.  Then there was a third room in the back!  This is where I get super excited because they have bins and bins and bins full of remnants... CHEAP!  When I started making art dolls years ago I would use these remnants as their clothes.  Some upholstery is very textured and rich in colors and there are different types of patterns that you can't find in a traditional fabric or quilt shop. 

Since my artistic endeavors change like the wind I can usually find various uses for my art supplies.  Sometimes if I'm working on two different projects in two different mediums they will overlap, hence my love of art quilts.  Art quilts combine traditional quilt methods with a modern twist, usually adding unexpected objects to beautiful wall hangings. And this is where my ideas overlap... I could use my upholstery remnants as a base to creating unique one-of-a-kind art quilts!

This was one that I started a few months ago:
Of course it was 2-D until I added beads, yarn, ribbon and puffy paint to it.  I also made some of the centers stand out by using extra upholstery and stuffing it with cotton.
Then I found some of my old sculpey beads that go almost perfectly with these colors!  I probably made these in the early 90's.
(circular bead in the bottom right hand part of the photo)
Again this is not finished yet.

Last week when I went to this upholstery shop again (they aren't closing until at least December) I found this remnant that I fell in love with!  The moment I saw it it inspired me.  The dark brown part of the leaves are velvet and feel oh so soft!  Here was the picture I took a few days ago after quilting it and hand sewing a row of gold beads:
As you can tell by the photo there are gold accents on the beige background part of the upholstery.  When I quilted over this it seems to disappear so I wanted to make that stand out again... fabric markers to the rescue!  I have also added decorative yarn and turquoise beads.

I have a huge collection of beads and usually I can find the right colors to go with my projects.  Here is a photo of everything I've used so far:

As with the first one posted here I like to work on these for a while then walk away for a few days. This is why I could never be on Project Runway, sometimes they only have one day to complete a challenge!  Anyway, when I return to a project it is with "new eyes" and I am able to be inspired again.
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