Catching Up with the Queen Bees

March 25th, 2015

As per last week’s blog posting, I have been running around the country, and to even write this meant sitting down for a break from packing for the Empire Guild show in New York City this weekend! With all that travel, keeping up with the monthly assignments from Printed Fabric Bee (a collaboration of professional textiles artists printing fabric collections for each other) has been difficult at best. Each month a member of the “Hive” chooses a theme, making her the “Queen Bee,” and we all create a piece of fabric based on her choices.

I’m so fortunate that the other members of the Bee have been so understanding. While I was at Art and Soul in Portland, Oregon, Liz Kettle taught a mono printing class using Gelli Plates as one of the tools. Ruth Chandler was kind enough to mind the store for me during lunch so that I could print while the students were out of the classroom. Included here are two of the fabrics that I owe the bee.

The February theme was Petroglyphs, selected by Queen Bee Lynda Heines. She first fell in love with this type of art a few years ago when she vacationed with her husband in the Southwest. She requested fabrics in turquoise and orange.

Petroglyph theme fabric by Judy Gula

This Petroglyph theme was the most difficult for me…someone purchased the last of the skeleton fish wooden printing block I had had my eye on, so then I felt I could not come up with anything. Finally I picked up our Primitive Horse. I used a brayer to mix several brown shades of textile paint to coverthe Gelli Arts™ Gel Printing Plate, then I stamped on the paint with the horse block, which removed most of the paint and left a negative image. I repeated this several times to create a large cloth.

That alone was pretty boring, so I added scribbles of blue paint with a syringe. I need some more pratice with that method, as I kept ending up with too much paint. The orangey-red is a Nautilus shell stamp.

detail, Petroglyph theme fabric by Judy Gula

Close up (above) it looks a little better. I am not 100% happy with this fabric, but sometimes, you just have to call a project done. I do think the horse evokes Petroglyph carvings, and the varying texture of the browns seems like a cave or cliff wall.

Printed Fabric Bee member Carol R. Eaton has a few days left in her reign as the Queen Bee for March, and noted that it was easy for her to decide on a theme. “Nature is my biggest influence when dyeing fabrics and designing wall art,” she writes. “The colors, textures, smells and sounds are unique and endless. I was imagining what a view of the forest floor would be from the vantage point of a bird or maybe a squirrel leaping from branch to branch in the tall trees.” Carol did not offer color suggestions gave each of us free range to interpret her Forest Floor theme.

Forest Floor theme fabric by Judy Gula

This one came easier to me, and I’m happier with the final result too (complete fabric above). The background was created by brayering on several shades of green textile paint to a Gelli Arts Gel Printing Plate. I pressed a swatch of textured wallpaper to create the gridded background, which is visible in the below view.

Forest Floor theme fabric by Judy Gula

The next layer was created using the 4 Ferns (TCW414) stencil from The Crafters Workshop two ways. First, I placed it onto the Gelli Plate and brayered paint over it. The stencil was then lifted off, and I rubbed the excess paint coating the stencil onto the fabric. Then the fabric was placed onto the gelli plate and brayered to pick up the fern images left by the stencil. So the stencil was used both positively and negatively…plus you don’t waste paint! This photo shows those options.

Fern stencil used as a positive and negative image

The extra pops of color and bit of brown added with a brayer. Another detail shot is below; all together I love how the layers look like the plant and leaf strewn ground you find underneath trees.

Detail, Forest Floor fabric by Judy Gula

‘Tis the Season

March 18th, 2015

Tis the Season… We normally associate this headline with the November/December holiday season. But this season is the Season of Quilt Shows. And like the holidays, we enjoy the happy, excited energy of shows… but (also like the holidays) it can lead to exhaustion!

Australian Aborigine-Designed fabric for sale by Artistic Artifacts/Batik Tambal

I am frequently asked how many shows per year that Artistic Artifacts/Batik Tambal exhibit at, and I am never really sure. I guess I could count them… but maybe I don’t want to know?

Those of us who take our businesses on the road really appreciate those of you who come prepared to shop. It makes the difficult work and long hours worth the travel. Fortunately, I have many customers who are very aware of what it takes for a business to participate in shows around the country. If you haven’t thought too much about this subject, may I share?

The first show of the year for us is Road to California in Ontario California in January. I should really begin ordering and pulling product 3 weeks before the show. (I can tell you it never happens.) Ten days before the show, the pallet needs to ship to California from us inVirginia for it to arrive on time. The cost to ship the pallet is $1.00 per pound. I try to ship just 500 lbs, but usually it weighs in at approximately 700 lbs.

The Artistic Artifacts/Batik Tambal booth at Mid-Atlantic Quilt FestivalWe fly out the day before the set up day, which is a day to set up our booth, usually a 10 x 20 booth. Depending on the show, that size booth can cost between $1,000 –$2,000. The Road to California Show is four days long; most quilt shows run three or four days. The show ends on Sunday, then we have to repack the unsold product and supplies used in the booth onto the pallet and ship back to Virginia. Monday morning we fly back to Virginia, always with some product carried in our luggage. The following week when the pallet arrives back, it’s time to unpack and put the store back together.

The end of February we went through the entire laborious process again for the 26th Annual Mid-Atlantic Quilt Festival at the Hampton Roads Convention Center in Hampton, VA, only this time we also had to prepare and ship a pallet of materials and supplies to Portland , OR for Art & Soul.

And since Hampton had a record 8 inches of snow the first day of the show, I ended up putting on my taxicab hat on… I made six runs from the hotel to the Convention Center to ferry determined attendees when shuttle bus didn’t show up. (Happy to help out, but I had to laugh at the number who assumed I was the official hotel shuttle driver!)

I left Hampton, flew to Portland, and without an extra minute to adjust to the new time zone, began assembling a satellite store in the hotel. Art & Soul

Empire Quilt Guild 2015 Show logoBarely recovered from that, at the end of this month I’m attending the Empire Quilt Guild show in New York City: Urban Inspirations Quilt Show, Under a New Star. This will be the first time I have been a vendor for this show; the original owner of Batik Tambal, Trish Hodge, was a vendor there often, so I am looking forward to continuing the tradition.. The show will be held at the Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT, which was my dream school!),
right in the heart of the city, 7th Avenue at 28th Street.

If you are close to the city, or lucky enough to plan a trip, it should be a great experience. Paula Nadelstern, whose quilts have been featured internationally, will moderate a panel of experts on Collecting Quilts: How and Why. The show will also feature Barbara Brackman, the renowned and well-loved author of the Encyclopedia of Pieced Quilt Patterns, who will discuss the ebb and flow of block patterns, how and why they rise and fade in popularity over time.

The quilt show craziness continues for most businesses until November, with the International Quilt Festival in Houston.

Why do we do it? Some days I am not sure! But then the show opens and excited, creative, friendly, wonderful people show up and the day is wonderful!

To end, I would like to offer the following ettiquette for those attending quilt and craft shows.

Quilt/Craft Show DO’s

  • DO bring your patterns, ideas, and fabrics to coordinate with.
  • DO, bring your open mind, creativity and sense of adventure and be willing to listen to new ideas.
  • DO, use some of the space in your tote to bring “show and tell” projects you’ve made using products and materials that you’ve purchased from vendor at previous shows.. I know I love to see what you have created with the materials and supplies that I have gathered for you!
  • DO come by and let me know that you read our newsletter and blog, and that it is helpful!
  • DO come by and let me know that you are a current customer, whether shopping in person in Alexandria, or virtually online..
  • DO, ask before taking any photos of samples on display in a booth. I am usually happy to oblige when it is my own work, but please ask, as I do have other artists’ samples on hand. Know, and respect, that many companies restrict photography of their patterns, which is only fair as they are protected by copyright.

Mid-Atlantic Quilt Festival attendees

Rebel Quilting at Art & Soul Portland

March 11th, 2015

As you know each year I set up as a “satellite” on-site store for the Art & Soul events that take place in Portland, Oregon and Virginia Beach, VA. I’ve just returned from Portland…and don’t mind admitting I’m tired, as I went there straight from the Mid-Atlantic Quilt Festival!

Doing two events back to back involves a lot of prep work, packing, travel…it does wear on you! This year in addition to manning the Art & Soul store, I taught Rebel Quilting with Stencils & Fabric, which was a lot of fun…and also served as a great energizer, being around all that creativity and everyone’s passion for their art!

Judy Gula teaching Rebel Quilting at Art & Soul in Portland, OR

The challenge for me was that this class had been originally created by Jamie Fingal, and so when I stepped in, I had to come up with a way to make the class and product my own, while still retaining enough of her work that the students who had registered expecting it would still be happy. I had so much fun I hope to be able to offer this class again!

Student sewing during Rebel Quilting at Art & Soul in Portland, OR

BERNINA USA provided a classroom of machines for Art & Soul… Modern Domestic, a BERNINA Excellence dealer in Portland, Oregon was on hand to set up the classroom and to demonstrate the machines. Art & Soul has focused on increasing the number of fabric and fiber art classes and arranged this sponsored classroom; a wonderful perk for students, as they didn’t have to worry about not owning a sewing machine, or the fuss of traveling with it. (Juki America will be furnishing the sewing machines for Art & Soul in Virginia Beach, VA.)

Student work in progress, Rebel Quilting at Art & Soul in Portland, OR

Shown throughout this posting are a few photos that were taken during the class. You can see everyone ended up with great work!

Student work, Rebel Quilting at Art & Soul in Portland, OR

The results from a class differ for everyone…not just in terms of each student’s talent and personal aesthetic, but in stages of completion. Are you one of those people who always feel like they are the slowest in a class? Or the one who never fails to walk out the door with a completed project? Somewhere in the middle? Able to enjoy your own experience without comparing it to the other people in the class, or secretly feel some stress and competitiveness?

Student work, Rebel Quilting at Art & Soul in Portland, OR

In the classes we hold at Artistic Artifacts, there is always a range. Sometimes a class is more geared toward teaching a technique, such as the this past weekend’s Gelli Printing with Susan Gantz, and next month’s Printing with Thermofax Screens with PG Fiber2Art; in both of those examples you will leave with plenty of prints and swatches for your stash but not necessarily a finished piece of art. (Although many prints end up so beautiful all they would need is a frame or stitching, and yes, they’re done!)

Other classes, such as this past weekend’s Machine-Age Santos with Leslie Brier and her class this weekend, Vintage Beaded Floral Pendant, are project-based, and you are to walk away with a finished product. Or, one that is at least close, and you have learned the skills and techniques necessary to finish it.

Cards by Beverly Hilbert created in Seth Apter’s 52 Card Pickup class

Pictured above are some of the cards Beverly Hilbert, long-time member of JAMs, created in Seth Apter’s 52 Card Pickup class in January. On the left is an example of the cards as she left class…tons of color, texture and background stenciling, but no collaging. The other two, and the examples below, are examples of the continual collage work she has done on them since. (View larger to examine these in more detail.)

Cards by Beverly Hilbert created in Seth Apter’s 52 Card Pickup class

P.S. The next edition of Art & Soul will be in Kansas City, MO, at The Elms Hotel, beginning April 27 and running through May 1. Founder Glenny Moir has assembled the usual roster of talented instructors, including (for the first time) our friend Seth Apter! And this fall you can attend in Virginia Beach, VA at Virginia Beach Resort Hotel, September 28 – October 4, 2015. If you have never treated yourself to a creative retreat, make 2015 the year you do…it is a wonderful way to learn new techniques, meet new people who share your passion, and nuture your soul.

Bali Fish: Recycled Hexie Quilt

March 4th, 2015

Recycled Hexie Quilts: Using Vintage Hexagons in Today’s Quilts

Anyone who knows me knows my love of vintage quilts and textiles…and for repurposing those vintage pieces that might otherwise be discarded or forgotten. One of our greatest champions for both vintage and repurposing is Mary W. Kerr, author of A Quilt Block Challenge: Vintage Revisited, A Quilted Memory, Dare to Dance, Cutting Edge Art Quilts and now her latest, Recycled Hexie Quilts: Using Vintage Hexagons in Today’s Quilts, which we featured in today’s Artistic Artifacts enewsletter.

Mary, an American Quilt Society certified appraiser and an award winning quilter (visit her website to learn more), excels at merging her love of all things vintage with the freedom of expression of art quilts. I have been happy to have participated in serveral of Mary’s projects, and even had some of my quilts published in her books. While at the 26th Annual Mid-Atlantic Quilt Festival February 26-March 1 at the Hampton Roads Convention Center in Hampton, VA, we were thrilled to have one of Mary’s quilts in our booth: Bali Fish, pictured below. What a wonderful example of how our batik panels can be combined with other fabrics, designs and traditions!

Bali Fish by Mary Kerr, machine quilted by Shannon Shirley

From Recycled Hexie Quilts: “Bali Fish combines a contemporary batik fish panel with fragments of a mosaic top from the last quarter of the nineteenth century. This partial top was gifted to me in segments, as there was extensive damage in several areas of the textile. After the piece was quilted, I added eyelash trim for a pop of color and to soften the transition between the panel and mosaic top.”

Bali Fish was beautifully machine quilted by Shannon Shirley (see detail below).

Detail, Bali Fish by Mary Kerr, machine quilted by Shannon Shirley

MIX: Adventures in Mixed Media Exhibit Coming this May!

February 25th, 2015

I’m really pleased to formally announce an upcoming collaboration with Del Ray Artisans Gallery: MIX: Adventures in Mixed Media. This juried exhibit will take place May 1-31, 2015 at Del Ray Artisans Gallery, located at 2704 Mount Vernon Avenue in Alexandria, VA. Download the Call for Entry PDF »

Combine two or more mediums and shake up your imagination! Mixed media compositions can convey visuals that are quirky, abstract, political, environmental and social. Use paint, wood, fabric, metal, found objects, items from nature and more to create:

Del Ray Artisans Gallery logo

  • Altered Books
  • Art Quilts
  • Assemblages
  • Collages
  • Dolls
  • Fiber Art
  • Jewelry
  • Sculpture
  • Shadowboxes
  • and beyond!

My MIX: Adventures in Mixed Media Co-Curator is Karen Schmitz, a contemporary painter, mixed media and monotype artist. As a former Del Ray Artisans Gallery Director, she has curated numerous exhibits and events. The MIX: Adventures in Mixed Media juror is Rosalie Lamanna, owner of Beads Ltd in Alexandria and a very talented quilter, jewelry artist and much more.

This show is open to any area artist who is interested (some shows at the Gallery are for members only), and we hope to see a lot of submissions from Artistic Artifacts customers and friends, especially from our wonderful Judy’s Altered Minds (JAMs) members! Artists may submit up to three (3) pieces of work for consideration. The (non-refundable) entry fee is $5 per piece for Del Ray Artisans Members
and $10 per piece for Non-Members.

Visit the Del Ray Artisans Artwork Presentation and Submission Guidelines page for useful guidelines to ensure that your work is neatly finshed and properly prepared for display. Your art must be ready to hang or display with wire and screw eyes, mounting and/or display stand, framed, matted, or with edges finished. If your work is well-executed but poorly presented, it risks rejection as unprofessional.

This exhibit will also be featuring the MIX Marketplace, where participating artists can sell Art-to-Go (selected artworks that can be purchased and taken home immediately by the buyer). Visit the Del Ray Artisans Art-to-Go Marketplace page for details on what type of art is accepted for Art-to-Go, and presentation requirements. The following fees apply:

  • For art priced at $1–$30, the fee is $2 for 5 pieces (10 item limit)
  • For art priced at $31–$70, the fee is $1 each (5 item limit)
  • For art priced at $71 and over, the fee is $2 each (5 item limit)

Start brainstorming your submissions for this exciting exhibit opportunity!

Del Ray Artisans is a nonprofit organization (founded in 1992) with the mission of promoting art for the benefit of artists and the community. It strives to support new and emerging artists and artisans; to develop and foster community based arts activities, events and organizations; to develop and promote the arts as a resource for community outreach and to make more available and accessible to the general public the full range of creative expression and artistic endeavors in the visual, performing and applied arts.

Fabric Woven Wire Basket

February 18th, 2015

I get asked many times how I created this fabric bowl that has been on display at the store for a couple of years.

Fabric Woven Wire Basket by Judy Gula

This began as an experiment that I thought I would duplicate, in order to sell the final creations. Yes, I purchased many wire baskets in preparation for this retail launch. LOL!

I have gotten as far as the sample!

This project draws on my love of upcycling as well as my experience as a weaver.

To begin, I took what I felt was ugly painted fabric and stamped on it with the same paint color, purple with bubble wrap. Then I tore strips, approximately 1" wide or so. I did not sew these torn strips together, but left them different lengths.

I wove them in plain weave loosely: over, under, over, under the metal that formed the wire basket. (You can see the vertical wire structure of the bowl in another photo below.) As I reached the end of one strip, I added couple hand stitches to attach the next strip length. I found doing so easier than beginning and working with a very long length of fabric.

After weaving for approximately 2 ", I scrunched the fabric close together to hide the metal of the basket (see photo below).

Pushing the fabric strips closer together
Adding feet to the bowl

Working in this manner, I kept going until I reached the top. At the top of the basket I whip-stitched (so to speak) around the top with another strip of torn fabric.

I also added feet, created with some wooden beads that were painted to coordinate, by wrapping and twisting jewelry wire.

In the above photo as well as below you can see the bits of sheer fabric and beads I added to embellish the bowl both inside and out. (Disclaimer: This is a purely decorative piece. I would not use it for food!) The purple roses were added to the finished bowl quite a bit later…they seemed to belong together!

Embellished fabric woven wire bowl by Judy Gula

Fabric Printing at Home Blog Tour, Day 6

February 6th, 2015

Updated 2/11/15: we are extending our commenting period until this Friday, February 13 to be eligible to win. And we are now awarding TWO copies of Julie’s book!

Several weeks ago we wrote a review of the wonderful new book by Julie B. Booth, and today it’s my turn with her Fabric Printing at Home Blog Tour, running from February 1 to the 14th.

Detail, fabric created in Julie B. Booth class at Artistic ArtifactsDuring these two weeks there are 14 opportunities to win a copy of Fabric Printing at Home: Quick and Easy Fabric Design Using Fresh Produce and Found Objects…comment on this posting below to be entered into today’s drawing!

For my turn on the tour, I wanted to give you a bit of the flavor of the techniques you will learn from Julie…whether that is in person in a class (as I describe below), or by self-study through her book, which contains thorough instructions and illustrations to guide you.

While Julie rightfully has fans around the country, we are lucky to have her live near us in Virginia, so we were able to host her for the first of what we hope will be many workshops at Artistic Artifacts.

Detail, fabric created in Julie B. Booth class at Artistic ArtifactsUsually I miss out on the fun of classes: too busy with administrative work, on the road vending at an event…some reason or another. Luckily this time I was able to make the opportunity to be a student in Julie’s new workshop, Fabric Printing at Home: A Kitchen Sampler. What a great way to spend 2 days! (We are repeating this class on April 18-19 — I personally can highly recommend you registering for it!)

Ready to begin! Julie B. Booth teaching class at Artistic Artifacts

Julie B. Booth teaching fabric printing at Artistic ArtifactsAbove, we are ready to GO! Julie is walking us through the plan for our first day, where we concentrated on printing fabrics.

For each printing technique Julie discussed, we first had a demonstration from her, and then time for us to practice and refine.

While we all couldn’t wait to get to carving up the vegetables (more on that below!), we began the class spending time hand-painting background fabrics. Julie’s book points out that while you can certainly use commercial solid-color fabric to print on, why not add a personal touch by painting your own?

One fun tip/technique we learned from her involved getting a second hand-painted background: you simply place an unpainted swatch of fabric atop a freshly painted fabric, then brayer the back of the top, unpainted fabric. It picks up the extra color, giving you a lighter version as well as some wonderful texture from the brayer.

Here are a few of my fabrics created on the first day of class:

Printed fabric created by Judy Gula of Artistic Artifacts

Above, plastic wrap prints. Below, using a printing plate of recycled cardboard with hot glue squiggles.

Printed fabric created by Judy Gula of Artistic Artifacts

Printed fabric created by Judy Gula of Artistic Artifacts

Above, an aluminum baking pan used as a stencil and then a stamp. Below, recycled cardboard cut away plus corn on the cob. (I think this is my very favorite!)

Printed fabric created by Judy Gula of Artistic Artifacts

As mentioned above, we all couldn’t wait to get to the veggies! Below, some of the vegetables I carved and used in class.

Carved vegetables used as stamps to print fabric
Printed fabric created by Judy Gula of Artistic Artifacts

Above, my carved vegetables print. Below, my classmate Betty’s carved carrots print.

Carrot and vegetable print created by Bette Rudgers

Julie Booth demonstrating stitchingWe all enjoyed our first day in class! Everyone was commenting on the fun of learning how to use so many creative — and inexpensive — materials and techniques for surface design.

The next day we all arrived in the morning to our dried and ready fabric stash. The second day of the workshop focused working with your printed fabrics to create your own design of a of a small art quilt or fabric sampler, embellishing our fabric designs with hand stitching. Right, Julie demonstrates hand-stitching.

Two of the reference texts Julie bought for class use were Patchwork Folk Art by Jane T. Bolton, and Mark Making by Tilleke Schwarz. Personally, I’m loving the embroidery resurgence we are seeing nowadays!

Students at Artistic Artifacts creating their stitched samplers
Students at Artistic Artifacts creating their stitched samplers
Students at Artistic Artifacts creating their stitched samplers

While I loved the fabrics I created, when it came down to stitching I decided to focus on my Starfish, in progress below.

Stitched Starfish by Judy Gula in progress

I straight stitched with black embroidery floss to further define the starfish. My love of black and white printed fabrics is well known, and I love the contrast they give this. I am thinking that I might add an actual starfish to this … hmm, maybe?

Julie Booth student stitching awayAs you can see from the results of this class, Fabric Printing at Home: Quick and Easy Fabric Design Using Fresh Produce and Found Objects is chock full of amazingly creative printing ideas that are easy to do, resulting in fun for all ages and levels of expertise. Visit Day 2 of Julie’s Fabric Printing at Home Blog Tour posting to view a several more photos of the beautiful fabrics that were created in our class!

To enter today’s drawing for a free copy of Julie’s book, please leave your response to the following question in the comments section below.

What is your favorite fabric paint? Reasons why?

Visit Susan Purney Mark’s blog tomorrow (Saturday, February 7) for the next turn in this fun blog tour!

Thank you, Julie!

Your Opinions About Classes & Retreats…Plus Check this Space on Friday!

February 4th, 2015

Earlier this week on the Artistic Artifacts Facebook page we included my friend Liz Kettle’s provocative blog post, The Death of a Teaching Industry?

When enough people don’t sign up for a class it has to be canceled… two people can’t support the effort of the teacher and a class with only two students lacks the dynamic energy that makes classes so much fun and deepen the learning experience… We teachers, store owners and event organizers talk about the “why” all the time: not enough advertising? bad economy? boring classes? too much free stuff on YouTube? Do the classes look too hard? Do the classes look too easy?…

Liz lives in Colorado and teaches there frequently; she usually teaches at each of the three Art & Soul venues…we’ve even been fortunate enough to get her on our schedule once a year or so. She asks specific questions and requests honest feedback, and since this is a topic that is frequently discussed here at Artistic Artifacts, I too am very interested in reading everyone’s opinions.

Please visit the Textile Evolution blog to read the entire post and then add your comments so that all of us in the industry can learn and serve you better.

My Guest Artist Post Coming This Friday!

Fabric Printing at Home: Quick and Easy Fabric Design Using Fresh Produce and Found Objects by Julie B. BoothWhile I usually post on Wednesdays, I’d like to ask you to please check this space again on Friday, February 6. That’s when it’s my turn with Julie Booth’s Fabric Printing at Home Blog Tour, running from February 1 to the 14. Julie asked 13 other fiber artists to contribute, and I was so pleased to be included!

Each day another free copy of her wonderful new book Fabric Printing at Home: Quick and Easy Fabric Design Using Fresh Produce and Found Objects will be given away: a total of 14 copies! All that is necessary to enter your name into each day’s random drawing is leave a comment on that day’s contributor’s blog. Visit Julie’s blog at each day for a link to the guest fiber artist postings.

In order of daily appearance, the guest artists are Lisa Chin, Lynn Krawczyk, Jane Davila, Carol R. Eaton, me, Susan Purney Mark, Teri Lucas, Jennifer Coyne Qudeen, Deborah Boschert, Lynda Heines, Cheryl Sleboda, Terri Stegmiller and Jackie Lams.

Each day of the Tour, Julie is sharing thoughts on some of her favorite tools and materials, providing surface design tips, or playing around with some Valentine’s Day-themed projects using techniques from her book. Make certain to leave a comment on Julie’s blog each day too, because she is giving away a bonus “door prize” (she’s given away a linoleum carving tool set and a brayer, for instance) via random draw!

Remember, post a comment on each guest artist’s blog for the chance to win a copy of Julie’s book. For instance, on Friday, you comment on MY post for that day’s opportunity to win one of the 14 copies of the book. And for the chance at any of the various door prizes leave a comment on Julie’s blog.

Finishing a Quilt with a Touch of Beading

January 28th, 2015

Batik Tambal quilt kit sold by Artistic Artifacts

When quilting with our Hand Drawn Batik Panels, the finished product can be very simple, or can be embellished in a variety of ways. We always try to provide both options in our samples.

We have a few quilt kits left in orange and red flowers for this Batik Panel by the very talented Hari Agung. Very simple, but an elegant finished product.

But to make this panel “mine,” I felt that somehow it required a few hand dyed vintage doilies and beads.

Judy Gula yellow flower batik panel quilt

Pictured above, I had previously completed the quilt to including the binding and the vintage doilies but, until now, have not had time to add the beads. (Remember me previously writing about how my word for this year would be FINISH? Well, here we are…)

I began with the yellow vintage doilies as flowers.

Below, a detail of the section I began working on:

Yellow floral batik quilt section before beading

I gather my favorite beading tools:

Judy Gula's favorites for beading

For beading techniques, we recommend the book: First-Time Beading on Fabric: Learning to Bead in Nine Easy Lessons by Liz Kettle; it is our go-to reference manual for beading on fabric. If you already have beading experience, don’t let the First Time in the title fool you — there is something for everyone in this book!

Creating a hydrangea-type flower by beading

Above, my idea was to use a variety of beads and stitching to create a Hydrangea-type flower. I used the beading to extend beyond the doily and batik flower.

Yellow beads in the center of a doily create a flower

And sometimes, all that is needed is to just keep it simple! Above, I added beads just to the center of my vintage doily “flower.”

I’m enjoying finishing this project. Friends thought my quilt was beautiful as is, but I knew it needed a bit of beading to truly consider it mine!

December Fabric, Printed Fabric Bee

January 14th, 2015

The December theme for the Printed Fabric Bee was Old World Maps, which was selected by Lisa Chin. What a cool idea!

While I came up with a few visions of my Old World Map, at first I just could not get them executed.

Intentional Printing by Lynn KrawczykGenerally in my art I am not a planner…and for sure I don’t usually overthink things. But with Lynn Krawczyk, the author of Intentional Printing, as a member of the group, I should think about it a little, right?

When I looked at maps for inspiration and thought, the elements that kept drawing my eye and intriquing me were the lines that indicated the flow of the oceans.

And when I looked at the World Map 5 paper by Cavallini & Co. carried in the shop, those lines again caught my attention. So, it was official. I had thought, and I was going to go with my inspiration: create fabric with the feel of the ocean current lines that are part of vintage maps.

I actually did a test on white muslin to test my idea out:

Judy Gula map fabric test on white muslin

The fabric speaks to me, currents and water… You see that, right?

Then I think, what if I create the pattern on a color…maybe one that looks like really old parchment paper, as a vintage map would be printed on?

Judy Gula supplies for creating map-inspired fabricSo here we go! My tools:

My first Layer is using the Geologic stamp, which I wanted to show. I turn the stamp pad upside down and apply the ink selectively over the stamp, trying not to cover it completely (below).

Judy Gula first stamped layer, creating map-inspired fabric

Below, I have added another layer of texture using a teal iridescent Paintstik and one of the Doodles rubbing plates.

Judy Gula second layer with rubbing texture, creating map-inspired fabric

Rubbing plates are difficult to photograph; they are made of a shiny black plastic. This Doodles set has some really amazing patterns in it (below); I think you can immediately see which I used to play with the Geologic stamp.

Textures in the Doodles Rubbing Plates by Cedar Canyon Textiles

Below, I created another layer of “bubbles” using a blue iridescent Paintstik and another of the Doodles rubbing plates.

Judy Gula final layer with rubbing texture, creating map-inspired fabric

And the fabric is finished!

I hope that my finished fabric says currents, water, bubbles, movement to you! Which do you prefer, the old-gold fabric or my test white muslin?

Remember, anyone has the opportunity to win a 6" × 6" swatch collection of fabrics by leaving a comment on either the Printed Fabric Bee blog or on Lisa’s blog (you have until tomorrow, January 15 to do so).

Visit these websites to learn how each member made her fabric: