Saturday, 18 October 2014

August Journal Quilt


Deborah O'Hare

I am catching up slowly with these. This one is my offering for August.

Deborah O'Hare

So far I am quite taken with these subdued greys and browns.
The previous one can be seen here.

Deborah O'Hare

I am also happier when I stick to liner marks.

Deborah O'Hare

I am also trying to repeat some of the printed marks so that there is some sort of cohesive quality to these little pieces. The large circle was previously seen here, here and here.
Stay tuned for September's offering.

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Sunday, 12 October 2014

July Journal Quilt

Deborah O'Hare

  This was my offering for July, which kinda matches up with this one from March.

Deborah O'Hare

Deborah O'Hare

Deborah O'Hare

Deborah O'Hare

This week the three that I submitted to be displayed on the Contemporary Quilt stand at the Festival of Quilts (and Exeter) were returned.
It was nice to see what others in the group have been doing. They are all visible on the private Yahoo site but they look so much better in the flesh, so to speak.


Did you spot mine at the bottom :D


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Wednesday, 8 October 2014

While I have been...

Deborah O'Hare

...keeping up with my Journal Quilts for the contemporary arm of the Quilters Guild I have been lax with sharing them here.

Deborah O'Hare

This one is a bit too busy for my liking (although I know at least one person likes it), but then they are all about playing and trying out different things. I am learning from the experience.

Deborah O'hare

Here's the close up.
A few more months to come!

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Friday, 26 September 2014

And so...

...has it taken me so long to getting around to this because I am putting off showing it to you?
Maybe, though that would be silly as hundreds and hundreds of people saw it at Festival of Quilts.
It actually has more to do with the fact that after the show a whole lot of stuff was deposited away up in the attic and I have been too busy (couldn't be bothered ) to get up there to fetch it and take some decent pics. I did take one of it while it was in the booth, but was not going to cut it so hence the wait.

art quilting
Dreaming of Borneo

So why have I shared all of this with you?
Firstly because I started to blog about it and felt compelled to finish this.
I had also made a commitment to my both buddy to create a Borneo piece.
Mainly though I hope it will force me into a better practice in the future.

I know that my better work is produced when I fill the sketchbook and fully explore where to go. I know that some quilts are serendipitous but when given a "theme" it pays to work out all the options.

The usual chestnut of allowing enough time and not leaving things to the last minute also applies...obviously.
There are parts of this that I like but I have enough self knowledge to know that the whole design of the piece is not good.
I could do what one person suggested (you know who you are if you are reading this :D) and cut it up into smaller sections but then that would mean losing the tree and I don't want to do that.
I do have one thought up my sleeve that I might attempt.We shall see.


For all that I have said this is a deeply personal piece, even if it looks a bit as if I have been dreaming whilst under the influence of something. It represents what was a very important and pivotal time in my life, not least because Borneo is where I met and married my husband.

The three motifs represent some of my best loved memories.

The Dragon Boat which is based on wood carvings represents the yacht that we bought and lived on for a while and which was called Dragon Lady.

art quilting

The wonder of nature in that part of the world can not be underestimated. The turtles are a reminder of a trip to nature reserve situated on an island. I got to watch baby turtles hatch and make their way to the sea. It was magical.

art quilting

The orangutangs, or the hairy man of Borneo will forever have a place in my heart. If I had to make a top ten list of best moments, the one where I got to watch a whole group of them swinging their way through the trees towards a feeding station (a step towards their complete rehabilitation into the wild) would probably be at the top.

art quilting

An unusually wordy blog post for me. If you have made it this far, thank you for reading.
Onwards and upwards!
Be back to share some new bits and pieces soon.

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Saturday, 13 September 2014

Stage 4. Progressing

In my last post you would have seen a glimpse of the motifs that I added to the quilt using freezer paper stencils and paint.

I chose three different motifs, orang utangs, baby sea turtle and a dragon boat, based on the designs from some of the tribes living in Borneo. Each was chosen because of the significant memories that each represent to me personally,the details of which I will go into in my next post.

All seemed fine but as the stitching progressed I became more and more aware that there was not enough contrast to make these elements stand out, especially with the orang utang.

At first I cut out the designs form painted Lutrador but wasn't happy with the results and so as is my want in situations like this I just hit the machine peddle and stitched!



I then created two more using soluble film to be added once all the background stitching had been completed.



The baby sea turtles are the one element that I am happy with.

art quilting

The dragon boat sculpture is okay...ish.


If you are still with me, stay tuned for a full reveal next time.

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Sunday, 31 August 2014

Step 3. Making the best of it.


After the mishap of my previous post, there was nothing to do but get stitching and add the missing white as and when. Those elements being redefined with the help of my original sketch.


Then it was a case of filling in with stitching!


Of course because I was in a hurry I decided to hand stitch the tree!!!!

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Saturday, 23 August 2014

Step 2. Working out the design


(bit of Apologies if you have been waiting with bated breathe for my next installment on how not to make an Art Quilt. I had a great but exhausting time at the Festival of Quilts, plus a holiday, so have been a bit lax with the blogging)
So now this is where I sketched and sketched and refined the design until I was totally happy with it... ..or maybe NOT!!!
I painted the background fabric and without doing any sampling (big mistake) I went straight into getting my tree design onto the background.
I decided to paint some interfacing and cut out the tree from that. In my head I was hoping to stitch it down with some simple hand stitches that would be representational of the stitches I had seen on lots of baskets and other crafts like this.

Borneo Crafts

I fused the interfacing onto the background fabric and began stitching.

art quilting

Thankfully before I got too far I knew this wasn't going to work.
One, because the stitching was tearing through the interfacing and two, because I knew that I needed to reverse the light and dark. The white tree just wasn't working for me.

art quilting

So....the interfacing became a mask and I painted out the background with a layer of white.
All seems well but there was some residual glue from the interfacing left on the background fabric. 
I decided to wash it out, and this would have been fine if I had done a proper job of heat fixing the white paint!
I was in too much of a rush again. 
Needless to say when the fabric came out of the machine a whole section of the white had gone and the interfacing that I had removed was too much of a tangled mess to re-use.

tree of life

This is what it looked like before I washed it. I was too upset to take photo afterwards.
Oh dear!!

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