Last fall I participated in a Studio E challenge to create an art quilt for the fall quilt market. Basically the company sends me some fat quarters and a size requirement and I play around to come up with something pretty.
And yes, in light of Friday's post, this does sound a bit familiar...with the big difference that I don't plan to put these quilts in books...at least I didn't until I thought about it just now...oh no! lol!
So this is the quilt I submitted last fall and was displayed at the Houston Quilt Market:
Now I love a good black and white print! There's so many things you can do with these fabrics - use them as is, or play with dye and paint to create really interesting colors.
For this challenge, I decided from the beginning I wasn't going to make a black and white piece. I want to play with lots of color and texture!
Instead I set myself the challenge to see if it would be possible to dye fabric AFTER it's been pieced, but BEFORE it's a complete quilt. Essentially it's like dyeing the tube of a bargello quilt before slicing it up and piecing it together again. That's more or less my inspiration here!
So to start I selected the fabrics I wanted to use and cut 2.5" strips and seamed them all together to create 3 panels of 8 fabrics each. These measure around 16 inches x 22 inches - ish. This really isn't an exact technique.
Next I dyed each sheet a different color with this simple method:
1. Soak the fabric in a mixture of water and soda ash. Wring out the excess water so the fabric is wet, but not dripping.
I used plastic bins and large plastic sheets to keep the mess down in my sewing room and let the dye set for 15 minutes. The dye I'm using is Dharma Trading Procion Dye (Fire Red, Deep Orange, Deep Yellow, Better Blue Green, Sapphire Blue, and Grape) - AWESOME STUFF!
3. Now just wash the excess dye out by hand, gently squeezing and agitating the fabric so the seams don't get too messy.
4. Once the water ran clear, I laid each piece on paper towels to dry.
A careful press along with extra careful starching prepared all the fabric for cutting.
I cut all the dyed panels into 2.5" strips and then seamed them all together into one long strip of multicolored fabrics:
And here's what the quilt looks like all together:
So that's how this quilt is coming along. I think this dyeing / strip cutting / cut to size method is really neat! Definitely play with this idea if you like it and have fun with it in your sewing room this weekend!
Let's go quilt,
p.S I couldn't resist playing with some extra dye: