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Last week I started designing a new quilt. I manipulated a photo to make a better composition, then printed it out and pinned it to my design wall to think about and consider changes.
Last week I went for a 30 minute walk and snapped photos for inspiration (read it here if you missed it) and this week I'm going to use one of the photos I took to start working on a new quilt. There is a little ground work to do first before I can get to the sewing machine or even the cutting board but all these things will make for a better result.
Today, Tuesday, is always the day I publish my blog post. I've been doing this for years now.... and usually, before Tuesday I have an idea of what I want to blog about. Often I have some ground work done as well, however, this morning I come up with a blank. No prep work, no ideas. I have heaps of notes, journals and ideas that I could use so spent an hour or more, sifting through these, but nothing sparked my interest..... and anything that did, actually would have taken more than a day to prepare, create, photograph, and write about.
If you follow along, you'll know what I've been doing over the last few weeks. If not, then I suggest you go back and read last week's blog post.
Last week, if you read my blog post, you knew I was about to head to the cutting table and cut up a perfectly good quilt which only needed binding to finish - well I did it - yes I cut it up into strips and it was more fun than it should have been! ..... let me also say here, that last week, in one of my groups - unrelated - there was mention of 'falling down a rabbit hole'. I think this is a great description of what happened with this project too.
I don't know if you've heard, but we are back in lockdown again.... I was hoping we were over that but no, it continues into 2021... and to be fair, right back at the start of last year when we first went into that dreaded level 4, I predicted we'd still be having problems this time next year!
Wherever you go – slow down – take the time to look around you. This is one of my biggest forms of inspiration, especially in art quilts. Do not look at just the scenery though.... also look for shapes, color, and contrast.... stretch your imagination. If you see something of interest, sketch it, write notes or take a photo to remind you. Almost all of us have smartphones on us these days so there should be no excuses to take a snapshot. Don't just think ‘wow that’s so cool, I could use that in a design. I will remember it’. Trust me, you won't. It will get stored somewhere in the back of your mind and you will never retrieve it. However, if you have a note or sketch, you have something to jog that memory or thought of the moment. Keeping a notepad and pencil in your purse or pocket so you have something to write your thoughts and sights with or get familiar with the camera on your phone so you can snap photos anytime. You can even record your thoughts!
As I mentioned earlier, it's been 20 years since I started online teaching so today I decided to take a look at what I was doing 10 years ago and a leap forward into what's happening this year.
There are many applique techniques around and in a sense, they can all be considered "layered" as small pieces are piled on top of each other, but there are very few that include full layers of fabric such as in the technique I have developed and taught over the years.
I realized a couple of weeks ago that 2021 means I have been teaching online for 20 years. Over this time I have written numerous lessons and tutorials plus 26 workshops for all sorts of techniques. Over the next few weeks, my plan is to review some of these workshops. Today I'm going to start with the very first one I wrote and the very last one. This will give you an idea of how the workshops have transformed over the years.