Extrasolar Space Quilt
When my boys, who are grown now, were small, they drew a spaceship together. I decided to make a space quilt and got a lot of help from my daughter-in-law, who is an amateur astronomist and my sons in figuring out how it should look. Here it is–it’s called “Ken’s and David’s Excellent ExtraSolar Adventure. (KADEESA)” Let me know what you think. I really enjoyed making it.
Oh my goodness gracious! It's fabulous. The planets are so gorgeous and the stitching is, too. Did you stipple the background? Did you hand-dye the planet fabrics? THANKS so much for sharing those photos!
Thanks very much. I did what I call my "scribble stippling" on most of the background, although I also have some "space events" in the stitching (several compass rose like stitchings, a "star field" in front of the comet, and some very distant planet type stitching all in black). Scribble stippling is accomplished by setting my embroidery machine on it's widest largest stippling stitch, loosening the pressure on the foot and moving it around. It gives some control to the stitch length, results in fairly close stitching, and is really fun. It does sometimes result in crossing over other stitching, but I never thought that was a distraction or flaw--which is why I call it "scribble" stippling. Again, thanks.
Edited 8/27/2006 1:19 pm ET by Sewdreamy
I appreciate your description of stippling. I plan to try the technique when I can sit down with my machine. But I have a very old zig-zag machine only, so I'm wondering if I can just remove the presser foot, and put the fabric on an embroidery hoop.I also meant to say earlier, that the designs you stitched in black, the "distant planets"?, are elegant. The circles within circles are especially nice; I love the non-concentric design. Your comet was a nice touch, too. Very nice design.
Thanks for your nice comments. No need to worry if all you have is a zig-zag. Some of those older machins are excellent. If you put on a spring-type embroidry foot--or better yet, purchase a "big foot" for your machine--and drop the feed dog, you can move your quilt around to make the stipple or follow a pre-marked pattern. If you have your quilt well pin-based and learn how to hold and move the quilt, you don't need a hoop. It really just takes a bit of practice to move it at just the right speed to make the stitches more or less the same right length and to hold and control the quilt as you move it. There actually are books and articles out there describing the technique in detail and suggesting practice projects. My technique is really not standard and this free-motion quilting I just described that you can do with your machine is what most quilters do. At first you may think you aren't going to get it, but if you persist and practice on smaller projects, you'll find it a very good technique indeed. Good luck.
What a wonderful quilt! Your boys must have been so happy. I am wondering about the fabrics you used for the planets—did you hand-dye them? Your work is absolutely beautiful.
I have a friend who has recently been experimenting with quilt art. She has been doing a lot of background stitching similar to what you have done here. (I don't know what the technique is called—I usually sew clothing.) I am going to send her this link. Perhaps she will post some of her work as well.
I used all commercial fabrics, except that I had collected some hand dyed pieces at the local quilt expo that I also used. Commercial fabrics have gotten so wonderful and I do a lot of my shopping online, that I really don't think I need to use my scarce quilting time in hand-dying fabrics at this time. Maybe after I retire in a few years...we'll see. Thanks for your comments.
I can honestly say I have never seen a masculine quilt before. This is just so cool! Thank you so much for sharing the photos with us. My own creativity is tickled every time someone shares their unusual work!
I agree that masculine quilts and other neat items are scarce, but they do exist. I must have 15 quilts in my head and at least a third of them should appeal to men. I just wish I had more time!!! Thanks.
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