Thursday, November 15, 2012

Walk in the Woods, Again

I spent a lot of time in the studio over the long weekend.  I got this small study completely quilted, and then spent time doing hand and machine embroidery.  I am really happy with how it turned out!


I quilted heavily in the green pieced areas- all straight line, with a variegated King Tut thread.  I'd planned to do some free motion on the tree trunks, but when I saw how my straight-line quilting made the trunks stand out and look almost dimensional, I changed my mind.  Then I did some machine embroidery, and topped that with hand embroidery in colors to give some pop.  I loved the effect it created.


The quilt is bound with a zigzag stitch and rattail cord.  I like this much better than yarn, it gives a cleaner and sleeker look.  I think the piece needs to be bordered some how, so I started auditioning fabric for a 'matte', something I learned from Jean Wells' books.  I found the perfect piece (in the top photo), which I plan to quilt before sewing Walk in the Woods 2 on it.  I'll be thinking about how to quilt the matte to best show this off.

So many things about this piece work for me.  I love how the heavy quilting softens the piecing lines, and makes the tree trunks stand out.  I love the effect I got with the machine embroidery, and will be experimenting with this a lot more.  And, I love the pops of color from the hand embroidery.

One more note: I have FINALLY mastered French knots!  I have tried to do them many times over the years, never successfully.  Today, after watching two video tutorials and one book, I finally figured out what I was doing wrong.  The French knots on the bottom of this piece were the final design element I wanted- crunchy texture to remind me of the crunchy leaves underfoot in the woods.

I'm really glad I did this small study, I'm already thinking about how I can take what I learned from it and make something similar in a larger size for a show next year. 

I am linking up this post with Nina-Marie's Off the Wall Friday.  Make sure you go take a look at what the other artists have posted!


12 comments:

What Comes Next? said...

This is fabulous Beverly - the quilting really makes those trunks pop, but then the embroidery and just finishes it off perfectly! I've never been able to get the hang of french notes so good on ya!

Renate said...

Oh Beverly this piece is a dream! The hand embroidery really gives me a sense of the tumbling fall leaves as the float through the air to hit the ground at your feet. Well done!

straythreads said...

The quilting lines feel like sun coming through the tree tops. Beautiful!

Sylvia said...

I love the greens and browns! Feels like Autumn in Utah!

Libby Fife said...

I keep meaning to talk with you! This piece looks great and I am even happier that you seem satisfied and settled with it. The lines and quilting are wonderful along with the minimal yet effective embroidery touches. Really nice and it conveys the idea of that photo in a complete and easy way-very appealing. Keep going:)

Karen S said...

I love the colors in this. And the hand stitches look like leaves falling. Very nice!

Lisa said...

Bev, this piece is gorgeous! I really love the mix of hand and machine stitching. It really works. I will look forward to seeing it in a larger version!
It was good to see you the other night!

Cathy Perlmutter said...

Absolutely gorgeous! Ready to display!

Nina Marie said...

ohhh for a small study this sure tells about a big forest! love the quilting lines!

Vera said...

It's lovely, I really like the green color!

Vicki Miller said...

Beverly, you are getting so much inspiration from this photo and the work is glorious. I love this one and I can see why you are pleased with it!

Lynda said...

I absolutely love what you've done with this piece. I've wanted to make a wall hanging from a picture of the Bamboo Forest we took in January in Hawaii but just can't seem to get to it. I really like what you did.