Thursday, November 14, 2013

Comfort in the Arts, a quilt challenge

       "Comfort" is a pleasurable topic to contemplate. The arts comfort me as on a Sunday morning when I sit down to play certain arrangements on the piano, pick up my ukulele after a long day on the computer before going to bed, or draw and paint at the kitchen table. I am relaxed and transported by the arts. But even more so, I have wings when I get to dance.

        In art school as at my Journal Quilt Connection, I was given the topic of “shoes.” I picked out tap shoes, stuffed some shiny fabric wings I had sewn, and glued them to the heels. My tap shoes would again be the reference for this month’s journal or art quilt. However, the creation of this “comfort” quilt for Material Mavens was totally UNcomfortable. 


       I chose the background and back fabrics spontaneously. I found a shiny black fabric from which I free-hand cut patent leather tap shoes. Problem. The black fabric cannot be sewn easily. I secured the shoes with a hot glue gun after stitching the silver “stage” to the background, batting and backing. I pulled the backing over the quilt edges bind them, a bit prematurely. I cut down the old wings from art school and glued them to the shoes, but the heat from the glue gun removed some of the color from the wings. No matter. I glued on beads for some glitz, trim, or taps. I wanted to stitch in free-motion my dance routine: One, two, three, four, five, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, One Kick-Hop, Two Kick-Hop, Repeat. However, my sewing machine didn’t like my writing with stretchy invisible thread, so I quit after a bungled line. Instead, I cut free-form notes out of the shiny black no-sew fabric and glued them down. I felt I should wrap the entire piece in pink tulle, sew it to the binding edge and pink it near the seam. Then I felt I should layer more beads over the finish. I put beads on the front and back.
    
    The quilt has sweet comforting memories encased. However, during a work crisis, I accidentally deleted this blurb on “comfort” which I had just written and had to rewrite it.   Time for COMFORT!

8 comments:

  1. I loved seeing this striking quilt early this AM on our Material Mavens blog! You've captured a lovely concept in such a colorful manner. Making it may have been "uncomfortable," but no one would realize that, looking at this image!

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  2. I think it's a great composition. I can't believe all the elements that you used and it looks great!

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  3. Yes, art can be a comfort to us. Your tap shoes are darling and I think your granddaughters will be impressed. I can imagine you doing the dance steps as a little girl. Memories are a comfort, too.
    NM

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  4. I did a short rendition for my journal quilt group Thursday eve. Not as graceful as in the past! hahaha

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  5. I just love your shoes. We all feel the comfort of the arts. It is so important to our lives. Tricia

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  6. Love the shoes and the memories. I feel like I'm at the Musical Arts Conservatory in Amarillo, only I'm kicking up my ballet shoes and twirling from corner to corner.
    I've always vented my creativity by writing, but more and more I'm grabbing a pencil and drawing. New and great feeling. Someday--maybe quilting. Always the new challenge!

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  7. Linda, I too took tap dancing for a while as a child so your cute shoes are nostalgic for me too. As always, I love your ideas and your ways of making them a reality.

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