How I design my quilts goes something like this:
1. Have a dream about it.
2. Think about it for a day or two.
3. Just go for it and start! LOL
The quilt I am working on now took me a couple of weeks to figure out how I was going to do it. For those that know me I am not a procrastinator at all. If I think of something I will just go ahead and do it the next day or within a week. For some reason that didn’t happen with this quilt.
I love Birch trees. Actually I love all trees. I have seen a lot of quilts with trees in them done with different methods. I wanted to try something new to me and not sure if it’s new to you as well. I am right in the middle of this quilt but I wanted to share the steps as I am going along. If you wish to follow me come along and try something new.
The first thing I did was go for a walk around my wooded area and take pictures of birch trees. Just the top half of the tree. I didn’t really want the lower trunk part but the branches and not to many!! Then in my photo shop program I made it black and white. I then went and made it the size that I wanted. Went to my poster program and printed out lots of sheets that I tape together to form the print in the size that I want. This was my template for my branches! I eliminated a lot of the smaller branches and just outlined the larger ones.
I had some left over white batting (I use Quilter’s Dream Batting) and with a light box, outlined the branches one by one on little pieces of batting with black marker.
I then covered the batting with two layers of white cheese cloth. There is nothing under the batting, just cheese cloth and batting. After this step I cut up small pieces of black tulle to add to the edges of the branches. This gives it a shadow effect. On top of that I cut small pieces of black hemp and placed them here and there on top of the cheese cloth and black tulle. Then I added one more single layer of cheese cloth on top of that!
I then took white thread with my darning foot, feed dogs down and just went back and forth to form what looked like bark. If you look at birch trees they look like the bark is all going in the same direction. Once I liked the way it looked, I cut along the line of my tree limb. I did learn, with all my threading, that it shrunk my branch quite a bit so the next ones I marked bigger so they would shrink to the right size.
Last I added some fibers of grey and black to the top to give it even more texture.
I had purchased a beautiful piece of dyed fabric going from grey to black to put my branches on. I am going to leave you here till my next post to explain how I attached the branches to the fabric. I am in the middle of quilting it right now and love the way it is coming out!!