Wednesday, December 12, 2012


"Peaceful Woods"

Close up of paws

Aspen and pine
A couple of weeks ago Karen Musgrave put out a call for a 12-12-12 challenge.  Perfect, that is the date of my friend Karen E's birthday!  I will make a 12"x 12" art quilt for her birthday!  I wanted to do something that is meaningful to her and not go with the number 12 for inspiration.

My first thought was to do a collage.  Something with a forest theme.  So I pulled all kinds of brown and green fabrics.
The palette
Then I started to build the piece.  Somehow it turned into a landscape instead of a collage.
Building the foreground

Trees trunks in place
I was so involved in the process that I spaced out taking more in progress photos.   Once I had the background in place I did some quilting along with stitching down the foreground.
Little bits of fabrics for the pines and aspens
I knew that I wanted to use little bits to make the pine needles and the Aspen leaves.  To keep it all in place I put a layer of netting over it.  Then I quilted to define the pines and aspen leaves.

A layer of netting
I ran into an issue.  The netting wasn't secured down in most of the places and something seemed to be missing from the details.  I did some loose quilting in the backgrounds to hold down the netting.  On a whim, I used some black thread and went around the details such as the rocks and tree trunks.  I also did some gold thread in the aspen leaves to give the illusion of "quaking".   Much better.

Ready to trim
I had started with a larger piece thinking it would shrink down more.  I had to cut off some of the trees on either side.

I used a piece of fabric that looked like wood grain for the binding.  And then I added some dragonfly charms.  Karen uses dragonflies on her business cards and logo.  

I delivered the gift to her this morning.  She loved it.  She had tears in her eyes.  I knew that I got it right.  The 3 paw prints in the piece represent her 3 beautiful German Shepherd dogs.  Two of them passed away this year, one just 2 weeks ago.  I knew that she had a yours and mine family and wasn't sure of how many kids there were.  I had intended on adding 6 dragonfly charms and somehow ended up with 7.  Which is how many children they raised together. And the woods is to represent the forest just up the mountain from where we both live.  With pine, Aspen, wildflowers and rocks everywhere. I used some gold thread in the background to represent the shimmer in the woods on a sunny day.

My finished photo didn't quite turn out as well as I would have liked.  Karen is going to try and take a better photograph tomorrow.

This is my Off the Wall post for this week.  Check out what everyone else is doing at Nina-Marie's blog. And also my TGIFF!


  1. It's a beautiful piece Sylvia! I think it is one of your best art quilts. I love it!

  2. ohhh I want this - grin - what a lovely gift!! It really a good idea to do a 12 by 12 gift - not only because its a doable present but also 'cause its a way to try new ideas without a huge investment

  3. Hi, Sylvia. Came over from Nina Marie's to enjoy your blog. Lovely piece. I especially like your use of greens as I'm a green fan, so to speak. And what a thoughtful gift.
    best from Tunisia,

  4. Nice! I really like the photo when you are at the tree trunk stage without everything else added. I like the hint of foliage without adding it. It could easily be another piece in this series. So now you have another one to do, lol.

  5. I love how it developed as you progressed. That is a fun way to work. It is a lovely piece. Here from Nina's blog.

  6. Oh what a fabulous gift. I love your story and photos. The quilt is a pure treasure.

  7. Ooh, thanks for sharing this and how you made it. Very cool! Thanks for linking up to TGIFF!


Thanks for stopping by! I love to hear what you think about my post!