Create a Wearable Art Garment!

If you are looking to create a Wearable Art Garment this pattern (Kwik Sew K4104) gives you space to play.  The Lined Open Front Jacket is pretty easy to construct.  It took me longer because of all the embellishments and Quilting that were added.  When I plan to Quilt on a garment constructed with Hand Dyed Cotton Fabric, I always use Flannel as batting.  The Flannel has been washed and dried a minimum of three times in very hot water and dried in a hot dryer.  This is done to get any possible shrinkage out of the way. 

Kwik Sew 4104 Open Jacket

First Cutting

Because I planned to Quilt on this garment, I initially cut the fabric out one-inch larger than the pattern pieces.  This allows for any shrinkage that occurs during Quilting and Embellishing. 

Paper pattern showing the extra one inch added.

Accent Designing 

Accent colors are Hand Dyed Lavender, Sky Blue and Marbled Cerulean.  The strips were made using a ¼” Bias Tape Maker.  The Ultimate Marking Pencil (UMP) was used to draw the lines for strip placement.  After sewing down the colored strips, I used a hot iron (Steam or no Steam, works both ways) to remove the UMP lines.  At this point I felt a little stumped, things didn’t look right, my creative eye was not happy.  Thinking it was time to put the project into a Time Out.  My sister suggested that I hang the jacket on my new dress form to see what I thought.  Realized that I had been constructing in 2D and my brain had been dreaming in 3D.  With a few minor adjustments and I was ready to move on. 

Shows the drawn lines and color placement.

Quilting Design


The Ultimate Marking Pencil is used to draw very basic Quilting outlines.  I always allow myself the freedom to create and adjust as I am Quilting.  The beauty of the UMP is if you are not pleased with the design you can iron it away.  I love the face that once I am done Quilting, I can iron away the markings and no one knows that I Quilted outside the lines.

Shows proposed quilting lines drawn with UMP.

Quilting


Quilting takes time, give yourself time to Quilt.  I always use extra pieces of Cotton and Flannel to do a sample to find the right thread, needle, stitch length and tension.  Remember everything is a huge adventurous experiment.

Close up of Tone on Tone Quilting.

Second Cut


My Fabric has been created.  Time to cut out and mark everything.  Construction of the jacket took less time than making the fabric.  The pattern called for tons of Understitching, so I chose to leave an opening in the lower center back of the lining.  It made it easier to get to all of the places to Understitch.  I sew it up by hand when everything was finished.

Paper pattern piece on quilted and embellished fabric.

Finished Wearable Art Jacket

This is View A, but with all of the Embellishments and Quilting I chose to put pockets in the side seams instead if the Welt Pockets.  Jackets need pockets in my world. This is how I Create a Wearable Art Garment.

Front view of finished jacket K4104.
Back of finished jacket.
3/4 view of finished jacket K4104.

Finding the Perfect Marbling Colors

Finding the perfect colors for each hand marbled pieces of fabric can be a challenge.  Generally I find myself using a combination of six colors.  The tricky part is that the paints I use are opaque (Solid), translucent (see through but not clear) and transparent (clear).  Each color is printed on a colored background.  I am using Burnt Orange for this example.1_Burnt_Orange_Fabric All of my paints are in clear jars.  A fair amount of fiddling around and trying different combinations of paint follows.  My favorite combination is dropped onto the clear marbling base.  Sometimes that can change the look of the colors.
2_Colors_on_Base

The hand dyed fabric is the gently lowered onto the base.  They are lifted and rinsed.
3_Wet_Marbled_Fabric

I discovered it is hard to photograph wet fabric.  The water reflects the light, just like a lake or pond.4_Wet_Marbled_Fabric_CU

Opaque colors tend to stay the same, translucent colors may darken or appear to mix with the fabric color, transparent color allows the hand dyed color to shine through.  More fiddling with the combination maybe required at this point.
5_Marbled_Fabric_Curing

The colors often change once they dry.  The hard part is waiting fifteen days for the paints to cure.  No trying to rush them or the colors do not adhere properly and all of the work is wasted.
6_Marbled_Burnt_OrangeThe cured fabric is washed, dryed and ironed.  It takes about three week from start to finish.

Eagle by Kathy McNeil

Eagle

It is so exciting to see what artists are creating with my hand marbled fabric.  Eagle is a pattern by Kathy McNeil, you can find it on her web site.  Wow! this big bad girl is gorgeous.  I say she as female eagles are larger than the males,  wing span up to six and one half feet across.  Kathy has captured the majesty of the American Bald Eagle.  I am adding a close up of the body, it shows how my hand marbled Chocolate and Black fabrics were used to add depth and texture.
Eagle_CUCannot wait to see the beauty in person!!!

Guardian Spirits by Joy Hegglund

Nothing makes me happier than seeing my hand marbled fabrics turned into wonderful, brilliant, amazing creations.  A couple of Summers ago I received a this photo from Joy Hegglund.  She had taken the photo on Hornby Island, BC, Canada.  Joy was excited to be taking a class from Kathy McNeil and she would be using this photo.  Kathy was kind enough to recommend my hand marbled fabrics to her students.  Joy wanted a range of grays dark to light and a selection of blacks.  I started experimenting with a gradation of grays, dying them and then marbling.  Joy had planned ahead, so I was able to get her hand marbled fabrics to her in plenty of time class her class.
Joy_Hegglund_Origional_Phot

Earlier this week another photo arrived of the completed quilt, Guardian Spirits.  Congratulations are in order as Guardian Spirits has been accepted into International Quilt Festival, Houston 2015.
Guardian_Spirits_Full

It takes my breath away.  I love seeing the original photo and then Joy’s creation.  Is it just me are do I see faces in some of the rocks?
Guardian_Spirits
Guardians?
Guardian_Spirits_EXOK, I had to show off my hand marbled fabric.  I am in the middle of adding new color and updating existing colors to my web site.  Take a look!

 

Diamond String Quilt Revisited

Mariana Foliart was in my booth at Quilt Fest in October 2104.  She was admiring my hand marbled fabrics and all of a sudden she looked at me and said something to the effect of “I’ve got it, I know just what to do”.  I asked “Got what?”  She said, “You will see”.

In May 2015 during a wonderful visit to the La Conner Quilt & Textile Museum with my sister, we found Diamond String Quilt.  The original (on left) was created in 1890 it’s maker is unknown.  Marianna was so taken with she decided to make and updated version.  The original quilt was made using silk, due to age and the chemical processes use on silk during the period (1880 – 1890) the black silk varies in color.  I was so excited to see that mariana had used my hand dyed marbled fabrics to create that vintage look.
Old_and_NewDiamond_String_1

Diamond_String_2

Diamond_String_3New

A Job well done.