Family Portraits

Most of my pet portraiture involves lots and lots of teeny tiny pieces of fabric, sheets of MistyFuse and thread painting.  But— sometimes, simplicity can be quite lovely (and much faster to produce)!

If your subject is mostly monotonal instead of dramatically striped, it can be fun to simply cut one piece of fused fabric for the furbaby.  Here the white chin and paws were provided by a white marking pencil (since I never mark my quilts, it came in handy) and a few facial features were carefully inked in (using a light box to trace the positioning of the eyes and nose first).

As demonstrated in the photos below, the design was a dramatic simplification of the original photo.  I like to use a background color and one other element (here, the chair) and let the pup or kitty be the focus.  Instead of fur-painting, I took a minimalist approach– you’ll notice that I simply varied the stitch around his fuzzy chin to imply more fur.

Two critical cuteness components:

1- even if you decide to adopt a minimalist approach, do not forget to stitch whiskers 😉

2- bring the eyes to life with touches of white ink (or typing correction fluid) to represent the highlights

Have fun with the process 😽!


Published by neonkittyquilts

Laurie is a fiber artist who combines her passion for animals and quilting by producing pet portraits though a technique she calls "Pet-lique." A frequent teacher at IQF's Open Studios and The City Quilter in NYC, she has been published in Quilting Arts magazine and The Canadian Quilter. Her art quilts have been juried into special exhibits in Houston and the National Juried Show of the CQA. She sits on the board of the Quilt Alliance and is an enthusiastic member of SAQA. Laurie lives in NYC and Connecticut with her husband, their two angelic German Shepherds and three mischievous felines.

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