The Night Garden

This year I have resolved to focus on one project a month (yes, we’ll see how long that lasts)…and January’s mission was a piece inspired by SAQA’s theme of “Dusk to Dawn.” This happily coincided with one of the (many) photos I want to transform into fiber pieces. Before dawn one morning, I stood at my kitchen window and watched this sky:

I am always inspired by the effect of the trees in our front yard against the shaded of almost-dawn. Of course I couldn’t resist having a little fun with my photo apps:

…oooh! Turning to my stash, I found a perfect piece of hand-dyed almost-black batik and a yard of light purple silk/cotton. As always, the first step was to MistyFuse the black:

Next, free-cut the “ground” and rip some tree “trunks” and “branches”:

The ground needed more dimension so I cut some bits of dark silk…

And after fusing them to the foreground, first applied metallic ink…hmm a little too bright…then a layer of black Paintstik:

The sky was the most fun, as I brushed various shades of ink onto the fabric then used a spray bottle (of water) to allow them to spread and mix.

Many shades of Superior’s Magnifico later…

It was time to work on the trees. I prefer to rip the fabric to create texture on the edge, and for the trunks I molded the fabric to model ridges in the surface (actually the technique I demonstrated in the currently-running season of Quilting Arts TV…it is very easy and quite fun!).

The moon began as a slice of MistyFused Angelina…

…but was way too distracting on its own. (Rule #1: always listen to my husband’s artistic advice ;)…Rule #2: when in doubt, refer to Rule #1 πŸ˜‚.) The solution was to reduce the volume (stitch in along the border with thread matching the sky), then stitch the surface with grey thread to take it down a notch–both of these reach missions accomplished with non-shiny Aurifil thread…then dye some shredded wool batting to resemble clouds. Much better:

Of course, Jackson had to help…

February’s project has already begun: creating some pieces for Jamie Fingal’s “Heart of the Home” project. I cannot think of a better mission for Valentines month ;)!

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