Caption This! ๐Ÿ˜‰๐Ÿพ๐Ÿพ

My latest piece all began, as they so often do, with an amazing piece of fabric from Carol Eaton…a 2-toned piece she added to my order for fun. The nanosecond I laid it out, I thought…hmm, black cat would look awesome on the red background, buff cat also awesome on the blue/violet.

I had pre-MistyFused pieces of Carol’s custom-dyed solids for Jesse’s other portraits and black silk from another piece featuring Jackson. Aha! I ended up not going with the other hand-dyed you see here, but instead the last precious scrap of Cherrywood black. (As you may know, black is a very difficult color to achieve in hand-dyed fabric…Cherrywood is my favorite, darkest black.)

The photo I immediately thought of was this one:

Summit meeting? Plot to overthrow human management of the house? Who knows…but it is a favorite of mine. The MobileMonet app turned it into this image:

…which gave me a paper pattern. Well, eventually…I played with re-sizing each cat half until it was the right size for the background. From there it was fast work to trace the outlines of my subjects onto their respective fabrics!

A brief side note on eyes: for very dark-toned pets, I sometimes prefer to use reverse appliquรฉ for their eyes…so Jackson’s eyes were traced, cut out then backed with a bit of Carol’s brilliant green fabric-

Next…arranged and fused…and ready for LOTS of thread ๐Ÿ˜!

For the backgrounds, I just had to try the dark red Aurifil in a slightly heavier (40) weight…for the blue-violet, well, when you cannot decide, use both! (Using monofilament in the bobbin makes life easy when you plan to change top thread colors frequently.)

Then my favorite part: whiskers! I love using very heavy 12wt thread for this detail as it helps them to really stand out:

If you do this, don’t forget to switch to an even larger needle…I use a 100 Topstitch needle for whiskers (90 for nearly everything else).

Time to complete this piece: about 8-9 (all-consuming) hours. My biggest time-saver, by far, is to MistyFuse my fabrics in advance-this enables me to go right to the cutting-composing-fusing-changing my mind and re-positioning phase. (The biggest time drain was trying to adjust the highlighted sections of Jackson’s fur…too dark!…whoops, too light…oh, SO much fabric ink…)

Now, to decide on a title ๐Ÿ˜‚…what do you think?

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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