Love Life

This quilt is so crazy important to me because it was the first quilt I ever had hang in an exhibit. AND IT WAS HOUSTON INTERNATIONAL QUILT FESTIVAL! Crazy, right?? This quilt was very very early on in my journey as a quilter. I started quilting in 2009 and this quilt was made in 2011. I had no idea what I was doing, especially when it came to how I would actually get my vision onto fabric, and the rules of typography. I totally broke the first cardinal rule of typography: “Thou shalt not stretch fonts”. Man this design almost kind of makes me cringe looking at the lettering more than 5 years later. But the cringe is a good sign. It means I have become more aware! Haha… So here is the process of how this quilt started… (and remember, I had NO IDEA what I was doing. I just used my artistic background from school.)

I picked out a lineup of spray paint colors to get an ombre effect on the fabric.
Then I laid my fabric onto a couple pieces of plastic and spray painted a beautiful sunset gradient on the fabric.
Then I used the silver spray paint and just misted it over the top to try and make it look sparkly.
I liked the splatter of the silver on top of the gradient. I have always loved sparkles.
Then I projected my lettering design onto the fabric and traced it. Then I used acrylic paint to make the lettering black. The paint wasn’t spreading super easily, so I watered it down a tad and that helped a lot. But it took a little longer to try than I’d hoped.
Then, I used a black backing and one layer of Hobbs 80/20 batting and took it to my little old Sit-Down quilting machine.
I chose to do my signature Karlee Kurls allover the quilt since that was basically the only quilting design I knew how to quilt. I avoided the lettering, hoping that it would puff up. It didn’t.
Then I made a scrappy binding that was mostly black and then pops of color from the spray painted fabric edges that I had trimmed.
With this quilt I learned how to apply hot-fix crystals! I just did the clear Swarovski crystals at the center of each curl.

So there you have it. This quilt kind of makes me cringe, and it’s so crusty because I used non-textile paints. Lesson learned.

And here it is hanging in the show! I was just a baby!!! This was the best feeling ever.

So here is what I learned:
-Don’t stretch fonts.
-Don’t use spray paint on fabric unless you feel like ruining the hook in your quilting machine.
-Don’t put acrylic paint on fabric unless you are totally fine with it being crusty and not at all snuggly.