Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Art Nouveau and Dandelions (Spokane, WA)

On The Cutting Board
This is my second time making this project.  Not too long ago, I had a problem with some of the green material bleeding onto the background and I could not get the dye out.  So, I tossed the first one, washed all the batiks, tested them, and started over again.

Surprisingly enough, this second appliqué project moved a lot faster.  Part of it was learning from my mistakes and trying a some different tactics.  Most of it was due to the material cooperating by creasing with no arguments.  Even the threads were being good by staying untangled.
Now this was the tough part...well, at least for me.  I have never added an appliquéd border.....let alone one this big.  I used freezer paper for the pattern.

Marked, trimmed, then basted to make sure the large pieces of material did not move or get in my way while I was stitching it to the background.
The first time I did both borders, I somehow got one or both off center.  Commence the Frogging!  Rip-it! Rip-it!  

I can tell you this much...if the thread ever breaks, the material is not going anywhere because my stitches are so small that I could barely rip out the thread.  It took me a lot longer to rip out the thread since I had to wiggle the ripper under a stitch without putting a hole in the material.  Often I will cut the thread a couple of stitches down and pull that out....yea, not this time.  I had to loosen the thread before I could pull it out.

All right!  Both sides are re-positioned and finally done.  I know it looks crooked.  I did not trim the outer edges of the border since I need to trim the whole block after I am finished.  
 The block is now trimmed and ready for the border.  I'm going to put this one away until we are on the west side of the Cascades when I will have more time to work with my sewing machine.

I know most people do not like dandelions, but I do with or without a yard.   We never allowed the dandelions to take over the yard, but we did not stress over a few of them being in the yard either.  The fields here are filled with dandelions and I think they look wonderful.
Now I know they are a weed....a very invasive weed and to the immaculate-green-lawn owner, the dandelion is the terror of all weeds.  Just get one yellow spot and it seems like overnight, they have taken over the lawn, but I can't help loving the bright sunny yellow flowers and the fragile looking petals.
The bees certainly put them to good use.  They were very busy on the day I took these photos.
Even when they go to seed, they are beautiful and so delicate looking.  They also bring back childhood memories of making wishes and blowing all the seedlings free to float into the air.
Yep, right into the neighbor's yard.  I'm sure they appreciated that!  
Was I tempted to pick one and blow?  You bet!  
            I sent my wishes floating away into the warm summer day....  


  1. What patience you have to work....and sometimes rework ;) ....such lovely fabric art. It looks beautiful, love the border design!

    As always, wonderful photos. I too still cannot resist blowing those little white puffballs! Our cow eats most of the dandelions, it's like candy to her, so we don't ever have that many around.

    1. Thank you Ugly Barn Farm! I feel quilting gives me patience. It has its meditative moments which is why I love making them.

      That is so funny! I should tell the campground host. She is out there battling dandelions right now and all she needs is a couple of cows.

      I saw a squirrel eat one once. Popped the puffball into his mouth and did a spaghetti slurp of the stem.

  2. Lovely work! I'm glad it worked out better this time! Although not particularly fond of dandelions I do love them in my art and they make great photos too. My little daughter of course is thrilled to pick them and it keeps her out of Mommy's paid-for flowers ;)


    1. Thanks Heather! I bet she loves picking them. I know I did and Mom would put them in a glass for me. I never thought she was happy that I was picking dandelions instead of her roses!

  3. That is a beautifully appliqued piece. Can't wait to see the finished product.
    Love the dandelion puff.

  4. I blew a dandelion just last week!

    The applique looks beautiful!

  5. Every time I have to un-sew something, I am aware that these things are sewed to last. There are so many ugly invasive weeds, I think I prefer dandilions if I have to have any ... and a whole field would be super.

  6. Your cutting board looks like a busy one! LOL
    Funny you mention dandelions, because my baby girl (almost a year and a half now) LOVES dandelions! =)
    from Blogging Buddies

  7. How frustrating to have the dye bleed. You have more patience then I do to try it again! Your second try is just gorgeous! The border has such an elegant look.
    Love the dandelions too! :)

    1. Thanks SibStudio! I find quilting has taught me patience.

  8. Nice project. Pretty dandelions, too! One of my friends took the cutest picture of her daughter holding a seeded one, and I plan to draw her into dandelion fairy someday.


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