Welcome to Day Two of the Blossom Blog Hop!!

I’m one of two scheduled bloggers for the day, so when you’re done here, make sure you go visit Sherry at Powered by Quilting. She’s amazing, and has written some great tutorials lately!

You probably know by now about the grand prize for this blog hop: the beautiful Rising Star quilt, designed by Lovingly Lissa, stitched by the bloggers of this hop, and quilted by Lisa and Lorelai. I have a giveaway, too! Check out the entry form at the end of the post to learn how to win a bundle of my hand-dyed fabrics, a pattern from Quilt Theory, two spools of Aurifil, and a cheeky pin, pictured here:

I live on a cranberry farm. In fact, I’m even featured on the side of some varieties of juice from the leading brand of cranberry juice. So when I was invited to join this blog hop, and I heard the theme was “Blossom,” I knew immediately what I had to do.

These are cranberry blossoms!

I took this picture in 2007, and I’ve always, always loved it. Almost since I started quilting, I knew I wanted to translate it into fabric, but I didn’t quite know how to go about it. I started and stopped and tried and failed and eventually moved on. Finally, after joining the art quilt club at a LQS and experimenting independently with lots of techniques, I felt confident that I could figure something out.

I found a tutorial from Leni Levinson Wiener over on the Bernina blog and pretty much followed her recommendations. (Then I ordered her Pictorial Art Quilt Guidebook, which I will write about later this week, because it’s EXCELLENT.)

How to Create a Fabric Collage Art Quilt From a Photo

I figured out that enlarging and cropping the photo down to one major element was the best option, and I was off to the races!

I chose a mix of batiks, hand-dyed fabrics, and commercial prints, but I was stumped when I got to choosing the background. I put it up for a vote on Instagram and Facebook.

Pink background or green background?

A post shared by Becca Fenstermaker (@prettypiney) on

The votes ended up roughly even! So I compared the two photos in black and white…

Green background
Pink background

…and made my decision.

Don’t worry, the pink square wasn’t wasted!

From there, it was just a question of choosing the thread to define the petals and add detail.

I used a little Aurifil 28 wt (the dark pink) and several shades of Aurifil 50 wt. One of the beautiful things about nature is that there you don’t have to worry about perfectly straight lines. The whole process was liberating and delightful.

I used the same pink Aurifil 28 wt to finish the edges, and voila! The whole thing is about eight inches square.As part of the blog hop, we were asked to give some tips about social media. I’ve found that focusing on growing the following on one platform at a time has been the most manageable for me. Instagram was my target. Start by searching for a hashtag that interests you, and follow a bunch of people who use that hashtag. Like some of their posts, and comment–you know, be SOCIAL. If you have a blog, join a blog hop and/or offer a giveaway–ask people to follow you on Instagram as a requirement to win the contest. Join a swap or two (or three…or more. They’re kind of addicting.). My favorite is when someone hosts an event like the recent #igquiltfest, which was a month of daily prompts with a topic every participant posts about each day. I gained well over 100 followers during that event. Good luck!

Now, scroll on down and enter some giveaways!

Not bad, huh?
Blossom Blog Hop Schedule
Monday, April 3, 2017
Tuesday, April 4, 2017
Wednesday, April 5, 2017
Thursday, April 6, 2017
Friday, April 7, 2017

 

 

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super-secret bonus prize:

Yay! You read all the way to the end! Just for that, you have an opportunity to enter ONE MORE CONTEST. Can you guess which two blocks I contributed to the Rising Star quilt? You may enter ONE guess for both blocks. Anyone who guesses both correctly will be entered in a drawing for a super-secret bonus prize (it’s one of those “I Quilt So I Don’t Kill People” enamel pins. Shhhh!). If no one guesses both, anyone who guessed one correctly will be in the drawing. If there are no correct answers, all entries will be included.

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48 Replies to “Blossom Blog Hop–Day Two–GIVEAWAY!!

  1. I think the closest I have come is Interleave quilts. Totally intimitaded by the whole process.

    1. I had to look up what an Interleave quilt is, but I knew it when I saw it! That intimidates me. The beauty of art quilting is that you don’t necessarily have to worry about precision! I also like that working small means almost-instant gratification, and if I don’t like the results, it’s okay because I didn’t invest a lot of time or fabric in it.

  2. My favorite (and only) art quilt was a result of my favorite (and only) 2 person workshop 😉

  3. Thanks, Sherri! I had a good time making it. I may try a couple of other interpretations!

  4. I love them and think they are amazing. Havent ventured into them yet. Great job on yours!

  5. I’ve been experimenting with creating my own art quilts – sometimes they look great and sometimes less than but each time I learn something new!! Love your blossom!!!

    1. Thank you, and I love that attitude! That’s my favorite thing about making small art quilts and mug rugs. I feel free to experiment more.

  6. Yes, I have experimented with “art” quilts. The best one hangs in my mother’s house.

    1. I can understand that. Sometimes “no rules” is as hard as “too many rules.” You should give it a try! It may not end up exactly as you envision it, but that’s part of the learning. (And if you don’t like it, you don’t have to show it to ANYBODY. Does that help?)

  7. Yes, I do make art quilts. No photos to reveal. I do like to use various fabrics (cotton, linen and silk) and various fibres for the texture. Glad I found this blog hop. Always fun to meet new people.

    1. I’m glad you found it, too! We’re quite a diverse group of sewists. I’m just starting to play around with texture on a very small scale. I’m really enjoying examining how others use fiber, but I don’t yet have an “instinct” for it.

  8. Not sure if what I’ve made in the past is considered art quilts having made a few free style batik pillow covers

    1. I think the definition of an “art quilt” is a little fuzzy. If you think it’s an art quilt, then it probably is! And sometimes an article can be artistic even if it isn’t technically an art quilt. I’m sure there are strict prescriptivists out there, but I’m not one of them!

  9. Have you ever experimented with art quilting? If not, why not??
    I just participated in an 4×4 art quilt swap. It took three tries to get the look that I was working toward and I’m still not that crazy about it, but after reading your blog, I might keep it for myself and try again.

    1. Monica, definitely keep playing!!! Artists sketch, singers rehearse…try a few different things and have FUN!

  10. I have not tried art quilting. I’m working on more difficult traditional quilt blocks. Love your cranberry blossom.

    1. Thank you! I have so much respect for the patience it takes to create the challenging traditional blocks. I have a tendency to give up and call them “wonky” and move on….

    1. Very cool! I like that you’ve made several. I think I’ll probably always balance traditional quilting with other work. I feel like there’s a “food pyramid” comparison somewhere in a future blog post….

    1. Thanks for the link!! I remember seeing that as part of #igquiltfest. Stunning! Was it hard to cut up the kimono? I feel like that would make my heart stop for a moment.

      One of my local quilt shops has an art quilt club that meets monthly (we met today, in fact) and I’ve found it very helpful.

  11. I came across your blog from the 2017 New Quilt Bloggers list. I was part of it last year and love finding new blogs that way. I love that star quilt, it is beautiful. The pin in your giveaway is fantastic!

    1. Excellent! I was excited to find out I was eligible to participate. I’ve heard so many good things from others who’ve been part of the New Quilt Bloggers in the past. We just got our hive button, and I’ll be adding it to the blog in a bit. Lissa is going to release the pattern for the quilt soon, so if you don’t win, maybe you can make one…it was a great pattern for collaborating on, with each of us sending in 1-3 blocks.

    1. Thanks, Paula!! Your work is stunning. I don’t understand how you manage to work in so many dimensions….

      You’re going to have to come up this way during harvest for a spectacle! So glad we met. I hope we can get together again soon.

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