I have been making quilts for a long while. Like many art quilters, I started out by making traditional quilts, coverings for beds and babies, and couch throws. Wall hangings and quilted clothing followed. Somewhere along the way, quilting became a way of breaking through boundaries and expressing myself artistically.
I started adding embellishments to some pieces. Handwork is relaxing and portable. You can add richness and texture that can’t be added by machine, like hand embroidery, beadwork, and buttons. I do most of my work by machine but handwork lets you pause and think. With a sewing machine you tend to rush through things and not live in the moment.
Journal pages are the art quilter/ fiber artist’s answer to art journaling. The size of a journal page, they let you experiment with new ideas or express a feeling. They are often embellished but not always – they can be painted, stamped, or written on. Journal pages offer a lot of freedom when quilting can be a very precise and labored activity.
Printing photos on treated fabric opens up new possibilities. It gives you the opportunity to repurpose your artwork, honor a dear friend’s cultural heritage, or create a family memorabilia piece. It feels like I have just scratched the surface.
My mother taught me to sew. Mostly I taught myself because she found it difficult to teach someone who was left handed and did everything backwards as she called it. They made me write with my right hand when I went to kindergarten but that does not change you from being left handed. I adapted and am ambidextrous for some things. I cut with scissors with my left hand and rotary cut with my right hand. I can paint with either hand.