Wednesday, May 13, 2015

One quarter done Three quarters more ..

Where did the quarter go !! Time flies .. Welล‚ I still have three more so let's catch up ..
  I write and that's about it ..no fancy words or eloquent bullshit ..but most times I don't write .. 
This year begun like all New Years !! Duh Moment .. Took part in a quilt competition which I actually won the third place .. Surprise of the year . That will be another post on how I made that quilt ..
This is my first tutorial ..so any goof ups .. Cut me some slack .๐Ÿ˜Š
It all started with a quick trip to chennai for a workshop where I met some lovely ladies & when one such woman who impressed  the hell out of me with her  attitude & asked me to make a fabric bowl I readily jumped ..a few days of self doubt and all the shenanigans . I did what I do best .. Wing it my way & voila my yellow leaf bowl is ready for show .. Thank you Anasuya for asking me ..if you hadn't this post would have not been up , more than that thanks for the joy of teaching someone who wants to learn ..

And here is the method I used .. No hard and fast rules ..enjoy the process ..come up with new ideas & have fun . If you need help send me a note will get back ..




Fabric Leaf bowl 

Materials :
Your choice of fabric ,I used a brocade cotton ,  collar canvas ,in a fancier term interfacing ( iron on ) not too fond of buckram  too much of starch powder gunking my machine , wadding , 150 gsm will be a better option .i used synthetic batting .


Cut two pieces of fabric in the size you want .. you can also use a different fabric for the back ,I chose to use the same , draw a line  in the middle as it will be easier to draw one side of the leaf & fold length wise & cut .. I drew a rough figure of an unknown leaf !! 

Once you fold in half & cut you will have two identical shapes ..like this 

.. Take your leaf ,draw an outline on the iron on interfacing , cut & iron it on both the fabrics because we need the stiffness ,. Also cut out the leaf shape from your wadding . I used two layers of 100 gsm wadding .
With tailors chalk or erasable pens draw notches on the leaf as marked 
Interfacing & wadding all set 
Clip and mark notches .. I prefer binding clips than pins for this . I found using pins made the layers shift a lot it's annoying ..clips hold it with a death grip .
 
Change your presser feet , needle , feed dogs etc according to your sewing machine ,. Have to show off I didn't need to I use a Bernina ๐Ÿ˜
Sew along the edges & also the notches because it's easier when we cut the notches or again we will have all the layers shifting .

Now cut away like this .

If you notice ice the sharp pointed leaf has a rounded edge , changed it . ๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜

Now to join the notches using zigzag stitch . Set your machine on the slowest speed & sew . Make sure you catch the back of the fabric too . Try holding both the sides of the notch like a V while sewing . I do suggest if you are new to sewing a notch together this way , make a rough square patch and cut a V Shape and sew . 
While sewing the bottom of the leaf ,use the notch piece as a stem if you want . Or you can make one the same way you made the leaf .fabric , interfacing & wadding ..


Once it's stitched up . Trim all the edges & do a tight zigzag all around . If you are making a circular leaf like for a lotus you can use a binding .. 
I didn't find it stiff so I quilted on the whole leaf , you can see the erasable pen marks ..
It still looked unfinished so I stitched some veins too .. 


Have fun experimenting ✨


Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Taking stock ...

This year has been rather good ..like all years :) had its high , lows & ok moments ..but isn't that how life is ? 
I wanted to know how much I actually created this year & I made this rough collage of my art quilts , custom clothing , quilts & bags ..not bad ..I could have done better & I bet I will say that every year . But hey not bad ..I took part in two quilt competitions , learnt heck of a lot .. 
As for my lovely & chic pattikadu Boutique it's been a good year too . 
   I don't have resolutions but a list of things I would like to accomplish , complete , learn , explore in terms of my textile art , boutique &  as a person .. 
I also have a list of stuff which is incomplete which hopefully will see daylight soon .. This list is actually not long .!! Just took account ..so it's like just 9 unfinished projects !! Not bad at all ..cos I was running in two digits long back & 9 is an auspicious number so .๐Ÿ˜good luck on that .. 

A few of my art quilts 
Some more quilts ..
Few bags I made ..
A few sarees & pavadais ..

A tiny quilt & tiny elli ..
Sure could have done more if I don't procrastinate or analysis a bit too much before a project !! 
I have jotted all I would like to do the coming year & will do that & more .. ๐Ÿ˜Š
Signing of for 2014 & bringing in a bright , cheerful , creative & brilliant 2015 ๐ŸŽŠ๐ŸŽ‰✨๐Ÿ˜˜







Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Of low cost airlines & the " F " word ...

Ahh and you scanned the entire post  form the F word dint ya ? .. Ok if you dint .. way to go Saint !!! 
   With the advent of low cost airlines travelling has become so much easier . Been a while since  I traversed around in busses & trains . Travel time is quicker & I'm lost less tired . so from the airport to work is easy & darn I look absolutely perfect for my meetings .. 
 Ooh now while I wait at airports I love watching  people cos though I buy an interesting read it doesn't grab   me at that moment .so I'm watching you ... 
   This is when I spot the many wannabe page 3 fashionistas .. How to spot them .. Rule number one : the sickeningly straightened hair ..for Christ sake girl your hair could've been used as pokes at the fire place or perhaps toothpicks or any bloody pointed tool ( read in a miffed british accent sounds  more fun) . The razor sharp ends looks like an expensive rat chewed it off .. And no it doesn't suit you , your natural hair was put on your head to suit your blinking face !! Not that your face is original anymore so yeah !!! 
 Oh not to forget the wannabe will use her index finger to push the hair back , which was not falling on her face ... Whatever.
Rule number two : the handbag , if the handbag is on the shoulder look past her, she is not your target ..this one will carry it on the crook of her arm .. A Michael korr's or fashionably called " MK "  , or the LV or Gucci ..a Ted Baker perhaps .. Which is the FAKE .( the F word ) . No no I'm not asking who is the fake , the girl or the bag ..both are.. Discussion here are the luxurious Goods .. 
 
Wait a minute she opens her FAKE " LV " to check her smart phone & update all her statuses .. She is flying from city X to city Y ..and oh my the peasants are boring darlings .. Yeah yeah the power of a fake bag can make you feel high .. 
Many shopping groups & sites stock all these bags by the dozens & ppl flock to get them at a staggering 2500- 3500  or more .. Which are made of faux leather , pleather , vinyl / rexin .. Tacky tacky !!!All for the love of a brand name ..
.I know I would love a Dior bag & 4 lakhs for it . It is steep ..but wouldn't a custom leather from one of your local brands do ..or pret leather bag at the shopping mall !not to forget handmade bags which are done oh so brilliantly ! Most are customised prefectly too ..
Ughh these wannabes .. 

   Call for boarding . Shh our fake is nearby I have too see what she is wearing .. 

Now rule number three ..
Skinny jeans from some local boutique stocking  Bangkok goods .. T- Shirt mmm local made to look global ..
Not bad finally supporting our economy .
Flight takes off ..
And we land ..oh she scrambles and stuffs her earphones & frantically calls some one to either be picked up or announce her arrival .which would be on facebook .. 
As we pick up our luggage from the conveyor belt I see she has a " LV " duffel bag ..which apparently even LV hasn't yet designed. !! 
We step out of the icy airport interiors to the balmy hot sun in your face city . Out comes the Armani , Gucci & LV shades your truly FAKE .. 
Our many fakes give me the look " ooh the village girl is flying " the Ooh here is not awww ,it's an undertone ..
I'm wearing a pretty cotton salwar courtesy my own boutique ( this is luxury ,owning a boutique & wearing your own designs , you know nothing is FAKE ) 
My handbag custom designed using high quality nappa leather , shoes by Aldo  , jewellery handcrafted diamonds by an old timer who has  been making jewellery  for my family for generations.

Till my next flight to watch the fakes & the busy .
I sit on my plush bed at the Taj ,sipping english chai ..
Ahh life when you don't need to be fake is rather interesting ..

Happy shopping ๐Ÿ˜‰


 

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Around the world blog hop

I was asked to contribute to around the world blog hop by Elvira . She is a brilliant quilter & makes the neatest wallet I have ever laid eyes on .
Elvira
  She has a lovely blog where she shares her love of sewing , photography , cooking & much more .
She also has a lovely etsy shop stocking up on beautiful indian cottons , wallets , quilts & much more .Elvira's etsy shop 

I was  thrilled yet surprised cos it's been ages since I blogged . I hopped in with great enthusiasm,maybe this is a sign I should be more diligent in updating my blog . The rules for this post was rather simple , I had to answer 4 questions & since it involves my work I can yap away or rather tap away ..
So here goes ..
     1) what am I working on ?
    Ahh well I'm working on a few projects. Some have been going at a snails pace ..
Not a close up cos I'm a bit finicky ,I prefer showing my art quilts once it's complete so will reveal it soon . It's white silk with a variegated thread . Do stay tuned .




Fishes  , horses & Brit print will become a quilt someday .. Have to start cutting the fabric .. 



I do a bit of Aari work so this is a Saree blouse for me .. Final stages of completion before it becomes a pretty blouse ..it's been on the frame from July .. Ahh sometimes ..



A 100" *100 " quilt top completed .. Have to quilt it & it's ready to be cuddled up in .. 



Silk bags for my best friends .. Diwali gifts .. 
   
         2How does my work differ from  others of its genre? 
    I really don't have an answer for that . I would say we are all influenced by someone or something it's how we intrepret it & how the viewer perceives it . 



This art quilt for me is all about the texture , colours & layers . A visual representation of a lotus . A viewer asked me if I support a political party !! Huh ,. It never crossed my mind ..


It's been quiet sometime since I have done traditional quilts .. I started with traditional quilting nearly 10 years ago . Most of it hand pieced & hand quilted . Now  I do it with the ease of my Bernina . 
 It's only recent that I took up art quilting .. It was something I always wanted too .. Never knew how to start ..once I took the plunge it's no turning back ., 
I use a lot of silks , velvets, satins ,lace ..well actually any fabric I lay my hands on . It's a constant learning process . Each piece is different . Most of my inspiration is nature .. I like bright colours , lots of texture . Most of my works are 3 dimensional. I like trying new products & techniques .



This beetle I used the confetti technique but instead of tiny pieces of fabric I used all my left over silk threads & with a bit of colouring with my Inktense pencils .

   3) why do I create ?
    Why do I breathe ? The answer is same as to why I create ..  
But how I got to create I would thank my Mom & dad ,they encouraged me to do what I love . Whether it was sketching or sewing . Right from a young age I would always be seen with a book & pencil drawing or reading .. My mom being an artist she taught me her skills , my dad would teach me to be observant , patient & diligent so put that all together & there you have my work .. I still go to them when I have a creative block .. 
I was always interested in fabrics ..I would design clothes for my Barbie . And the joy of giving handmade gifts is bliss .. Be it a tiny bag or quilt or wall hanging or a pretty dress ..the hours spent designing , choosing fabrics & sewing it up with lots of love & when u gift it ,,a smile & a hug makes you puffed with happiness which  has no bounds ..
But it did take me years of hopping around with various careers till I decided it's time I do what I truly love .
Now I quilt full time & have my lil boutique where I design salwars & sarees .

There are those who say fate is something beyond our command. That destiny is not our own, but I know better. Our fate lives within us, you only have to be brave enough to see it.- my fav quote from the Disney movie # Brave .



      4) How does my creative process work ?
    Inspiration strikes at the oddest hour & place too ..be prepared . 
Mostly I see fabric & I get an idea how I would like to work on it .. Yeah sounds like I'm heading for the looney bin ..but nope .. I visualise what I want to make . It doesnt have to have a theme or how I intrepret it .. 



This was bits of bright poplin ,  I knew I wanted to FMQ ..the butterfly was an after thought .. I don't have any rules ..I just go with the flow with my thought process ..
If I do have a topic or a theme i Start with writing it down .Eg . Hope . I would write down or Draw what is hope to me .. 



Say I think hope is a teeny seed coming up from a parched land .. Once I zero in on my idea I do a rough sketch how I want it to be .. Then I audition fabrics .. Then I do a sketch in the size I want & then go about piecing it , embellishments , quilting.. No hard and fast rules ..I keep adding layers or textures or whatever it needs to look finished to me ..most of the times my initial sketch & my finished work don't have much in common .. 



This was my sketch for the theme footprints ..I wanted it as a foot prints on the beach with shells etc ..



This is how It turned out .. No beach bum here .. It was welcoming Lord Krishna on his birthday !! With kolams ..not a bit of brown .. Mmm
So that's it ..
About me & my work ..hope you enjoyed the long read ..
Now it's my turn to tag 3 of my friends .
I would like to introduce to you : 
Veena Kumar  a quilter & food blogger . A charming lady who cooks up a storm & makes beautiful quilts too .  
Bilqis a exemplary quilter ..her quilts are stunning ..perfect points & her choice of colours I am at loss of words to describe her quilts ..it's marvellous indeed ..

Sharon Robinson is a quilter I know virtually ..she is  an architect by day . She makes stunning art quilts .

Happy blog hopping . See  you lovely ladies on Monday to read about what makes you tick ..













Saturday, October 11, 2014

Time..

Every year is getting shorter; never seem to find the time.
Plans that either come to naught or half a page of scribbled lines
Hanging on in quiet desperation is the English way
The time is gone, the song is over.... Pink floyd.
 
  In another 2 months it will be 2015 .. Shocking .. Nothing new bout a huge list of to do this year . I did complete a lot & a lot is on the anvil . It may see the light of day perhaps not today !.
Recapping these 10 months .. I took part in two Quilting  competitions & love both the quilts I made . Learnt a lot & the feedBack I got from the Dubai quilt competition was so worth it . 
Completed an ufo which was more than 7 yrs .. Yep pls don't faint .. I started this with the intention of foraying into Art quilts / Textile art . "Green Meadows " finally saw daylight .. 70 odd tiny pieces hand stitched 
& machine quilted with ribbon Flowers .
Finished bout 5 or 6 art quilts .. Happy bout that :) ..

My blog did take the back seat .. Procrastination is the reason .. But then again I blog cos I ... I don't know .. 
My boutique , my quilts , bags , dogs , family ..my baking ..  Grateful for all this .. Without all of them this journey would be boring .







Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Spring is in the air

" Spring is in the air" I choose this season as it's the beginning of a new cycle , a rebirth , when nature is at it's bountiful . Living in a farm nature is my constant source of inspiration ... 
This was my artist statement for my first quilt competition .."

2014 .. Started out in a creative note ..I took part in an international quilt competition held in # DUBAI .
 The theme being " SEASONS" I paid up the fees and had absolutely no idea on what to do .. I sketched & sketched , brain stormed with my artistic family ..but not an idea at  all ,just a waste paper basket over flowing with paper .. I started out with a four panel piece ..but time was a factor & being my first didn't want to experiment much wanted to play safe .. I then decided to choose spring ... And somehow the idea of macaws came in .i had a design I made years ago for a little boys quilt ..it had birds ...i had to change a bit cos my original design had macaws on a tree , swans / goose on a pond below and a few birds flying too .. & they were very cartoonish images ..I decided to use only the macaws and changed the faces to a more realistic one ..
    Then it was shopping time for fabrics .. To make a 37" * 45" inch quilt I bought material for bout 10 queen size quilts .. That's me and my fabric addiction ,, 
With fabric ready ..my design wall was up . This is my original scribble . Cute birds ... 

Choosing fabric took more time . With all the materials laid out.. I spent more time admiring each fabric ..well with materials decided , which is subject to change as work goes on ..
 
You will see most fabrics here were not used :)) ... 

Now to work - the base fabric was a blue cotton batik , the tree I used shades of brown wool ..corded to give the bark effect ,,I loved doing this bit .. The leaves were velvet .. Quilting on velvet is actually easy & the FMQ highlights are lovely .. The flowers were pink raw silk which I dyed ..yep I do silk dying too :) another trick up my sleeve I know how to dye fabric using procion dyes , sulphur dyes ( which is not used much ) , napthol dyes , etc & batik , screen printing , block printing ,,
The flowers were 3D .
Then the macaws were done in China silk , which was madness to work on , they tend to fray least when u expect it !! I highlighted the macaws with a bit if fun feathers yarn .. Which is actually rubbish .. China silk decided to be evil , Just when I finished the entire quilt ..it started to rip apart & knowing silk if I stitched in it agin it would have worsened the situation. ,that's when I saw my newly bought yarn & sewed it on after a bit to gluing up !!! Phew ..was a bit unnerving till I set it right .. 
Last I decided to use  white tulle on the entire base to give the effect of haziness , like the uplifting of winter . That was another yarn ..I needed to soften the bright blue or it was too over powering the rest of the fabrics.. 
    Quilting was super fun because once I finished the tree & birds it was FMQ all the way .. The border 
was a batik & binding in red china silk .. 
   Twice checked & packed & shipped of to Dubai .. 
Wish I could have gone there , maybe next year ,, 
A wonderful experience doing this quilt & the excitement of taking part .. 
     I knew I'm competing with pros in quilting but yep taking part in this exhibition  was a awesome & the feedback was worth all this .. 


This is my first art quilt in an competition .. To many more .. 


Friday, November 15, 2013

INSPICATION - inspiration / justification

It's October 27th .. So .. The desi quilters challenge closes by 30th midnight . I don't have an idea or time to do anything . I log on to see all the entries , all so lovely and brilliant . Damn and double damn I want to do something .. Ok that decided .. The theme is flowers .. I draw a blank .. Flowers to me is on a plant or mallipoo in my hair , a Bouquet of flowers - no I hate that plastic paper around it .. A vase of flowers - no .. Still a blank it's already late evening ..
   I had other work piling high on my desk , bed and everywhere .. So I put my iPhone on shuffle and I tackle my boutique accounts .. I hate numbers and they hate me too ..we are even .. 
Ahh good old rock of the 80's .. Sweet child of mine .. Bingo ..it's GNR .. Guns and roses .. I prefer guns to roses ,.so one part of my  inspiration  . No I don't kill it's just the beauty of a gun .. 
Now I have been making fabric flowers for years .. Roses from tissue paper , satin etc.. So I knew I want 3d flowers but just flowers nope .. 
Inspiration part two - I hate numbers so as I calculate again and again ..it looks evil yet so bloody necessary .. So the skull .. 
Then part three of inspiration -like most mothers my mom hated iif I wore any picture of a skull ,even wearing a skull t shirt or earrings .. Oh I must add my best friend too , I have no clue why he isn't fond of a cute skull ..so I told my mom this is it , she says why skull I say .. Can u live without a skull ? Discussion closed .
To my sketch board .. It's beautiful .. Perfect skull of mine .. 
Ahh I must add my original sketch had two skulls and more flowers . It's already 28th so the other skull is for apple brandy .. 
As for the execution nothing much cut , iron facing on , pin and stitch .. Velvet & raw silk creates a magic together .. Flowers were a no brainer .. After doing up the skull , flowers and leaves I thought I needed a bit more definition to give it a boost so I drew those lines from the skull . And thank god I decided to just stich the lines leaving the fmq to be done last .. Why ? Cos I ran out of pink rayon thread .. And if I need it I have to go to health and glow , chennai .. And time is running out so ..this is it she asked for flowers by midnight ..