Nellie"s Needles

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Smoky Mountains

There just may be a Smoky Mountain series in my near future. If so, here's number one.

Smoky Mountains (14"x 14")
This photo taken a few falls ago was my reference.
I ended up dumping all my scraps out of their bags to find large enough pieces of browns, purples, and greens. That mess is still on the floor here in my Michigan studio.
The sky is a major element, as well as being the most distant in this composition, so it was arranged first.
For the first time I placed a piece of light blue tulle over the sky fabric pieces and roving before I continued with building the mountains. My purpose was to keep them from migrating down into the mountain area. Mmmmm...I'll have to keep this in mind for a misty (smoky) horizon in future pieces.

You'll notice the fabrics are not ironed. I like the texture that wrinkled fabrics lend to the work. My next step was to scatter bits and pieces to represent the trees on the distant mountains and then I added wisps of wool roving to the foreground trees.
Another layer of light blue tulle to hold all the layers in place evened out the effects.
The quilting patterns added details, but when that was done the piece had lost its "sunshine". I wish a photo had been taken then, but I couldn't wait to get at it with watercolor pencils and oil stick pastels to get light and shadows in there to more clearly define the distances between the foreground stand of trees and the distant mountains. For a time, I was afraid it had been overworked. I'll try to keep this in mind when choosing and layering the fabrics in future mountain pieces. As I recall, this is very much how I felt about Lake #1 ... overly done to make it work.

The border is made from the leftover pieces I had created to frame "Regeneration". I like the way this type of border looks with the mountain theme. It's the same type that borders the "Bear Lake" quilt. The next time I create one, I'll take step-by-step photos for a tutorial.
There will be lots of photos taken in those mountains when we get back to Tennessee in a month. In the meantime, I intend to "play" with a few more pictures I already have in my archives.

mmmm...wonder where this creative adventure will go.


StegArt said...

That is very lovely!

Deb said...

It is so amazingly generous of you to share your method. I'm never going to even try because you have rung the bell so perfectly so many times!

Vicki W said...

I'd love to see SM as a series - it's beautiful!

Anonymous said...

wonderful - is ths fabric reversed? - i like that you show how you made them - and i am still amazed at how good the finished quilt is. the fist shot of wrinkled fabric looks so unpromising!

Nellie's Needles said...

Thanks to all of you for the comments.

Paula, to me there is no reverse or wrong side to fabric ... just a choice of which side to use.

Sapphire Dakini said...

I love your work!

H.D. Campbell said...

a wonderful blog thanks so much for sharing

Waltraud said...

Wonderful - love your work!

Deborah said...

Just so beautiful. i really want to learn this technique. Thank you for sharing!

Bizarre Quilter said...

Wow! I just loved watching the lake scene form from scraps to a beautiful piece.

Thank you for inspiring us all.

Loz in Oz