Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Embellishing Workshops with Melody Crust

I recently spent two very inspiring days at workshops sponsored by the Capital Quilters Guild with quilt artist Melody Crust of the Seattle area. Day 1 featured ways to embellish quilts with beads, ribbons, and embroidery. Melody brought many examples of her creations, including some beaded and embroidered purses to die for. She has written a book called Quilt Toppings: Fun and Fancy Embellishment Techniques, which of course I purchased. She signed it with the inscription, "Don't ever let anything be ordinary"- I'll try not to! Seeing Melody's quilts made me remember that all quilts do not have to be bed-size. Many of hers were only the size of Artist Trading Cards, or business card size. But, they were not stiff like ATC's, they were just tiny little quilts, often with beaded edges, thread painted flowers, and embroidery. What a great way to try new techniques! Melody's website is www.melodycrust.com. She allowed us to photograph her quilts, but I chose to buy her book or view her website with its gorgeous photographs. Her husband is a professional photographer!

We were each supposed to bring a project to embellish. I couldn't think of what to bring, so I did a pillow top in the colors of my baby granddaughter's room. I did not get much done on it during the workshop, but have lots of ideas! When I got home I added embroidery and beads to two quilt labels. One is for the basket quilt made by my sister-in-law's grandma. I recently finished it for her and will enter it in our quilt show. The other is for a small embellished quilt I made called "Spring Greens."

Day Two featured the use of Shiva Paintsticks and foiling on fabric. This one was lots of fun for me. She brought many boxes of supplies, so I added quite a bit to my collection of paintstick colors. We mostly used stencils (which she also supplied, or we could use our own) and applied the paintstick with stencil brushes. I made a few future quilt labels while I was there. After lunch we played with foil, and applied it with stencils or stamps. My only previous attempt had not turned out too well, so I was glad to learn how to do this. I made a few pretty foiled pieces that have gone into fabric postcards to sell at the Capital Quilters Guild show on March 9-11. They will be offered for $5.00 each, with proceeds to go to cancer research.

Here are the foiled postcards I made from my workshop samples. You can see more in the Fabric Postcards album at my Webshots site http://community.webshots.com/user/quiltnc/.

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