Thursday, August 12, 2010

Another Quilt Finished

Maggy Trees a Coon, 2010, 22" X 37.5"

I have finished another one of my personal quilts in time for the Carolina Longarm Association quilt show in September.  This one is called Maggy Trees a Coon.

I began this quilt in February during my third online class with artist Pamela Allen.  It began as a garden quilt.  After making several fabric studies of various flowers and trees (to avoid the ubiquitous elliptical leaf and daisy-shaped flower), I created a narrative of an event that actually happened last fall at our mountain home.  Our old dog, Maggy, patiently sat at the base of the tree which a raccoon had climbed to escape the mighty Maggy jaws.  It was amusing to watch as the raccoon slowly sneaked down the opposite side of the tree, peering out to check on the dog every few minutes.  Eventually, she meandered safely back into the woods while Maggy still stood guard at the tree.

The backgrounds and all of the elements of the quilt are scissor-cut raw-edge applique with embroidery floss or Pearle Cotton thread, mostly in the ladder stitch.  That is why I have working on this piece since February!  I had to keep adding background pieces and batting to grow with the quilt.


I used black thread on my Gammill longarm machine to quilt it once it was all stitched down.  I did a lot of thread-sketching to add more branches and the illusion of more trees in the background.  The actual trunk of the prominent tree is gnarly like the trees on the mountain that have had to compete for sunlight and deal with wind, snow, and ice.  I added some raggedy brown flannel to give some texture to the trunk.

I like the ferns and flowers the best.  The foreground flowers are similar to those I made in my study of Georgia O'Keefe's poppies.


I used a shiny metallic-looking green floss for the ferns.



On these narrative-type of quilts, I often use black thread to contrast against the backing.  You can almost see the scene on the back as well as the front.



I made a label with the story of the quilt and some pictures of Maggy enjoying the mountains.  She always hated the ride up and back to our mountain place, but loved the freedom of roaming the hillsides, trails, Christmas tree farms, and creek.  We do miss her.

9 comments:

Robin Olsen said...

Jeanne, this turned out fabulous! I love the playful quality you've captured in it. And I especially like all the movement your stitching adds. Those warm colored leaves and flowers pop alive with that background. Thank you for showing us the final product!

Karen S said...

This is wonderful! I love the expression on the raccoon's face.

Cathie said...

Jeanne - over the years I have witnessed your talent in many, many quilts, postcards, art quilts, etc. but I have to say out of all the pieces I've seen THIS is my absolute favorite. I am so in love with the subject matter (needless to say) but I also adore the stitching that you've done on this piece (hand and machine) I especially love the hand stitching you've done around the edges and the selection of fabrics. It is a wonderful, wonderful piece. Sweet, sweet Maggy.

Vicki W said...

I agree with Cathie, this is one of my favorites! I lvoe the expression on the coon's face.

Quilter422 said...

wonderful, and what a nice way to have a remembrance of Maggie.

Art by Rhoda Forbes said...

Nice finish, you have done a great job on this one Jeanne!

SheilaC said...

Thank you for sharing all those pics, I love all the details that you added to this quilt! It looks wonderful!

SheilaC

Debbie Cook said...

Wonderful! That little raccoon is adorable!

Melinda Cornish said...

this is so fun! I love the raccoons face.....