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Monday, April 29, 2013

The Owl and The Pussy Cat Art Quilt for Allie

This art quilt came out of a request after a request for my grand daughters safety! I saw Allie bathing in the tub at our last visit and noticed a picture in a rather heavy frame hanging on the wall over the tub. I, as very caring and cautious grandma, became fearful something might cause that picture to fall into the tub and be a danger to little Allie. So I asked my son to remove it for that reason. He said he would and did, "but with one stipulation". "What might that be?" I asked. "To make an art quilt to hang in it's place!" he said!

So I thought about baths, water, children, and recalled an old nursery rhyme by Edward Lear that starts: "The Owl and The Pussycat went to sea..." I went on line looking for a copy of the poem and found photos of same. One painting by illustrator, Laila Hills, stood out as perfect for something I could turn into an art quilt. I got permission from Ms Hills to post my replica of her painting in fabric to my blog. Thank you Laila Hills!

Painting by Laila Hills was my inspiration for this art quilt.
Laila Hills art is copyright protected
Since we had a trip planned to visit the kids again in a weeks time I had to hurry if I wanted to hang that quilt over the bath.
I started and completed this quilt in three full days over the weekend!

I began by drawing elements of the painting by eye, (the boat), tearing fabric, cutting it to size and laying it out, sewing it down by machine. And some, the owl and the cat, on cardboard, as patterns for the cut out fabric backgrounds. You might recognize the sky fabric from my last art quilt made for Ms Em and Mim in my post before this one. Almost all my fabrics are gleaned from garage sales and thrift stores. Some like the orange and yellow used for the cat are hand dyed by Chris Daly from Dyed Candies. Check out her ETSY shop for her hand dyed fabrics. They sing of bright color!

The cat and the owl start to take shape.

All pieced together, adhered with fusible web, but not sewn down yet.
Making the water was fun. I had fabrics with lines like waves built into them and colors that sang of the sea!
And finally the finished art quilt!
With free motion sewing making more waves in the water, and highlighting the sky and hills! I also used it for adhering the owl and cat to their places in the boat.
I embellished with hand stitched yarn to make the pea green boat and sail stand out!  Hand stitched sparkly gold thread shoots rays of light from the light house! The binding matches some of the water fabric.
And a quilt is never finished until the back is done as well.
Backing fabric from my stash, sewn down, binding wrapped around it, hand stitched in place,
and hanging sleeve added.
DH will cut a thin wooden dowel for me today and I will string wire across the back for hanging.
 And old pillow case pulled from my stash was perfect I thought for printing the story and poem (using TAP)
A letter to Allie about the making of the quilt and the poem so she understands the story behind the picture!

This pillow case is so pretty, a cream color, with gorgeous intricate same color embroidery and scalloped bottom edge.
Sewn down by hand using the same sparkly gold thread of the light rays on the front.
Now our Allie will be safe in her bath, and have a fun story to look at and one more family heirloom
made by Grandma Lynn!