Cherrywood Fabrics Prince Challenge: Raspberry Beret

The theme for the 2018 Cherrywood Fabrics Challenge is the artist Prince. I am excited about this since I have followed his career since the late 1970s and own his first album and the 1999 album. Then I moved into CDs. I've watched his movie Purple Rain over and over and have always loved Prince's fashion style and his music!! I did not want to create a portrait of Prince because I figured many people would do that as well as the songs Purple Rain, When Doves Cry or Little Red Corvette. I made this quilt from January until March because this is the time to sew when the weather is snowy and yucky. I have been staring at it in my sewing room since March and finally get to share it!  I chose to create a quilt based on the song Raspberry Beret. I've always loved this song and I own 5 different colors of berets and actually wear them. When I began this process I thought the three purples "read" very similar in value and color and it would be difficult to differentiate them. I use my iPhone and take photos of the different steps along the way to get a view from far away and this helps with value and clarity. The rules allowed only 20% of the quilt to be other Cherrywood fabrics and I needed this 20% for the beret. 

The theme for the 2018 Cherrywood Fabrics Challenge is the artist Prince. I am excited about this since I have followed his career since the late 1970s and own his first album and the 1999 album. Then I moved into CDs. I've watched his movie Purple Rain over and over and have always loved Prince's fashion style and his music!! I did not want to create a portrait of Prince because I figured many people would do that as well as the songs Purple Rain, When Doves Cry or Little Red Corvette. I made this quilt from January until March because this is the time to sew when the weather is snowy and yucky. I have been staring at it in my sewing room since March and finally get to share it!

I chose to create a quilt based on the song Raspberry Beret. I've always loved this song and I own 5 different colors of berets and actually wear them. When I began this process I thought the three purples "read" very similar in value and color and it would be difficult to differentiate them. I use my iPhone and take photos of the different steps along the way to get a view from far away and this helps with value and clarity. The rules allowed only 20% of the quilt to be other Cherrywood fabrics and I needed this 20% for the beret. 

This is the quilt with the fused applique in place. I used black for the hair because Prince's wives, girlfriends and females in his videos and movies all had brunette or black hair-no blondes. I used black for the garment as well. I was wishing for more variation of value with the purples such as a lilac. I decided to add lighter areas with thread painting.

This is the quilt with the fused applique in place. I used black for the hair because Prince's wives, girlfriends and females in his videos and movies all had brunette or black hair-no blondes. I used black for the garment as well. I was wishing for more variation of value with the purples such as a lilac. I decided to add lighter areas with thread painting.

Here the lighter variegated purple thread is used to quilt the project while lightening up the quilt. I used light blue variegated thread to add movement and definition to the hair as well as lightening it up also. The quilt is starting to come to life. 

Here the lighter variegated purple thread is used to quilt the project while lightening up the quilt. I used light blue variegated thread to add movement and definition to the hair as well as lightening it up also. The quilt is starting to come to life. 

I machine stitched in place two values of narrow light blue shiny ribbon to the hair to again lighten it up and give hair definition. I used the thingie on the top of my own pink wool beret by snipping it off and hand tacking it to the top of the beret to make it more realistic and authentic!!

I machine stitched in place two values of narrow light blue shiny ribbon to the hair to again lighten it up and give hair definition. I used the thingie on the top of my own pink wool beret by snipping it off and hand tacking it to the top of the beret to make it more realistic and authentic!!

Here is my beret before I cut the thingie off!!

Here is my beret before I cut the thingie off!!

In the close up of the face I used light purple nail polish on the eye lid and some lavender fabric paint to add highlights to the face. The eye is detailed with a green Pigma Micron pen and a dot of white matte paint for the eye reflection.  I did a crosshatch quilt design on the garment to look like a quilted jacket since she lives in Minnesota like Prince and needs to be warm in the cold weather!! I added a necklace of various purple beads.  I added the word "Prince" in his recognizable font and quilted the background to look like sheet music including a few musical notes in the mix!!  July 2nd is the deadline for entering and July 13th is the day people find out if their quilt is accepted into the traveling challenge. The last three years my quilt has made the cut so I hope this year I can do the same. I am adding to this post on the morning of July 3, 2018 and on Cherrywood Fabrics Facebook page they stated there are 388 entries and they are not telling how many quilts they will select for the traveling challenge. In ten days I will know...

In the close up of the face I used light purple nail polish on the eye lid and some lavender fabric paint to add highlights to the face. The eye is detailed with a green Pigma Micron pen and a dot of white matte paint for the eye reflection.

I did a crosshatch quilt design on the garment to look like a quilted jacket since she lives in Minnesota like Prince and needs to be warm in the cold weather!! I added a necklace of various purple beads.

I added the word "Prince" in his recognizable font and quilted the background to look like sheet music including a few musical notes in the mix!!

July 2nd is the deadline for entering and July 13th is the day people find out if their quilt is accepted into the traveling challenge. The last three years my quilt has made the cut so I hope this year I can do the same. I am adding to this post on the morning of July 3, 2018 and on Cherrywood Fabrics Facebook page they stated there are 388 entries and they are not telling how many quilts they will select for the traveling challenge. In ten days I will know...

Cherrywood Hand Dyed Fabrics Van Gogh Challenge "Vincentia"

Cherrywood Hand-Dyed Fabrics is having a third fabric challenge in 2017 due August 1. They select three gradations of one color plus black and anyone interested purchases a bundle of fat quarters for the challenge. The rules state these four fabrics must be used in 75% of a 20" square size quilt. Any of their other lovely fabrics can make up the 25%. If you need to use white you can use some from your stash since they do not sell white (they dye white fabric pretty colors!!) The other two past challenges were The Wicked Challenge in 2014 using witch skin tone greens and last year the challenge was The Lion King using warm yellow oranges. My entry "Feline Fashionista" was one of twenty designs the Disney Corporation selected as their favorite! These 20 quilts will hang in a Broadway theatre in November-I also received a huge beautiful ribbon!! Both times my quilts made the cut and have traveled through the year to national and regional quilt shows. Both years Cherrywood created a book with a photo of all the entries and had a book signing opportunity for all included artists to meet and sign each others books while at quilt shows. in 2017 they chose an idea that had nothing to do with a Broadway play and selected the artist Vincent Van Gogh and there were three blues and a black to work with.

I love art and art history and am familiar with Van Gogh's work and especially love his Starry Nights painting. I had a vision of a black woman with an Afro Puffs hairstyle that looked like a starry night painting. I used the black for the background and all three blues for the skin tone depths and highlights on the order of the movie Avatar. I made a copy of the Starry Nights painting and analyzed where there was more white, yellow, blue etc. I saw one orange new moon in the design. I began with a medium blue background and funny shaped circles of yellow and white. I cut narrow fused fabric strips from the three blue, white, yellow, gold and orange and layered them to look like the Van Gogh Painting. I heavily quilted all of the strips down with thread in all of these colors to secure them and create movement. I really loved how it turned out. and I feel it has the same movement as the original painting

This a close up of the hair and some of the face. I used a craft store blue star mini Christmas ornament with a sequin and bead for an earring.. The background needed bling so I added a few black rhinestones to subtly add shimmer. I love my bling!!

This a close up of the hair and some of the face. I used a craft store blue star mini Christmas ornament with a sequin and bead for an earring.. The background needed bling so I added a few black rhinestones to subtly add shimmer. I love my bling!!

This photo shows more of the face. I used tiny gold rhinestones from The Dollar Tree in the nail art department for eyeliner. Shimmery nail polish is on the lips and in the hair. I used some brown Derwent Inktense pencils to define the mouth. I named my entry "Vincentia" after Van Gogh's first name.  Last year there was a huge amount of entries and only a third of them made the cut. I can only hope this quilt is as fortunate.   

This photo shows more of the face. I used tiny gold rhinestones from The Dollar Tree in the nail art department for eyeliner. Shimmery nail polish is on the lips and in the hair. I used some brown Derwent Inktense pencils to define the mouth. I named my entry "Vincentia" after Van Gogh's first name.

Last year there was a huge amount of entries and only a third of them made the cut. I can only hope this quilt is as fortunate.

 

Modern Scrappy Portrait Quilt Class at IQF Houston

I will be teaching my "Modern Scrappy Portrait Quilt" Class using my Bella pattern at the International Quilt Festival in Houston Saturday November 5, 2016. The website is www.quilts.com to register and the Class is #703 and is a 6 hour class. The class kit will have 25  pre-cut 5" squares from Cherrywood Hand-Dyed Fabric for the pieced background as well as the Bella pattern. Cherrywood is the fabric company that created The Wicked and The Lion King Challenges that have been so popular! Their hand dyed fabric is so soft and buttery and I just wanted to pet them and ooh and aah over them before I cut the fabric into kits. We will be exploring the color wheel and placement of color to get more visual impact with the 25 different colors in the pieced background. The applique in a raw edged fused technique. I hope to see you there. If not The Bella pattern can be purchased on my website at www.laurieceesay.com

New Work: Neon

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This is my latest portrait quilt. I was inspired by the hair color industry and the funky neon hair colors that are available in the cosmetology industry. I have been searching and purchasing neon fabric and embellishments since last fall and recently had the time to make this quilt. I really love the yellow print that I used for the dress and wanted to use more of it in the borders but since I do not like yellow in large quantities I chose to use this print for the backing fabric instead. The fabric for the lipstick and the pale yellow highlights was purchased while at the IQF Houston 2014 Show last October which gives me good memories! I used Cherrywood Hand Dyed Fabrics  for the gradation of 6 skin tone fabrics. They are hand dyed cottons and work very well for skin tones and are are equal to me as batiks. I purchased a fat quarter packet of browns for another project and love them to bits!!

I decided to take photos of the various steps of this portrait quilt to show how it come alive with each step of stitching, borders, fabric paint and embellishments. This is just the center of the quilt. I chose to cut some of the top off the center once it was completely fused because all the background was not needed.

This is the top with the various borders added. I love the swirly fabric on the left and bottom borders since it reminds me of the fashion designer Emilio Pucci! I fussy cut the directional pattern once I discovered there was a double direction. My cat Jack photo bombed this picture! Hi Jack!!

The quilt is quilted, bound and on cardboard being blocked. This is a step I only was taught about 4-5 years ago which changed my world because it will square up a quilt and make it lay flat. This is VERY important for having a quilt hang in a quilt show and the judges love a straight quilt without any wavy edges!!

I collected neon colored embellishments. I have a variegated orange/yellow ribbon, a fun neon colored decorative elastic, loose glitter, nail polish, rhinestones, and a variety of beads. I did not use everything which is the part that is hard because I have to use good taste and know when to stop adding more bling!!

This is the finished close-up of the face. I added the ribbon and elastic to the dress neckline; the loose glitter was used for eyeliner; rhinestones were used to make an earring; nail polish was used in the yellow of the hair to add to the highlights; rhinestones were added to the right and top borders and beads were sewn to outside of the binding. I intend to enter this quilt in a national quilt show and beyond!!

A Wicked Commotion

http://t.co/aIiJeFWPVf  
 I entered this quilt in the Cherrywood Hand Dyed Fabrics Wicked Challenge. It involved the Broadway play Wicked and a fat quarter packet of this company's green hand dyed fabrics. I had not heard of this company before but I was extremely interested since I LOVE witches and I double LOVE green skin!! I ordered the fat quarter packet and received the rules. All entries are sized at 20" x 20" and 60% of the quilt needed to be the 4 green fat quarters and the 40% remainder was some of their many other hand dyed fabrics. I selected more of their fabrics to get the skin tones and I bought a pink gradation to get the lip color and then the binding. This was my challenge to not go into my stash to make this quilt and only use the hand dyed fabrics from Cherrywood. Also I usually use batiks and prints and this was all solid fabrics.

I must admit I have not seen the play Wicked (bucket list!) and I went to Pinterest and started my research on how the lead character, Elphaba the Wicked Witch, was different from other witches and the witches I normally make. Elphaba's dress was very modestly covering her body, it was not totallt black in color, very textured and it was inspired by nature. Her hat was very tall and pointy unlike my normal bent over hat style. I wanted to have black hair but I already used the black for her dress and hat so I went with dark brown and used black variegated thread and black fabric paint/markers to darker the hair even more.
This dress is full of embellishments. The rules said any embellishments were fine so I went crazy! I machine quilted in a bright variegated color, I added a lace trim with black beads to get the textured look. I ruched dark green silk ribbon around the neckline, I ruffled the same ribbon for the high neckline. I found a great black with metallic green edging at the IQF Chicago show and used it on the neck and the corset area. I hand sewed beads to the bodice and lower dress to add more color and texture. I used a black shimmery ribbon with wire and created the shoulder ruffle.
For Elphaba's hat I dotted the hat with a metallic fabric paint in green, added some of the metallic ribbon for the band and a dark green leather button to the band. Her face is embellished with fabric paint, markers and nail polish like I usually do.
The background has a few lime green rhinestones for bling.
I discovered there were famous quotes from the play and I really like this one Elphaba says-"I don't cause a commotion-I am one." I love this quote and used a portion of it in my quilt.
I had the time of my life making this little quilt. The link at the beginning of this blog is Cherrywood's blog post with my quilt as the first entry. I decided to share my quilt after they did. The deadline is August 1, 2014. There will be a gallery exhibit of all the quilts for judging purposes and then 20? quilts will travel to various quilt shows and the Broadway at the Wicked anniversary. I really want my quilt to be selected!!