Friday, July 29, 2016

Strip Fusing

In previous lessons we have been fusing a shape onto a base fabric. Today we are not going to be using a base fabric but fusing one strip onto another. More like piecing, rather than applique. The idea of strip fusing is so integral to my work that I can't imagine making a quilt without them. I want to share some examples and the problem is not what to show, but what to leave out!

All of these began by making strips fused together to form new fabrics as shown below.

To begin, select several colors that you love, and cut some strips, varying the widths. 
 Place one strip next to the first and overlap a tiny bit, just enough to attach it. Fuse lightly.

Then place a third strip onto the first fused set and again fuse lightly.

Continue fusing strips into a panel of strips. Now you can trim it even or fuse it to another set of strips, leaving an uneven edge. Something that would be a time consuming task if we were sewing strips instead of fusing them.
Continue adding strips, building larger and more complex fabrics.

Some of the ways strips can be used with larger sections of fabric. 

Friday, July 22, 2016

Leaf Shapes

Some examples of leaves that you would never want to hand applique, am I right? But cutting and fusing them is quick and easy.  Here are steps to achieve this result. Note: use any color fabric for your practice pieces for this lesson.

Using your rotary cutter, slice through in a gentle curve.

 Turn and repeat. With a scissor snip the end so that a stem is formed.

 Use your soap sliver to mark a curved rib down the center.

 With small sharp scissors, cut  down to the rib.

 Cut away every other strip leaving a section on the end for the point of your leaf.

 Repeat on the second side. You may fuse this to a contrasting fabric, and then cut it to match the edges, or just keep this leaf fused, lightly, to the release paper, for future use.
I found this painting which had very similar leaves.  And what about this stamp, with our favorite dots. So clever. Birgit Koopsen 

To cut the larger fern leaf in the tulip quilt above, cut a longer shape with a stem end. Use your soap sliver to draw it out if necessary.

Cut almost to the side of the shape, alternating sides.

The soap lines disappear when the iron melts them.

27 Gingkos by Ann Fahl
We love the shape of Ginkgo leaves, and lucky for me, Main and Market streets are lined with these beautiful trees, so I could just grab a few for examples.

 Cut a simple leaf shape, curving the bottom edges with your scissors as you cut.
Add a skimpy bit for the stem, just fusing it in place.
 Nasturtium leaves are another favorite and the easy way to get that white veining is to do as follows.
Garden Nasturtium by Jungsun Jung,  not fused, so it took forever!

Cut a round-ish shape.

 Snip away each section, either almost to the center, or all the way, keeping the sections in order, so you can replace them on white fabric later.

This version keeps the sections intact, and then cut a little circle in the center.

And then there are the really simple leaf shapes, which can easily be cut in masses and added to designs, with dots of course!

 Leaf Light Detail-Melody Johnson Quilts:
Tapestry by Evelyn Ackerman
New Big Leaf by Pat Pauly

Priscilla Kibbee - If leaves were blue
 Veining is a prominent design element in these two quilts.

Some oak leaf shapes are used in this piece all about leaves. The three log cabin blocks at the top are also fused, not pieced.
A maple leaf shape was carefully cut to look more realistic.