Last week I wrote about how my friend and dyer Linda Waddle kindly offered to over-dye my languishing whole cloth trapunto quilt. The silk had faded from a delightful icy blue to a putrid yellow/blue/gray mix. Linda and I rolled on thickened dye as a Hail Mary move – what did I have to lose? Here are the results:
The silk took the dye well. You just can’t see it in my photo but it is a wee bit splotchy but I am fine with that and I think it adds interest. I had to have Hubby hold it up for me. Every photo I took indoors yielded a horrible yellow/blue unnatural color. For some reason, taking it outside as the sun was beginning to set brought out the color. Expert photographer I am not.
Some areas went a little on the purple side but again, happy with that too, kinda like it.
Two areas had bright red spots about 1/4″. I am confident that I can fix that with ink or something so I’m fine with that too!
There were areas that had water soluble thread that of course disappeared during the dyeing process. It will be tricky to quilt those areas. The surrounding thread has been dyed so I will need to search to find the right thread and color for those areas. Some of them lie right next to an already quilted area so it needs to match. The areas that still had water soluble thread were randomly spread across the piece.
The monogram is more prominent with the new deeper blue and I am pleased with that.
The backing was cotton so of course it took up the dye differently. It is definitely more splotchy on the back but I like that too!
I hope you can see the undyed part next to the dyed part. I will need to simplify that border. It is based on the fabulous edge I saw on this antique quilt I saw at the International Quilt Museum while attending the SAQA Conference in Lincoln, NE. It was divine! But this is too complex for me and would take me 6 months to finish I think.
I love what Kathy Stuart did on this quilt! But I don’t quite understand what she did and I’m thinking it is above my existing skill set. I can modify this and it will still be gorgeous!
This was supposed to show the splotches but I’m not sure you can really tell.
A note about the color of the photos. The actual quilt is not that dark, it’s about 2 grades lighter. It is a pure blue and it’s gorgeous! The silk did not lose its sheen and I love the slight gradations of color and the occasional purpley parts.
How do I feel about the quilt now? I’m not sure yet. There is A LOT of work to be done yet on this quilt. I will need to make a decision about that complex edge. The fabulous edge treatment on the antique quilt is one of the primary inspirations for this quilt. It will be a little tricky and maybe even annoying to finish up those random areas where the water soluble thread washed out. And If I could go back in time I would have used ruler work for the dots. At the time I was purposefully going for a more organic look but I now wish I had just pulled out the ruler and used it. There is not a whole lot I would do differently with the design.
So I have three choices: do nothing with it, finish it from its current state or remake it. The first and last choices just seem wrong so I suspect I will want to finish it. I. do. love. this quilt! And I am thrilled that it has been resurrected with Linda’s expert hands. I think it needs to age a bit until I get excited about it again. Once I decide on that edge, I think I’ll be ready to go.
I’ll be linking up with Nina-Marie’s Off the Wall Friday with a bunch of other good links!
P. S. – I do still have openings in next Tuesday’s (Sept 29) Fabulous Free Motion Fills and Frills class on the Live Online Quilt Class site. Join me!
This is a beautiful quilt. I am glad your Hail Mary worked and the quilt is now a color that you like. Definitely finish it.
I’m thinking maybe if things settle down in Nov and Dec I could work on it then.
Betty Jo says
I hope you finish it, or use it in some way. It is so beautiful at this point. A simplified border would be quite wonderful with this fabulous quilt.
I need to cogitate on that simplified border Betty Jo! I think if I had that settled I would feel good about finishing it.
Stitchin at Home says
I think the overdying of this piece looks great! I love the fmqing and hope you finish it.
I hope I finish it too, lol!
Margaret Blank says
It’s absolutely beautiful! A real heirloom!
thank you Margaret! Now I just need to finish it…
Donna Brennan says
It’s a beautiful color. It was beautiful before and now it’s a different beautiful. I think after taking another break from it, you’ll return and do the border/binding just like you’d originally intended. Facing?
Gosh I hope you’re right, I do want it finished. Facing is kind of an issue due to the odd edge and quilting right to the edge. That edge is a problem!
Rebecca Grace says
HOORAY!!! Linda for the win!! It looks amazing! I totally get why you need to let it “age in place” now for a bit. You’ve had such an emotional roller coaster with this one already. One idea for the thread match dilemma: I would think that someone out there somewhere, in one of the many, many thread lines available, probably does have a close match to your dyed thread. But if not, using invisible monofilament to requilt the dissolved water soluble stitches would be an option that wouldn’t draw undue attention. I’d look for matching thread first, then consider monofilament, and finally, if I was dissatisfied with the way monofilament looked but could not find a good enough match, I would consider a deliberately different thread choice and then add some additional quilting in that new thread to other parts of the quilt, to make it seem deliberate. Maybe even some hand quilted stitches rather than machine. Sometimes the best inspiration comes from the necessity of fixing a problem, which seems to be the theme of this Problem Child quilt of yours. It’s a masterpiece already.
Oh you are such an encourager Rebecca Grace! The areas without thread are so random, in some areas, very concentrated and in others, dispersed. I haven’t had a moment to consider what to do. I agree, “mistakes” sometimes produce the very best art. I hope I can say that about this piece when it’s all done. I do have a considerable thread stash so I just need to dig in and see what I’ve got!
Cheryl McCallum says
Love, love, love it. It is gorgeous!
Thank you Cheryl! Now I just need to finish it!
Mary Stori says
Beautiful color……it will be worth the extra work in the end.
Thank you Mari! I’m thrilled with the color.
Kathy Horan says
Absolutely beautiful! I love everything about it. Can’t wait to see the finished piece.
Lol, me too, can’t wait to see it done. Let’s hope there are no more bleeds!