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Topic: The Rainbow Sloth - LOTSA pics!  (Read 10403 times)
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« on: May 10, 2017 03:45:20 PM »

Here's a bit o' background on the mini art quilt I made for dfabbric in MAQ Swap 8.  Smiley

"Bright rainbow colours" and "sloths" were two things that jumped out when I read dfabbric's list of themes.  Who doesn't love a sloth?  Smiley  I looked up a bunch of sloth pictures on Google, found a pose I liked and did a sketch.  I've wanted to try doing a ticker-tape quilt since I saw sheepBlue's versions, so I filled in my sloth doodle with random ticker-tape shapes and then coloured them in like a rainbow:

dfabbric also mentioned an interest in a non-standard quilt shape, so I decided to make the quilt circular.  Initially I was hoping to dye some fabric for the background, but that didn't work out so I used some dark blue fabric with glow-in-the-dark stars on it because I've been itching to use it since I got it!  I scanned my doodle into Inkscape, tidied it up a bit and printed out a template onto card, then used it to cut out the basic sloth shape in Kona Graphite and to mark out the future placement of the branch:

Then I got completely distracted by leaves, lol!  I free-hand drew a bunch of leaf shapes on more card, then used the templates to cut out green leaf shapes and also brightly coloured backing fabrics for reverse applique:

After I'd created the reverse applique leaf markings, I used a couple of layers of interfacing to create a "faux-punto" effect under the coloured areas and the leaf mid-vein, and held it in place by couching green rayon embroidery floss on the top of the leaves:

I clipped the excess interfacing away from the coloured markings, then backed all the leaves with a different green fabric, turned them through, topstitched all the way around to close the gap, and did FMQ veins on each leaf:

Then I went back to the main body of the quilt and started by couching a variegated brown/gold rayon floss as the outline of the branch, then I filled the space with ticker-tape bits in "tree" colours:

(The leaves weren't actually attached until *much* later - I was playing with possible layouts!)

The branch got an extra layer of batting for more faux-punto, too.  Once it was all sewn down and zuzhed up a bit with some viney decorative stitches and more couched floss, I positioned slothy and secured him down with couched glow-in-the-dark embroidery floss and glow-in-the-dark polyester thread, and with his own layer of faux-punto wadding.  That done, I started filling in the sloth shape with a rainbow of scraps:

All the ticker-tape bits were first sewn down by stitching around each shape, then I added texture (and even more security!) by doing FMQ over the surface - a sort of wood-grain effect on the branch and a more "furry" texture on the sloth, matching the thread colour to each area I was quilting:

The face was a little tricky - I really wanted to show the distinctive sloth face markings but I didn't want it to look like a skull!  In the end I relied on more quilting to make it look "fuzzier".  For this, I used more of the glowy polyester thread, which proved to be really nice to quilt with, and it looks really cool in the dark!

Sloth's eyes, nose and claws were done with a slightly metallic-looking brown pleather:

The background was stipple-quilted very minimally with black rayon - mostly I tried to avoid crossing over any of the larger stars.  Then I decided there needed to be even MORE GLOW and covered the leaves with French knots in the glowy embroidery floss.  After some thought, I attached the leaves by sewing part-way up either side of the mid-vein, just enough to hold the leaf on but still allow it to show its shape and be folded back to see details underneath.

The binding is a pretty navy-blue bias binding I picked up 'specially and attached with a decorative leafy vine stitch pre-programmed in my sewing machine:

The hanging sleeve gave me a bit to think about - no corners! No corner pockets! So I made a sort of tube out of more starry fabric that followed the outer edge of the quilt and inserted a couple of very long buttonholes to allow the insertion of a hanging pole:

One of my favourite bits is actually the back - I made sure to match the colours of the top and bottom threads, so... Ghost Sloth is made of rainbows and stars!  Cheesy

This was tons of fun to make and I learned loads.  Thanks for looking!  Smiley

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« Reply #1 on: May 10, 2017 03:53:44 PM »

I love this so much! Wonderful job and I love all the details pics and seeing how you created each piece. I think some of your fabric treatments were what I aspired to in the quilt I made but don't think I achieved lol! Love it!

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« Reply #2 on: May 10, 2017 04:06:39 PM »

Seeing how you made everything makes this quilt even cooler, which I didn't think was possible. Most of my stuff gets hung in my craft room, but I think I need to hang this one somewhere special. Not sure where yet.

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« Reply #3 on: May 10, 2017 04:20:24 PM »

That is just UNREAL! Wow, girl you really knocked it out of the park. Amazeballs!

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« Reply #4 on: May 10, 2017 05:02:38 PM »

This is amazing in every way possible!  Shocked Rocks, Rocks, Rocks!

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« Reply #5 on: May 10, 2017 06:14:44 PM »

Your MAQ is deliriously excellent!

I know the ticker-tape by sheepBlue! (either one) and the leaves are just perfection. Love the shape, and how the reverse glows...and then the front ACTUALLY glows! But still stays sophisticated.

You are a talented woman!

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« Reply #6 on: May 11, 2017 01:59:32 AM »

Thank you so much everyone for the kind comments! dfabbric, I'm honoured!  Cheesy

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« Reply #7 on: May 11, 2017 03:36:40 AM »

Absolutely gorgeous!

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« Reply #8 on: May 11, 2017 07:21:55 AM »


So good.


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« Reply #9 on: May 11, 2017 07:37:23 AM »

 Shocked Shocked Shocked

Holy rainbow sloth this is amazing!!

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