Monday, August 26, 2013

Creatures From Deep in My Stash

Cue scarey organ music.

Unfortunately/fortunately, I've gotten rid of some of the uglier & more embarrassing pieces from my stash, but I thought you might enjoy seeing some of the ones I've held on to -- for better or worse. I won't show you them all at once, my creatures will be a recurring feature we'll come back to from time to time.

First, some real creatures: fishes, bunnies, ponies, owls & wild things from the American West. (I'm not including my cat fabrics -- that's a topic on its own!) How did these come to be in my stash? Well, the ponies & national parks critters were from the remnant bin, both about 1yard cuts -- I don't know why I bought them other than they probably didn't cost very much. The fish & rabbit cut-outs I probably planned on making up as pillows -- whimsical, right? The owls are a fairly recent purchase; I was making reusable shopping bags for everyone on my Christmas list one year & one friend has an especial fondness for owls. I found them on sale, asked for a yard & ended up with 2 yards.

what the what!?!

I still like these fabrics (she said sheepishly (no creature pun intended)). I think I can find time to use them. And, most importantly, I think I can have fun making something fun with them.

So, let's see.

I think the owls could be interesting cut into strips, just their little eyes peeking out. They combine nicely with the stack of browns I got a few years ago. So maybe log cabins, maybe simple string blocks? Or! Maybe a teetering stack, inspired the Totally Tubular technique in Tula Pink's first book. I LIKE it!

teetering owls

The ponies with dots & swirls are kind of fun  -- what about wonky stars with pony centers? (Is it just me, or does that sound like a children's breakfast cereal? Wonky Stars with Pony Centers! Now with MORE Ponies!!!
No? Just me? OK.)

wonky stars with pony centers!

Hmmm, the fish & bunnies? I've seen real make-do quilts, the Gee's Bend quilts for example, that use these cut-out panels as just another piece of cloth. But I've cut around my pieces, so can't do that. What about using them as applique -- trout swimming on top of patchwork, rabbits with some garden-y fabrics?

bunnies & veg

And the big game? My inclination with a fabric like this is to highlight the fabric with fussy cutting, maybe a square as the center of a medallion quilt. But I think it would be too easy to let this fabric look too lodge-y. One of my favorite things to do is to try to make something "modern" with very not-modern fabric. So what about something inspired by a painting from the 1940s by the artist Leon Polk Smith? Still very much a work-in-progress, I'm having a good time with this one!

critters

And who knows, maybe the trout will show up on the back!

13 comments:

capitolaquilter said...

I've got some critters in my stash too - have fun being creative.

O'Quilts said...

Ha..love the pony stars. I am now a well recovered catfabric.com addict.

QuiltingCyclist said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
QuiltingCyclist said...

Pony centers would sell. Excellent and somewhat cathartic post!

Karamat said...

I love the bunnies with the vegetable prints! Looks like they were made to go together. Whe you're ready to do a cat fabric post let me know and I'll dig my collection out for a post too ;)

Claudia said...

I love all of these ideas, Beth. The realistic animal fabrics can also be fussy cut and added to landscape quilts.

Rachaeldaisy said...

Your Stash is like a Dr Doolittle movie! Your ideas are all so fun and perfect for their critter, peeking owls, bunnies in vegie gardens, pony centered stars, all so wonderful!! That big trout is a classic!!

cauchy09 said...

these are spectacularly odd!

Nifty Quilts said...

Wow! I love your solutions to these fabrics. What fun! I had thought about stars for some cowboy and cowgirl fabric I've been saving. Now you've inspired me!

amy and the bad cats said...

i like what you've done with the owls and pony fabrics, despite my extreme dislike of ponies (the real ones). i will NOT be wanting my wonky stars with MORE ponies!

Scooquilt said...

You did amazing things with these stash dogs! I had a yard of wolves and bears that must have come from the same line as your owls (what were we thinking?). I also cut some of it into strips, where it was much more about color and less about pattern, and I made the rest into bandanas that I sent to firefighters in Idaho. Seemed very Idaho-y. I've also made great inroads into my cat fabric with charity pillowcases. Not saying it's gone...

Tonya Ricucci said...

these are fun. I had the same idea you did about the bunny fabric - use a big piece and just celebrate the oddity. you could still do that. lay that fabric on top of something else and then rotary cut the bottom fabric along the cut line of the bunnies...

O'Quilts said...

OMG...I see that once again, I have already commented on this post...How can this be? Do you know where my mind is???? I have never heard of Leon Polk Smith...but I love him very much. And, I love this, new to me, post...$#^%#@$ ^

And I thought that all in my family were crazy but me..