Sunday, August 19, 2007

Seeing Sunflowers

Nikki Wheeler Field of Sunflowers Poulsbo, WA
Here are two new quilts I made with a sunflower theme. They are made in a similar mannor, but have very different looks.
I enjoy the realistic bright sunny sunflower faces in Field of Sunflowers. They make me happy shining on my wall, especially during this rather dreary summer we are having in the Pacific Northwest. When I was laying out the petals my 4 year old daughter kept telling me I was doing it wrong -- they should only be yellow, not have bits of color poking through. Little did she know what was to come next.
Nikki Wheeler Contrary Sunflower Poulsbo, WAI wanted to try using the compliments to the colors typically seen in nature. I named the piece "Contrary Sunflower" since the colors are so contrary to one's expectations. My husband says the colors remind him of my great-grandmother. I think they look sweet like a lollypop.
To make the quilts, I first quilted the fabric and then painted the backgrounds. I appliqued fabric paper for the petals and leaves. The enters are yarn felted onto circles of wool felt with the needle felting machine. I used ribbon for the stems. Finally, I finished the edges by couching yarn around the edge. I having a lot of fun experimenting with combining fabric, paper and anything else that seems to fit.


Judy Rys said...

These sunflowers are wonderful. I really like the purple one. The center really is like those giant lollipops. Fun colors and textures. Why do you quilt before you paint?

Susan said...

Thanks so much for commenting on my blog. I have no idea how you manage to make so many beautiful and varied works with little ones around! Your work has really inspired me. The paper fabric is quite an interesting thing. I'm in the process of making more. I've been keeping up with Maddie from time to time. Her story of recovery is remarkable. The photos and general mood of each post is even more remarkable. I don't know how Maddie's parent, your friends, are managing in such good spirits. Surely, the Lord works in mysterious ways!

Nikki said...

Why do I like to quilt before I paint? I like the way the watery paint lays on the quilted fabric. The intensity varies on the ridges and valleys, highlighting the quilting. The thread is also painted when I work in this manner. I then don't need to worry about the color. And mostly I just like to do things differently and see what happens. I've never been one to follow the rules.

Carla B said...

Nikki, I really enjoy seeing when you post pictures of your work! I'm intrigued by how your quilt before you add paint. Does the pain ever get absorbed to the backing fabric?
Regards, Carla

Nikki said...

Carla, Yes the paint is absorbed into the backing fabric. I tend to not worry about what the back looks like.

Clevelandgurlie said...

Hi Nikki - love your quilting. I have a particular fondness for sunflowers too (see my blog).
I love your quilting technique of patches and big stitches. Very textural.