Yay, I finally got this monkey off my back! I don’t know why was so hard, being it’s a simple concept and similar to this quilt that just went together like butter, and I consider to be one of my best quilts, technically speaking. (maybe that’s why it got into FiberArts International 2007).

Maybe part of the problem was all the starts and stops. I started it for this TV taping, then had several interruptions. Or maybe because I had artistic doubts about my work during the process and decided to recklessly experiment.


Or maybe it’s the maze mentality. I wanted to put a maze pattern on it because of the traffic theme, and the project did become a series of starts, stops, and wrong turns.

If you’re wondering about the solution to my background problem, pastels.jpgI used oil pastels to adjust the color. These are cheap school kid oil pastels by Colorific, but what I had on hand. This is not recommended for fabric.

In discussions on the QA list, I learned oils in oil pastels may eventually destroy the fabric. Maybe not for a few years, but in terms of 50-100 years which is how conservators think. Here’s a link to good explanation about Shiva Paintstiks that could be an alternative.


Meanwhile, I had a great time using the oil pastels on the background, using predominantly purples, but highlighting with a blue. I love this effect, so will have to try the Shiva paintstiks in the future. And I was thinking, since there are really only three main elements in the quilt, I could cut them out and sew them to a new background. Or better, I could just move onto new projects!

p.s. Here’s a couple more process shots – click to see bigger. trafficjamtsquare.jpg Squaring up the quilt is always difficult for me. I leave lots of room to crop after I’m done quilting, and try to use a t-square or laser-level to chalk the lines. This quilt is only 3’x4′ so the t-square worked pretty well.

Here’s why I covered the background with pastels. trafficjamhair.jpgI had quilted it with a light-colored thread, then when I stepped back, thought it had the unpleasant look of being covered with hair. Which is how I felt too. When things aren’t going right in an artwork, I feel like I have hair growing under my skin. Ever feel like that? 🙂


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