Trying Out 3D

For many years I have planned to make a 3D quilted object. I have sketchbook drawings to back up that claim. My scheme was to create multiple small connected units with see through spaces between them. The piece could cast shadows on a wall or floor, or give a screen-like view through to other items in a room.

Fast forward to 2020, when I got serious about this idea. Using many silk fabrics I had amassed, I created circles and ovals. After trying to create one big piece out of all the shapes I decided to group them by warm and cool shades. The warm shades were first up because I had fewer of them.

As I wrote earlier, I treated each shape as a mini quilt, sewing together front, back, and batting. Then I hand sewed the shapes together, and machine quilted them as a single unit. I thought that would be the end, but the results didn’t look finished. I had the idea to add metal rings, which I made from jewelry wire. Once those were sewn on I threaded satin cord between the wire circles.

In a change of plans I thought I would mount the construction to an ice dyed backing. To help the shapes stand out against the backing I edged each shape with silver glitter. After I carefully sewed black wool felt spacers behind each shape to help them stand away from the backing, the construction just didn’t look right. There was still not enough contrast.

At this point I made an executive decision to declare “Roundabout” done. Some finishing details are rough and I really can’t ship it anywhere easily with the wire, so I am chalking it up to process rather than product.

Roundabout, the first pink piece I’ve made
Roundabout detail

Because I was determined to use the backing I worked so hard to make, I resurrected an old resist piece, quilted it, and attached it to that backing. It’s called “Raspberry Lime Swirl.”

Raspberry Lime Swirl

Now all I have to do is figure out how to finish all the cool tone shapes. They are sewn together, but languish on top of my old trunk awaiting inspiration.

I’m linking to Off The Wall Friday.

10 Comments

Filed under Art quilts, Completed Projects, Techniques

10 responses to “Trying Out 3D

  1. Even when you find the output somewhat disappointing, the process always teaches a lot. I’m always inspired by you and willingness to try things.

  2. I know you of all people don’t need or want more ideas but I was imagining two more Roundabout pieces – all three narrow point ends up and attached to each other at the sides making a triangle, surrounding a light bulb. It’s a cool piece and I think the wire rings are a great addition. If you made the resist piece, did you write about it? I’m wondering what you used for the resist, wax? Thanks.

  3. Have you tried rolling it onto a foam pool thingie? It seems like it might work as well as any other quilt with just a bit of effort to lay it flat on the wall.

    • I assume you mean for shipping it? If so, the issue is the metal wire circles. I don’t know if I could expect folks who hang shows to straighten them out, plus a lot of bending might weaken the wire. But it’s all moot as this isn’t a piece I’d enter in a show; it has too many flaws.

  4. It is such an interesting construction method, and I think all the effort you dedicated to thinking through it will come back to reward you in later pieces!

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