Tuesday, July 27, 2010


Spring Runoff - Little Rogue
12" x 16" Art Quilt Framed
Sheila Mahanke Barnes 2010

Done! This was my last day to finish this if I wanted it in the "Art Aquatic" Exhibit at the Power House. (This is in conjunction with Pend Orielle Arts Council ArtWalk II). I beaded until I was sick of adding more, then went back to couching more decorative thread to highlight a few more areas and called it done. (Click on the picture for a larger version to see the detail.) I was so sure I did not want to put it in a black gallery frame, so spent some time last night and this morning auditioning fabric for binding, carefully cut and sewed it on, turned it to the back and pinned it for hand stitching, then turned it over for a look. Well, THAT'S not going to work. Although the color brought out the green organza in the water, it simply didn't have enough presence to balance the design. Maybe if it were wider? But no, I still felt it was all wrong. So I got out a frame, and sure enough, that is what it needed.

Time for lunch and a think. I didn't want to remove the binding, so I did something that may come back to bite me. With time growing short, I simply took the Plexiglas that comes with the frame, centered it on the back side of the quilt and pulled the binding around it, using buttonhole thread to lace it in place. Lucky me that I'd placed the stitching line for the binding at the 12 x 16 mark, same as the frame, rather than using the 12 x 16 dimension as the guide for lining up the raw edge. Otherwise, the binding would have shown on the front.

You may have forgotten, but this quilt is my response to June's April Challenge, the Little Rogue painting above. June and I have taken a hiatus, our lives presenting challenges that we decided were not conducive to sticking to our creative timetable. I might still be staring and avoiding this piece were it not for the exhibit deadline. I'd promised myself not to overwork my idea. Wait, that was, not over-think it, but I may have done both. I vaguely remember it starting out well, but along the way it became a struggle and a fight. I'm not sure who won this one. As for June, she is painting again, and I await her response to my April challenge.

If you are interested in the progression of this piece, here are links to the relevant posts:



Anonymous said...

I think you're right about the frame,it does set it off well. I think it looks fabulous and your challenge timetable really worked!

The whole frame versus binding thing is an issue with me at the moment. Two of the quilts I sold recently are going into frames. Hangings without frames seemed to puzzle those people unused to seeing textiles on walls. I pointed out several times that the Bayeaux tapestry seemed to survive quite well, but the nub of the matter is that visitors on the whole prefer a framed piece....even alarmingly, on the large pieces (4 foot by 5 foot for example)

magsramsay said...

It looks fantastic, that black frame is just right. I've been following your progress with great interest, interpreting anothers artwork can be so difficult but you've pulled it off in great style!

kathy said...

Sheila, this looks REALLY nice in the frame.

Wil said...

At first I had difficulty visualising this piece, but now I see the completed one I must say I like it a lot. Well done Sheila!

Linda B. said...

Couldn't agree more about the frame, and all that hand work too! But you must be pleased, the finished piece is very effective.

Vanessa said...

Oh Auntie S, brilliant and beautifully executed! I am so proud of you and will be sending success energy your way!

The Idaho Beauty said...

Thank you one and all. I really do value your opinion, even more so on pieces that I feel iffy about. No doubt about it, the frame was the way to go on this one!