Wednesday, June 13, 2012

How To Make Fabric Artist Trading Cards, Part II

We left off yesterday ironing the cut collage piece to the batik substrate:

Continue cutting 3 more small pieces from you fusible-backed collage piece.

And give the edges a wave effect . . .

. . . finishing up by ironing the fusible-backed collage pieces to your batik substrates. If you so desire, add a decorative stitch along the wavy edge of the collage pieces. If you like a more textured look to your piece, I'd like to suggest the look of AURIfil's Lana Wool 12 wt. Thread. There are many colors to choose from, and the wool will lend an artistic texture to your finished pieces!

All ATC's should include the name of your piece and your signature, plus any other information you wish to include, such as the date or a dedication of your design. You can sign them when you complete the project, but will need to include a backing for this purpose.

Prepare your backing by selecting a neutral fabric, then cut a strip from it that measures at least 3 1/2" x 10". Additionally, cut a piece of Heat 'n Bond this same size and iron to the back of the fabric strip.

Cut your fusible-backed fabric strip into 4 pieces, 2 1/2" x 3 1/2" and set aside.

 In order to give your ATC's stability, you'll want to add a light weight stabilizer between your top and the backing fabric, making a sandwich similar to how we sandwich a quilt.

Cut a strip of your light-weight stabilizer and a strip of Heat 'n Bond that measures 3 1/2" x 10". 

Iron the Heat 'n Bond to the stabilizer.

Cut your Heat 'n Bond/stabilizer strip into 4 pieces, 2 1/2" x 3 1/2".

 Remove Heat 'n Bond paper from your stabilizer pieces to expose glue and place your collage on top; iron to bond together. Do this to each collage.

Now add the fusible-backed fabric strips: Remove Heat 'n Bond paper from the fusible-backed fabric strips you made earlier and iron the glue-side to the back of the stabilizer. Do this to each collage and trim, if needed.

Using a zig-zag or satin stitch, finish off the edges of your ATC's and sign the backs.

That's it! You've made your first set of Artist Trading Cards!

Everyday blessings,


Tuesday, June 12, 2012

How To Make Fabric Artist Trading Cards, Part I

There are a myriad of ways to begin your Artist Trading Card project. My first tip would be to begin by sketching out a minimum of 10 ideas. Push yourself to do it. You'll be amazed at what you come up with! And remember: your sketches don't have to be perfect. As you sketch out your ideas, keep in mind that an Artist Trading Card (ATC) measures a finished size of 2 1/2" x 3 1/2".

ATC's were first introduced as business cards; a unique way to show-off artistic talent. They've since become a very popular way to collect miniature works of art. When I was taking classes through The Art Institute, someone introduced me to an ATC online group. After this weekend, I think I'll look into it more seriously, now!

From a basic sketching session, there should be one design that you're drawn to; that you keep coming back to. Listen to this inner voice and run with the idea!

I envisioned making a collage of fabrics. Using a 1/8" seam allowance, I began by sewing strips and pieces together from my scrap bag. Once my sewn strips measured approximately 8" x 12", I began cutting and re-piecing until I had an interesting mosaic. Note: this size is much larger than you'll need, but I wanted to make my piece larger so that I could also use the scraps for future projects.

The following pattern will show you how to make 4 coordinating ATC's.

List of Supplies:

fabric scraps
batik fabric piece, at least 3 1/2" x 10" (I chose an interesting wavy design from my stash)
neutral fabric piece for back
1 spool of coordinating AURIfil thread
rotary cutter
rotary cutting mat
quilter's ruler
sewing machine
Heat 'n Bond lite
light-weight stabilizer

Measure your pieced fabric collage, then cut a piece of Heat n' Bond the same size. 

Place your fabric collage upside-down on your ironing board . . .

Add the bonding sheet, paper-side-up, and press the textured/"glued" side to the back of your collage (see manufacturer's instructions for further information). Allow it to cool when finished ironing before you work with it.

Once your fabric collage piece has cooled, cut a 2 1/2" strip using your rotary cutter, then cut a piece from this strip that measures approximately 2 3/4" (see photo, lower right):

 Cut your coordinating batik fabric, paying close attention to its pattern. Because I wanted to take advantage of the "wave" of the fabric, I cut a strip 2 1/2" wide to use the wave horizontally in my design.

Cut 4 pieces from your batik fabric strip and lay out on your cutting mat.

Taking the first piece I cut from my fabric collage and using my rotary cutter, I cut a wavy edge off of the 2 3/4" length.

Remove the paper backing from your collage fabric to expose the glued back.

Lay the cut collage piece on top of a batik strip.

Now iron it to the batik substrate.

 Please check back on tomorrow's blog to see how I finished my Artist Trading Cards!


Monday, June 11, 2012

Good News, Bad News (But Really Not That Bad!)

I'm going to give you the not-so-good news first . . .

I'm forced to postpone the AURIfil giveaways I've been promising until sometime next month. My husband and I are moving into our new home at the beginning of July, and it's virtually impossible to successfully pull it off without hiccups and perhaps an unplanned glitch or two. As you may know, preparing for a move across several states can be daunting.

When I first planned this giveaway, we were not aware we would be moving. Postponing will allow me to enjoy the giveaway right along with you, as I'll be able to give my full attention to it! In addition, this will be a great kick-off to an idea I'm sharing with you early, in this blog!

With that being said, and as I'm getting my studio in order for packing day, I've decided to make my giveaway even bigger and better!!

I will be giving away lots of Moda pre-cuts,

A Fat Quarter bundle (or more? hmm... )

Some Amy Butler products, a selection of my most popular SuzGuz Designs quilt patterns, as well as packages of generous-size spools of AURIfil thread!

I've been thinking about, and have decided, that I will be starting up a FREE Block-of-the-Month. It will be a re-do of my popular "Take-A-Break" applique quilt. I designed this quilt several years ago when Heather Bailey first came out with her collection called, Fresh Cut. I thought it would be a great time to re-introduce this quilt because the collection has been re-introduced this year, as well; more opportunity for you to find most of the fabrics, if you wish to use them, too. More on this later!

Before we leave our current home, I'll continue to blog and hope that you will follow along. Tomorrow, I'll be taking you through how to make Artist Trading Cards. It was something I did for the first time this weekend, and I know you'll find it as fun as I did!

So stay tuned for my upcoming Suz-A-Palooza!!

Everyday blessings...