Saturday, March 27, 2010

What Exactly is an Art Quilt?

I'm wondering what exactly constitutes an art quilt. Are there any rules? Or is it whatever you make and call an art quilt? Because I was playing around with some Tyvek while I was working on a techniques page for a RR journal project. I think I might have made an art quilt, teehee.

Okay, here's what happened. I painted a 11 x 14 piece of Tyvek in pretty colors, very loosely painting a red flower amid blue and green and yellow background. I decided to put it under the sewing machine and free motion stitch all around the flower and very randomly stitch some circles and swirls. Then I thought "Hmmm. What would happen if I heat this with an iron?" So I did. But I heated it too much and it came out fragile and holey with large areas burned away. It almost hit the trash bin at that point. But since I'm a bit of a freak about throwing stuff away... it stuck around a few days. Then I found some fine red tulle on the remnant rack and I thought "Hmmm. What if I put the tulle over the Tyvek to 'capture and hold' it so it can't fall apart?" Guess what? I LIKED IT! After stretching the tulle over the Tyvek (which was placed on a piece of raw white canvas) I free motion stitched the entire piece using gold metallic thread. And I only broke the thread 5 times! Yes, I used a needle made for metallic thread... it just didn't like the thickness of the melted Tyvek and the thick canvas. To capture the edges, I just zig-zagged the tulle near the canvas's edges, which were left as fringe/fray. I'm considering adding some beading to it too... haven't quite made up my mind...

What do you think? Art quilt? or just a save of some junk better off in the bin?


  1. Yes--it qualifies as an art quilt. Three layers: tulle , tyvek, canvas!!! congratulations, you've made an art quilt!!

  2. I don't know anything about art quilts, but I really like what you made. That tyvek is interesting stuff to work with. Now I am curious to try playing with some envelopes I have made of the stuff. I love the colors you used - it is very appealing and beautiful!

  3. Love the result. Your persistence and willingness to experiment paid off and encourages me!...bea

  4. Definitely an art quilt. It looks fabulous. Well done.

  5. Wow! definitely a keeper! Here is my dilemma (and the reason I'm a journaler) How much wall space can one have...LOL Where will we hang everything? Lori from Sketchbook

  6. I have been working in an art journal for years and years before I knew what I was actually doing was art journaling!! HA! i say call it what you want--it's your creation--and you can label it any way you please!

    PS I really dig your blog!!

    Big hugs!


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