Thursday, January 23, 2014

CQJP 2014 January Block

Under the Sea themed January block for CQJP 2014 stitched and designed by Renee.

Sharon Boggon, of Pin Tangle, recently shared a question with the members of Crazy Quilting International.  She asked why we like crazy quilting.  There were so many responses I could relate to!  It was fun to see what draws other to this craft I have grown to love.

One of the things I love about crazy quilting is that I can stitch together a few scraps of fabric, like the simple 6 x 7-inch block below, and transform it with some floss, beads and charms into something completely new, as seen finished above.

This is my first block for the Crazy Quilt Journal Project 2014 (CQJP 2014.)

Hmm... I did not plan for the blocks to all slant up to the right.  I almost started over.

Instead, I opted to try to use the motion of the schools of fish I added to pull the eye back to the left a bit.  The anchor helps with this, too.

First, I made simple seam treatments.  I did not want them to compete with the rest of the embroidery.

I find myself drawn to encrusted crazy quilt blocks (where the majority of the block is embellished.)  I finally decided to try encrusting a block.  It does not come naturally to me, and my have been easier to accomplish on a block I could easily add lace and ribbons to; however, I was determined to give it a go.

Close-up of lower-left corner of Renee's January CQJP 2014 block.

After adding the seahorse I shared in my last post, I added seaweed and sea stars to the sandy ocean floor.
Close-up of lower-right corner of Renee's January CQJP 2014 block.

Next, I added an anchor (that I picked up at Michael's) and some jellies (using clear plastic glittery buttons I found in my stash.)

A very dear friend of mine spent years volunteering at the Oregon Coast Aquarium, in Newport, Oregon.  She taught me my "something new" this week.  Starfish are now called "sea stars" and jellyfish are now called "jellies" - as neither are actually fish.  (This same dear friend gave my sister and I our first sewing machine and introduced me to cross-stitching when I was a teenager.  I doubt I would have attempted crazy quilting without those earlier influences in my life.  Diane, if you are reading this, "Thank you so much!")
Close-up of anchor and jelly on Renee's January CQJP 2014 block.

After that, I used three different variegated flosses and combinations of chain stitches and straight stitches to create three schools of fish.
Close-up of the seahorse on Renee's January CQJP 2014 block.

To finish the block, I added a few beads to the sand and a few for bubbles in the water above the seahorse.  I also added a bit of black to the eye on the seahorse, to help it stand out a bit more.

I fear my block may look a little busy, but I think I succeeded with my goal to fill it with stitching!  (Out of curiosity, I tracked the amount of time I put into this project.  Nearly 27 of love have gone into this Under the Sea block so far.)

I plan to make a purse with each of my CQJP 2014 blocks.

A few people have asked if I have considered selling any of my CQ projects.  I had not, but 2013 brought along some challenges that decreased my income and increased my expenses; so, I am toying with the idea of making some items to sell on Etsy.  We'll see...

Thank you for stopping by!


Anonymous said...

LOVE IT!!! Oh my it looks so great! The button jellies are awesome, and I really love the seahorse. WOW

Renee said...

Thank you! I love the work you did on your UTS block, too! :)

Elizabeth Braun said...

Welll done, that looks great! I always thought those stitches would look good as sea floor plants.=)

Renee said...

Thank you!

Kippy SoMature said...

Renee - you are just delightful - and so is your block - you are gifted in so many areas :) crazy quilting especially!!! thank you for your kind words on my CQJP2014 block :) I came over here to thank you and saw that you too participated in the Grow Your Blog! so did I :) I already feel a closeness with you between the GYB, CQJP2013 &2014, TAST and pintangle! :D come visit if you are inclined

Renee said...

You are so sweet! Your needle felting is amazing. The little hippo on your blog is so intricate. I look forward to getting to know you more through CQJP, TAST and your blog. Hugs, Renee