Monday, October 22, 2012

Patterns from Nature

Looking for the perfect leaf shape for your next project?  Why not turn to nature?  Take a look outside to find your next pattern.  Once you have found the perfect leaf you can take a picture of it with your digital camera. 
Next print a copy of your photo on plain white paper.  If the perimeter of the leaf is hard to discern, use a black marker to emphasize the outline.  Also at this time you can use the marker to emphasize veins or areas of color that you want to include in your pattern.  Cut the leaf shape out, now you have a pattern to use. 

I like to trace the reverse of the pattern on light weight fusible web, and then fuse it to the wrong side of the fabric that I want my leaf to be. Next I cut out the shape on the pattern line and fuse it to my quilt.  Once you stabilize the piece, (I like a medium weight tear-away stabilizer), then you can thread paint the veins and do any shading you desire.
You can even use these patterns for your quilting patterns!

Don't forget to try different types of threads, like the variegated thread on the yellow leaves,  or the metallic thread on the bottom leaf.
Of course if you don't have a camera, you can get similar results using the low tech method of doing a leaf rubbing using paper and crayons!  Hoping to inspire you to a fall project, Linda B.

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