I come from a long line of sign writers and am happiest with a brush and some paint! Add
paint to fabric and I get really excited!!

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Text Me! Not

So now that I know my pieces were not accepted in the latest Quilting Arts magazine Reader Challenge, I feel comfortable showing them here. The theme was “Text Me!” and I really enjoyed creating these. I have them nearby so I can enjoy the warmth they bring me. Funny thing about being rejected, or not chosen; I know they set guidelines for their publication, but when push comes to shove, the choosing is subjective. My pieces may not have been picked by the editorial board, but those who have seen them have given me very positive feedback so I know I am on the right track as I continue creating in my own special style.

I titled this one, “O” Baby, I love your curves! 

I know it is very trendy right now to use text in your designs, whether as part of the fabric, or as part of the design, but I have been doing this for a long time. Some of my earliest pieces were based on phrases and words. This time I decided to hi-light one of my most favourite letters!

When I started studying signwriting we had to draw pages and pages of letters. We had to draw them thin, thick, elongated, squat, with serifs, without and on and on......over and over till we got the dimensions perfect. When I worked for my Dad and computer generated letters were still far in the future, he would handcut vinyl letters, then adhere them to another color of vinyl and I would cut a 1/8" or 1/4” border all around. These letters were generally black with a gold outline and used for window lettering and it was great practice for learning their shapes. So, I love hand drawing letters and I love cutting them out almost as much! 

In “O” Baby, I used my hand dyed fabrics and I even cut those tiny, tiny yellowish dots out by hand! I used a few gold seed beads for embellishment and then twisted three different strands of decorative yarn and hand sewed it along the edge.

My second piece is called, “Summer Alliteration”. I love the curves of “S” as much as “O”’s!

I used my hand painted fabric for the background and then cut the letter “S” and all my “s’ words from my photographs that I had printed on fabric. I really like this concept, have used it in larger pieces, and plan on doing a lot more with it. I take a LOT of photos and I spend even more time editing them. So, using them in my fabric pieces is a natural progression for me. The shells are actual sea treasures and I have devised a method to sew them directly onto the fabric without making any holes in them. I didn’t take a photo of the back but it is also a photograph of gull tracks in the sand.

My history with letters led me to this more literal interpretation of the challenge. I know that “text” has taken on an entirely new meaning to this generation, but to me, the beauty will always be in the individual letters and the words you can create.

I am connecting to The Needle and Thread Network. Check out what Canadians all across this chilly country are up to this week. 


  1. Beautiful pieces, both of those. I especially like the colours and details in the O quilt. Your quilts are wonderful, probably just not what they were looking for. : )

  2. Very pretty pieces, Jennifer! Of course now you've got me intrigued about how you sew the seashells onto the work.

  3. Very creative both pieces Jennifer. Even if they weren't chosen they are an inspiration. I really like the "O" piece and thanks for telling us how to sew on the shells; that intrigued me. I like text on fabric too, so drawn to it. What caught my eye today on your blog because I haven't been for awhile was your picture header! It reminds me so much of the artwork I see from the North. Did you design it too? I live the simplicity of it.

  4. Jennifer VienneauApril 8, 2013 at 8:27 PM

    HI Peggy! Thanks for your lovely comments! I really enjoyed making these text pieces and have more based on them in the works. The quilt featured in my banner is based on a picture my daughter drew when she was 4. I made it keeping very true to her original drawing and actually made a smaller version for her (see my post of June 6, 2012 - Fusion of Time). This quilt has attracted a lot of attention over the years and was the start of my art quilting, though at the time no one referred to it as such...haha

  5. Jennifer VienneauApril 8, 2013 at 8:29 PM

    Thanks, Sam! I appreciate your feedback! I guess that is all part of the game - just keep pluggin away doing what you do, making yourself happy!