Monday, March 21, 2016

Monday Morning Inspiration/Quilted Inspiration

Well, I'm stumped! The 2016 Thread's Challenge in conjunction with the Association of Sewing and Design Professionals is "The Quilted Garment." For some reason, the competition interested me, so I decided to enter the challenge. I have yet to be inspired :(
Here's the criteria of the competition,

“Quilting” is defined here as two or more textile layers joined by hand- or machine-stitching, and you must do the quilting yourself. Choose any fabrics that inspire you. Quilting cotton is not required, nor is traditional quilt batting. The garments don’t have to be pieced. The quilting itself should be the star. The stitching must meaningfully contribute to the structure, silhouette, and/or embellishment of the garment. 

Here's a little of what I've found in my searching for inspiration. The above coat is from the 2015 couture collection by Schiaparelli. I have no idea is the fabric is hand quilted, but I know I will not be doing anything similar to this.
I do like the use of textiles in the coat below. 
This is simple and yet a lot of work. I think it may be a Kantha quilt.
This coat is from Fendi and except for the pocket, I think it's lovely, but not very inspiring.
This coat is from Valentino and I think it is absolutely amazing. 
This piece I did find interesting. I love the mix of textiles.
In this close up picture, you can see how the red fabric is stitched so that it is actually raised off the bed of the jacket. 
Another piece from Valentino. Not so sure about the one shoulder aspect,but I do love the piecing. Dramatic and yet subtle.
This is not a quilted piece, but I do like the stitching idea. Quilting a piece with beads on a solid ground.
Here's a piece that is quilted and then the faces are stitched over the quilting.
I included this coat as I think it is a great use of color. It's from Bjork. Not quite sure why the yo-yos weren't taken into the armpit.
So here's how I'm feeling. The picture below makes me think of being tied into a straight jacket! I'm simply stuck.
But then, I could just grab an old quilt and make a dress!!!! This won't happen :)
So today, I'm asking for some help, maybe a little direction. The competition is based more on the actual quilting of the fabric rather than the piecing. Is there anything that inspires you? I'm up for any inspiration that will come my way.
Thanks so much :)

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  1. I'm pretty sure that 'straight jacket' is actually an old style fencing uniform (breeches and jacket). I love the shape of fencing gear (even though the quilted aspect is almost gone in modern outfits) - maybe that would be an inspiration for you?

  2. I've made many a quilted garment. My favorite was a vest that I never wore. I used gentle curves in the quilting and I ended up liking the inside better than the outside because I liked looking at the curved lines. So my advice is to find lines or lined drawings that appeal to you and let that guide you. The garment design will follow, I expect. You have great instincts, you know.

  3. How about incorporating trapunto into your garment? Here is a coat that made me think of you immediately...

  4. I saw this shared on Twitter a while ago - this is a Library of Congress photo of the coat Abraham Lincoln was wearing the night he died. It has an extraordinary quilted lining: https://www.loc.gov/item/2011633237/ A bit of an odd example, but I suppose it's one way to add interest through quilting without making the outside of the garment too busy.

  5. There are a few fabric manipulation books. Some of those techniques might inspire, where fabric is stitched down as it is tucked or gathered.

  6. This will be a challenge, for sure. Since the emphasis should contrast, or compliment. A silk dupioni jacket or coat, with a dragonfly theme. Large dragonfly on the back, smaller ones scattered here and there on the garment, echo quilting around the dragon flies. (you can draw this off on paper to get your thoughts going) You can add beads and sequins for eyes, etc. as highlights, but not to take away from the quilting. A thin, very soft batting would make the design stand out. Or you could use just about any fabric really, the silk is what came to mind. That is my idea. :)

  7. Just to be clear, quilting is simply stitching two pieces of fabric together. There can be batting or not. Piecing is entirely different part of making a "quilt" as we typically think of it. That one jacket is actually just quilted, just in different colors and patterns. The faces are stitched through two layers (or more) so it is just another layer of quilting....clear as mud no doubt. Love the bead idea!

  8. Rhonda, the timing of your post is a wild coincidence, or perhaps...sweet serendipity. I actually just published my own quilted art jacket post this morning. I love seeing all these inspirations, and it has me wanting to quilt/sew another piece.

    I hope I'm not barging in, but may I ask for more details on the competition please? It sounds as though it is for those in the sewing profession only?

    I'd love for you to see my jacket too:

    A Colourful Canvas: My Quilted Art Girl Jacket

  9. How about Alabama Chanin? It's more applique type stitching, but it might inspire you. Love your blog BTW

  10. Rhonda- what a fun, and daunting, project!
    If I were going to enter the contest, which I'm not, I would surely be having the same dilemma. Here's what I think I would do:
    1. Get out a book that shows fabric samples and designs through the decades. I find it inspiring to browse.
    2. Put a limited palate of fabrics in front of me. To see what I like and to get me warmed up, I'd choose 5 quite different main fabrics, 5 backing fabrics with different properties and cut 10" squares of each. I'd also choose fabrics to use as "batting" - flannel is great, but try whatever you want. I'd cut 10" squares of each, sit down at the machine with my squares, make a quilt sandwich, and go to town.
    3. See if I was inspired by anything, or bored, or whatever and go from there.
    OR-- I wouldn't do any of the above, and I'd go to an art museum for a quiet afternoon by myself!
    *****I think that Mary Ray's Quilted Jacket class on Craftsy would be good if a person wanted a good basis for how to fairly easily make a high quality, comfortable quilted garment if they didn't already know how. I have not taken the Craftsy class, but I did learn to make quilted jackets from Mary Ray in person.

  11. Sorry I'm no help- quilting is a whole different art to me!! Loving the inspiration pics:)

  12. I agree with Pauline, Alabama Chanin, but take that inspiration and go to a new fabric? Maybe boiled wool, a coat?

  13. Use Mattlasse fabric. I'm pretty sure that's what the first one is!

  14. You have shared some wonderful inspiration pieces here. I cannot wait to see what you come up with!

  15. Take a look at mola (reverse applique) work. Maybe that rings a bell.
    Honestly, Martha had the right idea. Look for the lines that interest you, and your creative instincts will follow.

    1. For sure that second coat uses the mola technique. I have a few in my fabric collection and they are wonderful pieces of textiles.

  16. Have you checked out the Alabama ha in books? They're full of wonderful hand stitched pieces that use several different applications including applique and reverse appliqué. Whatever you do, I'm sure it will be wonderful and fun!

  17. A quilted garment makes one automatically think of a coat or jacket but you recently did a post on Ralph Rucci and a dress with a quilted hemline - could this be extended into side panels, cuffs, collar, shoulders, waistband etc? Choose a plain fabric and let the stitching become the pattern - different coloured threads, stitch lengths, even different stitches......exciting stuff.

  18. You have all the skills and savvy you need already. May I suggest that your head is actually overflowing with images? I would take a 30 minute brisk walk outdoors, or walk until you're no longer thinking about your quilted garment. Breathe fresh air and let your mind and body resume its natural rhythm--like pressing a reset button. Drink water, go to your workspace, and jot down 5-10 ideas. Do not edit or evaluate them. Write them even if you don't think they're viable. Then choose one you like or repeat the process another time, depending on your deadline. This is the advice I give to my music composition students. Sometimes listening to other people's music drowns out your own.
    Can't wait to see your creation!

  19. Look at whole cloth quilting and vintage quilted garments then test out various color threads. I think you like color and movement in your fabrics by testing out color threads quilting designs you may unlock your block as to the garment a formal dress or coat is my suggestion good luck

  20. I would also go for some trapunto, it seems to fit the bill. Please do keep us posted.