Barb Schultz and Enchanted Valley Arts

Those of you who are local are familiar with Barb Schultz and her great patterns, offered both online at and through local quilt shops. Just recently her patterns are now available through Nancy’s Notions!  How cool is that!  Barb also teaches art and quilting classes locally and is our resident expert on Tsukineko inks.

Yesterday Barb took my free motion quilting class.  Not sure how much instruction she really needed, but she seemed to enjoy it and we had some great conversations.    After my class she gave me an impromptu mini-lesson about application of Tsukineko inks (I was having trouble getting a uniform color application; now I know what to do to fix the problem!).

Anyway, this reminded me of the class I took from Barb years ago, which involved use of Tsukineko inks and also fabric discharging.    Here is a photo of the quilt I completed in that class:

Leaf shadow quilt

Leaf shadow quilt

In a future post I will be showing how to make those angled corners on the binding, because someone at my guild asked me about that recently.  It is covered in my binding book (the techniques work for any angle) but since this kind of corner is fairly common on tablerunners, I will put up a post with step by step photos for this specific corner.  Stay tuned!

And here is a closeup of the shadow and quilting detail in the leaf quilt:

Leaf shadow quilt detail

Leaf shadow quilt detail

The detail photo shows the shadows behind the leaves ( a bleach discharge technique; see Colleen Wise’s book Casting Shadows for details) and also shows the very subtle veining in the batik leaves that was accomplished with Tsukineko inks, courtesy of Barb’s great lessons in her class.  I am also very fond of the free motion quilting in this one.  The gold rayon thread worked very nicely with the rusty orange discharged fabric (which started out as solid black before discharging; the black shadows under the leaves are the original fabric color).  And I am very fond of leaf quilting patterns, which can be done with no marking and almost always turn out great.

I don’t know if Barb is teaching this particular class any more, but it was one of my favorites.  Tsukineko inks are great for many things, adding both bold and subtle detail to a quilt.  Once ironed, the color is permanent.

Here are a couple of links if you want to get Colleen Wise’s book or need an online source for Tsukineko inks:

Colleen Wise’s book:  Casting Shadows: Creating Visual Dimension in Your Quilts

Tsukineko ink sets: Tsukineko All-Purpose Ink Workstation Set  This set is fairly expensive  ($100+) but does give you lots of colors and everything you need to get started, including an instructional DVD.  You can probably buy the ink and applicators through your local quilt shop to try them out without such a big commitment.  The inks are also sold as Fabrico markers, if you want the color in something more like a felt tip pen.  The markers would be great to add an accent color to a fabric — say you had a black and white print and wanted to add just a touch of color – a pop of red or yellow on a flower petal or inside a circle.  Lots of creative options to think about.

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