Art Quilts, A Trip Down Memory Lane

As you know I recently revealed my 31st Art Quilt. Woohoo! Please pardon my temporary pause to celebrate! 🙂 After sharing the last one I was reminiscing abut the stories and photos behind each of my art pieces. Even though I was the person that created them, the older I get I have to admit it is sometimes hard for me to remember what they all look like. To satisfy my curiosity and fill in a few of those hazy recollections I decided to search back through my notes and my posts to refresh my memory. My travels brought back many fond memories and aha moments. Thank goodness for photos as they many times are worth a thousand words.

To celebrate my milestone I decided to share photos and links to all 31 in one place. Their combined history spans a period of more than a year. While that probably doesn’t seem like a long time to you for me it feels like ages ago. So much of my time and my heart has been poured into each and every one. They represent a small piece of my journey through fabric as an art form. Please enjoy my trip down memory lane.

AQ # 1: Bloom


AQ # 2: Paws for a Moment

Paws for a Moment #1
Paws for a Moment

AQ # 3: Quilting Friends

Quilting Friends
Quilting Friends

AQ # 4: Flowers


AQ # 5: Sunrise

Art Quilt # 5: Sunrise, The Quilt
Art Quilt # 5: Sunrise with its many embellishments

AQ # 6: In the Right Direction

In the Right Direction
In the Right Direction

AQ # 7: This Way

This Way #1
This Way

AQ # 8: This Way # 2

This Way #2
This Way #2

AQ # 9: Moo


AQ #10: Crossroads

AQ # 10: Crossroads

AQ # 11: Birch Trees

AQ # 11_ Birch Trees.jpg
Birch Trees

AQ # 12: Autumn


AQ # 13: Ticktock


AQ # 14: Tulip


AQ # 15: Hodgepodge


AQ # 16: Bird House

Bird House

AQ # 17: The Chosen Nine

Art Quilt # 17_ The Chosen 9
The Chosen Nine

AQ # 18: Four Friends # 1

Art Quilt # 18_ Four Friends # 1
Four Friends # 1

AQ # 19: Four Friends # 2

Art Quilt # 19_ Four Friends # 2
Four Friends # 2

AQ # 20: Rising Star

AQ# 20_ Rising Star
Rising Star

AQ # 21: Backwards

AQ # 21_ Backwards

AQ # 22: Crossroads

AQ # 22_ Crossroads (Finished)

AQ # 23: On The Fringe

AQ # 23_ On the Fringe
On the Fringe

AQ # 24: Multicultural

AQ # 24_ On the Fringe (finished)

AQ # 25: Towne House

AQ # 25_ Towne House (finished)
Towne House

AQ # 26: Blue Condo

AQ # 26_ Blue Condo (finished)
Blue Condo

AQ # 27: Summer Picnic

AQ # 27_ Summer Picnic (finished)
Summer Picnic

AQ # 28: Buttons

AQ # 28_ Buttons (finished)

AQ # 29: Pink Cadillac

AQ # 29_ Pink Cadillac (finished)
Pink Cadillac

AQ # 30: Harvest Medley # 1

AQ # 30_ Harvest Medley # 1
Harvest Medley # 1

AQ # 31: Harvest Medley # 2

AQ # 31_ Harvest Medley # 2
AQ # 31: Harvest Medley # 2

Well, that was quite the tour! I like all 31 but I have to confess that I have a few favorites. Actually, let me rephrase that. I have ten favorites. Making my Top Ten Favorites list are:

  • AQ # 1: Bloom
  • AQ # 3: Quilting Friends
  • AQ # 5: Sunrise
  • AQ # 10: Crossroads
  • AQ # 14: Tulip
  • AQ # 15: Hodgepodge
  • AQ # 16: Bird House
  • AQ # 22: Crossroads
  • AQ # 25: Towne House
  • AQ # 28: Buttons

If I were to narrow it down even further I would select these as my top five:

  • AQ # 1: Bloom
  • AQ # 10: Crossroads
  • AQ # 22: Crossroads
  • AQ # 25: Towne House
  • AQ # 28: Buttons

Then my all-time favorite, if you must know, is……

  • AQ # 25: Towne House

After reading my lists you have probably noticed that I made a slight booboo when choosing the names for my quilts. Oops! Somehow I gave AQ # 10 and AQ # 22 the same name. Who does that? LOL! I mean, it’s not like I have oodles and oodles of quilts that are hard to keep track of.

You would think that I would have a master list somewhere that monitored the name assignments. Sadly I did not. I do now though! I’ve taken the time to organize my blog posts and created categories to make the management of my art quilts easier. The categories also make it simpler to find all of the posts related to each quilt. All this organizing probably makes me sound slightly analytical but I am a numbers kind of gal so it only makes sense that I would do it.

So, which one is your favorite? Notice I am not asking for your top ten or your top five; just your # one choice. I know it probably seems unfair to ask you for only one favorite but I didn’t want you to have to work too hard. Leave me a comment sharing your thoughts of the tour as well as which art quilt is your favorite. You can also ask me questions. I love receiving and responding to comments from my readers! 🙂

I know you probably have a limited amount of time set aside for reading blogs and because of that I want to thank you for stopping here. I’m so glad we had the chance to visit and catchup.

If you like what you have seen and are not currently a follower why not become one! Becoming a follower is a really easy process. In the right margin of my blog there is a box provided for entering your email address. Type your address there and voila you are all set. Then every time I publish a post you will receive a copy in your email.

If you are already a follower let me give you a big HUG! Thank you so much for being a faithful reader. You are the reason for my success!

About Cindy

The world of art has always brought me joy. From my childhood explorations with chalk and paint to my creations using fabric and thread, I have utilized art as my vehicle to stretch my wings and explore the world around me.

My favorite art form has been given many names; I know it as “free-form” quilting. This direction has taken me on a journey resulting in the formation of more than 200 art pieces. Most of them center strictly around the manipulation of fabric. Some of the later pieces have added elements of hand stitchery. All of them have brought me an immense sense of joy.

I use this blog to share glimpses of my art and the environment in which it is created. Most of my art pieces are available for purchase. You may see a sampling of them at Raven’s Wish Gallery in Janesville, Wisconsin.

My art is periodically on display in a variety of venues. To learn about my current exhibits you may send an email to cindy [at] inastitchquilting [dot] com

Now go and create your own masterpiece. With warm hugs…

Cindy Anderson

AQ # 22: Crossroads Update

Such A Joy

I am really enjoying the process of sharing my 16 recently completed quilts. Composing these recaps is taking me on a trip down memory lane. The catalyst that ignited this string of posts was this one 16 Quilts.

The Beginning

AQ # 22: Crossroads began its journey during my private 9 day retreat last summer. The concept evolved by accident while pulling fabrics from my stash. I love happy accidents. Don’t you? Sometimes those turn out to be the most successful.

These are the scraps I started with. The post that originally talked about them was called Quilt Retreat Day Eight.

AQ # 22_ Crossroads (the beginning).jpg

I am assuming they caught my attention because I love the colors and the designs.

First Instinct

At first glance I was tempted to leave them unadulterated. I could have simply attached them to a background using a fusible material, quilted, then finished the art piece using customary steps. My over-exuberant enthusiasm, however, tempted me to proceed further. In hindsight, if I had it to do over again, my hunch is I probably would have stopped the ball from rolling and declared it done.

Don’t get me wrong. The quilt I am revealing today is absolutely gorgeous and one of my all-time favorites. Its just that I have this feeling that continually replays in my head. The feeling that when is enough, enough? I saw the opportunity to create something bigger and better, when I already had something right in front of me that was spectacular. Oh well! No turning back ! Let’s move on.

Moving On

Where were we? Oh, that’s right! We were admiring my collection of fabric scraps. 🙂 Following the protocol I learned from Rayna Gillman I grabbed my tub of scraps and searched for additional candidates. After merging the two groups I began stitching combinations. With a little nudging here and a little persuasion there I managed to create one spectacular art quilt.

Art Quilt # 22: Crossroads
Art Quilt # 22: Crossroads

Finishing Touches

My job wasn’t finished just yet. Now that my small quilt top was done it was time to add the finishing touches. I really liked the appearance of the raw edges so I decided to preserve them by fusing the quilt top to a background of black cotton.

Art Quilt # 22_ Crossroads with Black Backing

A protective row of stitching was added around the perimeter of the quilt’s edges. These stitches should help maintain the integrity of the piece. I also added a pattern of geometric stitching using a spool of color coordinated variegated thread. The exposed areas of the black fabric were quilted with black thread and straight line quilting. Rather than finishing off the raw edges of the background with a matching binding I chose to add a black cotton facing. The facing, while providing a protective, invisible, seal also left the edges looking clean and unobstructed.

The Finished Project

AQ # 22: Crossroads measures 18 1/4″ x 15 1/2″. The materials used in the quilt top are 100% cotton. The batting is a fusible black fleece. The backing and facings are also made of black cotton fabric.

Origin of the Name

Crossroads, the name given to this quilt was chosen because of its linear lines. The linear lines reminded me of intersecting streets or crossroads on a road map.

The Reveal

This is how AQ # 22: Crossroads looked when it was done.

AQ # 22_ Crossroads (Finished).jpg

Thank You!

Thank you for sharing in this debut. I hope you found the mini quilt to be as interesting as I do. Links to the previous five reveals can be found here:


Life After Nine Days Away

Welcome Back!

Returning to reality, after nine days away,  can be exhausting. There’s all the unpacking and laundry to do as well as catching up on household tasks. Once those chores are taken care of it’s easier to slide back into your normal routine. For me, it doesn’t take very long to get that out of the way. Once I put my mind to it, I keep myself focused on the tasks-at-hand until each one is crossed off. After my list has been accomplished and tossed into the trash I’m free to move onto more enjoyable things.

Let’s Unpack

Re-establishing my presence in my sewing room meant unpacking and stowing away the supplies I took to my little cabin in the woods. It’s also a great opportunity to clean-up and reorganize my things to give them a fresh, new appearance. I especially had a great time unpacking the items I made while on my trip. Each one was carefully removed from the plastic tub and checked for wrinkles. The small art pieces were stacked, one on top of the other, on a shelf. The two quilts, Circuit and Teacup, were draped over a rod for safekeeping until I have the chance to long-arm quilt them.

Time to Sew

After unpacking and tidying up my sewing room I created the backings for Circuit and Teacup. Even though I don’t have time to long-arm quilt them now I like having the backs already to go. Then when it is time to quilt I don’t have to stop to do it. As soon as I finished the backings I could finally move on to other items.

One of the improv art pieces I made during my retreat was this little quilt.

Art Quilt # 22: Crossroads
Art Quilt # 22: Crossroads

If you remember from this posting the inspiration came from this random grouping of fabrics.

Option Two

These small pieces of material, along with the addition of several others, morphed into Crossroads.

A Backing was Added

After pressing the final seam I decided, rather than add borders, I would fuse the mini art piece to black fabric. The borders would have provided a smooth finished edge. This technique would have worked just fine but I really liked the look of the raw edges. I wanted to preserve as much of that appearance as possible.

To accomplish this I used a piece of Misty Fuse, a product I learned about at the Rayna Gillman’s class I attended in May 2016. I prefer to use this product because it allows my piece to maintain a soft feeling. Some of the other products make your piece feel stiff. This is how my Crossroads looked after being fused to it’s new background.

Art Quilt # 22_ Crossroads with Black Backing.jpg

Left to do on this piece:

  1. make a backing
  2. cut the batting
  3. quilting (most likely a simple linear pattern with gray thread, except in the black area)
  4. binding (I will create a facing for this)

Once I’ve added the finishing touches I will share the final outcome.

Moving On

Not much else to share on Crossroads for now. Once I’ve had the chance to make further progress I will bring you up-to-date.


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Cindy Anderson