Thread painting is a type of free motion embroidery where the thread “paints” images your quilt top – the quilt top is your canvas and the thread is your paint.
I have always been interested in thread painting. I took a workshop in Santa Fe from Jennifer Day. “Bear”, the image below, was my first practice piece. He is Jennifer’s dog. I fell in love with this technique!
This is my second try at thread painting. “Alice” is my granddaughter and was also created at the same workshop in Santa Fe. I think her hair is my favorite part of the art quilt made from thread painting – there are close to 30 different colors of thread in her hair.
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Below is my beloved Barney. This piece is about 10 x 12 inches. I decided to frame him. The piece doesn’t have binding.
Sandy’s Dream was thread painted on my long arm in memory of a good friend who died of brain cancer. As I stitched this, I thought of all of the good memories of her. I used about 80 colors of thread on this piece.
A little more . . .
Paint a picture with thread! Also referred to as thread sketching, thread painting with your sewing machine or long arm quilting machine allows you to create art with just thread! Use the thread to draw on fabric, just as you would draw with colored pencils. Switch up the colors and types of fabrics to make a picture come to life!
Some of the thread painting techniques include using different colors of threads close to each other to create shadows and highlights. Use the density of stitching and different types of threads and stitches to create the texture and visual picture.
Thread painting is a free motion sewing technique. Lines of stitches define the image. Create a picture, or just add elements of design or embellishment to any fabric surface. Use a basic straight stitch or a zigzag stitch to create the look you want.
Painting and drawing with thread is just like drawing with different colored pencils. You can make long lines and curves, or small smooth strokes and dots to create a design. Combine the stitches to make a thread painted piece of art!
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