Thursday, 30 August 2012

35. Of Death Journal Quilt

I've reached no. 35 in my 52 Journals project where I aim to make one small journal quilt (this one is A4) for every week of 2012. And this one has been inspired by that quite contradictory smiling skull seen below.
The skull formed part of the table gravestone of James Deans who died in 1764. His stone is located in Glenholm Graveyard and you can read about that graveyard in one of my earlier graveyard blog posts here. The photograph had been lingering on my desk for quite some time and I decided to turn it into a journal quilt this week.

 In order to do so I printed hms out onto a denim cotton fabric sheet (Crafty Computer Paper), layered him with wadding (batting in US speak) and adorned him with a wealth of hand embroidery using cross stitches.
For some reason cross-stitch has gained a bit of a bad reputation among art embroiderers. Completely undeserved as it's a wonderful stitch to add texture specially if you use a variety of yarns and sizes of stitch as you can see in detail above. The stitched skull was machine appliqued (using a double buttonhole stitch) onto a machine quilted background. The red fabric is vintage and came originally from a Belgium convent. It was bought by me on Ebay. I added a cotton binding picking up the colours from the skull. Beading was added around both the binding and the skull as well as in his eyes. Vintage text was added too as shown, once again taken from the vintage book Proverbial Philosophy by M. F. Tupper, published in the 1860s. Text from this book is featured in quite of few of the 52 Journals and has become a kind of leitmotiv for them.  It gave this JQ it's title and the rest of the text that I added that reads as follows: " Death, new tenant of the house, pervadeth all the fabric" and further down: " Death, cold and lonely, thy frigid face is hateful". A bit unfair on the old chap as he seems to be having a large grin on his face.

I also added a red rose embellishment to the bottom left (from Alpha Stamps).

Remember if you want to see all the JQs so far for my 52 Journals Project you can either watch the slideshow in the sidebar of this blog or click on the 52 Journals label below this post and it will take you to all the posts here related to the project.


Emily's Mum said...

Freida, its brilliant, but def creepy looking too

theresa martin said...

Frieda, Love this and congrats on the number of weeks you're into this. Well done.

Lenna Young Andrews said...

I agree, slightly creepy! but knowing your love of all things like this, that seems to melt any creepyness away for me. I loved reading about the cross stitch! And the words are perfect, especially the bit about fabric! Your workmanship exemplary. xoxo

Terri said...

Wow! Frieda, you always amaze me. Not just your beautiful finished pieces of art, but also your amazing process as you go through your creative process.

Linda said...

You captured him perfectly. Can't help but smile just looking at him.


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