Lately it has been wet around here and my plans for planting our now fairly bare garden have been stagnant. In the meantime, I moved on to working on a little indoor flower project. This is another one of those long-forgotten quilts. I designed my favourite flower quilt patterns in the style of stained glass window panels. As I was drawing the flowers, they took on shapes of mineral crystals. Since I love geology, the blocks are all named after my favourite minerals – Garnet Primrose, Kyanite Iris, Olivine Tulip and Selenite Clematis. I made the initial blocks with the Downton Abbey fabrics.
I didn’t want an usual 4 x 5 block arrangement for this quilt. I wanted something completely different, a special layout for this one. Until I had the layout designed, I didn’t know how many blocks I needed to make and progress stalled. The four blocks went into the cabinet not to see the light of day again for a long time. Now it is finally time to dust off the pieces and start working on the rest of the quilt.
This is the layout I came up with. I imagined walking through a very big garden made up of smaller, sectional gardens. Enchanted Garden is what came to mind as the name. Now that the layout is done, I can start making the rest of the flowers.
Since I always get asked about the pattern links, you can purchase the stained glass flower quilt patterns in my shop.
They are quite easy to make 12″ blocks. Many thanks to those of you who purchased the patterns already.
I do love nature and my most favourite are the trees. One evening, I sat down to relax with my sketchbook while running one of my favourite movies in the background. It was early March, the trees were still very bare and the sky took on beautiful colours at sunset. Using pastel pencils I was trying to capture those colours peeking through the silhouette of a tree.
A few notes about oil pastel and pastel
Although they share the name pastel, oil pastel and pastel are really quite different from each other and cannot be used together. I used paper stumps to blend the pastel pencils. I tried to use the stumps to blend the oil pastel, but using my fingers proved more effective. The heat from my finger warmed up the oil in the oil pastels, which in turn blended the colours a lot better.
I didn’t buy any special paper for the pastel pencils. They worked great on Strathmore 400 Series 80lb drawing paper. For the oil pastels, however, I used a thicker paper so the oil from the pastel would not seep through. I used Canson 150lb smooth surface paper for the oil pastels. I would like the try the oil pastels on canvas one day.
Pastel sticks create quite a lot of chalk-dust, pencils create a lot less. That’s why I like the pastel pencils better. They blend very easily, they smudge easily too. Oil pastels have mineral oil which never really dries completely, so they would smudge as well. Therefore, both of them need sealing. I used Grumbacher Matte Finish Final Fixative to seal both of them. One thin coat was enough for the pastel pencils, but the oil pastels needed three thin coats. I did take the time to let each coat completely dry before applying the next one. I suggest you try out the sealant on a small test sample before you apply it to your finished painting.
I couldn’t find much information on this and had to figure a lot of this out by playing. So, in case you paint, I thought you might find this information helpful.
I painted this Field Of Wild Flowers with oil pastels in the style of Van Gogh. As you can see, they behave quite differently than pastel pencils. I wrote about his painting a couple of weeks ago in “The Master And The Apprentice“.
One Friday, it was raining outside and I was feeling like doodling after work, but without taking out a whole pile of painting paraphernalia. So I pulled out my box full of markers. I have never used markers for landscape painting before, so this was a first for me. Markers can get quite expensive and they can’t be mixed together to create new colours. Since I don’t have an unlimited supply, I lined up the shades I had at home and doodled away at this picture of trees in the morning at the local park while listening to the patter of rain.
I leave you with a photo of a tiny little Spring Vetch adding its splash of colour to the countryside around here.
Hope you find some inspiration in flowers and trees this week as well!
I am also linking up on Through My Lens, Our World Tuesday, Wednesday Around The World, Seasons, and Friday Photo Journal along with other linky parties on my Events And Links page.
Lynette April 5, 2019 at 10:39
ooo – This post came up in the featured thumbnails at the bottom of your latest post. What a gorgous quilt design, and the blocks are so pretty in that Downton Abbey fabric.
Photo(Geo)grapher April 27, 2017 at 08:53
Linda April 26, 2017 at 16:06
Love your flower blocks, very pretty and delicate. And the setting is great! Thanks for joining in with ‘sew stitch snap SHARE’
Emily Bailey April 26, 2017 at 11:57
I like to play with oil pastels but haven’t tried the pastel pencils. I’ll have to give them a try. Thanks for sharing. Your sketches look great as do your flower blocks. Thanks for sharing with Moving it Forward.
kelleyn rothaermel April 26, 2017 at 10:12
Your drawings and quilt are lovely!
Susan April 26, 2017 at 09:29
Soma – love your layout! It does seem like I’m walking in a garden – good job!
ARTantana April 25, 2017 at 19:49
What a beautiful post. Thanks for sharing info about the pastels. Have an awesome day.
jesh StG April 25, 2017 at 12:26
The delicate quilt pattern is so beautiful! I am a messy painter, so often do the blending of pastel with my fingers:):) Love the painting you made with the progression of the green in trees! Tell me about it, always heard (before) that oil paint is expensive – I think pastel is more expensive! I recognize the Rembrandts you use. Also am very much drawn to the Sellenier. Love this post for All Seasons, Soma! Have a lovely artsy week:)
The Eclectic Abuela April 25, 2017 at 07:04
Kaja April 23, 2017 at 00:52
What a beautiful layout; the whole thing has such a delicate, considered feel to it.
rosa April 22, 2017 at 06:28
Beautiful blocks and art projects.Love them all!
Lady Fi April 21, 2017 at 10:54
Gorgeous quilts and drawings.
Susie April 21, 2017 at 10:36
I can’t wait to see your Enchanted Garden quilt! It is good that you let it sit for awhile, until the right design ideas surfaced!!
I like learning about the different drawing and painting mediums you use!
Your Spring Vetch photo reminds me of a butterfly , ready to take flight! What a beautiful photo!
Myra @ Busy Hands Quilts April 21, 2017 at 09:28
Lovely flower quilt!
Loris Mills April 21, 2017 at 06:27
This is really a lovely quilt! Beautiful blocks in a perfect setting. Wonderful work!
Debbie H April 21, 2017 at 04:38
First of all, I love your quilt. It is so refreshing and delicate, just beautiful flowers. I connect with your stagnation of project progress. I think we all go through it at times. But thanks for sharing your art work. I have always loved to see the different techniques and supplies, but have not tried them. I absolutely am in love with your sceneries. You are very talented.
Lena April 21, 2017 at 04:34
Your stained glass flowers are beautiful, and the delicate patterns in the fabrics so suit their character and your crystal analogy! I love your landscape sketches, pastels have always defied me, I would never have thought of painting a landscape with markers – live and learn!
Kim Sharman April 21, 2017 at 00:02
Oh, there is always oodles of inspiration in flowers and trees, Soma….AND….there is always oodles of inspiration when one visits your lovely place to gaze upon whatever project you have been working on. Your quilt is a masterpiece. So glad you dusted the dust off those pretty flower blocks. This quilt is an enchanted garden. I love the arrangement you have imagined. I feel I am sitting in a walled garden sitting amongst the pretty flowers filled with a sense of peace and restfulness . Your artworks, too, are lovely. You really, really are so very clever! Such glorious hues in your pretty Spring Vetch flower.
Beth @ Cooking Up Quilts April 20, 2017 at 20:12
The layout is original and adds so much interest to the quilt. I love the fabrics, and the bit of green in the sashings/border is *just* right!
Paige April 20, 2017 at 18:08
Beautiful flower blocks and layout! The greens in your drawings are so springy, just lovely!
Janine @ Rainbow Hare April 20, 2017 at 13:53
I love your blocks and those fabrics are perfect – delicate and beautiful. I like your layout too. This really will be an enchanting quilt :)
Cheryl Brickey April 20, 2017 at 13:37
I love these flower blocks and how you set them in the quilt!
Susan April 20, 2017 at 09:10
The weather her has cooperated enough that I was able to take a few walks. The Magnolia, Dogwood and Redbud trees are in bloom. The maple trees are beginning to leaf out. The rest are just beginning to bud. Crocus, hyacinth and star flowers are gone. Daffodils are in full bloom. Tulips are getting buds and other plants are coming back to life. Of course all the pollen means allergy season is in full swing as well.
I really like the painting of the bare tree at sunrise. You also did really well with the markers. I wish I was half as artistic as you are. Thanks for sharing the information about the pastels and oil pastels.
krislovesfabric April 20, 2017 at 08:35
I like the layout you have chosen and the floral stripe look. We have planted onions, cilantro and lettuce…after the hailstorm yesterday I am glad I haven’t tried anything else. So many pretty things in this post, you have been busy!!
Mary April 20, 2017 at 07:17
Enchanted Garden is going to be stunning. I have loved those blocks and am so glad that you are going to put them together in such a beautiful piece. The layout does remind me of the proper English gardens.
You are so talented with you many art forms. Seeing your delightful drawings almost make me want to take it up! Your eye for all things nature comes through your pieces beautifully.
I love the photo of the single bloom too. The detail is glorious.