Sunday, February 24, 2013

Peppers and Avocado

Isolation.  It can be really nice to have time to yourself… time to do your projects, eat on your own schedule, stay up as late as you want.  But this weekend was more than time to myself.  Sometime on Friday, a critical piece of equipment broke down cutting off all Internet, email, WiFi and our home and business phones.  Although I still have my cell phone and texting, it’s amazing to find out how connected we are through these other forms of communication.  With my husband and sons away for the weekend, it was more like solitary confinement than a peaceful weekend to myself! Luckily, our computer expert was able to find the piece of equipment and get it installed this afternoon, so we're back live!

Start of Red pepper- showing underlaying stitches
The good news is that I had little distraction, so I’ve made a lot of progress on my Salsa series.  First, I started with peppers:

This red pepper proved to be particularly challenging, since the perspective.  I started with making the stem, and then doing the darker parts as underlayment.  I made circular shapes, to try to get the sense of the knobby bumps on the top of the pepper.

I think it came out pretty well and like the effect of adding a little violet for the shadows.  

With the orange pepper, I again started with the stem and the darker shading.  As you can see, most of the stitching goes in the direction of the shape of the vegetable.  With the underlayment, I will go across the grain, but most of this stitching will be beneath other layers of color, so it won’t show the cross-grain stitches.  

I then start building layers of color up.  I generally go from dark to light, as the dark is in the shadows, so further away from the viewer and light is closer.

Here are the three finished peppers.  I need to start working on doing the freemotion quilting and decorative stitching on the background today.

Next, I started on avocados.  Same, process, although it is challenging to think through how to be able to show the indentation of the place where the avocado seed was versus the other half with the seed jutting out. The rough texture of the outer skin was a little worrisome as well. 

I started with going over the darkest part in a thick black cotton thread.  I then added layers of dark grays and some dark muted green (basically a green that has dark gray added to it.)

I added the darkest yellow to the texture of the fruit, making it heaviest in the area that the pit was removed.  Then I layered about 10 different shades of light yellow and light green to make the fruit.

The final part of the process was to do the avocado pit or seed and the little area where the stem comes out.  
Because of how I layered the thread, both the pit areas are slightly stretched out, which will give a nice 3-D effect when I add trapunto.

I'll be looking over Leah Day's FreeMotion Quilting Project to find some interesting designs for the backgrounds of these two 5 x 7 Challenge pieces!

You May Also Be Interested In:

Cilantro- Si! 5 x 7 Week 3- 
The Start of Salsa
La Cebolla (Onion)


  1. Edible! I am starting to look forward to your posts every week, I'm always wondering whats next. These pieces are inspiring!

    1. Thank-you! I'm going to have to start thinking ahead to what my next topics will be once I'm done with the Salsa series. I'm also enjoying seeing your progress on the goddess/Express your Love quilt and loved your Ikea sewing table tutorial!

  2. Oh I just happened upon your work! Nice! Is this a photo u are working on?

    1. I start by printing a photo on fabric. I use this then to help me with blending my thread shades. The series of ingredients will be going together for a quilt to be entered in a show with the theme "Salsa!"

  3. Every time you post a new item in your salsa collection, I am amazed at how beautiful and unique your work is. Can't wait for the next installment.

  4. Thanks so much. I'm excited to see it coming together.

  5. Wow! They turned our so gorgeous! Did you start with a picture printed on fabric? How cool!

  6. I love everyone of them. The thread painting is fabulous.

  7. I love your thread painting. Those thread colours go onto your photo prints really well. I especially like the way you choose thread colours so well to make the veggies look so realistic.