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When I am selecting fabrics for my quilts I almost always reach for a linen first. There are several quilt pattern fabric designers out there that print on canvas and use a technique called Block Printing. I am always drawn to the look of block printed, modern fabrics. So, I have wanted to give this technique a try for years!
As I have mentioned before - I dream of one day being a surface pattern designer. I want to design quilt fabrics for modern quilts one of these days, but I also know it takes time to develop your own artist style. So, that's where I am at now. I'm just creating and doodling when I have time to keep the practice up, but I'm not quite ready to put together a portfolio.
If you want to try this technique out yourself I highly recommend Jen Hewitts book - Print Pattern Sew. She lays out each step very simply! The most intimidating part for me was staring at a blank sketchbook. You have to just start sketching! I sketched for quite a few days until I narrowed down the print I wanted to try out. From there you just follow her simple instructions and you've got it! I will definitely be trying this again.
Supplies I used:
- Cotton Canvas
- Speedball Block Printing Kit
- Rubber Blocks
- Screen Printing Ink
- Roller Brush
- Clear Ink Plate
I had to mix this paint color up myself. I bought this screen printing ink on Amazon and it only included these basic colors. I knew I wanted to match the front of this Natural Harmony Quilt Pattern. I cut up some pillow shams I had laying around that were also block printed!
My personality type tends to be very Type A or perfectionist. Quilting has always provided a release from that for me! I rarely feel the need to rip out a seam or redo anything on a quilt. I feel the same about block printing. I love the handmade, imperfect look of these prints. I feel like it leaves way more grace for "mistakes" and makes me embrace them!
Next I want to try block printing some shapes, scanning them into my computer and creating repeating patterns that way to see what happens. I think this would also allow me to play more with color combos and layering shapes together. I can't wait to give it a try!