All Together Now…Altogether Now

The quilted pet portrait of Tinkerbelle is coming together at last. I’ve been describing this technique of transforming a photo of your pet into a quilted pet portrait in the last couple of blog posts. Today’s post is all about bringing a lot of little bitty fabric pieces together.

After fussy cutting out 85 pieces from 9 different fabrics, I started placing and fusing them onto a base I had cut out of fusible non-woven stabilizer. To be honest, this was a real challenge. Here’s the deal: many pieces had edges that had to be tucked under AND edges that had to go over the adjacent shapes. There were basically a lot of interlocking pieces. Here’s how she turned out…but I’m getting ahead of myself. Belle’s quilted pet portrait

Read on to find out how this all came together.

Step 9

So how did I bring all these pieces together? First, I spent time studying the original photo to observe depth of field — what parts are closer and which ones are further away? Then I did a dry run with all the major shapes to see how this interlocking would work. I made lots of mental notes and then I cleared the deck, making sure the keep the shapes together in numbered groups. I pinned the transparent master to my portable working surface, slipped the base underneath and one by one, removed the paper backing and placed the shapes in their final resting place.

Here’s the forehead region.  All those little arrows marking the ‘unders’ and ‘overs’  really come into play here as they tell me which edges to place underneath the others.

Quilted pet portrait

Here’s Belle’s muzzle. Yikes, some of those pieces are small! I use tweezers to move them into place.

Quilted pet portrait

As I positioned each piece, I used a light touch with the iron to tack it to the base and avoided touching the edges that had to remain free to allow the next shape to tuck underneath. Here’s how she looks under the transparency when all the shapes are in place.

Quilted pet portrait

At this point, I need to look at her with a critical eye to decide if I really achieved the right values in the right place. I can see there are a few subtle adjustments to make however the construction is completed. I’m off to the fabric store now to find a background that will really make this portrait pop. Next up will be a post all about colour and focal points.

If you’ve read this far, thanks for reading my blog! Remember, blogs are for sharing so don’t be shy.

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