Recently I helped Whitby Art Society deliver a day of activities as part of The Big Draw, an annual drawing event to encourage everyone to get creative. I did decorated pumpkins.

One of the other ladies did a haunted zig zag book that gave some amazing results. Children’s drawings are so free. I was inspired to make my own fabric haunted book.

As always when creating an art quilt I draw first. Don’t be put off, drawing like quilting is just practice. There’s so much help out there and on the internet to get you started. The biggest thing to get over to start your drawing adventure is your old school teacher telling you you’ll never be any good. Thre were good teachers out there but there were a lot of bad. Esp if you are my age, coming up to retirement. I met both, the good later in life so don’t be put off, you can do it.


I have this old quilt cover of my daughters I use quite a lot, I’m starting to run out. I love using fabrics that have had a life. Saves them going to landfill and they have a certain something about them.

I thought because it was already foresty I would be on a winner. Well wait and see.

As usual I stitch from the back and did so with this project too



Adding a bit of colour using watercolour paints as I went along. As this was to be a book I don’t need to worry about the colour running in the wash, this gives me the freedom to add what I want.


I soon began to realise that the foresty background was a little too much, so decided to give the whole piece a wash of blues, purples and greens to knock the original deign back into the distance. So it sits behind my appliqué better. A Drawing device to give the appearance of distance but also used in quilting when choosing coloured fabric, to make colours standout or recede.


Of course by wetting the fabric with the paint my drawing ran on the reverse. Good job it was my drawing and not one I’d used from elsewhere. Good job because I knew the drawing so was able to replace it easy enough. While it was drying I had time to have a look at where it was at. Always a good thing when designing. I decide my trees needed something more now there was colour all over so added fabric to them.


I kept adding fabric and colour until the design was complete. Once the appliqué was complete, I turned it over and added freemotion stitch to add detail, such as spiders hanging from the trees etc.

So now the whole image is complete, just need to add it to its cover and make it into the book.

The whole image