Journal 3

“I’m Hooked…on Thread Painting!”

I knew I was hooked on this whole thread painting thing after finishing my first piece. I wanted to try something more complicated and larger to see how it would go, and then the perfect opportunity arose. In the summer of 2014, our Modern Quilt Guild was having Dana Bolyard from @oldredbarnco and the author of Imagine Quilts come and speak. The guild started making gifts for each speaker as a ‘thank you,’ so of course I jumped on board to make Dana’s gift. I knew the perfect thing to thread paint for her, her barn logo! The tricky part was that the logo I was using as a guide was very small and on my phone :/ but I went for it anyway; I figured it’d be fine; I can draw just about anything.

Old Red Barn Co. labels, logos and photos 018

So I drew out the design with pencil onto my fabric and backed the fabric in embroidery stabilizer. I used embroidery thread to thread paint this piece and I used a TON of it!


I really enjoyed this one because the barn almost had a watercolor effect so it was really fun to treat it almost like a painting. I layered it the exact same way I would layer paint or colored pencil for a piece, starting with the darkest areas first and then layer the next lightest and so on until all colors are applied. I also experimented with doing a light base layer of thread all over in the specific area to cover and then coming back with the next layer to decrease the amount of puckering. I don’t think it really helped though it still puckered.


Once I finished the thread painting I had to make it into a mini quilt. I decided to make it look like it was a picture frame, so the simple border would not compete with the thread painting (since that was to be the focus). In an effort to reduce the puckering around the edge of the barn, I tiny stippled the heck out of it!

Side note: I think thread painting has improved my free motion quilting, especially on tiny close quilting. I have more control on the piece to make sure the needle goes in the precise spot I need.


I absolutely loved the finished thread painted barn and I could not wait to give her this piece. She was so surprised!

I think gifting my thread paintings is the most fun part of all! I loving seeing the reaction on their faces when they open the mini quilts. Now onto more thread painting!


Happy Quilting!


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