|Cherrywood Lion King Challenge Bundle|
Back in October 2015, Cherrywood Hand Dyed Fabrics announced they would be hosting a new quilt challenge, but hadn't revealed the theme nor challenge bundle. Regardless, given the huge success of the Wicked Challenge, as well as my love of Cherrywood fabrics, I signed up and reserved my challenge bundle sight unseen! A few months later, they revealed the King of the Jungle theme, along with the challenge bundle featuring three tones of gold with one black. A week or so later, Disney gave Cherrywood permission to use "Lion King" as the official challenge theme.
|Inspiration Found in Local Quilt Shop|
As the 7/1 deadline approached, I started to ponder design ideas and thought it would be fun to create a jungle themed mandala (more on my mandala design will be covered in the next post). But first, I wanted to transform the challenge fabrics and create my own original prints inspired by African animals. For inspiration, I turned to Pinterest, my local library and even my local quilt shop, where I found several bolts of animal prints! Originally, I envisioned four quadrants, with one section featuring a different African animal: zebras, leopards, tigers and giraffes. After borrowing a number of children's books about Tigers, I learned that tigers are native to Asia and as such, would not fit into my African themed mandala.
|Abstract Animal Prints Sketches|
I opted to create more abstract representations of the various animal prints. I drafted a few ideas in my sketchbook and scratch paper. Some designs came more easily to me, while a few needed more fine tuning.
I decided to tackle zebra stripes for my first print, as I had found a small zebra stripe stencil at a local craft shop. While the rules require you to use all Cherrywood solids for the quilt top/binding, white is an exception, as Cherrywood does not make/sell white hand dyed fabrics. For stabilization, I ironed on a 6"x 20" piece of freezer paper to the backside of each of my fabrics. Having the freezer paper in place made it much easier to use a black micron pen to outline the stripes, and then fill in with diagonal tick marks. It was fun to watch the fabric transform with these repetitive lines.
|Layers of Creating Giraffe Geometric Print|
Next up was my giraffe print. I began by marking wonky vertical lines every inch or so across the length of fabric. From there, I bisected each wedge into smaller areas. A brown paint brush tipped micron pen was used to add hash marks over these marked lines. Finally, a fine orange micron pen was used to fill in each area with a spiral.
After learning that tigers were not native to Africa, I needed to find a replacement. I discovered the bongo antelope had a reddish-brown coat with vibrant white lines. Using white acryllic paint, I recreated these white stripes along the darkest brown/gold challenge fabric.
I went back and forth on whether to create cheetah or leopard print. After going through several kids books on both animals, I was drawn to the rosette clusters of dots associated with leopards. These may have been the hardest for me and required multiple sketches. I started with a thick black paint-tip micron pen to create abstract U's and C's, along with amoeba like shapes for my first layer. I then used an orange pen to fill in the centers of the rosette shapes.
Last up was creating crocodile scales. A darker green micron pen was used to draw lines at different intervals along the length of a light green Cherrywood solid. I then created boxes, which were filled in with circles and spirals to repesent the armored scales of the crocodile.
|My Fun & Fabulous Five Abstract African Animal Prints (left to right): Bongo, Giraffe, Leopard, Crocodile and Zebra|
|A Blank Canvas and Fabric Palette Await Design Inspiration|