Connecting Design to Stitch….and a giveaway


Sandra Meech‘s Connecting Design to Stitch is newly published . . . and powerful. Part guide and part design class, the suggested lessons and projects offer exercises in refining and focusing design skills.

The examples and lessons all the way through feel like a design class and a visit to a museum at the same time. Meech reads like a docent talking about her favorite works through aisles and rooms of sophisticated works.

What’s most appealing about this book? For me, the use  - and influences of – other mediums is really refreshing. The first design class is to make a bound signature book and to begin to fill it with design elements dealing with different compositions straightaway.

I leaned in to the book with acrylic paint, collage, and stamp techniques and used some pieces from the Artful Fiber mixed pack as pages.

Especially fun is practicing with the Rule of Thirds – a composition tool that has long been used by photographers and fine artists. I now use this “rule” with my own photos as well as my layouts for art quilts. Stepping away from fabric and textiles to practice on pages in a book helped me look at my own works and gave me a few tools to choose from to design pieces with more confidence.

Meech calls this a “guide to design and composition for contemporary stitched-textile artist and maker.” I don’t know that I’d call myself a contemporary artist, but I am taking myself and my works more seriously  - and more confidently – after reading it.

What I’d really love to do is go through this book and its exercises with a group of creative people. If you are in a guild, or are looking to refine your design skills with a few pals, I’d highly recommend it. I think this would be a blast to work through these pages with a group . . . and it would certainly take the term “book club” to a whole new level.

This book feels like a trip to a museum and a design class in one.

Let’s give a copy of this essential design guide away. One lucky person will win a copy of Connecting Design to Stitch to have for their very own (it’s true!). To enter, leave a comment on this post sharing your favorite design tip.

Deadline to enter is Sunday, July 1, 2012. One comment will be drawn at random to win…the winner will be contacted via email and listed here as an update to this post. Good luck to artists and makers all!

7/2/12 UPDATE:  Kat Scott is our winner – congratulations!

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  1. Lubaska
    Posted July 1, 2012 at 4:28 am | Permalink

    I would like to have this book – I am fascinated by any kind of fabric arts. I love if wall hanging frames vary in size and shape.

  2. Posted June 30, 2012 at 2:25 pm | Permalink

    This book looks gorgeous. My design tip is that there are no rules – if it feels good in your gut go for it.

  3. Kathy H
    Posted June 30, 2012 at 12:37 pm | Permalink

    My design tip is to never be afraid to experiment with colors and textures. I try not to plan too much when going in to a project. I love the surprises that can result!! Be especially blessed, Kathy

  4. Posted June 29, 2012 at 2:36 pm | Permalink

    My tip is to embrace the mistakes made in a piece and, where possible, incorporate them as a feature! I like to look back & know that I’ve grown with each error.

  5. Lydia
    Posted June 28, 2012 at 7:10 pm | Permalink

    My design best tip is do not try to complete the design and then the quilt. Begin. Start your composition and see where it takes you. It will veer off in directions you can’t foresee in the beginning and it is a lovely journey.

  6. Posted June 28, 2012 at 5:55 am | Permalink

    As an intuitive artist I have to say my best tip is to go with your heart. Sandra’s books are great! I am glad to see she has this new one out.

  7. Posted June 28, 2012 at 5:35 am | Permalink

    If a piece I am working on isn’t “working” and I can’t figure out what is wrong, I will take a photo of it, then in a photo program on the computer I will change the photo to black and white…. Often, I find that the problem is with a lack of differences in value in the piece. Turning the photo to black and white, takes the color out which can tend to trick my eyes into seeing something lighter or darker than it really is.

  8. Posted June 28, 2012 at 2:56 am | Permalink

    Point elements towards the centre, or faces pointing away from the edge. Consider limiting your colour palette if you want to make a bold statement. Allow blank breathing space for eyes to rest.

  9. Posted June 27, 2012 at 9:05 pm | Permalink

    Go with your gut! Don’t let others talk you out of your design ideas.

  10. Jennifer Payan
    Posted June 27, 2012 at 8:20 pm | Permalink

    I would absolutely love to own this book! I’m a mixed media artist that has just began sewing and I would really like to learn how to incorporate the two. Thank you for the chance to win!

  11. Sue
    Posted June 27, 2012 at 4:21 pm | Permalink

    I would love to win this book. Looks like a really good one.

  12. Kat Scott
    Posted June 27, 2012 at 3:33 pm | Permalink

    Would love a copy of the book….
    My best tip…. sleep on it! Let your idea sit for awhile, then go back and look at it with fresh eyes. Also take process photos so you can go back to an earlier stage if you want to.

  13. Emily C
    Posted June 27, 2012 at 3:23 pm | Permalink

    The rule of thirds, ofc, and i love odd numbers.

  14. Posted June 27, 2012 at 1:09 pm | Permalink

    Because I’m a mom 24/7 I don’t have enough time to do my stuff. So my tip is don’t wait to go your kids to bed, they never do when you want to work, just be prepared to work with them. Find the way that they could play with you with your project and your materials, and you will have fun, they will have fun, and at the end of the week you will have some project to enjoy. One more thing, teach them what you know, and learn from them too, they will show you totally new view…

  15. Kathrynn
    Posted June 27, 2012 at 11:03 am | Permalink

    I would really love to win this book, thanks for the chance.

  16. Claire C
    Posted June 27, 2012 at 10:43 am | Permalink

    My tip is to “make the way you like”, other people don’t have to live with it like you do.

    Thanks for the chance to win this great book, I hope I can win.

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