Carla A. White
My art quilting journey began at the first quilt guild meeting I attended in 2008. I fell in love with a gorgeous landscape art quilt, looked at it closely and thought “I can try that. No more matching corners! And I can decorate my house with them.” I overcame my fear of competition the next year and entered two quilts into my local quilt guild show. Lo and behold, I received two ribbons! I have been competing ever since in both the Champlain Valley Quilt Guild of Vermont Show and the Vermont Quilt Festival beginning in 2012. One of my quilts was juried into the Studio Art Quilt Associates Global Exhibition “Aloft” in 2020.
My art quilts reflect my fascination and passion for nature in all its fabulous variety of colors, textures, and dimension. I love to make realistic art quilts of birds, animals, landscapes, flowers, and anything else related to the natural world. I take tons of inspirational photographs on my daily walks in the woods, on my travels, and in my flower gardens during the spring, summer, and autumn. Everything from the clouds in the sky to the bee on a flower I see as a possibility for a new art quilt.
I spend the long, cold, gray winters of Vermont making art quilts from my photographs to remind myself of the warmer and colorful months to come. I trace a simple, small sketch of the photograph of choice and then enlarge it on my computer to the desired size for construction. This is just a general plan which may change as my work progresses.
I create the gorgeous textures and three-dimensionality of the natural world with hand-dyed fabrics, batik and batik-like cotton fabrics, and other fabrics such as silk, tulle, and organza. I often change fabrics and their placement in the design if they don’t seem right for the composition. Double-sided fusible web is applied to the back of the fabrics which are then cut into the leaves, petals, feathers, etc. and ironed to the background. Even more depth is created by quilting with different types of threads; the use of paints, inks, and pencils; embellishments such as crystals, beads, and yarn; and lifting elements above the surface of the quilt with layers of felt. It can take me from 20 to over 120 hours to make a single art quilt depending on its size and complexity.
I love designing my art quilts and choosing the fabrics to be used. Creating a three-dimensional look in a two-dimensional medium is always a fun challenge because it can be achieved in so many ways. My favorite quilts tend to be the ones I spent a lot of time figuring how I could achieve the effects of detail, color, and dimensionality. I hope you will enjoy my art quilts, whether in the gallery, art fair, or at home. Thank you for visiting my web site.