Crafts are called applied arts because the crafter is using art elements such as color, shape, line, form, etc, to create an object that has practical use. Art
principles are also used in crafting, such as balance, harmony, variety, unity, etc. Let me show you how this all works in Quilting, which is an applied art. Art Elements: Form could be the shape of the quilt as well as the shape of the blocks or a quilt\’s pictural parts such as flowers or appliques. Line is the physical lines visable in the quilt\’s design. Shape is also part of the visable design. One might see the actual shape of the individual pieces used in a traditional quilt block, or stand back and see the graphic shapes created by the different blocks all together. Color is important because it is chosen by the crafter and helps to set the mood of the finished project. Texture is important as a visual element because, even though most quilters use cottons which have a smooth physical texture, the quilting, which is the actual process of sandwiching the top to the batting and backing, provides ample texture to the finished piece. Texture can also apply to fabric that is folded, or stuffed. Space applies primarily to how the blocks and/or pictural parts are positioned on the quilt.
Are there strips of different fabrics placed in between the blocks, called sashing, or lots of background fabrics showing in an appliqued piece? Value is, of course, the amount of lights, mediums and darks used in the design. Art Principles: Emphasis is the first thing you see when you look at a quilt. It could be the theme of the design, such as houses, or flowers, or even the repeated parts like a color or fabric used over and over. Balance is the visual symmetry, not necessarily the physical symmetry of the quilt. Harmony is how well the different bits work together on the finished piece. Variety could be the different types of fabrics used such as printed and solid. It even applies to the blocks and borders (the outer bands that encircle the center, think picture frame). Do the different parts hold your interest? Movement, like shape applies to how your eye moves over the quilt. Do you see just the center? Do the fabrics make you look from the border to the inside? Rhythm often refers to repeated elements within the design. Proportion is how well each section relates the each other. Some quilters will keep adding borders, or make really large borders in order to make the quilt reach a certain size.
That tends to throw the proportion way off. I usually suggest not making the borders exceed the size of the individual blocks. If the blocks are 6. 5 inches, for example, the individual borders (a quilt can have multiple borders) should not exceed 6. 5 inches. Unity refers to how all the visual parts go together to make the finished piece. Do the colors make sense? Does your eye move across the quilt? Since I am a traditional quilter, I am able to discus briefly how these parts all work together. Art quilters use fabric in the same way painters use paints. Even though an art quilt may be displayed rather than placed on a bed, it is still constructed in much the same way as a traditional quilt, even the art quilts that use non-traditional \”fabrics\” such as plastic, tyvek, leather, etc. I\’ve been pondering this question recently as I\’m now into my second year of SAHM\’hood. I am loving my day to day life, which is full of DD and writing and crafts, and housekeeping, of course. I have been knitting, sewing up a storm (quilts, diaper covers, clothes, toys. ), beading, making soap and bath bombs. In the past, I have done pottery as well, which I also love. In my family crafting is seen as a grand waste of time, something not within our \’culture. \’ But now I am seeing my 9 year old cousin get into sewing and knitting and I\’m encouraging her.
For me, crafting is therapeutic. I find that as I am sitting down as my sewing machine, my breathing slows, becomes deeper and more restful. I sift through tiny beads and my focus changes from the trouble-filled life I usually live to a minute, colourful world full of nuggets of prettiness. When I made bath bombs, I brought aroma, sensation into my house (and it was overpowering! ). A quilt, to me, is as big a sign of love as I can produce, and it makes me so happy when my dh and I and dd pull it up around us to keep warm. I love to create things out of raw materials because it is more meaningful to me than going out and buying something. I am thrilled that my dd uses only my homemade diapers and diaper covers. Also, I love knowing how to make things \’from scratch,\’ as in days of old. I would like to believe that I could live very happily if my farm had no electricity or running water, that I would be able to get by sewing all of my own clothes, making my own bedding, and such. In that same vein, I do all of my cooking from natural ingredients and don\’t buy very much packaged stuff. So why do you love crafting?