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Paint and Stitch Art Quilting

Expanding Your Tools for Creating

paint and stitch

A great way to enhance your art quilting is to use paint in addition to your applique and piecing.  Why paint?  It’s fun and relaxing.

There are several ways you can use paint on a quilt.  Sometimes I screen print leaves or textural designs as in the quilt below.

paint and stitch

This was basically a strata quilt with a few slightly curvy skinny lines spliced into it running horizontally.  I screen printed the metallic gold swath of tiny squares across the quilt to give it a little more movement. I appliqued some batik leaves onto it and satin stitched around them.  Adding the screen printed leaves with metallic paint took it to a whole new level, especially when using metallic paint.  I like Profab Pearlescent paints from Pro Chemical & Dye for screen printing.  You can find great screen printing materials on Etsy or from Lyric Kinard at

paint and stitch art quilts

Another way I like to paint on quilts is to make a stencil and draw the design on my quilt.  I drew this design and scanned it into my Cricut cutter to cut the stencil with Evolon paper.  I used a very fine Micron pen to draw around the stencil.

paint and stitch

I stitched the design onto the quilt by machine then painted within the stitched lines.

paint and stitch

For this kind of painting I use Lumiere by Jacquard.  It’s thin and glides onto the fabric.  Their metallic paints are truly beautiful.

I used these paints for my Mystical Twilight Quilt  The trees and moon were appliqued onto a beautiful hand dye from Lisa Reber of

paint and stitch art quilting

I also used them for the Willow quilt.  For the trunk I mixed silver and gold.  For the leaves I mixed the copper and white, all metallic.  This background is a the Southwest gradient from

paint and stitch

I love to piece and applique but I also love to paint.  It just depends on what I’m in the mood to do.  I hope this gave you some ideas for some new ways to create your next quilt.

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  1. Elizabeth O'Donnell says:

    These quilts are beautiful! Thank you for sharing your resources!

  2. Cherry says:

    Love your ideas and thank you for sharing. I have just begun to use paints and it is inspirational to see what others are doing. Much appreciated.

    1. Rachel says:

      It opens up a whole new world, doesn’t it? Thank you!

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