Susan Slesinger – Series #3 – Complementary

Cattails III

Cattails III was based on the same inspirational photo as the previous two pieces in the series. As this challenge was to create a piece using complementary colors, I reimagined the scene using blue and orange, as though the scene occurred on a bright autumn day.

The sky was hand painted using Pebeo Setacolor transparent paints, and then helioprinted with cattail and tree trunk shapes which were later outlined in heavy thread. The cattail bodies were made from polyester batting saturated with Jacquard Dynaflow paints. The ground, lake and stems were created from commercial cotton batiks, and the spikes were created with couching.

Techniques: fabric painting, appli-piecing, raw edge fusible and Nina-fused machine applique, machine couching, machine quilting

Materials: Hand painted cotton fabric, Pebeo Setacolor paints, Jacquard Dynaflow,commercial cotton batik fabrics, Quilter’s Dream cotton batting, polyester batting, linen yarn, Wonderfil cotton, polyester and rayon threads including invisibility 100wt polyester, Spaghetti 12 wt cotton thread, Glamore 12 wt. rayon and metallic thread, and Ellana wool/acrylic thread.

Close up view:


Other pieces in the series:


  1. Well done love these colours. Cheers

  2. Three very different takes on your cat-tails which make a great series.

  3. joanbrailsford

    Lovely rich colours in this piece really give the feel of a bright sunny day, and round off your series very well. I like the way that your hand painted fabric has turned out, and this contrast well with the commercial fabrics you have used. An interesting series

  4. Susan this is a really beautiful series ! your theme suited very well for it and my favourite is the abstract one !
    I like how you painted the sky with setacolour paint.

  5. Very creative. I really like this. Each piece stands alone and they do well in a series.

  6. Your painted sky is really good. Using painted batting for the cattails is very well chosen. Must be even better in real. A very good series.

  7. A perfect conclusion to your series. I love the choice of colors and the composition. Well done.

  8. Lovely combination in handpainted and commercial fabrics. Gives strength to this piece and is a nice third piece in your series. Well done.

  9. studiociboulette

    Beautiful work. The series looks fantastic….

  10. I like how you made the cattails from saturated batting. It gives it a little 3D effect.
    Beautiful colours and sky painting. This one complements your series very nicely.

  11. Such warm colors, It feels like a sunny summer day. A lovely conclusion to your series.
    Well done Susan!

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