Teens, Frustrations, and Humor

These quilts span approximately a decade from the mid-1990s to early 2000s. More importantly, they are expressions about parenting, work frustrations, and humor to relieve day to day stresses.  During this time, I moved from breaking rectangular frames to experimenting with surface embellishments, paints, and transfers of Photoshop-manipulated images. One quilt even has extreme “trapunto,” making it almost sculptural.

See the text captions and more information below the image gallery to learn more about each piece. CLICK any image for a larger view and to open a slideshow style display.

All images and designs are ©Copyright by Candace Hackett Shively. All rights reserved.


The Bitch (apologies to those who are offended by the language) is all about the experience of being the mother of a sixteen to eighteen year old male and how it changes you into something you did not expect or want to be. If you can, look carefully for the secondary people found in threads and quilting.

The Risktakers splashes the self-assured immortality of teens as they swing and drop blindly from high in a tree into a deep ore pit filled with water. The risk is both enticing and beautiful as it grabs and hurls them into danger.

Botanical Canopy is my first full sized experiment incorporating both fabric paints and thread painting. The sheer size of the piece — and its presence in the room — tend to hide the many details you can find close up. Thanks to a friend and mentor, Selby Doughty, for her gift of fabric paints that sparked this new adventure.

Opening Day on the Yellow Breeches is all about the opening of trout season on a wildly popular stretch of well-stocked trout stream in Pennsylvania. What better way to poke fun at the people lined up shoulder to shoulder than to take the trout’s point of view and exaggerate the day through images?  This was the first time I experimented extensively with digital art/images and incorporating them into a quilt.

Much darker in view is Tunnel Vision, an expression of frustration with a difficult boss who had only one view. The “vision” is both the boss’s inflexible view and the visions of the person trapped inside its dark walls. The cracks of reverse applique, reflective and ghostly fabric paints, and heavily stuffed trapunto figure make this quilt more of a sculpture. Zoom in to see details of the many images (visions) trapped in the tunnel.

For a bright bit of humor, picture a heap of flip flops, dozens of colors and patterns of pure fun. FlipFlop Salute recognizes the accomplishments of a very serious student who just happened to LOVE wearing flop flops. Her ultimate accomplishment was giving her class salutatorian address while wearing a pair. This quilt salutes her.


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