Sunday, February 19, 2012
So I started with the background. I wanted a stylised cloud effect so I stippled acrylic paint on over a paper template. When it was dry and I considered it in the daylight I didn't like the colour very much so I brushed over it with blue Brusho. I couldn't risk adding any more acrylic else it might be too thick and stiff to sew into. Once it was dry I sewed a satin stitch band across for the wire that the birds will sit on using my machine.
I then took my paper design and cut out the bird shapes to use as a pattern to cut the fabric.
Next I moved onto the padded bird. I cut the paper shape out of felt first and bonded it to the fabric with Bondaweb. I could then cut out the fabric leaving a margin all the way round to turn it under. In a library book I discovered that you can add extra layers of felt in smaller versions of the shape to the centre to make it more domed so I did this to see what the effect would be. I added a medium sized and small sized felt shape just to the body part, which was tacked down to the background before tacking on the padded bird. Then I hand-stitched the bird down using ladder stitch. The points of the beak and tail are extremely difficult to turn under and do neatly so I ended up trimming the excess off and relying on the fact that the Bondaweb would stop it fraying. Then I added its legs using a couple of straight stitches in embroidery floss before selecting a bright orange cord to couch down all the way around. The ends of the cord have to be threaded through to the back and sewn down at the start and end, which I did in the tail so that it wouldn't show. Finally I added a flower sequin and black bead for the eye to echo the print on the fabric.
Next I moved onto the bird with the turned under edge on the right. I cut out lightweight interfacing using the paper pattern and bonded it to the fabric with Bondaweb. In order to ensure I got the pattern running at the right angle I used a light box to line it up! I could then cut out the fabric with a margin all the way around. I snipped the edge so that I could turn the fabric in and tacked it first before sewing it down on the background. I struggled with the points again and in the end cut off the margin on the tail because it got too messy. I added legs as before and then used orange beads to accent the wing, beak and eye.
Finally I tackled the decorated edge bird. I backed it with interfacing as before but didn't leave any margin for turning as I could rely on the Bondaweb to stop it fraying. The print suggested a chain stitch so I went for that in a rather slippery orange cord. This bird was probably the easiest to do or maybe I had got my eye in by now. I finished it with a felt and bead eye.
Tuesday, February 14, 2012
Then we moved on to using a diffuser and thin paint to give an effect like airbrushing, holding a piece of ripped paper in front of the fabric to act as a mask so that some parts stayed white.
We then put another sheet of glass in top and pressed hard and twisted the glass to get the paint to mix at the edges.
The paint dries quite quickly but it can be easily scrubbed off the glass to do further prints.
Then you stuff selected blobs from the back with wadding.
Another learning point is not to use this kind of furnishing fabric as a backing fabric again as it seemed very hard to sew using free-machining - the needle seemed to get caught in the jacquard pattern.
The techniques used are (clockwise from top left):
- Furrowing (see post from Week 13)
- Stuffed pyramid
- Fabric strips folded alternately like a paper jack-in-a-box spring
- Frayed edge strips gathered and sewn in rows
- Selvedge strip gathered to form a rose
- Random tucks sewn horizontally and vertically
- Stuffed sausage shape decorated with a strip of gathered frayed fabric
- Frayed strip gathered to form a rose
- Circle gathered round a piece of card and topped with another one and a frayed gathered strip
- Various circles gathered and stuffed, the large one quilted through in places
- Thin strips pulled through a square of Binca fabric (in centre of sausage circle)
- Thick wool wrapped in calico
- Strips of folded fabric woven
- Raw edge circles gathered and pulled up, large one round card and small one stuffed
- Fabric gathered by hand in both directions, ruched up and sewn down round the edge only
- Fabric gathered round chick peas
- 2 circles gathered up round card, one with snipped edge and one with turned edge
- Various fabric 'nipples' made by sewing a running stitch in a spiral and pulling up
- Evenly spaced tucks pressed and then sewn across at right-angles in alternate directions
Today is it my daughter's 16th birthday so I wanted to make her a special card. I chose co-ordinating papers and decorated them in various ways, dragging the edges across a black ink pad to give a vintage look. I was very pleased to find a sheet of paper featuring a rabbit that looks similar to hers, except for the colour!
I also made a Valentine's Day card for my husband using a square of red heart plastic bag behind a silver Angelina fibre heart, topped off with a red heart cut from a Quality Street wrapper! The hearts are suspended across the window on very thin wire wrapped round tiny red brads. It looked really good for not much effort and lots of recycling!
Sunday, February 5, 2012
The voile was very difficult to sew without puckering as it is so thin.
I decided to pull the ends through to the front and make a feature of them by knotting with small tufts of silk. I pulled all the stitching ends through to the back and knotted them off.
Finally I layered on another black square and 2 pink voile oblongs and stitched them on top. I had to tack these shapes first as I didn't want to use Bondaweb in case it showed through.
I edged the piece with a machine pattern to finish it off. I'm not sure I quite get the point of this type of quilting - perhaps it would look better if the trapped shapes were in a thicker material.
We then cut in between the lines of stitching, making sure not to cut the base fabric. You need good small sharp scissors to do this.
At home I have been working on my needle-point and have now finished it. I am very pleased with all the patterns.
Last week I spent a day making a quilted case for a Kindle as a present. I wanted to use some special fabric for the lining (top right in the photo) so I spent a while looking through my stash for matching fabrics.
To secure the squares I stitched a horizontal line across the middle of them all and then stitched across the ends of the yarns to hold them in place too.
I sewed vertical straight stitch lines in a dark thread first. Then I sewed decorative horizontal lines in browns, blues and metallic threads, varying it between parallel straight stitch, zig-zag and satin stitch bands.
I then pinned on the lining, cut round the pattern, sewed round the edge, graded the seams and turned it through.
The pattern recommended using velcro for the fastening but my overlap wasn't very big so I opted for a glass bead and a loop of ribbon.
I was very pleased with the result and there isn't another like it anywhere!
Inspired by a book on 'Inchies' - 1 inch squares of textile art I cut out 4 squares of heavy interfacing and covered with different fabrics using Bondaweb. The top square is pleated silk with a piece of twig and tiny silk cross stitches; next a purchased metal charm tied with hairy wool; next a piece of satin half covered with Bondaweb and scraps of thread placed on and ironed over; at the bottom the background fabric is half covered with Bondaweb and a scrap of frayed organza ironed on. A further triangle was applied and then topped off with a flower-shaped crystal.
I chose a natural Kraft card blank and cut out a rectangle of furnishing fabric on which to mount the squares. I attached the fabric rectangle and the squares with glue-dots for a mess-free finish. I will definitely give inchies another go.