Monday, April 30, 2012
The purple lines are the horizontal structures that carry the electricity wires at the top of the pylon, which I have simplified out. I am going to stitch them in a paler colour to make them recede. I have also omitted some of the electricity cables as they didn't work.
I also incorporated some small sections of fused Angelina fibre behind the top layer. I wanted to put some of the machine-lace I made above in on the yellow section, top right, to mimic the blue spotty bits in the design but was unsure how I would fray the fabric below so in the end I left it out.
I pinned it down and stitched the lines. I started with the purple lines as they are supposed to be the most distant. It didn't sew as well as I hoped, initally, but got a lot better as I added more rows. I think in my final piece I may have to put more layers of pale organza on the back to make it thicker.
Here it is after washing the dissolvable fabric away completely. I am really pleased with the richness and variations in colour.
The stitching the centre didn't work very well so I will have to try again on this. The wide diagonal lines would look too messy if I tried to satin stitch them so my intention is to bond some strips of dark blue fabric on for them and just stitch up the edges.
The Dandelion stalks took forever and are not that neat - satin-stitch needs a lot of skill and patience.
design the overall effect is darker and I may have lost something in the overall composition as a result. I'm not changing it though!
The Goosegrass was relatively quick and easy by comparison. The stem is multiple rows of Stem stitch and the leaves are just 3 rows of Straight stitch, all sewn with 3 strands of embroidery floss.
Finally, I went to an event at Brockenhurst Village Hall in the New Forest yesterday and saw this hanging (below) that the local quilters had made about the village!
Monday, April 23, 2012
My tutor approved the concept and gave me some things to think about, such as if it is a window hanging, identify the window it will hang in and make it to the right size!
I dampened it all over and then brushed on blues, yellows, orange and red. I had a couple of goes at college but I didn't think they were quite right so I came home a researched dramatic sky images on the internet. The one top right on the left hand piece of paper was the one I chose for inspiration.
I now have the tricky job of marking on the pylon lines and with it the next lot of decisions - do I faithfully reproduce the lines of varying thicknesses or do I simply represent them? Do I simplify it by missing out some of the lines? Do I want to put in the finer wires and other intricate details for interest? Next week's blog will show how I resolve all these points.
As this technique seemed close to what I wanted to do with my pylon piece I chose to give it a go with some of the sheer fabrics I have bought to test it out and use it as one of my samples.
Then I started cutting away layers from the front or back or both. At first I just cut whole areas away around the edge. However, as I got into the middle this was harder to do so I started cutting frayed holes, sometimes cutting colours below away completely.
It is quite painterly so I should be able to get a good sky effect using this technique. I like the dark blue thread I used instead of black.
Things to consider are:
- I need to decide whether I want to treat the sky as a whole image or create the impression of sky almost shape by shape
- The chiffons (orange and dark blue for example) are bolder than the other types of sheer so I need to use them carefully
- I had planned to make the whole piece with dissolvable fabric on the top to add stability and also allow me to draw on the pylon stitch lines. However, dissolvable fabric can leave a residue after you have washed it off which could ruin the lovely frayed edges so I will have to sample that too. I also did not experience any difficulty with machining the sheers on this sample.
I have not progressed any of my hand-stitch piece this week - I have been doing some of the written research that we have to present along-side both final pieces (research on 3 british designer-makers plus narrative on our design and sampling processes/results, final costings, health and safety considerations and final analysis on completion).
Monday, April 16, 2012
|Bought blue linen|
I laid all the cut pieces out with some of the embroidery threads on both backgrounds and took a photo. When I compared them side-by-side I felt that the colour of the painted piece 'lifted' the composition more. The bought linen was also quick thick and I was concerned whether the edge would show through the leaves and stems on top too much.
|Painted blue linen|
I sewed a running stitch line around the edge first to indicate the intended finished size (A3) and then bonded the blue strip on in position with Bondaweb. The ends extend beyond the running stitch line and I oversewed them with a small zig-zag to stop them fraying as I was completing the whole piece. However, I left the vertical edges un-sewed, relying on the Bondaweb to stop it fraying.
Next I traced off the main elements of the design by sticking my artwork on the window and the background on top with masking tape and pencilling in the lines.
I then covered the edges of the white linen with masking tape to stop them fraying and backed the whole piece with a layer of white cotton. This supports the looser weave linen and makes the white area whiter. It is also handy for starting off and finishing threads as you can 'hide' them between the layers.
This is as far as I have got. The Shepherd's Purse on the left is complete. The stems are Stem Stitch, the veins on the leaves are Backstitch. The patterns on the seeds are Straight Stitch and French Knots. The flowers are Bullion Knots outlined in Backstitch.
The Knapweed is complete apart from the pink tufts of petals (see samples above). The stems are in a thicker Stem Stitch and the leaf veins are Backstitch.
The Plantain is complete apart from the halo of white flowers (see samples above). The stems are in Stem Stitch and the leaf veins in Running Stitch.
The Dandelion leaves are finished - next the stems. The elements start getting progressively harder from now on as there is less reliance on filling in bonded shapes and more embroidery of whole plants.
So far I reckon I have spent 35 hours on it, not including the design. I am enjoying the challenge of it but it is physically tiring, on the eyes and the shoulders especially.