This Week’s Work

Tuesday is fast approaching and I’m trying to get the last demonstration pieces sorted out for the art/landscape class.

Taking the idea of the “Portrait” piece – assembled from a range of cutouts of skin-tone printed fabrics, I decided to see what I can create based on this “At The Beach” photo:

At The Beach

One of the “secrets” of successful textile art (whether primarily appliqué or thread  painting or a combination of both) is simplicity. The point isn’t to reproduce the detail of the photo but to abstract/simplify it enough that you have a clear background and a subject. In this case, I’m removing dad and the other people and the land on the opposite side of the lake. I just want the nude child and his tentative steps toward to the water:

At The Beach II

So far, I’ve laid down layers of beach sand, set up the water’s edge, and covered the top of the background with fabric for the water. I’m place holding the child with a paper cutout on which I’ve marked the colour blocks – I think I can create him with bits of five fabrics representing the gradations of colour on his body.

The next step is to do a LOT of thread painting to bring out the texture of the sand and to represent the wind on the water. Then I’ll work on putting the child together – I’ve already added fusible web to the back of my flesh-toned fabrics so once I have set up the template pieces, I’ll cut them out and fuse them together.

Finished dimensions of “At The Beach” will be 12″ x 9″ with a hidden binding and no borders/framing.

Another sample I wanted to create was a “modern art” piece of the kind Melody Johnson does:

Banana Boulevard

Her pieces are often small (12″ x 12″), constructed from geometric shapes cut from either solids or hand painted fabric – pieced and appliquéd, usually with a hidden binding.

I just wanted to illustrate the technique – since I don’t use much in the way of solids I decided to dig out whatever prints/batiks I had in my “strips” box. This is what I came up with:

Dots

I still have to quilt the piece – I’m thinking I’ll quilt this starting with stitching in the ditch, then add more straight lines of stitching to fill the space; I’ll see once I’ve done the stitching along the seam lines.

Shawl Update


I bought this scarf/shawl last year. I loved the woven fabric even though the shawl itself was constructed as a closed loop. I couldn’t figure out how to wear it so I decided to open it up. But the fabric was a bit too short to use as a shawl and too wide to wear as a scarf.

Many of the small hanks of alpaca yarn I picked up while in Maximo’s workshop seemed to be in color blends I could use for a fringe on the shawl to extend the length. Added the fringe yesterday.

Turned out rather well! I had it on last evening. I can see I will now use it.

Holiday Scarf for Hillary

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I’m having Christmas dinner with a long-time friend and I had nothing for her granddaughter. Last year and the year before I sewed gifts for Hillary (now going on twelve). But I didn’t get around to making anything this year.

I was tidying up my knitting basket beside the chair in my bedroom where I watch TV and knit and saw the ball of scarf yarn I bought two years ago to make a scarf for myself. I decided to use it for a simple scarf for Hillary.

So six hours later here is a warm scarf, long enough to be tied outside her jacket, should she wish it. And one more ball of yarn is out of my stash!

Crochet Bedspread

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Can you imagine the work that went into this bedspread. I didn’t make it, my late Aunt Rose did. I used it for years. I still have the pattern from a crafts magazine from the 1960s when she made it. She actually made four of them – I was lucky to get one.

PS: I no longer have it – it was given away in a recent purge of stuff. I still have the one crocheted for my sister Donna – it needs a new home as well.