Tuesday, February 25, 2014

What's in the box?

I recently posted that I'd made a felted cube (for want of a better description) with my round robin donations and I thought you might wonder what was going inside.
Well, as if I didn't have enough course work to occupy me, I signed up recently for an online felted surface design course with Fiona Duthie.  One look at her website and you'll see why.  I am now into week 4 of 6 weeks and loving it, can't recommend it enough.  I've also been able to 'meet' and chat with other felt mad people around the globe while we felt, not to mention receive lots of online advice from Fiona.

Anyway, enough of the sales pitch.  Back to the box - in testing out all the ideas given my Fiona, I've generated 'just a few' dozen samples which happen to be about 8" square and fit beautifully inside my cube, ideal!

And what am I working on?  Well, here's a few photos of my samples:

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Acts of destruction (aka chapter 4)

This chapter involves making samples exploring different ways of making holes in fabric / materials to create both positive and negative shapes.
I remembered doing similar lace explorations in the certificate course and so tried to move on and try other techniques. Some of these are shown below.
Positive shapes
4.1 : motif shape stitched with outline and skeleton on organza then cut out with soldering iron
4.2 : motif shape outline stitched, completely cut away then stitched across open space
4.3 : randomly stitched spiral pattern then shape defined by melted areas
Negative shapes
4.4 : Pulled threads in background to reveal shape in voided scrim
4.5 : holes made with soldering iron in polyester organza to reveal motif
I went on to slashing areas of suitable fabrics to create texture and reveal layers

4.6 : 2 layers dyed hession with grid pattern stitched then slashed diagonally in each square
4.7: 4 layers of cotton voile on gold silk dupion, random spiral stitching, cut holes, distressed edges
4.8 : detail of above showing dupion layer underneath

Saturday, February 15, 2014

round robin

Last year I took part in an ATASDA initiated round robin with 5 other members living in NSW.  We each started a project to our own theme, colours and design to pass onto the other members of the group each month - the only limitation was that each piece would be an 8" x 8" square.
I chose a theme of swirls and circles which I felt would be broad enough to interest others, asking them to stick to autumn colours, supplied them with some embellishing fibres and fabrics if they wished and a square of red merino felt on which to work.

In September my folder of goodies came back to me and I opened it to find the following lovely squares:

Claire Brach

Robyn McGrath

Sandra Shaw

Lynne Britton

Kathy Wood
 I had originally planned to use the panels in a wearable of some kind but with a need to find a receptacle in which to keep some felted samples (more of those later) I decided to make a box cube.
Each panel was backed with dyed homespun cotton and a square piece of mounting board inserted.  With a 6th panel required for the base I used my own nunofelt and added some feet.

The finished articles are to be displayed at the next ATASDA meeting on 1 March but for my fellow members who can't make it, here is how I used your lovely pieces:
I stitched a machined cord along each edge of the box to join the panels, added plaited braiding for the hinge, and simple tassels for opening.

the braiding is actually dark red too

So thanks ladies and I look forward to seeing the other creations soon!

Thursday, February 6, 2014

The year of the Horse

As a little break from the coursework I had a few pieces to make for the Gallery to celebrate the new Chinese year of the Horse.  Inspiration for these bags came from the Uffington Horse in Berkshire, UK.

It's a very large image formed from white chalk in deep trenches on the hillside and I wanted to convey the abstract form and the furrows evident in the landscape.

The main felt was humbug blueface leicester (BFL) overdyed and the image in white was prefelted BFL inlaid into the background. The felt was quite thick so the echo stitching I did with couched perle made it very textural which I liked.  The bag is about 16" by 11", with feet, zipped top inset and wool shoulder straps.

A couple of smaller sling bags used the same felt and copied the image in layered outlines.