Very Small Pieces, 5

August 14th, 2021

In my previous post I referred to how Pinterest images often speak to me about interpretations in stitch even though they may not be textiles or stitch at all. A while ago I noticed this image of a work by Jeffrey Allen Price of NY, USA, and pinned it to my ‘Grids!’ Pinterest board:

Circles within squares, by artist Jeffrey Allan Price, dimensions and date uncertain, but pre 2013.

I followed the link to the person who pinned it in 2013, and then looked at the artist’s website. My computer wouldn’t open some of the sections, but in one of the thumbnail captions I noticed the word ‘rustagrams’ which I think is a pretty neat term for rusted fabric, a popular technique in textile art at the moment.

Now the circle within a square is one of those compositions as old as Time itself, widely used by quilt makers, fibre and textile artists and others working in all kinds of media. I myself used it in this diptych:

“Sweat of The Sun; Tears Of The Moon” 2018, 125cm x 60cm

Anyway, though I initially pinned Allen’s image because I love grid layouts, and though I’m sure the surface markings are hand painted, what that work now says to me is “sheers + stitch embellishment”, which’s what I am going to explore in my next exploration. Considering the small size, I’ll do a trial of maybe 9 x 1″ squares of silk and maybe other organzas (nylon lift fairly soon after fusing, but are fine if they’re stitched down – see the final pic in the last post.) Under each of those will be a gold lame circle. I think it will work well, but if it’s just too fiddly I’ll do 4 x 1.5in squares. The stitch embellishment will depend partly on the background I put those pieces onto, and I need a change from black.

Very Small Pieces, 4

August 14th, 2021

I’m continuing on with 3.25 sample pieces laced over foam core. These three are from the past few days and have been or will be posted on the SAQA 100 Days Reboot Challenge site – which is a private group so I’m just showing some of my daily posts here.

Pewter leather, overstitched with high sheen polyester thread.
Bronze leather rings with metallic gold stitch (hard to photograph clearly)
Gold lame beneath fused sheer, polyester and metallic stitch. (hard to photograph)

I have plans to frame or present them (or at least the best of them) on some kind of form in some way but haven’t decided exactly on that yet.

This series is really one of exploration: things I have noticed in Pinterest and other sources often strike me as if they would make interesting textures interpreted in various materials plus stitch. Each of these is telling me a lot, about how materials behave when fused, for example, and how some might be scaled up in a larger work, or in a large work would be as great small detail. I know some of them will appear in some way as techniques in my next larger pieces of work

Very Small Pieces, 3

August 12th, 2021

On Pinterest I found a lovely way to present lots of little snippets of textile fibre and even painted art in a Pinterest image by UK artist Mary Morris, and there are more images of this work here It’s a fabulous work, so I saved the image, and have been thinking about it for many months. It bubbled to the top of my mind during the The Stitch Club workshop by Gwen Hedley, and it struck me that this would be a good time to try to make a small shadow box style presentation for the paint+stitch work I did. These boxes are about 2″ square, and I got far enough with the sample to know it could work for me, too.

Construction stages for a shadow box style presentation of fibre and stitch segments.

I did another one for one of the small works/samples I’m doing in the SAQA 100 Days Reboot challenge I’m doing. This time the boxes are a bit smaller ­čÖé so that four fit in the allotted 3.25″ sq space. I stiffened the walls a bit by painting them with gold+medium mix – but when dried the walls certainly are stiffer, though the gold was too dilute for any great effect:

The boxes are made from the same lightweight canvas, but making this sample showed me:

  • The boxes are just too small – as the wobbly walls between corners are quite pronounced on such a small thing
  • I think some stitching in the construction is needed to draw the sides of contiguous boxes closer together
  • For flat things inside, the height of the box walls needs to be a bit lower still
  • but it would be fine for stuffed, slightly puffy forms inside each box
  • The gold’s too dilute – there’s no dramatic effect.
  • Spray painting with gold or other colour after construction’s complete will be better
  • This is definitely worth tweaking and doing again.

Very Small Pieces, 2

August 12th, 2021

I’m continuing to make small samples in the SAQA 100 Days Reboot Challenge, and at the moment I’m exploring some stitch textures and presenting them as 3.25inch squares mounted on recycled foam core, as per the plan I outlined just before it started.

The challenge is a private group on Facebook, but from time to time I’m posting some of the images here. So far so good. On Day 9, Tuesday of this week, I posted this gold dot on black patches with orange neon stitching:

Fused black/gold pin dot shapes with neon orange stitchery.

This next one I made and posted on Day 10, yesterday. I also have several others waiting in the wings, so fingers crossed I can keep up the momentum and remain a few ahead, not that there’s any stress over it as I was going to be exploring anyway – but it would be nice to get to the end in early November having achieved the 100 posts on time.

Fused fabrics, glittery on top of the sheer, metallic hand stitch.

I’m particularly pleased with this one, because before I worked out what stitching to add to the fused shapes, it looked rather boring. There’s a lot of exciting potential, both at this delicate scale and at something larger.

Talking of ‘larger’ my floor frame is nearing completion, but needing another adjustment, which probably won’t happen until next week…. but that’s OK, because I’m doing a lot of auditioning while thinking about which larger project to work on first.

Sheer Overlays+Stitch

August 4th, 2021

In my Pinterest wanderings I came across a print “Water Dreaming” by Australian Aboriginal artist, Rosie Nangala Flemming. If you click that link, you’ll understand why it spoke to me of hand stitched texture. I filed the image in my contemporary hand stitch board, adding a note “lines = stitches!” To me, lines have always meant potential for stitches or seams.

I backed some nylon organza with Misty Fuse, cut some shapes and ironed them onto fabric. The big bold stitches look easy-peasy, almost inept, even careless perhaps. But actually, it took several unpickings to figure out where my stitches should go.

3.25″ x 3/25″ Fused nylon organza on cream cotton; stitched with neon orange thread.

That sample has suggested some other possibilities; so the next is with red leather circles + neon green stitch. The black machine stitch line outlining the 3.25″ square of foam core mount will be removed, of course, once it is in place.

Red leather circles with neon green hand stitch.

Triangles, squares, ovals, weird organic shapes – there’s a lot of potential here.

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