Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Module 2, Chapter 12, Stage 2: Creating a Functional, 3 Dimensional Embroidered Item

In preparation for making the final project for this module I began by returning to my monoprinted and dyed fabrics stash from earlier, picking a few to machine stitch. Below is a selection of a few of my new decorated fabrics. This time I was a lot more comfortable playing with both cable stitch and whip stitch. I also enjoyed incorporating both of these approaches to machine stitching on the same piece of fabric. I found that they complement each other rather well. The scrunched up piece of fabric on the top of the image below was especially interesting. I really like the ruched effect whip stitch can create especially when machined fast!

The next step was to create the pattern based on a section of the tortoise shell from one of my research images earlier in the module. This shape was just different enough to lift my bag design from the ordinary and expected. That it waspart of the tortoise whose shell had informed so much of my experimental work simply added to the effect for me.

Now with design and shape in hand it was time to make a pattern from which to cut the pieces of the bag. I enlarged the shape on cartridge paper, then traced it on to architect's paper, before cutting out pattern pieces from pelmet vilene and lining fabric, which was cotton canvas. I also created a window shape of the design to help me audition which sections of the combined fabrics I would use for both front and back panels.

Using Bondaweb I ironed the cotton canvas to the insides of the bag panels.

Now the real fun began! It was time to start playing and experimenting with fabric layouts to create both front and back panels of the bag. But first back to the drawing board! Covering the table with painted and decorated papers I played with some of the design ideas previously explored, only this time bearing in mind the finished object.

I knew I wanted one side to be somehow based upon or derived from the Fibonnaci design, as I had enjoyed the beauty of its geometry when experimenting with it earlier in the module.

First I choose a selection of fabrics to sew together in strips keeping a close eye on their tonality.

Next I cut the combined piece into the Fibonnaci sequence - 1-1-2-3 = 2"-2"-4"-6"

To rejoin the pieces I cut some black fabric following the Fibonnaci sequence again and sewed the strips together into a single piece. Below is the front of the fabric with seams facing outwards.

Much as I like the effect of the outward facing seams which will be ravelled back as far as possible, I also loved the effect of the back of this piece and was rather pleased with the overall effect of the stitched and decorated fabrics. I would never have thought that such a simple approach to fabric play could generate such effective work!

Next step was to take the cardboard cut out of the pattern and audition which section of the pieced fabric I would choose for the front panel. How about this?

Or this?

Back to the drawing board, or rather the cutting and pasting board to play with ideas of placement bearing quality of tonality in mind:

Which led to this: Note that the pattern piece still needs to be cut to size as well as having it's seams shredded.

For the back panel I wanted to work with the quality of value moving from light to dark. I loved the blackwork section of this module and was keen to incorporate elements which harkened back to the days of such glorious embroidery. So I started by cutting and pasting some of my decorated papers on to the mock pattern piece.

Next job was to recreate the above with fabric. Choosing my fabrics carefully I stitched them into strips before cutting them roughly into the panel shape. Bother panels will be completed by adhering the fabric to the other sides of the pelmet vilene once I have fully frayed all the seams. Otherwise there is a chance that the action of pulling at the seams and fraying the fabric will loosen the panel from its supporting vilene.

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