Saturday, August 31, 2013

A Miniature Experiment

Earlier this week, I found some wonderful fabric in my stash that I used as leaves-against-sky in this miniature:

"Home Sweet Home" (c) 2013

It's fabric I won several years ago now when "3 Creative Studios" (Sue Bleiweiss. Terri Stegmiller and Vicki Welsh) were in operation.  It was a fabric/embellishment pack, hand-dyed -- I think -- by Terri -- and up till recently, I hadn't done much with it.  Waiting for the right projects to come along, eh?

Today, I used some more of this fabric for another piece, but something quite different.  I had this photo I wanted to translate into a miniature:

I thought about how it would look if I could just place the branches and berries (Mountain Ash, also known as Rowan) against that "leafy sky" fabric.  I began by tracing the outlines of branches, leaves and berries onto plain paper, and copying this out onto water-soluble paper (Paper Solvy by Sulky):

Then I free-motion stitched over my drawing, using threads that would tone in -- green for the leaves, red-orange for the berries, green-brown for the branches.  When finished, I trimmed away the excess paper:

I trimmed the excess batting and backing, and washed the piece gently in cool water (per the manufacturer's instructions.)  I discovered it was tough to get the last of the paper residue out of the areas where the stitching was tiniest.  I used a soft face brush to gently work at these areas, with only partial success.  I decided to go with it anyway:

I ironed the piece, front and back, and then went back into it with fabric paint, water colour pencil (dark brown) and Tsukineko ink to highlight the berries, branches and leaves.

Matted for framing, I call this one "Bounty":

"Bounty" (c) 2013

You knew I'd find a home for that red mat, didn't you?  ;-)

While waiting for the piece to dry, I finished this one:

"Bovine Bliss" (c) 2013
All in all, this makes 5 new pieces finished, and one almost there -- hand stitching started yesterday and should be finished later today.  This meets my goal for pieces to take to show the owner of Different Strokes Gallery (Olds, Alberta) on Wednesday...and clears the way for me to get some knitting done between now and then.

Once I get back from Calgary, it'll be time to finish my piece for the 15 x 15 "Time" challenge, and to make even more miniatures for "Culture Days" at the gallery in Stettler at month end.

Something tells me that September is going to disappear as quickly as did August...

Now whats on (or off) your design wall today?  I'm hoping I can still link up with Nina Marie and the gang for Off the Wall Friday... Grab a cuppa and let's go see who's there!


Sha said...

I really like the mountain ash piece and its encouraging to see the easy flow from inspiration - concrete idea- action and presto - your results - you definitely have the tap on your creative pipeline wide open - I am sure the owner of the gallery will be thrilled to see your offerings - locals will love the portrayal for the familiar and visitors can will love this bit of life on the prairies to take home.

Norma Schlager said...

Thanks for sharing your progress and process. You ended up with a great little quilt and the red matting is the icing on the cake.

elle said...

You have definitely nailed that berry one. Fantastic!