Obliterated cloth – another way to torture fabric

Threads of Identity 3 - initial stages
Threads of Identity 3 - initial stages

 

This is the beginning of the third piece in this sequence.  Number two is still under construction with not that much to say about it.  But number three, here was started at the weekend when I really wanted to do some foot -down machine quilting.  The need to thunder away at a piece sometimes does come over me and these small quilts are ideal for working through the creative urge.  This one has a small piece of an early Laura Ashley print at the top.

Detail of Threads of Identity 3 - the Laura Ashley fabric
Detail of Threads of Identity 3 - the Laura Ashley fabric

 

The other thing that I wanted to do was to quilt and then paint over it.  I am not sure why, but I have been wanting to do this obliteration of the piece for a while, and the very pale neutrals of this piece seemed to be an ideal base for a painted over piece.  I used gesso on a brayer.  Although it takes some nerve to paint over a lovingly stitched piece, it does bring up the quilting really well.

 

hreads of Identity 3 - detail of quilting
hreads of Identity 3 - detail of quilting

 

The fabric here is an exquisite embroidered linen which is another remnant passed onto me by my mother.  It seemed like sacrilege to blank it out, but I think it really does highlight the quilting.  Here’s a back view of the quilting:

 

Threads of Identity 3 - reverse
Threads of Identity 3 - reverse

I think that one of the reasons that I wanted to go for this blanked-out, bleached out approach is that I went on a workshop last year with The Textile Study Group http://www.textilestudygroup.co.uk/members.html.  This is a long-standing and very accomplished textile group of impressive stitchers, but I was also fascinated by the way that a group that had been together for a long time had developed something of a house-style.  My work has been big and colourful and highly decorative for a long time, and a lot of theirs was stripped back and minimal.  Opposites attract and I found myself really wishing that I could produce something similar.  The workshop  was run by Cas Holmes who works with a lot of recycled materials, again in quite a minimal and bleached out way:

 

Cas Holmes - with permission of the artist
Cas Holmes - with permission of the artist

 

Here’s another:

Cas Holmes - with permission of the artist
Cas Holmes - with permission of the artist

 

Her website is http://www.casholmes.textilearts.net.  The workshop was great.  Full of very friendly and supportive women who were welcoming to the strangers who joined them.  They were great fun to be with and we had a lovely time with them.

Anyway, the next stage is to do some embellishment over the white-d out stitching.

 

 

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2 thoughts on “Obliterated cloth – another way to torture fabric

  1. Thanks for this. I do fairly regularly stitch and then rub over with a markal paintstick and that doesn’t seem at all scary. But the gesso is a bit more extreme!

    BTW I have put up a link to your beautiful blog with all its brilliant links. Ann

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