A Melted Heart

 

imageI haven’t posted in ages.  Not because I have stopped working, but more because of an excessive amount of ideas all competing with eachother.  This makes me confused and disorganised!

One of the themes I have been working on is hearts and their symbolism for love.  This is in combination with a continuing fascination for erosion, deterioration and  the ensuing potential for rebirth and renewal.

In my last post I blogged about a little stuffed heart I had made which had been covered with holey fabric.  As it was made from tattered denim I felt it evoked the grunge clothing and music vibe in the nineties, as the title of the blog ‘grunge heart’ describes.

It also seemed appropriate as the spirit of grunge is so much about being ravaged, and a defiance that nevertheless survives.

I was really touched when one of my friends on Facebook saw the textile heart and asked if she could have it.  She felt it was the only object she had seen that captured the pain she feels, due to tragic events in her life.

I had made the heart to express my own experiences in love; both sublime and from hell… and the journey it takes me through.  Likewise the heart in this post speaks simply of the same.

The silver fabric was heated until it melted.  The quality of melting, as often used to describe the surrender to love from another eg to melt in someone’s arms, to melt in a loving gaze, and so on…was something I wanted to refer to.

In addition the idea of melting suggests heat and fire which brings to mind more challenging elements, such as incineration, burning and purging by fire, providing apt metaphors for the more painful experiences of heartbreak and torment that the path of love likes to take us through.

Sometimes the pursuit of love feels too perilous.  Much like in the Greek myth, where Icarus in his exhiliration, uses his wax and feather wings to fly him too close to the sun, we can fear that the longing may well lead us to a place too powerful and we too will have our wings melted and will be left to fall to drown!

Oh well, hopefully all of our little melted hearts although threadbare, are still just about beating to love another day or two!!

X

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Grunge Heart

This time I wanted to return to a distressed look and make a heart with a grunge look. Made in tattered denim and repaired with metallic lurex fabric and machine-stitched darning.

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Padded Heart with Crochet

I worked some free form crochet while stitching it to the heart as decoration.  I think that the addition of beads and sequins could be nice too.

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Padded Hearts

Patched, stitched and padded heart.

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I really like the idea of creating hearts that look repaired, mended and healed.  Also the concept of something once broken but now repaired and somehow much stronger for it.

Lourdes x

Denim on Denim – Appliqued Heart and Stitches

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I love the distressed denim look as well as embroidered denim so I thought I would try appliqueing a denim heart.  It’s very soft light denim so it wasn’t too much trouble to stitch through the layers.

 

 

 

 

 

More Tulips

imageI bought these purple tulips mainly to see how they would dry and I wasn’t disappointed in their performance! I like the delicate colour scheme very much and the inclusion of complementary colours, purple and yellow brings a vibrancy.

The papery texture is also pleasing and as the petals have shrunk they have been pulled into tiny ripples.

imageThe veining in the petals also forms interesting patterns.

Infact they are quite similar to little watercolour paintings.  I find that the subtle characteristics are often the most inspiring.

When translating some of these qualities into textile design, I would look at ways in which I could recreate the colour scheme.  I find that dyed silk and merino fibres as used in feltmaking are really good for providing organic and sensitive colour palettes.  Also fabric paint could be used to recreate the colours, particularly silk paints and silk habutai would be an ideal fabric to work with as it is similar in weight and translucency to the tulip petals.

Thanks for visiting!

Lourdes x

Openwork Crochet and Stitching

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These are my most recent experiments where I have been playing around with more ways of combining very loosely-worked crochet with fabrics and stitching.  The work above was also melted with a heat gun to add a distressed quality.

These are samples exploring ways of combining small scraps of fabric with crochet and stitching.  I think that the lines created by the crochet contrasted with the coloured fabric is similar to the pattern and veining found on the wings of insects.  I also think that the use of black thread gives the samples a gothic look.

Thanks so much for visiting! All the best

Lourdes x

Crochet, Tucks, Cords & Thoughts

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As I mentioned a few posts ago, I am at the point in my project where I am having to consider how to bring my visual research and development to some point of culmination.   I have been looking through all of my samples to see what jumps out for more in-depth exploration and potential for some kind of eventual conclusion.

I have also been thinking about concept and how my visual work could suggest ideas, as these I have found are always interwoven with my visual sources of inspiration and chosen route of investigation.  I don’t want to be too definite in describing the ideas I have, as I know how these grow and change, but I would say that I am interested in analysing the relationship we can cultivate with nature through acknowledgment of it’s cycles.

In addition I am also interested in the meaning of beauty and what happens to many of our ideas of what constitutes beauty as we get older.

I began this project with the idea of a secret garden where unexpected treasures can be found and would now extend that to include inner secrets and mysteries particularly as relates to femininity and how they can be revealed.  So, in summary I am curious about nature, cycles, beauty and feminine mysteries and possibly how our awareness of these things could be improved.

Healing is always of fascination to me and I am also curious about how healing can take place.  The challenge is how to incorporate these ideas and questions into the physical act of constructing textiles and clothing.

In terms of textile work I have decided to focus on freeform crochet which is very effective at describing an organic, but also pretty quality.

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When a really large crochet hook is used with a fine thread, a very loose and ‘irregular’ fabric is formed, which is great for distorting as well as creating a very open work material like a net.  It is even reminiscent of the veining on the wing of an insect.

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I love using tiny hand stitching and when combined with fabric scraps and patchwork suggest repair, patience and healing as well as also having an organic feel.  I will also continue to explore ways to create form and texture with bias-stitched tucks which are perfect for creating again very pretty flounces, ripples and ruffles.

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After looking through all my samples so far I have decided to look again at this idea of combining crochet with fabrics and stitching the crochet in places to create a corded lace effect.

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At this stage I am thinking that this could work well as a detail on a corset or bra top.  I have begun by looking at different threads and yarn and how they look when covered with machine zigzag stitch, I need to research ready-made cords too.

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Here, torn satin strips have been handspun and then covered in zigzag stitch and crocheted.  Although an ‘open’ material has been formed, it is rather bulky and stiff.

Crochet and Tatters

Just a short post today.

Here I have included more attempts to combine crochet with fabric scraps.  I like the use of transparent fabrics as a delicate, dreamy quality is created.

imageHere small stitches have been included as well as some machine stitching to hold the fabric patches together.

May your day be filled with happiness!

Lourdes x

Stitches and Raggedy Fabric

 

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I wanted to further explore ways that patches of fabric could be joined to make a background surface for crochet and other forms of embellishment.  In keeping with the spirit of my experiments up to now, I also wanted them to look somewhat bedraggled. The above piece is comprised of small crinkled pieces of fabric held together with lines of machine stitching.

In these samples I wanted to look at the different results created by varying the stitch type and experimenting with textural effects achieved by layering and combining the fabrics.

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Creased fabrics have been stitched down with criss-crossed lines of zigzag stitch.  The stitching forms a prominent feature when used this way.

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Hand stitches secure small crinkled patches of fabric to a foundation fabric.

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Delicate hand stitches are used to very gently hold small scraps of fabric together.  This forms an extremely light and fragile fabric.

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Different fabrics are scrunched together and secured with machine straight stitch.  I think that this is suggestive of  dramatic,  ‘blousey’ blossoms.  This effect would look best in small amounts, perhaps as an edging or trimming.

Hope you all have a great week!

Lourdes x