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.

image

Advertisements

Padded Hearts

Patched, stitched and padded heart.

image

image

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

image

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.

 

 

 

 

 

Wrist Cuff in Autumn Colours

image

This is the third cuff I made for the ‘pay it forward’ challenge I mentioned a few posts ago.  It is based on the colours of autumn which are surrounding us at the moment.

image

My favourite part of this cuff is the red velvet combined with the stitches.  I also like the contrast between the red metallic net and the crochet.

Wrist Cuff In Graded Pinks, Silks and Velvet

image

This is the second of the 5 cuffs I have been working on.

image

It includes pieces of velvet, silk organza, chiffon and net.  It is smaller in size than the others.

Lourdes x

Wrist Cuffs

image

Last year I took part in a Facebook challenge to ‘pay it forward’. Basically the idea is to give gifts to people who agree to also give away gifts and so on, resulting in hopefully a very long continuation of gifts being both given and received.  3 people respond to each person taking part, but due to some misunderstandings, I had 5 responses!  Anyway each person is supposed to send a gift to 3 people which could range from a card or postcard to an object of some kind or well, anything!  I thought it would be nice to send things I made myself and I decided to design some wrist cuffs incorporating the ideas I have been working on recently such as crochet combined with fabric scraps and stitching.  The year has progressed quickly and I have been focusing my attention on getting these completed before the year has passed!

I have completed all 5 cuffs but I haven’t yet finished the fastenings,  I decided on brooches as both fastenings and extra adornment, but I haven’t made them yet so I will include them in a future post.

This was the first cuff I worked, using one of my favourite colour schemes of lilac and greens, it includes a couple of pieces of free-form crochet and small hand stitches.

Lourdes x

Added Stitching

image

More stitches have been added to this pece of patchwork, however I haven’t worked on this for a while as I have been seduced away by other projects!

image

A close-up of stitching worked on a piece of gossamer fabric (once part of a scarf) .  I like the combined effect of the print punctuated by the stitches.

image

Another close-up of black stitches.

Lourdes x

Stitching

I love stitching! There is something so satisfying about adding to the thickness of a material with stitching.  As with many textile crafts, stitching also is rhythmic and that is relaxing and centering.  As far as creative expression goes, stitches are like brush strokes or pencil lines and the personality of the embroiderer shapes the character of the work.  I particularly love hand stitching because it soothes me and makes me slow down and as I centre, I feel inwardly my energy begins to flow. So, for me, hand embroidery is healing and even spiritual.

Hand Stitches on Merino and Silk Fibre

Hand Stitches on Merino and Silk Fibre

I am drawn to hand stitching therapeutically as psychologically there is something stabilising about lots of stitches adding structure and substance to fabric.  In fact the above photo shows fibres entirely held together by stitches and the diaphanous and ethereal quality of the fibres is combined with strength and durability.  In relation to my current project I am finding that lots of small stitching speaks also of mending and darning, again emphasising repair and healing.

Hand Stitching on Felted Fibre, Velvet and Organza

Hand Stitching on Felted Fibre, Velvet and Organza

Here, stitches are added to materials of different thicknesses creating an organic texture reminiscent of tree bark.

Hand Stitching on Organza

Hand Stitching on Organza

Stitches on ‘barely there’ organza.

Sheer Fabrics and Hand Stitching

Sheer Fabrics and Hand Stitching

I continued exploring the combination of stitch and fabric by experimenting with machine stitching to hold scraps of fabric, yarn and thread together.  Again I think that it is interesting to create different thicknesses through layering and the use of different materials. In places the fabric is thick and unyielding, almost like cardboard and then the ‘fabric’ disintegrates to reveal shaky lines of stitching, floating between the edges of the material.

When the machine-stitched fabric is melted with a heat gun,  the look of deterioration is emphasised and also the impression of fragility.

For my next blog I intend to investigate other methods of utilising stitch with recycled fabric and other textile remains.  I may even try to incorporate some crochet as I think it would also be appropriate as a method to create organic and weathered textures.

Lourdes x

My Current Project

 

image

My current project begun last summer with bits and pieces I had collected from the garden and on walks in the countryside.  My collection included pieces of bark, dried leaves and petals which were twisted and contorted into interesting shapes and often exhibited striking colour combinations.

image

One of the shrubs in the front garden was so attacked by insects that the leaves barely held together for the holes left behind! What remained were incredibly delicate lacy leaf-shapes, perforated with irregularly shaped holes.

image

To begin with I was interested in how pieces of bark were layered with scales and their irregular shapes when they have come off the tree trunk. I made some similar shapes from papier mâché which I then used as surfaces to draw patterns and do mark-making on, inspired by the materials collected. Experimenting with different paint effects and methods of distressing, applied to twigs and the papier mâché shapes has inspired me to look at ageing and deterioration again – a theme I often return to.

image

I think that there is something really beautiful about the effects of  deterioration, in nature, on man-made materials and also on textiles.  Methods of repair, such as darning, patching and the tiny stitching used in Japanese boro can add further character.

image

I have always found the use of clothing as a statement about attitude and unorthodox ways of thinking as displayed in youth culture groups, to be very interesting and particularly when clothes and textiles are deliberately damaged to express a spirit of defiance and deviation from convention.  As more environmentally-considerate approaches to lifestyle are adopted as well as in this time of ‘austerity’, economic restraint;  methods of re-using, re-cycling and up-cycling are highly valued.

Textiles displaying meticulous mending skills or being of vintage origin are viewed as treasures which have survived the passing of time.  These are the ideas I am looking at as I endeavour to explore textile possibilities at the moment. There is a romance about something which is worn or weathered and  it becomes the subject of a story that the imagination seeks to define.