Friday, May 25, 2007

Elements of Architecture XXXVII

I know! I know! I should be working on the pieces for my solo exhibition....but....I started the hand stitching on Elements of Architecture XXXVII at the Artisan Center in Walterboro last weekend. Embroidery is easy to demonstrate, and I generally finish things I start. So, I finished it.

How are these pieces created? The design is painted on regular typing paper using heat-activated paints. I have some of these made by Ranger but I also mixed up my own from ingredients purchased at PRO-CHEMICAL. (They call them "disperse dyes".) Once the paint is dry, I place the painting, face down, on 100% polyester and iron using a very, very hot iron. There is a chemical reaction between the dried paint and the polyester. The result is a bright design...ready to be hand stitched.

I stitch using ANYTHING and EVERYTHING...but mostly big, bulky yarns. There's a lot of couching and straight stitches. I use bold colors. Once the design is filled in, I put a sheer, nylon scarf over the entire area. (Purchased from This allows me to free motion into my hand stitches without the foot becoming tangled. Also, I put a layer of craft felt underneath. The last thing I do is to free motion zig-zag the edge. I use a candle to "burn" a clean edge.

This last image is of In Pieces VI. It is the collage I made with the painted typing paper after I transferred the image.

I will be working on others from this series (despite the need to work toward the solo exhibition which will feature machine embroideries). We are scheduled to visit my great aunt this weekend. She lives in West Virginia. We'll be taking her to the graveyard to put flowers out for Memorial Day. I'll be hand stitching in the rental the way, Firestone accepted responsibility for the damage done to the Scion. They are paying for an entirely new engine and picking up the rental car tab. Thank goodness!


Anna Nowicki said...

THIS IS JUST WOW - I don't have words to describe!! IT IS BRILLIANT - I love all your work

Alis said...

I love this piece it is so gorgeous.
Thank you for sharing your process with us. It is so interesting to see how other people work.

arlee said...

HOLEY MOLEY this is STUNNING !!!!!!!!! The amount of time, patience and talent is awe-inspiring!

wanda art. said...

your art. work is beautiful ,