When teaching a workshop, I feel it is important that my demonstrations are also examples of how I work in my studio. So, instead of creating a "sample", I strive to create pieces that I intend to finish and include in my inventory. This small piece was designed in early May during my "Second Life" workshop at the Georgia Agriculture Museum. (Click here for a blog post on that workshop!) I actually designed a couple of pieces at that time. They've come in handy for the hours I spent riding in our van for my art installations and for in front of my laptop streaming Mad Men on Netflix during my art residency in Minnesota.
The tiny grave rubbing fit so sweetly on this embroidered vintage handkerchief even though I knew the fabric was quite light-weight. As expected, my free-motion machine embroidery was confined to the middle ... shrinking that area and leaving the edges rather floppy. Thus, I knew it would need miles of running stitch to flatten out the whole. Unexpectedly, the area around the dove motif puckered up because it wasn't stitched at all. That's when I attached hundreds of seed beads. This was an effect I thought I wanted for another project. Funny, that project didn't need an "encrustation of beads" at all.
In Minnesota I envisioned one of my cemetery images surrounded by hundreds of clear beads ... to fill the indentation in this Victorian photo album. Once home, I selected the image ...
... made it the right size ... and ordered it from Spoonflower. When I got it, I realized that it didn't need beads at all. I quilted the black edges instead. The angel motif puckered up, was filled with batting, and the piece was inserted into the Victorian album. I cut a mat board to cover the edges and glued the cover back onto the album. Finished!
So ... I beaded one project instead of another. Amazingly, they both got finished on the same day.
The reverse was made from other vintage household linens.