Friday, April 26, 2019

Time for Hand Stitch

(Above:  In Box CCCXXXIII.  That's Roman numerals for 333!  Unframed: 15"  11".  Layers of polyester stretch velvet on recycled industrial packaging felt with hand embroidery and melting techniques.  Click on any image to enlarge.)

I don't make many of these piece even though they look rather similar to my other work.  The difference is easy.  These pieces are entirely stitched by hand.  My other, similar looking work is free-motion machine stitched.  I could likely finish three, maybe four, machine stitched pieces during  the time put into one made by hand.

 (Above:  In Box XXXCCCIV, detail.)

The other difference is that these hand stitched pieces are quite colorful.  I use three strands of embroidery floss.  All this thread comes from auctions and yard sales.  It isn't organized at all, just stored in a big, plastic container.  The contents sort of look like a rat's nest but it works for me.

 (Above:  In Box CCCXXXIV.  Unframed: 15" x 11".)

I was able to make two of these pieces because an art residency really is "the gift of time".  I've had time to do all sorts of things, especially projects that take hours and hours ... like hand stitching.  I'll frame these two pieces differently than the others ... once I return home.  That will not be until mid-May because I leave here to conduct two, back-to-back workshops in Wisconsin.  I'm excited about that.  It is always a joy to spend time sharing my techniques with other fiber enthusiasts.

(Above:  More than half the altered cigar boxes are finished.)

In the meantime, I'm on the home stretch with the altered cigar boxes.  The ones in the photo above have been finished and waxed.  Because I use matte medium, a fluid acrylic, I have to hand wax all the surfaces.  With heat and pressure, acrylics tend to stick together.  I couldn't risk stacking them this way if the wax hadn't coated the acrylic.  The wax also give each one a lovely, smooth feel.  Waxing all six interior surfaces and all six exterior surfaces gave me a real arm work out but it was worth it.  I have the flatter cigar boxes still in process and will blog them later.


Meanqueen said...

I love your work, thank you. ilona

Shirlee Fassell said...

Love you work ... today I registered for your “Hot” 5 day class at the Hudson River Valley Art Workshop in August! I am so excited!