Friday, October 9, 2009

Playing With Fabric Paper!

I've been playing with fabric paper again! This is a photo of my first batch that I colored yesterday using spray inks. I belong to the Mixed Media Art Friends Yahoo Group, hosted by Belinda Spiwak. We are doing a book study on Kelli Perkins' book, Stitch Alchemy. This is an awesome book for techniques to use on your base fabric paper. I first learned about how to make fabric paper through the artist Beryl Taylor. Kelli takes the basics and goes a step further, adding different techniques and embellishments. I've made three sample sheets so far. Here is what the base looks like after it has dried and before you start coloring or embellishing:

It's just plain, cheap muslin with snippets of wrapping paper, tissue paper, wallpaper border, scrapbook paper glued down (tons of a Sobo glue/water mixture to really saturate the cloth and the papers). Then a layer of tissue paper over top of all of it. I used strips of plain white tissue paper to cover this piece. Then you let it dry completely. I waited overnight. Then comes the fun part. Embellishing! I used Adirondack Spray Inks in Butterscotch and Wild Plum, along with a couple of swipes from some pigment ink pads in various shades of pink. Here's the result:

I made this next piece much larger. You can see the various patterned tissue papers used here along with the other papers. I also used some tissue paper from some old sewing patterns that I then stamped onto:

Here is the fabric paper with the Butterscotch and Wild Plum colors sprayed on. The plum photographed more of a red color, for some reason. But it is actually more of a purple color.

This piece isn't finished yet. I'm still looking for some more embellishment. Kelli's book is a treasure trove of ideas. Think: beads, collage, oil pastels, etc. for further embellishing!

So what do you do with this? Anything you want! I can see uses in collage, art quilts, mixed media painting, just to name a few off the top of my head. I'm going to make a big batch of it using the same color family (yet to be decided). The book features this really cool (but small) wallhanging that has the fabric paper cut into squares, collaged with fabric circles, stitched around all four sides and then has eyelets along the top, bottom and side borders. The eyelets have jump rings in them and they connect the squares together. My idea is to do that type of thing on a much larger scale.

I'm pulling together the papers today to use for the base. I want to make a nice wallhanging (about 36" wide) for the stairway wall (two-stories high and BARE right now). So I need to make a huge batch of the base fabric paper and get it to drying. I can decide on my color scheme when it comes time to paint the fabric. I also need to figure out how big I want the squares to be. I bought a Crop-A-Dile (on the advice of Zinnia from Hands and Heart) to help with the eyelets.

So, big plans in the works. Always keeping a few projects going makes me feel energized! On today's schedule: getting more sheets made so they can dry overnight and starting on Lesson 2 of LK Ludwig's photo journaling class. Now I'm off to play!


Michele said...

Oh no. Now I have another thing I absolutely must try! I never knew of this fabric art paper stuff. I cannot wait to test it out though. It's looks like so much fun, and right up my ally.

I love your wall hanging idea so much, I may just have to steal it. I've been wanting to do a patchwork looking wall hanging (art quilt) for a long time, but know nothing bout sewing. This sounds like it might be a cool substitute.

The pieces you created are awesome!
I am eagerly anticipating seeing more, and the new wall hanging when it's finished!

Pam Tucker said...

Thank you, Michele! If you get a chance, grab this book. You'll use it over and over!!