A Larger Sample.
Here a larger printed sample was the aim using a choice of either a fully developed motif to create a single unit or an extended version of a repeating pattern. I decided to go with the single unit option and create a design suitable for a 40cm square cushion cover.
I started with a large piece of calico which I crumple dyed a muddy grey green, fairly light in colour.
I liked the swirl block, used in Stage 3, where I had applied a resist in strips to the background and decided to develop this further and add some other aspects. I started drawing some ideas. My sketches aren’t great because I was doing them while a passenger in a moving car.
On returning home I did a scale drawing (1/2 scale = 20 x 20cm) and marked out my mask, ready to apply to the background fabric.
I limited my colour palette. I tried them out on scrap fabric first to ensure they wouldn’t be too bright. Once the main colour was down I had to wait for drying time until I could ‘age’ the edging and then move on to the middle portion.
I pulled out the very central mask piece and applied the green very gently and lightly using a rubbing motion with a stencil brush. Then I had to wait for drying again.
Meantime I looked at what was to be my centre focal interest. I took the orange tear drop from the design to the left and started playing with it. Finally, having measured the space I had available and how many repeats I wanted, I cut a stencil. The lines show the alignment so that each repeat sits at the same angle. This was then applied on top of the green using brown Shiva stick (having tried out both the brown and red on scrap fabric) and a stencil brush. I wanted these tear drops to have some dimension and left areas less coloured in anticipation of adding some gold to give a glow.
I tried out several gold effects. Light gold Shiva stick, Derivan printing ink, acrylic paint, Treasure Gold and other gold waxes but none gave me any satisfaction. Even though I had (again) waited out a substantial drying time the golds just seemed heavy and clumped.
So I pinned up my piece, walked past it for 24 hours and came to the conclusion that I would add some further green to strengthen some of the background and ‘enclose’ my motifs so they would appear to sit forward.
I’m very pleased with the final result and would definitely consider it as a cushion cover in my home. I also think there is scope to add some simple linear stitching to enhance the edges of the blocks and the motifs. This exercise was to take around 10 hours and it took me all of that and more but was well worth it.
I haven’t gone further here and created another piece using an extended version of a repeating pattern because I have already done so in a couple of earlier exercises. That is not to say that I won’t explore further. The samples can be seen below. Both are over 40cm square in size.