Capturing the essence of a season can be achieved in a number of ways. In this month’s column we will look at building a colour palette of new shoots and Spring flowers using traditional applique and patchwork techniques, layering off-cuts of fabrics, adding texture with wool and naturally frayed fabrics, embellishing with light reflective beads, jewels and sequins to create light and depth within the surface, and hand embroidered poetry capturing the essence of my childhood at Easter in a crochet thread.
CAPTURING THE ESSENCE OF SPRINGTIME – BUILDING A COLOUR PALETTE
”Spring Garden” and ”Springtime” captures the essence of the season with a vibrant colour palette of rich greens (new shoots) and blues (bright skies), brown (soil), purple, pink, yellow, orange and white (Spring flowers of hyacinths, cherry blossom, daffodils and snowdrops).
TRADITIONAL APPLIQUE AND PATCHWORK TECHNIQUES
Layering fabrics (applique) and stitching fabrics together (patchwork) builds a strong colour palette and establishes depth within the surface structure.
LAYERING TECHNIQUE USING OFF-CUTS OF FABRIC
Collecting off-cuts of fabric is a fabulous way to produce depth within a colour palette. Individual panels of colour can be created by overlapping edges of similar sized pieces (use a running stitch to secure), building long lengths which are then layered and stitched to establish a surface of texture and depth within the naturally frayed fabrics. Additional lengths of frayed curtains and blankets have been used in Spring Garden. There is a natural rhythm established within the stitching and contouring of the surface.
ADDING TEXTURE WITH WOOL
Wool is a fantastic medium because of it’s diversity. The greater the thickness (ply) the greater the volume and 3D structure. I love creating wool pompoms for fringing because it adds a mobile depth within the textile.
Embellishing a surface with mark making embroidery is effective in layering colour, pattern and texture. ‘Springtime’ applies a simple running stitch and cross stitch to enhance panels and over sews to anchor large buttons.
ADDING TEXTURE WITH NATURALLY FRAYED FABRICS
Naturally frayed fabrics and woollens (roughly cut ) are a great source of texture, adding volume and depth to a flat surface. Use a wide variety of materials to establish a rich density within the structure of your textile.
EMBELLISHING WITH LIGHT REFLECTIVE BEADS, JEWELS AND SEQUINS TO CREATE LIGHT AND DEPTH
3D buttons, beads and jewels are very effective in establishing surface contouring, with a play of light upon the surface casting shadow, creating depth within the structure.
Light reflective sequins captures the delicate light of Springtime
CAPTURING THE ESSENCE OF SPRINGTIME WITH ORIGINAL POETRY
‘Easter Sandals’, hand embroidered in a gold crochet thread, captures the spirit of Easter when I was a child growing up in the North East of England. The viewer is transported back to join me in ”the hunt for brightly patterned eggs… church bands parading through South Shields…” A personal experience establishes an emotional layering to which the viewer can relate.