Final Experimentation

Today was (hopefully) my last session in the stitch workshop creating experimental development samples. I am hoping that after this, the rest of my time can now be focused on creating my final collection!

I started off by working into the shells I painted onto fabric on Wednesday.
I like the idea that these replicate my drawings better than applique with the painterly effect, and it also allows more of a gradient in colours. However it does seem just a little too flat in comparison to the highly textures appliqued samples, so despite experimenting, I think I’ll stick to my guns and continue with the techniques that I was originally using.


I then worked from my new drawings of the green shore crab, taking it into applique and free machine embroidery. I was really happy with the drawings and after today, this motif is definitely going to feature in the final collection. This polyester fabric is the perfect colour to replicate the crab in real life, and the black stitched details work really nicely.


Something which I took from yesterday’s tutorial was to work on the mermaid’s purse imagery. I went back to my research and realised that there are a variety of sizes and shapes of these egg cases, dependent on which animal it has come from. So in my next sample I appliqued both long, thin shapes combined with shorter, fatter ones, and I think this made a big positive difference. I also attempted to add some texture to the insides of the shapes with some green stitching, but I’m not sure if I really like this very much.

One of the things that Keireine suggested to me in my tutorial yesterday was to look back at my barnacle samples and work with scale to create more of an interesting design. I think that the result of this was effective, but could have been taken even further? However I don’t want to mess with the motif too much, because I am really happy with it as a coordinate design.


Another thing that Keireine mentioned was that now that I’m creating a collection of croquis as opposed to one off products, I can look at alternative fabric to the linen, so I came up with the idea of some transparent designs. So I used the same barnacle motif on some silk, which I’m really happy with. This could be sold as products such as silk scarves or curtains. I really like the contrast between the sheer silk and the block parts of applique.


I then tried the same idea but without the applique and my brittle star motif. I tried two samples, the first one using backing paper as I did with the barnacles. This looked great to start with, but once I peeled the paper from the back, the stitches became warped and began to unravel. It was also really time consuming to remove every piece of the backing paper, which I’m not normally too worried about because you can’t see the back of the linen! So next I tried the same silk fabric and image, but sandwiched between two pieces of dissolvable. Hopefully this more gentle process will be more successful (I still need to dissolve it and find out).


This weekend I’m going to concentrate on digitising my mood boards and getting them looking really professional to go into my portfolio, and next week its time to get making my final croquis!


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