Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving, I wish you all a wonderful day surrounded by those you love.   
 From beginning ....
to end............may each moment become a wonderful memory.
Warmly, Judy

Thursday, November 20, 2014

The Results - soy wax batik

Probably the hardest part of working with wax is the removal of it. Years ago I tried batik and swore never to do it again because of that reason. I was using the traditional set up of part parafin and part beeswax. Beeswax is too soft and won't crackle; parafin is too hard and crackles too much, so a mix of the 2 works best. I decided to give it another try after reading Rayna Gillman's book which devotes many pages to the use of soy wax. It's a little more user friendly and easily removed from fabric.
To remove, lay newsprint over the top and underneath; use a a hot iron which immediately melts the wax which is absorbed into the paper.

I found the fabric to be just a tad stiff but still very useable and I will try washing it which Rayna suggests. Many of the fabrics used were probably too busy to begin with so the waxed areas are hard to find.
This piece is probably more noticeable because I used solids rather than a busy print.
Here is another marbled piece done in the opposite color set up with the yellow being in the center.
I liked the way this turned out, very busy but I liked the wash of color over it more than the resisted areas of wax.
I just went through my scraps, pulling pieces. This piece was a piece of silk that was crimped as a demo for a workshop. It was a China silk and very thin so the crimping/pleats were very effective.
A lot of the wax impressions showed up better, probably because I started with a solid.
This was a marbled piece I didn't like and the only cotton in the group;  I think I like it better with a wash over it and some wax resisted areas.
My daughter is coming this weekend with my granddaughter and then we caravan back to Atlanta for Thanksgiving. It will be a whirlwind of a week.
Til next time...

Monday, November 17, 2014

Fiber Junkies Pt 2 - The Party

Last week, we had our "early for the month" Fiber Junkies meeting and since several of our members have had big birthdays this year, we've been celebrating them.
My birthday is at the end of December - the 30th and I remember my mom telling me the first words out of my dad's mouth were - "What a great little tax deduction" Anyway, getting back on track, my wonderful friends had a surprise party for me at our last meeting. We like to do themes and knowing each other so well, we seem to come up with the most unique and creative ideas. I guess I've mentioned numerous times how much I love paper dolls and how they were a big part of my childhood - so a paper doll party.
We celebrated with champagne and delicious home made chili from Kate. The placemats were poster board with a outline of a paper doll on them.
all set on a beautiful hand dyed piece of rayon Denny dyed to use as a tablecloth and I got to take home.
Talk about feeling like a kid the center of the table were crayons and colored pencils. Without any prompting, we all dove in to get our favorite colors to finish our "paper doll", guess we all enjoy that feeling of being a kid again.
They were all so cute and I brought them home with me....
The gifts were such fun - a cloth tape measure which you don't see anymore wrapped around vintage paper dolls of Ramona and an antique book...
magnetic barbies and Shirley Temple paper dolls. Denny copied the clothes onto magnetic sheets and provided pans that they would work with. My granddaughter and I are going to have such fun with these.
And of course what party wouldn't be complete without "beautiful men" fabric - too much fun!
The apple cake made by our resident baker - Mary, was delicious.
And I was happy to be amongst such very wonderful friends who put so much thought and love into everything they do, I am lucky!
PS. I've been ironing the wax out of my fabrics and have results to share as soon as I get this house back in order. Thanks for hanging in there with me.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Fiber Junkies Pt 1 - Working with Soy Wax

Yes, Fiber Junkies again, we work around everyone's schedule and this was the best time with the holidays coming up so fast. This month we did soy wax printing/batiking and it was great fun and a new experience for many of us. My friend Mary has some great pictures on her blog of this technique along with a good explanation. These first 2 pictures are from Mary as I neglected to take them, thank you Mary.
 Several of us had the small electric fry pans which is important for controlling the temperature. Wax has a very low melting point and can ignite easily so it's important to keep it just above the melting point. After stamping fabric with objects dipped in wax, we painted the area with Dye na Flow paint.
 There was a very creative assortment of tools that were "heat friendly" and could safely put put in hot wax.
 Everything from potato mashers to corks, spools and paint brush coiled cleaners were used.
 The wax dries almost instantly so you can start painting.
 This is one of my marbled prints and perhaps too busy for this technique as the waxed image areas seemed to melt into the fabric print.
 This has Dye na Flow added.
 Kates with the wax on..
 and painted.
 This tool that kate is using made such a fun mark...not sure what it was, but gave great results.
 Kates painted. Once the paint is dry, the pieces are ironed between pieces of newspaper to remove the wax the and original fabric shows through, so as pretty as this is, it is still not done and will take on a different look when the wax is removed.
 I loved what Denny was doing with her lettering and piece of plastic "ladder"
 Painted and waiting for wax to be removed.
 Mary's got an additional wash of darker purple...
 very nice effect.
 Gen used a print for hers so this should be fun to see.
 and Denny used a stencil here.
Vals was gorgeous, she used Lumiere paint which was very clever as it's so pretty with it's high metallic content. Everyone is to bring their finished pieces to the Christmas party to share the final look. Next time - the party and please stay tuned.

Friday, November 7, 2014

"The Boyscouts"

I started this piece a while ago, back and forth on the design wall. It just returned from a show I was part of at the NC Arboretum. I've always liked the piece, just one of those things where it got lost in the shuffle of other projects.
The subject matter is near and dear to my heart as it's photos of my Uncle Ted and my dad (his brother) in scout uniforms. The photos were layered on top of a rock wall and blended together in Photoshop Elements. The effect is subtle and you have to look hard to see the imagery of the boys. My uncle is in the top right corner, my dad in the lower left about 1/3 from the left side.

You can see it better  in this picture.
I did some screening along the top using discharge paste and felt I needed to break up the black area since the piece was dark to begin with.
I also added some tree branches at bottom left for more interest along with writing from my mother's autograph book.

 I started layering it but realized it needed more and also to be a little larger.
 I found this wonderful glitzy like cotton fabric with a very obvious weave which I thought would work...
and it did but it still needed more.
I tend to use and like darker colors on the edge to "contain" the piece and black seemed to work. I use all kinds of fabric as I'm after effect. Silk noil which is a heavier and nubby silk is what I used here. 
 I also added a more obvious face in the top to give it a more haunting look...
 and lots of glitzy thread along with monofilament.

And the finished piece which measures 17 1/2" x 20"H. If you're interested in purchasing this piece, please email me privately.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Fiber Junkies Pt 3 - Show and Tell

I've been meaning to share some of the pieces from our Show and Tell at our Fiber Junkies meeting. This is the last piece in  a series Denny has been working on. She's been wearing spider earrings throughout and said when she finished her last piece, the earrings would come off.
It's a wonderful piece and the back interesting as well
with the maze of webs.
Denny made these feathers out of fabric which were a great touch and meaningful to the theme of the piece. All the pieces in this series were based on interviews with people regarding life experiences;  each part of her quilts are essential to the whole.
Mary made this simple and very elegant quilt out of Japanese prints as a gift for family members....lucky family! 
And the back - as beautiful as the front.
Mary also shared her latest pieces using marbled fabric she had created and incorporated with beads. This one pulls at my heartstrings.
Marbled fabric has a lot of energy and hard to work with - quite a task to get a good balance between embellishment and fabric and I think Mary nailed it.
Til next time...