Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Machine fusion fiber - tutorial

I love creating layers fabrics using different fibres, fabric and even paint! This is a more in-depth look at a similar technique of mine, that I showed here.

This technique is fantastic for creating art quilts, fibre art or mixed media projects!

As always,
just a gentle reminder - this is an original tutorial, designed and written by myself. It's copyright and may not be copied or transferred without my direct permission.

To begin, let's get our supplies in order:
I’ve got 100% cotton fabric, heavy-duty interfacing, water soluable fabric, hand-dyed raw silk & wool, silk floss & yarn trimmings.

For your first step, cut a rough square out of your fabric and fuse the heavy-duty interfacing to the back:

Now for the fun part! Tease the raw silk & wool apart and start laying it on the fabric to form a background. Don’t try and cover too much - part of the this is being able to see a little hint of the fabric peeking through:
I’ve cut out several printed flowers (yes, my stash does tend to look like an enthusiastic moth was in it :-) and placed them on the wool/silk layers:
I’ve gently teased apart some hand-dyed raw silk and placed it over some of the flowers:
This is a fantastic use for little thread or fabric ends. I’m using short little nubbly trimmings from a friend’s loom, lightly sprinkled over the surface:
The next step is to pin a sheet of water soluble film over the layers & pin securely. I’m using a lightweight Sulky product here, but there are lots of different options on the market. Just make sure the film dissolves in water completely - I once spent hours making a sheet of fusion fabric, only to discover that the film I was using was a pull-apart - which was completely hopeless! Before you start sewing, make sure you have a fresh, brand-new needle in your sewing machine. Drop the feed dogs & switch to a free-motion foot.

We’re going to begin by using a neutral colored thread and making an even covering all over the fabric

. Don’t worry about making a meticulous pattern, all you’re doing is anchoring the layers together.

Remember to take the pins out before you sew over them!

Now that there’s an even covering of stitches, you can get to the more decorative stuff! I’m using quite a bright pink thread to “draw” over the fabric rose. Try using brighter colors instead of going for an exact match for this layer of stitching - it will give your work highlights.
It’s still not much to look at right now! Keep going - it will get there!

I think that's enough for one post for now - I'll post the second half of the tutorial later on.

tutorial & all images are copyright C Findlay-Harder

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