A TECHNIQUE DRIVEN Blog dedicated to mastery of surface design techniques. First we dye, overdye, paint, stitch, resist, tie, fold, silk screen, stamp, thermofax, batik, bejewel, stretch, shrink, sprinkle, Smooch, fuse, slice, dice, AND then we set it on fire using a variety of heat tools.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Creating Texture with Mixed Media and Fun Bits - part 3

Today I have an example for you of a piece that incorporates a few techniques for creating texture. It is one of my favorite pieces.

This piece was born from a challenge to create art that would engage more than the sense of sight. For some reason I knew I wanted to make an attempt at including the sense of taste. One thing I knew of that involved taste without actually putting anything in your mouth was how even the look of a juicy lemon can make your mouth water. So I set of on that experiment.  And this is how it went.

I knew I wanted this "lemon" to be squeezed so I had to figure out the form I needed to do that. After several drawings on paper and cutting them out, I came up with the shape needed. Now all I had to do was fill in the blanks.

Don't you just love serendipity? I had been gathering various shades and textures of yellow fabrics in anticipation of creating this piece. When it got right down to time to pick out the final choices, I noticed that one of the fabrics had a slightly random dotted look. PERFECT for a lemon peel! Then I used my white mulberry bark for the rind.

Now for the "meat" of the lemon. This took a bit of trial and error in fabric manipulation, I used a yellow satin with a bit of sheen so it would look wet. I just scrunched it and stitched in wavy lines as I kept scrunching.

And so it began. This was going to be a different piece because it was not a quiltlet as usual. The whole quilt part was the lemon...no borders or bindings.  Here is how it looked all laid out. The backing is just an unbleached muslin.

Things are going the way I want them to go. Now for the "sizzle".  The shine of the satin was working but it needed to "feel" wetter.  I added a BUNCH of round crystal beads of varying sizes, hand-sewn into the folds of the yellow satin.

Now, for the big finish...I stitched the lemon quiltlet to an already painted canvas. Then I hand-stitched more beads to create the look of a squirting lemon. And the final "sell"...a very large crystal bead for a drop of luscious lemon juice! (This is another serendipity. I had planned on a large teardrop bead. None were large enough. So as I'm wandering the aisles of beads, it called out to me! This very large and irregular crystal bead!! And the irregular shape fit SO much better than a teardrop would have!)

Here is the completed 18" X 24" piece. And the question I always ask...."Does it make your mouth water?" I hope so, because then I would have completed my mission successfully!  So....stitching, fabric manipulation, paint and fun bits all in one piece. Hope you like it.

OK now, let's see some of your art that includes fun bits to create texture! Please e-mail me your photos at:



  1. I have always loved this one.

  2. Thanks, Wil!
    Elle - Mission successful then! YEAH!!

  3. Well done. You achieved your goal of creating the sensation of taste.

  4. I love the texture and sparkle in the beading. How creative and beautiful.

  5. Thanks so much Eileen and Holly!! Always appreciate the feedback!

  6. This has given me some ideas for how to deal with a troublesome needlepoint canvas. Love this look. Very successful!

    Carol S.

  7. Yes, it makes my mouth water and my brain race! What wonderful ideas and it is so neat to have you talk us through the evolution of the piece.


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