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 20, 2014

Creating Texture with Stitching and Fabric Manipulation - part 3

Today we will be looking at more from one of our guest artists this month, Wil. I can hardly wait to show you the finished piece she did. It will be posted tomorrow.

So we'll get right to today's tutorials!! Take it away, Wil!!

All Kinds of Stuff

I had a look at the material I have in my studio and picked out the following:

 Some bleached mulberry bark, cheesecloth, pearl cotton, Tyvek, zapped lutrador and some strips of white fabric. This I arranged on a cut out paper circle till I had a pleasing composition. With the pearl cotton thread I stitched everything together. When this was done I trimmed it till it had an exact circle shape. While stitching it, the shape had disappeared a bit J.

At this stage I could have stopped, but because I want all my circles to be blue I had to add some color to it. Dyeing with Procion was not an option as some of the materials I used were synthetic, so I opted for ink and paint and this is how it turned out:

No doubt that you will have other materials at hand, but that is perfectly okay. This is one of those techniques in which everything goes.

Thanks Wil! I did this technique is a quilt and they were actually circles as well.  This one was inspired by a VERY  hot streak during the summer. I chose raw silk for the background and the snowballs were done with the technique shown above. It is titled:  "I Miss Snow"

Now for the next section from Wil............


Another way of creating texture is by folding the fabric. I started with a rectangular piece of fabric and placed a mark at every inch:

The marks are a guideline where I have to fold the fabric. Notice that all the folds go into the same direction.

To make certain that they stay in this position I pinned the strip onto a felt covered piece of foam. Beneath the fabric is a strip of fusible webbing so that after the ironing the fabric stays where I want it to stay.

Next step is to press down the fabric with a hot iron. The folds get a nice crisp line.

After the ironing the pins can be removed and the piece can be lifted of the felt covered foam and is ready for the stitching. As you see in this picture I stitched a straight line close to the edge of the fabric.

For the next stitching line I turned my fabric around and started stitching from the other side. This way the folds were forced to stand up and move over to the other side.

The same process was repeated again for the next stitching line.

And a final stitched line close to the edge of the fabric.

As my strip of fabric was rather narrow, I stopped after these four lines, but if you are working with a wider piece of fabric you can continue with these lines. In my experience 2” between the stitching lines is the closest you can do.

On this sample I placed a circle cut out of paper, pinned this and stitched close to the edge.

On purpose I stitched the circle with a white thread, so that it would show up in the picture.  As the samples will be stitched onto a background, the white thread of the circle will be covered. 

And we are done for today!  

I have already received some wonderful examples from a couple of you that will be posted on Free For All Friday!  Still room for lots more so send in your own examples.


Hope you are being inspired to try some of these techniques in your own work.  See you tomorrow!


  1. I can't tell you how inspiring these pieces and techniques are. I especially love the "I miss snow" piece.


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