Thursday, 4 July 2013

Fabric Paper

On Friday after the RedBerry Quilters meeting the art quilt interest group experimented with making fabric paper.

A demonstration based on a method developed by Beryl Taylor started up the session. (Sources used to develop the demonstration were Beryl's book 'Mixed Media Explorations' and Quilting Arts and Cloth, Paper, Scissors magazines. The following instructions are based on this demonstration.

 Materials List:
  • A piece of calico or other light coloured cotton fabric
  • A plastic sheet
  • PVA glue (mixed approximately 1 part glue to one part water)
  • A sponge brush or old paint brush
  • Magazine or travel brochure clippings, sweet wrappers, gift wrap, textured papers, text or printed material, store catalogues, photocopies, shopping receipts, old books or any other printed materials (these can be on a theme if you wish) - these can be cut or torn depending on your preference.
  • Paper scissors
  • Tissue paper - light coloured
  • Fabric paints or dyes or liquid acrylics or watercolour paints or inks in your chosen colour scheme

  • Lay plastic sheet on a flat surface and place calico (or other fabric) on top.
  • Arrange papers leaving a small space between.

  • Remove papers and brush calico with the glue mixture.
  • Replace papers onto calico and brush additional glue on top of them.
(A quick digital photo will help you to remember how to place your papers if you want a specific layout.)

                                   (Here, Mary took one large picture and cut it into pieces.)

  • Place pieces of torn tissue paper on top of the glue covered papers. Brush on more glue if required).
  • Smooth any air bubbles out of the tissue. (We found a small sponge roller worked well.)

  • Brush diluted paints or inks onto the wet surface mixing colours if desired.
  • Allow fabric paper to dry.
Some other experiments:

(Here, Mary used cut gold tissue paper instead of pictures before laying additional tissue paper over the top.)

(Here, Mary experimented with tiny fabric scraps instead of pictures and also experimented with drier brushstrokes.)

(Alas no photo of Anne's next step. She extended the walnut ink beyond the papers giving the effect of a border. It was looking like a marvellous antique tile.)

(Carolyn experimented with a paper napkin under the tissue paper.......

........then brushed a pale green wash over the top, before continuing her garden theme - see below.)

A few things to keep in mind:
  • The weave of the fabric can have an impact on the finished product. A more open weave will give a stiffer end product.)
  • More glue = a stiffer end product.
  • Less glue (ie more watery) = a softer end product.
  • Make sure paints or inks are not too thick or your base layer will be obscured.
What Can You Use to Embellish your Fabric Paper?
  • Rub on oil paint-sticks
  • Lightly roller on paint to pick up texture
  • Stamp onto the surface
  • Machine stitch (note that if you remove the stitches you will have holes in your fabric)
  • Hand stitch (note as above)
  • Bead
  • Punch holes and thread with ribbon or fancy threads
  • Layer
  • Finish edges with fancy cords
  • Finish edges with ribbon or braid and beads, buttons, eyelets or brads
  • Finish edged with glue which you can paint with a metallic paint once dry.
What Can You Use it For?
  • Book covers
  • Backgrounds to build mixed-media works on
  • Framing
  • Postcards, greeting cards or tags
  • Layers
  • Components of larger pieces
Most of all, play and have fun.......

Sue King
PS: This could be a good holiday activity if you have grandchildren........

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