What is your favorite surface technique?

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on 6 Nov 2009 10:45 AM

What is the surface design technique that you find yourself using over and over again, the one that you are most comfortable with?


Almost all of my pieces start with hand painted fabric done using Pebeo Setacolor transparent paints.  I use the heliograhic tendencies in the paint to create patterns (occasionally) and random designs, then I build from there.  More and more, I've been cutting stamps and adding them to the mix, and I've done a lot with photos printed on fabric and worked into the design in some way, but they almost all start with the hand painted fabric.




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arlijohn wrote
on 6 Nov 2009 11:18 AM

My favorite technique is thread. I find the colors so varied and the thicknesses create different effects. I never feel one of my pieces has come alive until I have changed the textures with thread. Most often I build the piece and it seems flat, like painting a canvas. But then, I get out my palette knife(threads) and start roughing up the texture here, blending the color progression there and suddenly the magic happens.

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Quilnan wrote
on 8 Nov 2009 3:14 PM

Here's another vote for threads. I especially like the look of couched heavy threads and yarns, but also the look of a surface with lots of decorative stitching in variegated threads. Nancy

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Bronwyn9 wrote
on 10 Nov 2009 1:27 PM

I love using wash-away fabric with sheer fabrics and lots of machine embroidery to make my own one-off never to be repeated designs, I also love painting my heavilly quilted work - there is so much I love doing with fabric, and so much more stuff still to learn and try.

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on 10 Nov 2009 3:01 PM

Ah, there's the rub - too many methods!  I've decided not to add anything new until I use the stuff that I have sitting around waiting for me.  This is, of course, NOT nonnegotiable.  I may find something that I absoluting can't resist any minute now.




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on 10 Nov 2009 11:17 PM

Deconstructed screen printing, hands down!

- Judi

My Blog   My Art


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reginabdunn wrote
on 14 Nov 2009 6:31 PM

I like couching yarns and fibers and sewing wire onto my pieces. Sometimes I make spirals from the wires and sew them on and sometimes I just use organic shapes from the wires. Once I was making fabric beads and using wire on them as an accent. I bent the wire too much so I snipped it off to start over with another piece. The bent piece fell onto my quilt in progress and the wire looked perfect exactly where it fell and in the odd shape it was. So I sewed in on just as it fell and then I made others like it and added them to the quilt. A very fun experience.

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Jody Johnson wrote
on 15 Nov 2009 11:45 AM

I too find I use thread painting in everything I do and am most comfortable with free-motion quilting techniques. I cannot resist buying threads and have amassed a huge collection. Thread is relatively inexpensive, comes in many yummy colours and is easy to work with.

I have lots of paints and dyes I really want to start working with, however I find the set-up/clean-up time just too much right now and I don't really have a space I can leave the stuff out in right now.

I hope to expand my surface design repetoire soon so I can continue to grow with my art.


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Carole31 wrote
on 16 Nov 2009 10:45 PM

I have to say that thread painting is my favorite....

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sha1non wrote
on 17 Nov 2009 5:14 PM

I love thread painting and creating testures with thread and beads.  However, I've just started  painting on fabric and paper.  And o boy is this like another obession started.  It's incredible the effects and the colours I can create. 

I must admit  as time goes on quilting as art and mixed media that's taken off from there demands more and more of my time and energy.  I am to comply


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on 24 Nov 2009 5:25 PM

I'm going to have to say painting, but that's a pretty broad category for me. If I haven't stamped or screened paint onto the fabric, I at least try to add a little paint for highlights, shadows, etc. It's amazing to me how much you can change the look of a piece just by adding a little paint here and there.

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ckquilter wrote
on 23 Jan 2010 8:10 PM

hi kathleen

for me, the technique is less important than the idea i want to express in a piece. once i know what the concept of the piece is, then having wide range of available methods makes it easier and more fun to work. i can concentrate more on the idea, and then figure out which method/combination will best express it.

i do love working with my hand and sun painted fabric. i just don't like cutting them into small pieces. so i have 2 series going - one is branches, with dimensional branches from fabric or sheers or thread wrapped cording or fused angelina. and then add leaves or flowers. and finish with beading. i am working on adding dimenisonal butterflies from angelina to the current one.

the second series is sea fantasies. i have done sea horses and sea dragon and am starting some mermaids. the sun printed fabric is the base, and then add the critters and sea weeds and tons of beading/shells. very dimensional, and multiple layers of interest.

i also love free motIon sewing of all kinds, and thread sketching and thread painting are favorites.             ckquilter

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on 24 Jan 2010 1:58 PM

I'm afraid with me, it all comes down to process over product.  I often do several pieces and let them hang around for up to a year before they start looking like a finished project.  Most of the painted fabric becomes a whole cloth quilt - I seldom cut it up.  If I do piece work, it is usually within the frame of the panel.




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