Tuesday, 9 October 2012

New Techniques


Good Afternoon Blog Readers!! Do you like my new bunting? Naughty of me to buy it I know but it is so pretty!! Now I have pink patterned bunting on one side of the room and red/blue birdies on the other. (The bunting is from Wilkos if you were wondering)

I have been a very busy bee at university lately, we are learning all kinds of new techniques which I absolutely adore! We have to have at least six samples of as many techniques as we can manage done by Monday and I think I am on track. Here is what I have so far!!

This technique is done by putting shirring elastic into the bobbin of your sewing machine. Your fabric must be in a hoop and stretched tight. I have just played around with stitching circles and little lines. When you take it out of the hoop the elastic pulls it in and up and in all sorts of directions. It will shrink so be careful of your fabric measurements. I have just embellished this sample slightly with french knots.

The sample on the left also has some shirring elastic in, but also some machine couching- which is very similar except you put embroidery thread in the bobbin instead of the elastic. (The sample on the right is just machine couching- for now!! ) You have to remember that the back of your stitching will actually end up as the front so make sure to bring all thread ends to the back so they don't get caught up!

This sample is very unfinished but I thought I would share with you anyway. You can probably recognise the machine couching now, but the circles are made by button holing (not the traditional method for buttons). I have done it before in art foundation, but the door of insight into this technique was opened slightly wider this afternoon as I learnt about all the shapes you can create and ways of developing this simple technique. It does take a bit of explaining and probably doesn't make sense without pictures so I might do a tutorial as it can look really funky.
I have started work on jazzing it up a bit with the next sample. Two rectangular button holes, one slightly larger than the other. Blanket stitched around the edge and layered on top- think of the other possibilities!! It doesn't have to be the same shaped hole layered underneath, cool fabrics could be layered underneath, you could change the scale of the holes...endless possibilities!!

My latest sample I have spent all afternoon doing- not that you would really be able to tell as it is still in quite a raw stage...

This is machine smocking using a Princess Pleater. A really easy, hand operated machine- it's just that threading up all the needles can take hours!!!

Needle threading is the fiddliest part, but once that is done, the other bits are quite quick and easy, and now the smocking is done, I get to play with placement and adding bits in (like ribbons and yarns and beads! Yippee!).
So hopefully I will be able to show you all sorts of lovely techniques and developments of these ones over the next few days, I am planning on getting to grips with the rhinestone tool as soon as my rhinestones come through the post. There is a vinyl cutter to be figured out (that gets quite complicated as it is linked to computers and various programmes), soldering iron, heat gun, Cornely machine (loved that!!), flounces....the list just goes on!! I'm way over excited!

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