Friday, 26 June 2015

Friday Faces - Fabric and Fairy-tales!

Hello and Welcome to Magpieheaven! I'm linking up to Kim Dellow's 'Show Your Face' again today! I do look forward to this weekly challenge on Kim's blog. Not only does it provide lots of portrait inspiration from Kim and the contributors, but it has also started me on a kind of portrait journey! Do hop over to Kim's blog here and take a look at what she's been up to this week and then why not create a face of your own?
About two or three years ago, when I was first fascinated by the world of craft blogs and just dipping a toe in the crafty waters, I discovered a tutorial on how to print vintage photos onto fabric. I had a go at this and made some cushions featuring vintage images, but sadly I took no photos in those days and the cushions have long since worn out! A thought came to me this week - why not scan sketches of your own into the computer, print them onto fabric and create with them?


I had a go with this 'green doodle' on lining fabric! You iron an A4 sized piece of fabric onto Freezer paper and then carefully trim the edges so that any threads can't tangle in the printer and then print in the usual way. I then iron my pieces of fabric to try to fix the ink because I like to paint over the fabric with a glaze both to improve the look and to prevent the edges from fraying.


I think I might use the green faces on a mini quilt, but for today's project I decided to use this lady created with Portfolio pastels and based on seventeenth century miniature. I printed out two because I might use some embroidery stitches on the other one some time.


I die-cut her into an oval shape, which was easy to do, as the freezer paper backing ensured a clean cut. As you can see I was over-enthusiastic with the iron, so the fabric is a little scorched! I wasn't too concerned about this, as I was intending to paint over her in places anyway!


I had a little 5"/5" canvas so I arranged lots of embellishments and laces from my stash on it. There's some stencilling with Grunge Paste; a Tim Holtz bit of die-cutting left over from another project and a beautiful Sandra Evertson Relics and Artifacts hand. As I played with the bits and pieces, I slipped the key into the hand and the story of this canvas sprang into my mind! The young lady in the portrait is the heroine from the story of Bluebeard's castle. 


My next step was to make up sprays of diluted PaperArtsy Fresco paint and put the little fabric picture to one side as I applied them.


For the last six years I have tutored students in English Literature and one of my favourite texts has been Angela Carter's re-telling of Perrault's fairy tales in 'The Bloody Chamber'. In Carter's version of the tale, the young lady is rescued from the evil Marquis by her mother arriving in the nick of time. Feminine curiosity is not punished but shown to be part of life's experience, and the young woman learns that marriage should be for love and not money or escape.


I did some alterations to the little picture, mixing Frescos with Fabric Medium to give her a little more of a Perrault fairy-tale heroine appearance. She now has a little lace hat and veil and she has perhaps arrived at Bluebeard's castle after her marriage ceremony. The hand holds the key to the forbidden chamber in the castle, which will be forever stained with red after she has disobeyed her husband and unlocked its secrets. Thanks to Carter's wonderful imagination, this story is given new meaning in her collection because the heroine's curiosity and rebellious streak saves her from the fate of Bluebeard's previous wives. The butterfly symbolises freedom as well as the concept of Bluebeard collecting wives like beautiful butterflies.


Thank you so much for taking the time to stop by Magpieheaven today and looking at my Friday Face, which this week is a Fabric Fairy Tale. I hope you'll be linking up a face to Kim's blog too!

21 comments:

  1. This is gorgeous Julie! I love the embellishments you chose for this piece, and how you enhanced your beautiful print. I think embroidery would be super too!

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  2. WOWEE Julie Ann you've really done it with this exquisite creation.
    Perfection and inspiration in every detail!
    Brilliant how your story unfolded and printing on the fabric gives such a beautiful beginning. Your creativity is boundless.
    Thank you for sharing the details of what went into this lovely piece.
    oxo

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  3. Love what you have made, the canvas is stunning. Have a nice weekend, hugs, Valerie

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  4. What a great technique. Thanks for sharing that Julie Ann. Your canvas really does have a fairytale quality. Lx

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  5. What an unique art work. I love this beautiful canvas and the fantastic fairytale that inspired you. You have a great talent Julie Ann. Thank you for sharing it♥

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  6. What a great idea, Julie Ann, and I love the results!!

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  7. Wonderful texture in your project.

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  8. This is amazing Julie Ann, I love the face you have drawn, the story, and the hand holding the key,

    Lucy x

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  9. What a magical journey, loved reading the story. Beautiful canvas!

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  10. She looks stunning, framed by all that wonderful texture! xxx

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  11. What a gorgeous piece of work - I love all your little details, especially the hand holding the key, and I love the story behind it too. Your printing is great and I must find out about freezer paper, I've never heard of it - I tend to buy fabric sheets ready prepared but because they are so expensive I don't use them very often, I think your way might be more affordable. Thanks for the tip, I'm off to investigate!

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  12. So sweet how this came out and your painting over the face really brings out her shine! xox

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  13. OMGosh Julie Ann!! You are truly so clever and brilliant!!
    I love that you thought to use your faces on fabric!! Something I probably would not have considered!! And your canvas came out beautiful- I just love your attention to those little details that pull it all together! Beautiful my dear friend!! xoxo

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  14. Romantic canvas Julie!! Wonderful textures and you used the R&AT hand to great. xxx

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  15. I love that fabric printing technique, and especially what you did with the fairytale canvas. Thank you for sharing the process. Blessings!

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  16. Fabulous canvas, very clever idea to print onto the fabric.

    Love and hugs
    Maarit

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  17. I absolutely Love this Julie Ann. Amazing. Great details. Thanks for the inspiration and linking it up to Show Your Face last week and thanks, as always, for the wonderful shout out. Kx

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  18. Oh that's wonderful, such a gorgeous canvas.

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  19. It's always such a joy to follow your creative journey, Julie Ann. I used to have so many "what if" ideas, but they're being drowned out at the moment by the rest of life. I hope when things quieten down, they'll start bubbling up again, but for now it's wonderful to visit here and follow your what ifs. How lovely to see one of your faces on fabric... when I saw her with the oval die sitting on her, I thought what a wonderful embroidery sampler she would make - so I'm delighted to hear there's a possible Mark II in the offing.

    For now, you've given her a setting to be proud of - fabulous texture and colours and gilding. Lovely!
    Alison xx

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  20. Once again I am in awe of your attention to the tiniest detail Julie Ann! A really stunning piece created around the tale!

    Hugs
    Lesley Xx

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  21. Julie Ann, this is fabulous! Such texture and such a beautiful face! Chrisx

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