Monday, February 02, 2009

Manipulating Fabric

One of the coolest things I've seen in a while, was friend Debbie's presentation at our recent CQFA retreat. She showed off some of the fabrics she created in a two week summer class called "FrankenFabrics" at Cabrillo College with instructor Richard Elliot. All of these are polyesters of different types which are secured around something like marbles, blocks, rocks and then boiled. The shapes created are then set into the fabric permanently until you boil it again.
Well, I just had to try this out for myself. I found a nice, yet teeny-tiny silk skirt with a polyester crepe lining at the local Goodwill, and took it apart. This is a picture of The Boiling Of The Fabric! Marbles were secured at regular intervals with small rubber bands. Boiled for about 20 minutes.

Then it was hung up to dry for about a day. After removing all the rubber bands and marbles this is how it looks:
This is what the whole piece looks like when it is hung up. Pretty interesting texture was achieved.

And this is the remains of the silk skirt which was deconstructed that I'll now incorporate into a piece with the manipulated skirt lining.

Some close ups of the interesting surface created by this technique.
I'm looking forward working with this flexible and strange fabric, making an attempt to corral it into a more 2-D shape. It will be challenging I'm sure. One thought I've had is instead of stitching in and around the shapes by machine I'll tack it down by hand by stitching on beads in and around the "grape shapes".


Jan said...

This is so cool. Thanks for sharing. I have been trying to make rocks for a landscape quilt and this may do it.

Darling Petunia said...


But neat!

JoAnn Deck said...

Julie, I just joined the ring and found your post of this techinique. I LOVE it, I have lots of polyester linining type fabric from years ago, I will try this out. Do you think I could do it in a crockpot so as not to need to monitor the time?

arlee said...

WOW!!!!! This is SO kewl! I shall have to try as well :}