Wednesday, August 26, 2020

Licensed to Cut Loose--post 6

Scraps from three quart sized zip lock bags
During the ninth week of working on this project, I auditioned various fabrics for the background. When I was preparing for Susan Carlson's class, I put my scraps in quart size plastic bags by color. I pulled the scraps from the yellow and blue bag to get an idea of what I had to begin the background collage.

Again, most of my scraps are small. Left over triangles and narrow strips made up the majority of the bag contents. There a lot of Martha scraps in this project! I even used some yellow flannel scraps because I was determined to use as many of the the small pieces that I had saved! 

I also have lengths of long selvages in a blue batik. I thought that I could use these in the background somehow. My
Auditioning blue fabrics and the batik selvages
youngest granddaughter suggested that the background be blue because butterflies fly in a blue sky. I liked her thought process! I was unsure if even a light blue fabric would provide enough contrast against the outer dark wing of the butterfly. I tried the blue scraps first. The batik selvages didn't show up enough as they were too close in value to the outer butterfly wing fabric.

When I posed the question of what fabric would be a better contrast, the oldest granddaughter suggested yellow. She thought if I put the sun behind the butterfly, it would be easier to see the butterfly's wings. Of course, she was right! I didn't place many fabrics around the butterfly during the week. I did make progress though!

Progress at the end of the ninth week
My granddaughters' abilities to solve the  dilemma of what color would work best continues to amaze me. I am beginning to feel more confident with choosing fabrics. I am making better progress with using a variety of prints in a similar hue to create more interest.

I did place some blue pieces on the background to give me an idea of where the transition to the blue color might begin. I did agree with the youngest granddaughter that there needed to be blue in the background!

When I started adding the yellow pieces, I thought a few inches of the yellow would be enough. Perhaps, I was also thinking that way because I have so few yellow scraps. I also though that hard edge on the background pieces would work fine.

Shape of the pieces with the scissors used to cut the shapes
After I had a few pieces in place, the hard edges didn't work well with all the gentle curves that I had cut for the pieces in the butterfly. The few inches of yellow background felt too small so I added more pieces to fill a bigger space. I stopped trying to confine the yellow to a certain space. I liked the result of letting it flow. 

In fact, I added pieces until I ran out of pins. Then I glue basted until I had a supply of pins so I could place more fabrics. It has been interesting working through the process for the background. I would place a few fabrics, step back to view the piece, rearrange pieces and repeat that process until I had used up the available pins.

Close up view of a section of the collage
Then, I'd glue baste the inner most pieces to free pins to add more pieces! I've used most of the yellow scraps that were in the quart sized zip lock bag. I scrounged a few from the triangle bags that people have saved for me over the years. Maybe rather than looking for a bunch more yellow fabrics, the message the piece is trying to tell me is to transition to the the blue fabrics! Although, I'm unsure how I will begin that transition!

As I have worked on the background, the outer portion of the top of the butterfly wing has been calling for some embellishment as the fabric in that area feels too stark to my eye. Thanks, Marla for your input and suggestion of white dots or circles. I will come back to that portion of the wing once I have filled in the background!

Progress at the end of week ten

The more that I work on this project, the more I'm liking what I'm seeing. I am amazed at how the yellow background accentuated the colors in the butterfly. 

At the end of the tenth week, I was pleased with the progress that I had made! The base fabric that I'm covering is about 45 inches tall by about 65 inches wide. 


Mereknits said...

The yellow background is brilliant, it highlights the whole butterfly. your granddaughters have excellent color sense. Stay safe. said...

Thanks, Mereknits! Those granddaughters are terrific consultants!