It's always fascinating when two separate, but otherwise unrelated 'things' come together in time to influence and inspire new work. I blogged here about finding a white feather on my morning walk and how it reminded me how much I enjoyed beading feathers.
A few days later I read a passage in a American Indian mystery that described their belief that white feathers are 'kisses from heaven' or 'angels wings'. The piece I'd been working on now had an additional direction.I was so anxious and driven to complete the piece that I hurried it a bit too much. I even went so far as to attach the embellished felted wool to fabric which was museum wrapped onto a wood frame. In the back of my mind....I kept hearing a little voice saying.....no, no....it's missing something......
Yup.....clouds....it needed clouds BUT how on earth am I going to add that detail at this stage?? And what material could I use? Believe me when I tell you I tried EVERYTHING....gauze, sheers, hand embroidery, curly wool roving, batting. I even experimented with paint on some spare background fabric.
Finally, I concluded that wool roving would work best. It took numerous attempts to figure it out. Fusible web was one of the failures....if it melted enough to stay secure on the wool....the fibers appeared too flat, if less than fully fused, it peeled away too easily.
Hand stitching is always my preference, rather than gluing....but there are times when its necessary. One trick I use is to dilute Fabric-Tac with mineral spirits.....so it's less.....well....I guess I'd say....less gooky.
In order to give the wool roving a bit more body so it wouldn't collapse, I worked a small amount (wet) with my fingers. It's not felted, or even pre-felted.....rather the friction was just enough to keep the fibers gently stuck together.
Using a bamboo skewer.....dots of glue were placed on the background....a tweezer helped guide the roving in place.... Now it is complete!
A KISS FROM HEAVEN 8" X 10"
Artist hand-dyed felted wool, hand embroidered, & bead embellished.
Museum wrapped with batik fabric on wood frame.