Monday, June 01, 2015

The Printed Fabric Bee: Found Objects!

Leslie Tucker Jenison chose "found objects" as the theme for The Printed Fabric Bee this month. She also requested a neutral color palette with a pop of color. Ok... challenge accepted.

I created my fabric for this month's theme while in a three day print making workshop. I gathered a bunch of random objects and brought them to the workshop with me. I used plain white muslin and black paint.

First layer... pastry blender.
You can see that I've got a layer of black felt under the cloth. That allows the objects to sink into the cloth a little to get a better print.

Next layer: tiny toy turtle.

If you zoom into this picture, you may be able to see the tiny imprint of "China" on these stamps.

Is this a triangle cookie cutter? I'm not sure. You can see I'm working on a large piece of fabric that will go to Leslie and a 6x6 inch piece that will be included in our monthly give-away.

I'm not sure where this came from. But it's awesome! A square filled with tiny circles. 

As the last layer, I add tiny pairs of teal circles. This is a very subtle "pop of color."

You can see that I also filled in the fabric somewhat randomly and left some areas unprinted. I really like the movement of the shapes across the fabric. It would look entirely different if I'd filled the whole piece of cloth.

I think the pastry blender is my favorite!

Here is the 6x6 inch fabric. Comment on The Printed Fabric Bee blog for a chance to win the whole collection.

As usual, I like to review what worked and what didn't work for my submissions for The Printed Fabric Bee.


  • I loved the random/not random placement of the prints across the fabric. I generally default to a grid pattern and this was a good departure.
  • I like the mix of open shapes with filled shapes.
  • I really like working with just black and white.
  • Creating the fabric within a workshop setting was nice also. It's good to get out of my own studio every now and then.
  • Using a layer of felt under the fabric was really important. (I learned this from Julie Booth's book.)

Less Than Successful:

  • We were using Akua printing ink for the whole workshop. I'm not sure I love it on fabric. It takes a super long time to really really dry. (Days!) It's probably fine, but it wouldn't be my first choice for this kind of work in the future.
  • I wish I would have chosen a much bolder pop of color.
  • Honestly, I like that pastry blender print so much, I almost wish I'd used just that. 

Be sure to check out how the other members of The Printed Fabric Bee interpreted this challenge on our blog and Facebook page.


Sherri Lipman McCauley said...

I love the black and white palette (with the touch of teal!).

Jody said...

I really like the simplicity of the palette. That tiny bit of teal really pops! I am going to try felt underneath next time I try printing like this.

Thread Born said...

Hi Deborah- Love the results. I got into the random printing with found objects for my Scavenger Hunt and so decided to continue with it for Leslie's piece. Since I'm also usually a grid person, it was very freeing! I'll be posting about my fabric tomorrow. Thanks also for the book "plug"!

Dee Spillane said...

Deb, this is really cool.

The Joyful Quilter said...

Your bee is starting to sound more and more like the "Quilters Playgroup" that I belonged to a number of years ago. My current group has a Dye Frenzy coming up this month, so your post was right on time to spark some ideas for me. We are planning to do some fabric painting this year and the techniques you used will fit right in.

Thanks for the inspiration!!

Carol R. Eaton Designs said...

I love the feel of this design! It's peaceful... if that is possible!

Robbie said...

Very cool!