Tuesday, July 10, 2012

fern fabric

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While the palm trees of Southern California (in my old life) were beautiful- I do have a soft spot in my heart for the wild ferns in Oregon- boy have I missed them! The Pacific Northwest is home to about 40 different species of ferns and it seems everywhere you turn you are able to find these gorgeous green beauties! I couldn't resist creating my own fabric using a variety of ferns from our yard and a few simple surface design techniques from my book Sew Wild.

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The first technique is a glue resist- all you need is Elmers Glue, a paint brush and ferns (any leaves or anything with texture will also work).


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I covered the ferns with glue and then pressed them into the surface of fabric- it left an imprint (almost like a stamp) in glue. I covered the surface and then let the glue dry completely.


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Next, I painted over the top of the fabric with dye.
Once the surface was dry, I heat set my dye with an iron and then washed the fabric.


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The glue washes away and in its place you have a beautiful imprint of the ferns.


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Next, I used the ferns as a stencil and as a stamp by placing them on the surface of my fabric and then painting over the top.

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I also covered the ferns with dye and then pressed them into the surface to leave an imprint


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I covered my fabric with layers of fern stencils and imprints.


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Of course I couldn't resist putting my fabric to use!
I cut it up and used all of the pieces to create "scrappy" place mats,


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I sewed all of the scraps together with lots of free motion stitching.


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And just like that I created a set of place mats for our dining room table!


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