Today, I am sharing a recent project: a fabric book in progress. The content is the 4th-century poem by Lao Tze. It is far from finished, but I think I have developed the hand embroidery enough to give my ideas form for you to see where this fabric book is going. It was started quite a while ago, as a slow stitching project. Originally, I pieced it as wall panel but felt it was going nowhere. Before it became a UFO, I decided to chop it up to make fabric book pages.
The poem in the book reads:
We put thirty spokes together and call it a wheel;
But it is on the space where there is nothing that the utility of the wheel depends.
We turn clay to make a vessel;
But it is on the space where there is nothing that the utility of the vessel depends.
We pierce doors and windows to make a house;
and it is on these spaces where there is nothing that the utility of the house depends.
Therefore, just as we take advantage of what is,
we should recognise the utility of what is not
[— Lao Tze, 4th Century BC]
These are the pages I have created for my fabric book. They are very much still a work in progress but I am sure you can see where it is going.
The first page is made up of hand-dyed and printed fabric and commercial quilting fabric. I used some coconut beads which are large but quite light. Other smaller disk-like beads were sprinkled across the page.
Stitches used are French knots, Bullion Knots, Buttonhole wheels and Whipped Wheels. These were worked in a mix of hand-dyed silk thread and cotton perle #8 and #5 thread.
To print the text, I used freezer paper to back the fabric and then put it through my bubblejet printer. (For Aussies the freezer paper I used is the American sort that you can get from quilting suppliers) I then cut it up and used Mistyfuse (Not affiliated) to fuse it to the page.
Stitches used are French knots, Bullion Knots, Buttonhole wheels and Whipped Wheels.
The next page of my fabric-book-in-progress still needs some work. I think I need more spillage of beads and stitchery into the text area. At the moment, this page is on my design wall so I can think about it. So far I have used some ruched tubular knitting ribbon. Stitches used are Chain stitch, Stem stitch, French knots, Bullion Knots, Oyster stitches, Buttonhole wheels and Whipped Wheels. I used a mix of hand-dyed silk threads and cotton perle #8 and #5 thread.
I have used some ruched tubular knitting ribbon and couched down some sari ribbon. I used a mix of hand-dyed silk thread and cotton perle #8 and #5 thread to work French knots, Bullion Knots, Oyster stitches, Buttonhole wheels and Whipped Wheels
I hope you have enjoyed this peek at my latest work in progress.
Follow Pintangle and have it delivered to your inbox
You can have Pintangle delivered to your inbox by using the subscribe feature in the sidebar. Enter your email address, and when you get the confirmation email make sure you say yes and you are all set!
If you are on a mobile or tablet you will need to scroll to the bottom to find the subscribe feature.