Our latest challenge at AVJ starts today and we have an open sewing theme for you. I am hosting and my brief for you is -
This is simple - a sewing inspired creation, any style as long as you tell us what the Tim influence is in your project, it could be that you have used a Tim technique, some of Tim's products, maybe you will case one of his tags but make it sewing based, you choose . Be adventurous and make whatever you like, it doesn't have to include real sewing but must be focused within that theme.
I have chosen to use fabric to make journal covers and have used Tim inspired layers using distress inks, stencil, and stamp – and also some images from Tim’s Eclectic elements fabric range, ideaology, paper from Tim’s wallflower stash and his wonderful layered butterfly die. I also got out the sewing machine, but I definitely need more practice using it lol.
I started with Tim’s monoprint technique using his layering stencils and distress sprays on plain cotton fabric but after several layers I decided I didn't like the result. So I got out another piece of fabric and started again.
I daubed over some thin layers of gesso with a palette knife and dried them. Next I dipped the fabric in puddles of watery distress ink and dried that layer. Then I added the harlequin pattern using Tim’s stencil with a mixture of evergreen bough and salty ocean distress paint ……
……and then grabbed the extra large flourish (from the fabulous flourishes set) and stamped with white gesso. Once dry I started to spray stains over but I was unhappy with the colour choices, so into the sink and under cool water I squeezed all the colour out. So I was ready to start again but with the same piece as it was back to neutral.
This time I decided I would go the vintage route and chose stormy sky, brushed corduroy, gathered twigs and walnut stain distress stains, squidging them onto my mat and spritzed them with water I used a babywipe to gently blend the colours over randomly. As I was drying it with the heat gun I was turning the fabric over to heat both sides and this is when I noticed that I actually preferred the reverse side. I decided though that I would add some sponged gesso to lighten and brighten the front again and then stamp with black gesso.
It was at this point something amazing happened, I splattered the background with drops of walnut stain distress stain, but they looked too dark, so I spritzed them with water and rubbed them in a bit and before my eyes I began to get distinct water marks, large versions of the spritz and flick technique, so cool.
I was much happier with this piece.
I took some fabric and spray starched it, making it stiffer than it was, then dipped it in some distress stains, drying it off. I ran it through the die-cutter with the layered butterfly die and through the matching embossing folder. It created the embossed texture and with some light swipes of rose madder archival, the fabulous patterns showed up. To finish it I edged it with walnut stain distress ink.
I took a piece of canvas roll cut two covers to the size I wanted, sprayed with tattered rose and antique linen distress stains and also used some blue skies glimmer mist. The age spots were a stroke of luck as I keep a box for spraying in and the canvas picked up some bits of other colours that has been sprayed in the box on previous occasions. I misted it all with water to blend the colours together and heat dried. I stamped using black archival and the distress damask stamps, a text stamp and blended broken china distress ink through the harlequin mask to provide continuity with the front covers.
Creating the collage on the front cover
I cut the fabric background in half and pinned each part to another piece of the canvas roll. I layered a collage design using images cut from the eclectic elements range of fabrics, a piece of wallflower paper and some cheesecloth. These were all sewn on using my machine (please excuse the sewing, I haven’t used the sewing machine like this for ages and am right out of practice).
I then added some other embellishments sewing them on by hand.
… a rusted button and washer ….
… a rusted pen nib……
…. a wishbone with tissue tape behind it …..
.. a stamped title ….
… and the gorgeous layered butterfly.
The back cover
I simply sewed on some card and paper butterflies.
To complete the covers I layered up the fabric over the canvas, a layer of stiffened fabric to help keep the shape and an inside cover of canvas with some of Tim’s trimmings to create the tie.
Some eyelets and rings and some pages sprayed with distress stains finished it all off.
Now what shall I use it for ………………..?????
Phew, it was rather a long process but I am really pleased with the finished outcomes, the lovely soft and pliable covers feel lovely in the hands and because they are flexible they will stretch over embellished pages easily.
Thanks for sharing in my project today. I hope you like the fabric journal and maybe you will be inspired to try one for yourself.
Do take a trip over to the Vintage Journey Challenge blog and take a look at all the incredible samples that the Creative Guides have made to inspire you. I am sure you will find something to get you making and if you enter with a Tim inspired project you stand a chance of winning a £10 voucher from Country View Crafts.
Have a great weekend.
hugs Brenda xxx
What a lovely sewn journal Brenda! How wonderful to experiment with the colors and techniques for a background and finally find one that is pleasing - you never really know how inks and stains are going to react until you get to play! Love your cloth butterfly - and all the stitched pieces and fun attachments - a beautiful sewn project! Thanks for inspiring us to get sewing!
Really beautiful Brenda, thanks for sharing all the details as you went along. I like the actual sewing that you did on this, I haven't been brave enough to get out that old sewing machine.
This is do beautiful. You have managed to do so much of layering on fabric..that's wonderful and results are definitely rewarding.
It was wonderful to go through the process along with you.. Loved the way its come out .Beautiful :)
Wow Brenda what a labour of love your journal is. The inks works brilliantly on the fabric and as you say this must feel so lovely in the hand. The sewing on it is brilliant you are far too critical of your beautiful work! Have a lovely weekend, hugs xx
Oh wow - What a fantastic Cover - it's so beautiful and so romantic! Your did a great Job :-) I love it!!! Hugs Dagmar
Meine Güte, Brenda, was für ein fantastisches Werk.
Ich sehe die vielen Arbeitsgänge vor mir und kann nur noch staunen...
Herzlichst Sophie xx
Oh my goodness Brenda, your journal is so stunning. I know all the work that goes in to something like this is no mean feat. It has all come together so beautifully and I really can't tear my self away from looking at it. Have a Good Day my friend. Hugs Rita xxx
This is so beautiful Brenda.
Fabulous fabric work here Brenda. It really helps to know what worked and what didn't for this and the end results speak for themselves - utterly gorgeous. Loving that stiffened butterfly too. Jenny x
A labour of love Brenda, with stunning results. Great collage and delicate butterflies. Love it and what a keepsake to treasure.
Once again, another beautiful project, Brenda. Wonderful techniques.
Love your fabric journal and I think that the 'wild' stitching is an extra touch in stead of correct stitching!
Have a great weekend!
Fabric and stitching vintage style at it's best. Stitching should not be perfect, it is part of the process not the focal point, even if your challenge is about stitching. Your Journal is a organic work of Heart, it has raised the bar and is just sensational:-) xxx
WOW, stunning journal! I love it.
This is so beautiful Brenda, love all the colours and the sewn on layers .
Thank you for this detailed tutorial and all the pictures of your experiments.
I shall keep returning to look and admire .
Inspiring -thank you!
I found your journal on A Vintega Journey hallenge Blog and I adore it! The colours you choose are lovely! I also love the style and the idea of making a fabric, soft cover!
Fabulous Brenda! Love your experiments to begin with using the fabric brings a whole different dimension to the project. Love it! Sue C x
Wow! I don't know where to start Brenda!! This is just stunning and I love how your experiments developed on the backgrounds (I actually liked all three!). The butterfly is just fabulous and the sewn on layers stunning. Gorgeous piece xxxx
The cover is so beautiful Brenda, I love all the detail but for me that large butterfly just stands out - it is exquisite! Hugs, Anne xx
This is wonderful, Brenda. I love the pastel shades and the fabric textures. Beautiful!
Gorgeous journal covers,love the soft feminine shades.
Simply stunning Brenda!
This is so beautiful, love all the elements gorgeously put together, a real treat for the eyes. Ruth x
Fabulous cover Brenda, your trial and error certainly paid off in the end! Love the collage at the front specially!
Gorgeous journal and thanks so much for sharing all the details with us. Happy crafting, Angela x
Your stitching is just gorgeous! LOVE all of it! Fabulous design!
All Sewn Up beautifully, Brenda! Love the stitching all all your lovely details! Hope you had a great weekend. Hugs.
Fabulous Journal cover
Love the techniques you used the results are fabulous
Love your die cut butterflies, and how you applied them
The finished result is beautiful
wow just beautiful, just love the soft colours :-) xx
Wow, Brenda, these are gorgeous! I am not much of a sewist but you make me want to try. The stitching adds SO much!
Wow Brenda this is totally awesome
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