Sun, May 5 2013 12:48

I can't help it. This time of the year makes me turn to my summer wardrobe and look forward to additions and updates. I love, love, love getting out my stencils and fabric paints and hitting the refresh button on what is coming out of my summer clothing storage bin.
Pick out YOUR favorite stencil and lets get started!
With bamboo and linen how can you go wrong?
Here are 2 linen garments, a bag and a piece of canvas where I have been printing with my Bamboo Forest Stencil and my Jakarta Stencil
 Ideas always come in multiples...don't resist that, it's a gift from your creativity! When I am working and another idea comes to mind, I start it, sketch or in some other way, play with the idea for a few minutes (long enough to remind myself what it was later)- then, I go back to what I am doing. Every idea doesn't have to be part of what your hands are doing at the moment. Giving that 'monkey mind' of mine a chance to climb around on a new idea lets me come back to what I am doing refreshed and not as distracted.
Here are my best tips for making it easy and your results successful-
1. My clothing remodels usually involves new buttons. Plus, the printing is easier if the buttons are removed first.
2. Press the garment for easier printing.
3. Get 2 pieces of cardboard (wrap with a rag/towel for padding). Use these to insert in to the sleeve and body of the garment to prevent printing through both layers at one time.
4. Start on the back. No really, think about it, last time you made buttonholes...wasn't the worst one at the top and the best one on the bottom after you had made afew? Yup, it is like that. Starting on the back or on a sleeve with give you a chance to play with the stencil, design and how the paint and colors are working on the fabric. Trust me, I have done this afew times....this pays off!
5. I finish by printing the front panels. You can see there are many different ways to arrange the images as you print. Some of you are grid people and some of you are know who you are). I intentionally arrange the designs on my stencils as separate elements so they are very versatile: with the bamboo stencil, you can make a symmetrical fence or a random forest. This gives YOU the opportunity to design with the stencil and create your own, personal images.

6. Add buttons, handstitching, beads  or other elements to finish the design. As you can see on these to garments, I tied the new buttons on with the embroidery floss.
The basic shape of this bag is from my Pacific Purse Pattern #201 . I used 2 stencils here. The Brush Alphabet Stencil  is one of my favorites for printing backgrounds. On top I printed the Bamboo Forest. To finish the bag, I made a cord that mimics a bamboo stalk by scrunching the fabric on the cord to create the look of the nodes. I hand-stitched to hold the scrunched fabric in place. It was a great design flash...and I love the look! The Asian coins close through a loop and complete the theme of the piece. I always enjoy pulling together the elements that will compliment the stenciling and work the them of the piece.
I could not resist using red as an accent!

Happy Printing! DIANE
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