There are a few questions in the course book to be answered at the end of Stage 4.
• How does working with fabric in this way compare with working directly with stitch?
It is easier to achieve big, bold effects with fabric manipulation as quite large areas can be changed quickly. Some parts of manipulation appear at first glance to be quicker than working with stitch but I soon found out that the effects were time consuming to create. I think the best effects are when the choice of fabric, manipulation and stitch are all used together whether to create a blended effect or to create contrast.
• Are you pleased with the shapes and movements that you have created in both
appliqué and fabric manipulation? What would you do differently?
I had mixed results here. I was pleased overall with my applique sample and the development work that led up to this. For fabric manipulation, I was happy with the range of small samples that I did as I tried different techniques that I had not necessarily used before. With my final sample on the plain fabric I was not pleased, largely because with the layering of stuffed and tucked areas it was difficult to achieve a smooth look and I ended up with a lumpy effect. I would need to do more small samples of layering the stuffing to get this right, especially where the stuffed areas overlap each other.
• How did the pieces work in relation to your drawings? Were the final results very
different from the drawings? Did the fabric manipulation technique take over and
dictate the final result?
As mentioned before I was not happy with my manipulation sample that related to my drawing but I do think it related to the drawing and followed the idea of the lines in different directions and of different widths. Some of the stage 2 samples worked well and others didn’t, for example the cyclone development into fabric was very successful as it created so much movement and feeling, whereas the work based on the Poinsianna flower was not so good as it was very geometric and felt forced. I am learning more about myself in this course and becoming freer in my approach to creating which shows in my sampling.
• Was it helpful to work from the drawings in the appliqué exercise? Would you have
preferred to play directly with cut shapes and materials?
Although I did not work from my drawings for my final applique sample I did for the test pieces developed in stage 2, any of which could have been converted into full appliques. I prefer to work from a drawing rather than play at random as I like to have a direction and image in my mind of what I want to achieve.
• How do you feel about working with stitch in general? Is it an area you would like
to pursue in more depth? Do you find it limiting in any way?
I enjoy working with stitch and fabric. I have a preference for hand sewing as I find this therapeutic even if it is time consuming. This may limit it’s use due to time constraints but also has the effect of making me think about using stitch well and selectively. I can also mix hand and machine stitching as I did with the flower that I produced in my mixed manipulation techniques experiment, using machine stitching for the background and hand stitching for more detail in the central image.