I hope you enjoyed last week's 3 part post on the tiles of this too shall pass....because now we're back to another One Post Wool Week. Remember this white wool coat? The one that I said wouldn't work?
Well, I did more experiments. If I attached the dark wool to the less-fuzzy side of the wool, I got better images. If I basted the dark and light wool together, and wrapped them very, very tightly, I got great images, like this small sample:
And since I couldn't find another white wool coat or jacket, I plowed ahead with this one. Somehow, I neglected to take a photo of the whole piece before boiling. In this detail, above, you can see how freezer paper bobbin-shapes were interwoven into the lace. Below are the blue wool shapes basted onto the bottom of the coat:
Some of these shapes are cut from another blue coat, which doesn't transfer color quite as well - I'm hoping for enough variation in color to be noticed, but still blending in. The scissor-shapes have already been boiled, so they should also give a different transfer color than the unboiled coat which will cover it all.
If you look in the upper left-hand corner, you'll see some black stitches. Here's a closer look:
In ancient cave paintings, there are some "ladder" images. I thought chain stitch might be good to reference them. Again, some experiments, this time with the thread that transferred rust-colored lines:
1. cave "ladder" 2. chain stitch, some covered before boiling 3. results
After seeing the result, I decided to use heavy waxed white thread to stitch around the dark chain stitches. I'm hoping they'll have more contrast.
So, I had the whole thing ready and laid out on the kitchen floor. The dark blue and the white wool were basted together. Plastic covering the floor, and rags in case of spills. Water boiling in the tea pot. A foil-covered cardboard tube to wrap around, and foil to cover the wrapped cloth. I asked my husband to lend a hand, just in case....
If someone had recorded us, it would be a You-Tube comedy classic. The wool absorbed a LOT more water than I had figured, and we were quickly boiling more, until it started running all over the floor. Working together, we got the hot, wet wool wrapped around the tube. Jeff held it while I struggled to pull cloth tape tightly around. I didn't get it as tight as I had hoped, but we managed to get it all inside a double layer of heavy foil, and it fit in the oven. Many hours later:
The dark blue layer has been removed, and now I just have to carefully cut off all the other resists and transfers....
...and we have this (with a red spool-end transfer temporarily pinned on). I'm delighted with some of the effects - the scissors overlapping the iron, the variations of color.
But ......my three rules for successful art: 1. must have content 2. content must relate to the materials 3. must have visual power. Well, I think I've really nailed the first 2 rules here. History, meaning, materials and techniques, oh, yeah, I got it. But visual power? no. The stark blue & white contrast is better than the first combination of sections, but it's just not right. Of course those other sections are still refusing to cooperate:
In the upper left corner, the mirror-image of the word WOOL has been resisted into the dark blue. There's a faint handprint on the right side. I stitched around the rusty scissors and boiled it to get stitch prints. The phototransfer of spool labels (the red circles) came out exactly the way I wanted. There's SO MUCH here that I love....but neither the jacket sections nor the white coat will SING!
So I'm going to be smart and step away from the wool. Leave it alone. Get some perspective....and while I'm at it, I'll start exercising and stop eating chocolate. Sure. Back next Monday with Continued Adventures with Wool...