Friday, 27 April 2012

Scraps And Ribbons

Oh ... I love Solvy!
Scrappy Fabric Work in progress ...

I discovered this material in my local craft shop and after reading about it on the net I got a great idea. The material is water soluable and I decided to use it along with lots of tiny scraps and ribbons in the trash bin to make a funky bit of material - maybe a shawl/scarf or whatever?

I cut two large shawl shapes from the Solvy and piled all my scraps and ribbon pieces onto one of them. I then covered these with the second sheet of Solvy and pushed it all flat. I then pinned the pieces in place. I did not try and arrange the pieces - just a higgledy piggledy mess of colour and bits from a scrap bag. I did, however, make sure that each of the pieces were touching each other or the material would fall apart when the Solvy was dissolved. I also added some sequins and felted wool, a gift from Tina at  Sweetypie50  ... I know this is important to her - for me to have a bit of glitter in my life!

I then sewed the two layers together by meandering and sewing lots of lines all over the the area until every tiny scrap was secured. Now for the exciting bit ... I put the whole thing in a basin of warm water and left it for fifteen minutes for the Solvy to dissolve. Then I gave the fabric a good rinse in fabric sofener to get all the remaining stiffness from it that is caused by the glue like substance in Solvy ... and now here it is after the first stage ... the beginnings of a very funky scarf/shawl or piece of wacky material or whatever ?

Shawl shaped - still wet - before the finishing touches

A closer look before the trimming, embroidery and finishing

Below are some pics of the dissolving process - lift it from the water when well rinsed and press flat  (the check background is a towel)  ...

The glitter - a gift from Tina

Old ribbon scraps from a friend

More felted wool scraps and sequins from Tina

Scrap ribbon from my new skirt

Any old tiny scrap pieces just piled in a heap

The back as colourful as the front

More back - a riot of colour

The heap of scraps - what a mess!

Now for a bit of red  machine embroidery to hold the pieces firmly together and tidy the ends ...

Beginnings of some colour stitching

More colour stitching

Even more colour stitches

Trying to cover the whole mess with colour stitches

Scrappy material unfinished fabric/shawl/scarf

When the fabric is dry and pressed I shall trim the edges and then embroider all over again with the machine in red to give it a bit more depth and interest. I may even add some red applique flowers and do some hand embroidery. Sadly my machine has been playing up all day with wonky stitches and making laboured noises so hope it will survive for at least the rest of the day. I shall post more pics of the finished product later today or tomorrow when I have decided just what to do with it.

Lots of detail so far

More detail so far

More colour so far

Even more colour so far

More detail so far

And even more detail so far

I shall continue with this strange work tomorrow and then post some pics of the finished piece when it is embroidered by hand, sequined, beaded, appliqued, washed and softened into a flimsy piece of fabric ... and then who knows what it will become?

Sweetypie50  has taught me that things need not be neat and tidy, could be colourful and unfinished,  and totally off the wall, weird and wacky and then still look interesting ... thank you so much Tina for that little lesson.

I can think of so many things to do with Solvy and this trial is just the beginning of understanding how to use this magical material. This scrappy material reminds me of the crazy quilting of Victorian times and presumably if I embroider it then it could be just as interesting as that was. Maybe a journal cover is beckoning?

Afterwards, now that I understand the process, I shall try to use the material again with some good designer fabrics and a little thought and planning. Watch this space ...

Still work in progress ... more later ...

Knitting outfits..
You know how much I like weird and colourful?
These ladies are knitting their own outfits!
Via cleobelle


  1. This appeals to my quirky side. Love the colours. can't wait to see the finished article.

  2. Ooh, fab idea! I keep meaning to try this stuff, but I've not ever consciously seen it for sale. What does it look like when you buy it? On the roll? In a package of some kind?

  3. I love this...I have made cards using this technique but nothing so big as these. I love the photo of the ladies too, so colourful

  4. Such fun. I tried to get Hadley to do this with one of her precious scraps, I think it's fab!

  5. ooh I love it, it makes you just want to grab that needle and stitch into it woulnt it be great to have a wall quilt like that, love it


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