After a few week’s break from stitching, having been away on our annual windsurfing trip to Boracay in the Philippines, it feels good to be back in my sewing room and starting work on a new project. The project is a series of four wall hangings featuring African sunsets shot in the Kruger National park by a friend, and it makes a nice change to be working on something a bit different from my usual Asian inspired designs.
To start with I made some washes on paper so that I could experiment with the colour mixes I would need when I came to do the skies on cloth. This is one of the ones that I did.
When I was happy with the colours on paper I decided to try some samples on fabric using fabric paints. I dampened the whole piece first, then painted a pale wash of yellow before adding other colours.
the samples drying on the line
Once the samples were dry, I heat set them with an iron and then backed each piece with fusible web. I did the same with a strip of commercial batik fabric which I will use for the ground and sky line. I fussy cut an uneven edge for the sky line, then fused that to the background sky and then fused the whole lot onto a backing of muslin.
I made another smaller sample so that I could experiment with stitching, and I used a fabric pen to sketch in some trees and shrubs.
I wanted a fine thread to stitch the details and go along the edge so I used Aurifil 50wt cotton and a narrow free motion zigzag. I varied the angle and width of the stitching to give an uneven edge to the sky line.