The website 'Wordle' was recommended to me sometime ago. Kind of forgot about it, but the other day found the little note with the link, when I was tidying up my desk. I love incorporating words and text in my work. More often graphics is more important to me than the actual meaning of the words, so finding 'wordle' has been a lot of fun. On the web site you are able to create word clouds. You can either write/copy and paste a text, import an URL, or import your tags from Delicious. The word clouds that I have created here for this blog post are based on imports from my Etsy shop and my tags on Delicious. The results are just stunning. Don't go to the site unless you have more than a moment to spare. It is so addictive. (Don't say I didn't warn you :-) If you don't want to create your own clouds, then browse the gallery, for some stunning examples, that changes all the time.
The other day I mirror imaged a wonderful word cloud before printing it on a transparency (for ink jet printing). Painted some acrylic mat medium on to fabric, while still damp (you have to work quite quickly), I pressed the printed text transparency with the rough side down into the medium. Rubbed it with a spoon. And presto. The word cloud was transferred with the writing the right side up on to the fabric. Pretty neat. I could get carried away with this..... Here is the link you you want to have a play: Wordle

Etsy shop cloud:


The other day I was making some backgrounds for a couple of project. My camera was right there so I decided to take a couple of pictures as I went along. Making roller prints is one of my favorites methods for adding colour/pattern/texture to a surface. I love the randomness and the fact that you can play with both the positive and negative image of a design is great. It is easy to create exciting results in very little time. The printing block can be almost anything as long as it has a leveled surface. Too bumpy and the paint/design will be picked up too unevenly. I often make great blocks from recycled Styrofoam pizza bases. Here I have used print blocks meant for texturing polymer clay.
On my printing plate, in this case a sheet of thick acetate, I put dollops of acrylic paint of the following colours: 2 blues, white and gold. I like using a selection of coordinated colours. I like the random mixing of the colours and small traces of colour showing here and there in the print.
Load the roller and roll it relatively dry on the acetate sheet. Roll over the print block. Lift the print block and use as a stamp. One can often at least two prints from one paint application. I like the shadow effect as the pattern fades. For my work I prefer to place the print block quite randomly, overlapping building up more or less dense areas.

Then take the roller and carefully roll the negative paint imprint that is left on the roller onto the surface.
When working with acrylic paint you have to work relatively quickly as the paint dries quickly. An extender can be added if one needs a longer opening time before the paint dries. This technique works just as well on paper as on fabric.
The finished sheet of paper. In this case I wanted to keep the white background, but in other cases I have painted the surface with a diluted, liquid dye. The acrylic paint will work as a resist and one can create very exciting results.
Have fun and most importantly PLAY :-)


The photo I used as inspiration for my stitched piece.

I made this picture a while back and I thought I'd like to share how I did it. It is such a lovely technique, if you like me, like texture and few frayed bits. All together a bit rustic I guess :-)

Choose your design source. It can be a photo you've taken or pulled from a magazine, your own design work, what ever appeals to you. Make a (rough)sketch with emphasis on the flow of lines in your design source. Then determine if you want to add a some pattern as a focal point. Again, look at your design source and see if something 'wants to be added'. Otherwise use your imagination and the artistic licence.

Layer 10-12 layers of butter muslin, (loosely woven cotton fabric). Tack the layers roughly together. Set your machine for free style machine stitching threaded with a a white/neutral cotton sewing thread. Stitch your design. Go over the lines 3-4 times.
Look at your stitched piece and decide what layers you want to cut away using a small pointed scissor. You will be creating depth in your design, so give it a bit of thought envisioning the various combinations. Cut the fabric away, but not all the way through. Leave a couple of layers.

If you want to dye your stitched piece. Place it in a flat tray. Spray with water, to dampen the surface. Use lightly diluted Dyn-a-flow, silk paint or any other liquid dye and a brush working the dye into the surface. Let the colors merge for a soft look. When happy, let dry and add hand embroidery and other embellishment if you so wish.