How I Started Thread Painting.
A few years ago I attended the Sew South retreat in Charlotte, North Carolina. I enjoyed sharing my passion for quilting with other quilters just like me! One of the most inspirational moments at Sew South was when Kati from The Blue Chair (@thebluechair) played this video (https://www.ted.com/talks/phil_hansen_embrace_the_shake) as the intro to her improv-quilting lesson. (If you want to be inspired…watch this video!!!) This video got me thinking, “You know, I could essentially paint with thread. I can draw out different designs and apply thread using the freemotion technique.” So, I was very excited when I returned to home to try out this technique I had contemplated in my mind.
The first thread painting I tried was on a Noodlehead 241 tote from a flower design I created.
I was trying to decide how to begin and I thought it would be best to treat this technique just like machine embroidery. So that’s what I did. I backed the fabric with multiple layers of stabilizer, hooped it with an embroidery hoop and used embroidery thread. Here are a few progress photos:
As I was working on the thread painting, I loved the way it was coming together but I did notice that there was some puckering around the edges of the design. What was even more irritating than the puckering was the thread continually breaking and shredding every few stitches. It probably took double the time complete because of the countless times I had to rethread the needle. It also was much harder to layer the thread once it became so dense and hard in spots. That is when I learned at some point you have to settle for the way it looks because the needle will simply not go through the thread/fabric anymore. But in the end when my first thread painting was finished, I loved the texture that was created with the layers of silky thread.
And although at times it was frustrating, it was obvious to say I was hooked!
And most importantly the recipient (@vt_ellen) of my bag was very appreciative and loved it as much as I did!
Now onto my next thread painting!