Thursday 11 January 2018

Inspiration Post - Fabric Collage

It is Cec here and today I am bringing you a fabric collage that makes use of lots of bits and pieces you have lying around along with some stamping and stenciling on fabric.  There is absolutely no right or wrong way to create this type of collage but I do recommend that you just dive in and start adding things because I wasted time trying to lay everything out ahead of time.  I did decide where the stamped and stenciled pieces were going to be but for the rest, I made it up as I went along.  I also did not want it to look perfect so I didn't take a lot of care lining things up or making sure the edges were at right angles and I sure succeeded  - LOL.

First I decided how large I wanted to make the finished piece and then cut two pieces of canvas fabric a bit smaller.  They were sandwiched with a piece of quilt batting in between and then I stitched around the edge a couple of times moving the fabric so my stitching was not straight.

The next step was to stencil a butterfly (IndigoBlu) onto some lightweight canvas fabric using a variety of acrylic paints - Pink Iced Gem that I mixed with a bit of Mulberry Bush, Wimberry Pie and Townhouse Teal (all IndigoBlu).

When this piece was dry, I added it to some quilt batting and hand stitched around the butterfly.  I used some double-sided tape to hold the canvas to the batting when I turned it to the back but would not do that again because it is hard to stitch through glue.  Another time, I would leave it un-turned and frayed as it is in the photo.  I would also stencil the butterfly straight on and not on an angle.  I glued a bunch of teeny seed beads (Michaels) randomly around the butterfly.

There was some leftover pink paint on my kraft mat so I mixed it with some Light Molding Paste (Golden) and used a feather stencil (IndigoBlu) to add some textured stenciling to a piece of frayed muslin.  When it was dry I decided it was too bright so I laid the stencil over it again and inked it with some Victorian Velvet Distress Ink (Tim Holtz).  The fabric was then stitched to a piece of quilt batting.

Another piece of muslin was stamped with a little bird from a set called Vintage Outdoors (Stampendous) using Cornflower Blue Archival Ink (Wendy Vecchi for Ranger).  This was also stitched to some batting and some seed beads (Dollarama) were sewn in the corners.

I went to my sewing stash and grabbed a few scraps I thought might work together and started to assemble the collage on the fabric background starting at the bottom and working my way up.  I won't describe every little thing I did because the idea here is that you make this your own and use whatever you have available.  There is lots of hand stitching with embroidery floss, including some french knots.  I sewed some buttons on as well as some seed beads.  I also added some wool and fibres.

Sewing the beads took me right back to the time I made a Japanese fan out of seed beads on a bathing suit for my daughter's synchronized swimming competition and the judges at the first level didn't like the colour of the suit (it was the colour of muslin so the fan would pop but they said she looked like she was not wearing anything under water) so they made her get a new suit before the next level of competition.  All those little beads and I had to start over and only had one week once the new suit was made for her.  Needless to say the fan idea was out and sequins were pressed into service because they were faster to sew on.  But I digress . . . .

After I sewed and/or glued everything on my fabric canvas background, I prepared my stretched canvas by adding some clear Gesso (Liquitex) on the top to create a border and on the sides.  I purposely put it on thickly and used my brush to create some bumps for texture.  When the Gesso was dry I added some Blood Orange Fresco Finish (Paper Artsy) and then when that was dry I gave it a spritz with some Aged Mahogany Distress Spray Stain (Tim Holtz).  Finally I glued my collage onto the stretched canvas using Super Thick Slap It On (IndigoBlu).

I had fun making this collage and hope I have inspired you to try your hand at stamping and stenciling on fabric.


  1. Beautiful collage Cec, love all the different elements, so much to see and the feather and buttefly are fabulous ! Sue C x

  2. I really appreciate your professional approach.These are pieces of very useful information that will be of great use for me in future.