In art, all materials are grist for the mill. When I was at SAS Fabric Superstore the other day, I saw some sage burlap and decided it had potential. I’ve seen over-dyed pink and yellow burlap, but the sage color was new, so it came back to the studio.
Tonight, I decided to work with it–no expectations, no project in mind. Just working to see what I can do with it, using what I know how to do.
Digging through my stash, I found some thread and some embroidery floss that worked well with the burlap. I cut a piece about 10 inches by 4 inches. To make the edges even, I pulled some of the woven threads out to create a fringed edge. Eventually, the edge will have to be sewn so it won’t unravel, but that’s not now.
Another piece of embroidery thread is run through, this one is joined with a piece of orange thread. The blue thread was put in first. Then I used a double thread and wove it on either side of the blue. Because the space is getting filled, I pull out a burlap thread to make room for the weaving.
I continued doing this, making sure that I don’t try to do very precise patterns, because burlap isn’t a precise materials.
To give the piece more interest and a less stripey look, I pull some pearl cotton mixed with orange thread through in the other direction. I love this look, because it has a lot of potential. It’s geometric, and fun. Perhaps I’ll back it with a heavier material and turn it into a journal cover. We’ll see.
As always, I’m open to all clever suggestions.
—Quinn McDonald is having fun with non-paper materials. She’s astonished at herself.