Monday, May 14, 2018

Not just eight dresses. Eight backgrounds too.

Once again, more than a month has skipped by since my last post. Life just seems to get busier. A couple of stints looking after the "grands" since the last post. And a Wedding!! Our son Matt married Theo, the love of his life, in a fun-filled weekend of festivities last weekend in Chatham, Ontario, which is her home town. No pictures yet, but I will do a post when I get some.

In the meantime, progress continued slowly on the Eight Little Dresses mat. I am definitely in the home stretch, but didn't get it finished in time for my teaching gig tomorrow at Niagara College.

Here are a few progress shots. I realize that I didn't take a photo of all 8 dresses hooked, before I got onto the background. And what a journey that has been. I was originally going to do a grey textured background, but decided that since these dresses were a staple in Barbados, they deserved a background that was more suitable to their wear. They needed something tropical. And instead of just doing ONE background for all, I decided to create a different background for each one. And so the journey began.

Here is a picture of the original greens that I was going to use. WRONG!! The brighter greens were in conflict with the bright colours in the dress.

So, I decided to dull them down and make sure that they stayed "in the background". You can see the difference between the greens on the left and the greens on the right. I figured it was a good lesson.

Here you can see both sides done the same, and it really worked - no conflict with the "star" of the study.

So now the exercise became finding a different background to go behind each one, using the same colours and trying to not fight with the patterns in the dresses. It was a fun, albeit challenging, exercise.

Here is background 1 completed.

Here is background 2.

Background 3

Background 4

Background 5  (My finger is there to remind me I didn't quite finish this one. lol. )

Background 6  (I will re-do these quillies - they are too high for the hooking.)

Background 7 (Thumb here is just to old it flat.)

And I'm not quite finished yet. Background 8 yet to be hooked, as you can see.

It's very interesting to see that 8 different backgrounds can co-exist in the same piece, as long as they are all the same colours.  In the individual shots, the greens all looked quite different, but here you can see that they are all the same.

In fact, they are kind of a unifying element that brings all the dresses together.  In hindsight, I might have done them the same way that I did the cats - individually, and they would have made a fun installation. But I like to see how they do all live together in this one piece. And I think it will be a good "teaching " tool, in lots of different ways.

As a rug hooker who is constantly asking "What if....", this was another exercise that I loved doing. Repeating the same motif and hooking it 8 different ways was fun in itself. But challenging myself to come up with 8 different backgrounds - all inspired by Huntes Gardens in beautiful Barbados was another layer added on.

(Oh, in case anyone doesn't know what the black and white fabric is for, it is added to the backing so that it is large enough to fit in my gripper frame - I eked it out of a too-small piece and cheated.)

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