Sunday, January 19, 2014

Mid-retreat check in

So my stitching "stay"treat began on Thursday, and even though I started a few things early, it has been incredibly productive so far. I've finished the set of wine-themed dish towels for my sister, a portrait of my husband's grandchild for his son, and a panel for a pillow for my brother-in-law. I also sewed a purse for our soon-to-be daughter-in-law, but I am disappointed with my sewing and will make another today. I will show you all of these things and whatever I finish on Sunday and Monday over the next weeks.


Today, I want to show you what I produced in the silk fusion class that I took at Golden Fiber Arts in Golden, Colorado on Friday. Prior to the class, I didn't even know what silk fusion was. Now I am contemplating making my experimental piece into art!

The whole piece is approximately 16" square.


For those of you who don't know what silk fusion is, I wish I had taken photos during class. It is a relatively simple process. You take dyed silk roving (it looks very much like wool roving) and gently tease out fibers to lay on a screen. I found it to be a relatively fast process to lay and gently pull the fibers out. Three to four layers are needed so that the screen is no longer visible. During the process, you must remember that the first layer or two really won't be seen, so you want to concentrate on getting your final layers looking the way you want them too. In addition to the roving, we had silk sari fibers and "hankies" available to layer on our works. The hankies are gauzy squares that are layered like filo dough. Each layer is a single silk cacoon drawn out and formed into a square. They are really lovely little things and can be layered on to cover large areas or pulled and crinkled in different ways to form shapes. The flowers on my piece are done with hankies.

You can see the rim of the hanky on the flower edge.


Once enough silk is layered, a second screen is placed on top and the whole thing is wetted and brushed until every fiber is soaked. Then a textile medium is applied to stick the fibers together before the screens are hung to dry. I let mine dry over night before peeling the screens away. The final step is to iron the piece on the silk setting to set the medium.

The silk strands leave a beautiful wavy edge and the screen provides texture to the fabric. In the lower left corner, you can see a piece of silk sari thread layered within the silk fibers.


I was thrilled with my piece when I saw it Saturday morning and am thinking of ways to embellish it. It will be a fun project and a great way to start off my resolution to learn new techniques!


One surprise was that when I walked into the class, I saw two women who I often stitch with on weekends. None of us were expecting the others to be there, which made it even more fun.


I am really happy that I decided to do this. With two more days of creativity to go, I am well on my way to having many of the birthday and Christmas presents I want to make this year done--and it is only January!



  1. you certainly are getting plenty done and your silk rovings have worked beautifully

  2. Your Silk Fusion Art Piece is truly gorgeous. I love it. I have never heard of Ailk Fusion. I will have to see if I can find out more about it... IS there a book about this technique??? Can you embroidery on top of your piece too??? Thanks for the information. Sorry for all the questions. I am very fascinated about this wonderful new technique.. Hugs judy