Thursday, June 7, 2012

Star Attachment

The sea star has landed...



As usual, it always takes me longer to do things than I think it will.  All I had to do was cut out that sea star and sew it to the block right?

Well...in my beautifully anal way, I first had to tissue transfer the outline of the starfish onto the block.


OK.  I heard you moan.  It does take a lot of time to tissue transfer the design.  Why didn't I just chalk it in with pencil or something?

Well first, remember I'm superimposing the sea star over lots of layers of fabric and stitching.  It's tough to get a good outline with a marking tool over all that texture.

Secondly, I wanted to make sure that I didn't lose the movement of the star's arms when I sewed the piece down. I also wanted to make sure that I knew the correct width of the arms. I had beaded the arms wider than the pattern hoping that, when I appliqued the piece down, the arms would dome up.


If I hadn't transferred the original design, I was afraid I would end up with fat sea star arms...I didn't want that. I don't think you get fat arms by eating tiny mollusks and crustaceans, do you?

Now, this was the second tissue transfer for this guy because I used the same method to outline the starfish on the ultrasuede.  By using a tissue transfer, I was able to keep all my beading stitches within the outline plus it gives me a great line around which to cut out my beaded applique...



I had also really packed my beads, adding a row of silver-lined crystals in between the central dark line and the creamy, arm edges...this served to force the arms to dome up a bit once cut out...
 

Here's a pic of the piece after it was cut out and just placed (not sewn) on the block...



To be honest, at this point, even though I knew the piece would look smaller when I domed up the arms, I gulped in disappointment. I felt like I may have overdone it on the size and my friend the echinoderm would be too big of a star on my 8" block.

I went forward anyway.

After investing this much time I thought I'd better just figure out a way to make it work, so I began sewing down the arms along the edges, using my transfer outline as a guideline and tucking the ultrasuede edges under by angling my needle as I went...


The last thing I did was sew an amber outline around the arms with one strand of floss to give the appearance of the tubular feet or suckers...



Here's the entire block with the sea star attached.



He's pretty dominant at this point so I'd better get busy giving him some competition.  I think I can tone him down a bit with some seaweed and counterbalance his star power with some shells and an urchin.  Well...if I can't...those nine-armed sea stars are pretty big. Anywhere from 30-40 cm or 12"-20"!  Compared to that this guy seems small at 8-9cm (3"-3.5").

See you next time!

38 comments:

Cynthia Nicole said...

Amazing! I'm sure you'll make it all work beautifully. Have fun!

Carol- Beads and Birds said...

I am thinking how proud you must be to have duplicated the grace and beauty of a star fish.

All of the techniques you use culminate into your MARVELOUS art work.

xx, Carol

flower friend said...

I think he looks great Susan. I don't think we have anything like this in the UK.I've only seen your standard 5 armed ones so this chap is a real star to me.

Cari said...

Perfect...I think he looks perfect!! Beautiful work once again!!

Nana said...

To me you are a real, real artist and I admire your talent.

Nana

Cathy K said...

What a star!!! And your starfish is amazing, too! Hugs, Cat

gracie said...

As usual, I am in awe of you and your creative stitching!

Sheila said...

Ummm Hm! Yes, your care and craftsmanship is one of your biggest strengths. Near the top 5, along with a real eye for beauty! It's looking fabulous, and I love the crazy quilt as your background. That really marries all the elements that I have seen in your blog over the years, Susan! What a lovely exploration. :) Have a great day!

FlowerLady said...

Stunning! Your work never disappoints your viewers and followers. You inspire constantly.

FlowerLady

Oriel said...

Wow!! I am learning so much following your blog and now I will be able to "tissue transfer"!! Love your inspiration.

Marjolein said...

Of course is the block out of balance. I am sure you will correct that. I also think that the seastar in real looks more dominant than on my computerscreen, I can't judge that. All I know is that the seastar is just perfect. You made the arms beautifully domed.

wonderlandwoodsblog.blogspot.com said...

Susan, thank you for sharing your beautiful work and the techniques you use to bring it to life. I learn so much from following your blog. It's always beautiful and inspiring!
Starr White

Olga Bogoroditskaya said...

It's elegant! Very nice! I'm delighted!

Wanda-Maria Roszak said...

Susan, a beautiful work, and all your work, I am happy that so beautifully big art show real art. ,
I cordially greet and welcome also to me, hugs ....... :)))

Colorado Stitcher said...

Nice, well worth the effort!

Anonymous said...

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Jane said...

I think this looks wonderful Susan. I'm sure when you get the finishing touches in the result will be stunning.
jane

Allison Aller said...

Nobody does it with as much joy and commitment as you do!!! The results speak for themselves...

Linda H said...

Beautiful Susan. I knew it would work; he is gorgeous. He can be the star of the block, or you can downplay him with something else even more dazzling.. I await with baited breath... whatever you choose will be awesome...

Vicki W said...

Fabulous!

Erica said...

Susan, he is SO lovely! Why down play him? I would let him be 'boss' of the scene. You have amazing design and technical skills. Can't wait to see what your next effort may be. Thanks for the pleasure you give in sharing your needlework journey.

Lisa said...

Wow Susan! You are really creating works of art here! Love the dimensionality of this and the layers of texture and color. Beautiful!

Createology said...

Breathtaking...your nine arm starfish is such a beautiful "star" of the block. (So far.) Your detail is exquisite. I am so thankful for your blog you share with us...I really learn so much from you and your research. Thank you Susan Dear...

Judy S. said...

Definitely a star block! I can't wait to see its companions. Fabulous work, Susan.

Susanne said...

This is so amazing, Susan! I love, love, love your work!
Hugs,
Susanne

Rachel said...

Now, me, I find ultrasuede such hard work to stitch I wouldn't have started there, but it does make a sturdy backing for the beads and helps to create the domed effect you were looking for!

I agree he pulls the block out of balance at the moment, but if there's one thing I've learnt it's to be careful of reacting to that sort of perception when a piece is still less than half-done. I think you'll find that he will settle down when you've added another motif or two.

Catherine said...

I really don't know how you do it!! Your visions always come to life and just pop! I'm so glad I am able to follow along for the ride!

Laurel's Quill said...

wow...stunning.

Lorraine said...

He turned out fantastic Susan! Will look forward to seeing all the other goodies that will not doubt bring it all together. So far, the block looks wonderful.

Wendy said...

Stunning! He is absolutely stunning and looks wonderful on your block! I cannot wait to see what you add to give him companionship on the block.

Mary Ann said...

Looks wonderful. I love the way the arms seen to have motion like it's about to move.

Saturday Sequins said...

Susan, I love how the star turned out!

I can understand using the tissue transfer method -- I would have done the same thing!

Elizabeth said...

I ALWAYS learn so much from you!!! the tissue transfer was just the ticket here. Your Star fish is stunning. I am so very impressed with how you take so much time to think about how you are going to do something technically before you even start. It certainly shows in your beautiful work!!!

underatopazsky said...

He's gorgeous and glorious! I'm really looking forward to seeing how the block starts to build around him.

Marie Costa said...

The realism you captured is outstanding. Thanks for sharing so many of your techniques, it's incredibly helpful. All this eye candy is much appreciated! Have you considered writing a book?

MulticoloredPieces said...

Just happened upon your blog. Your stitching is lovely and the addition of the sea star is perfect. I enjoyed stopping by!
best from Tunisia,
nadia

Molly said...

Wow, Susan, you are one talented lady!! Not only are you creative with your designs, but also in the technical execution of them. I am in awe. Your work is very inspiring and I enjoy your blog very much.

Thank-you.

shirley said...

I am sure with your talent this will finish up being ever so stunning, and you will wonder why your worried. I love your work Susan it is just amazing

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