Friday, March 2, 2018

Kimono challenge -- my response

Last fall I wrote about the kimono challenge in our local fiber and textile art group, and showed photos of several of the different things that people made.  But I never got around to showing you a picture of my own pieces.

I made two small hand-stitched pieces with bits of kimono fabric stitched on top of larger kimono backgrounds.  Mostly running stitches, in a variety of different threads, with french knots for emphasis.

I did a lot of experimenting with different threads.  Silk thread felt elegant and I thought there was a certain karma to using it on the silk kimono fabrics, but even doubled, it made a pretty faint line.  Rayons and polyesters worked the same way.  They were fine as background running stitches but didn't have the substance to make assertive french knots.

After trying every thread in my stash, or so it seemed, I found two spools of variegated Aurifil cotton in the very heavy 28 weight.  I don't know why I bought them in the first place, because Aurifil is an expensive toy to get if you don't have a plan for it.  But the ivory-pink-coral-rust colorway looked just perfect with my pink and coral fabrics, and made beautiful, fat french knots.  I had so much fun making the knots that I started piling them densely on, totally covering the background.

Before I display these in public I'll have to come up with a way to mount them.  I'm thinking of affixing them to wood panels, like the ones I've been using for collage.  The contrast of the soft fabric with the hard panel seems appealing.  I'll let you know how that works out!


  1. I really love the top one. Stays true to the original fabric scraps. Lovely.

  2. So appropriate... I’ve read that the first example of quilting was in ancient China. They believed the spirit of a person dwelt in their clothing, so that when their clothing wore out they sewed it into new fabric... but you know that...

  3. Love these pieces! The texture is marvelous, I have some kimono scraps that I may have to get out and play with.