Wednesday, September 7, 2011

New Adventures with Liquid Polymer and Gauze

I finally got a few days in a row to work in my studio and couldn't wait to try out an idea that had been knocking around in my head. You know that I like to experiment with liquid polymer and gauze - first coloring the fabric with alcohol ink, then soaking in LP and curing, usually as a cuff bracelet.

While drifting off to sleep a couple of weeks ago, I thought, "what if I intentionally ruched the gauze, then cut shapes from the cured piece for focal elements?" "Ruching" is that marvelous gathering of fabric that is usually held together with rows and rows of stitches running perpendicular to the gather.

I've seen thin sheets of solid polymer manipulated in this fashion, to create faux fabric. I wanted to take advantage of the already built-in texture of the gauze fabric. I do this gathering to some extent when twisting gauze on my cuff bracelets, but I wanted to be more deliberate and try the technique over a larger area.

So, I tried two versions in two color schemes: one scheme in autumn-y coppers, browns and greens, with just the gauze; one in cool blues, jades, purples and silver, with a very thin translucent polymer backing. Here are the results:
Translucent solid polymer backing

Unfortunately, I cut up the unbacked sheet before photographing - as you can see, I had a specific purpose and plan for finishing in mind, and was a bit impatient :)

 The results for the unbacked version, at the moment are more satisfying, but I'm sure that I'll think of a use for the other piece, too.

Actually, I'm sort of anxious to see the edge profile when I start cutting into it ....more to come...