Friday, October 15, 2010

Tutorials: Decayed Elegance Cuff Bracelet & tattered fabric supplies

Welcome to the Vintiquities Workshop 5 Days of Tutorials
Campaign Blog Party!
Each day this week I will be posting a different mixed media art tutorial and campaigning for your votes.
I am in the running for a sponsorship from Prilosec OTC and if I get it I will be able to provide
FREE Video Art Classes Online.
Your votes can make that happen!


Todays tutorials are two parts of the same project. First I want to tell you how to make the supplies for the cuff bracelet and then we'll move on to making the bracelet.
Tattered Fabric Supplies:
You will need to start gathering lots of different fabrics, scraps, etc.
muslin, cotton, old hankies, loose weave fabrics, vintage canvas, old pillow cases, old flower sacks, anything that dyes well and frays at the edges when washed.
I like to tea dye (see link at the bottom of this post for a tutorial link) and coffee dye new white or tan fabrics for a nice subtle aged look, but the vintage stuff usually has it's own natural aged appearance so I use that too.
For the cuff bracelet you will need various widths of fabric torn into strips.
After dying your fabrics in different shades let them dry then tear them into strips. Throw all those torn strips into the washing machine (no need to clean all those loose threads off of them, leave those on for now)
When they are done washing pull that tangled ball out in throw it in the dryer. When dry you will have some untangling to do which will require pulling and sometimes tearing wads of those loose strings from the ball. SAVE THOSE WADS OF LOOSE STRING, you want to keep those for your bracelet. After working on that ball of frayed vintage looking goodness for a while you will get perfectly tattered looking pieces of fabric that are perfect for your bracelet and other artwork as well.
Yummy! See that loose string ball to the left with all the different shades of color in it, Perfect for background layering and adding texture!
You will have plenty of strips for future projects and it's much better to get all that washing, drying and sorting over and done with in one sitting.

Decayed Elegance Cuff Bracelet:

What you need:
1. strip of fabric long enough to wrap around your wrist with about 1 inch of overlap
2. tattered fabric scraps and strips as shown above
3. pieces of lace or hankies
4. old pearl necklace with clasp
5. beads or old rhinestones
6. needle and thread

One of the good things about this cuff bracelet is that you don't need perfect sewing skills. It's purpose is to look a little messy and a little elegant at the same time. Sitching is merely to hold the pieces together not to look fabulous. If you can push a threaded needle up and down through the fabric layers, you can make this bracelet.
1. Pick out a background layer of fabric and tear it down to size (length around wrist plus 1 inch, by whatever width you want it to be, I like a 3" wide cuff, but I have a big wrist so you might want something thinner, it's all up to you)
2. Pick out a couple more background pieces for layers, (in the photo above my background piece is a dyed handkerchief and my second layer is a torn piece of dyed muslin) you can keep adding layers of lace or torn fabrics, whatever you like but keep in mind that most of the center of your cuff will be covered with flowers so the layers need to show more at the edges of your design.
3. Making a rosette with a fabric strip is nothing new, there are many tutorials all over the web on this subject. Mine are a little different because I choose to show the ruff edges of the fabric strips as I twist and wrap my fabric into a spiral rosette. The more fuzzy edges showing the better! Also I try not to make a perfect looking flower, if it just suggests that there is a floral idea to it, that is what I'm going for. You don't have to make a great looking flower for this cuff. You want a messy, overgrown, time worn garden look.
4. Before placing your first rosette down on your background, tear a pinch of those loose threads off and spread them out on your background then lay your hand coiled rosette on top, this is when you start to stitch your rosette to the background. You don't stitch the rosette together before putting it on your background unless you just want to add more work for yourself. :) **make sure when you are sitching that you put at least one small stitch through each portion of your spiral from the outside to the very center, i.e. you don't want to stitch around the outside only because the center will then unravel.
5. continue placing loose washed threads then a hand coiled fabric strip rosette, then stitch, over and over until you have covered the length of your background MINUS that 1" of overlap.
6. After you have sewn all your rosettes down you can cut the clasp off that old string of pearls, disconnect the two halves of the clasp and sew them on each end of your cuff. (make sure you stitch the second half of the clasp BEFORE the 1 inch overlap of fabric & Not at the very end, (see the first cuff picture for placement)
When you have finished to can overlap the ends of the cuff and snap your clasp closed. You're design will be continuous and you can now add beads or rhinestones or both. In my cuff bracelet I added the tattered pearls from the old necklace as well as some old rhinestone beads that I cut off a 1920's flapper dress
You can use this technique on stitched mixed media projects as well...

Someday I hope to make a video art class out of this tutorial.
Your votes can make that happen!
Today is the last day for voting!

Thanks for visiting, hope you have a great day and an even better weekend!
I'll be spending my weekend with my best friend at the War Eagle Craft Fair in Rogers AR.  We both had our birthday on Wed and this is how we are celebrating. I hope to share lots of fun pics with you Monday!

Robin Sanchez has a great tutorial up for tea dying if anyone would like to go check it out...
Thanks Robin!


Becca said...

This is beautiful! I would love to try this, thanks for the tutorial! Have a great weekend.

Emakesart said...

Wow!! This is so beautiful! I would love to make this!
I just voted for you and really hope you get enough votes!


Cami @ Creating Myself said...

Beautiful! I haven't been blogging much lately so I"m lucky I saw this...was able to get one vote in. Wish it could have been more....sorry! Sure hope you're able to post more free tuts though....that would be great.

Cami @ Creating Myself said...

Just saw that you are in the lead....YEAHHHH!!!!!

Netty said...

Wow totally gorgeous. One day will have a go at this as I love the whole effect. Annette x

Martina2801 said...

This is totally stunning! Thank you so much for the tutorial!

Robin Sanchez said...

What a wonderful cuff. Thanks for sharing. I will be making one of these for sure!!!

I just made a tea dye tutorial for anyone who needs to know how to do that part. You can find it here.


Createology said...

I am so hoping you have won and can continue to make these wonderful tutorials. Your help is very much appreciated. Thank You! Happy creating...

Jillayne said...

This stunning Thespa - just stunning. Thank you so much for this tutorial! You make it look and sound so easy that I am pretty sure I could tackle this - my challenge will be to keep it looking old!

Lynn Stevens said...

I'm now drooling on my keyboard, if my compter blows up its all your fault! LOL

HJC Editor said...

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Anonymous said...

I love this tutorial. The bracelet is stunning and so is your blog. I love creating altered art jewelry and have been trying to figure out how I can incorporate leather and copper in a cuff. If I figure it out I'll let you know. Keep up the fantastic work.

Melissa said...

So pretty! I like the vintage tattered look of the flowers!

Lori @ Katies Rose Cottage Designs said...

That is absolutely beautiful!!!

Terri Gordon said...

Hi Thespa, Your cuff is gorgeous, thanks for making such a wonderful tutorial, I want to try one like yours. Have a great week and thank you. Hugs, Terri

Alexis Grenzer said...

Lovely Thespa, you are on a role my dear! These are just looooovely! Hugs, Lexi

Crafty Mama of Four said...

Absolutely beautiful! Thanks for sharing!

Janice DeSeranno said...

Thank you so much. Wonderful!!!

Lainie said...

Your work makes my heart skip a beat! Thanku so much for sharing your tutorial with us!!

Lainie said...

Your work makes my heart skip a beat! Thanku so much for sharing your tutorial with us!!

VĂ©ro said...

Oh la la!This is wonderfull,gorgeous!Bravo and thank you so much for sharing this tutorial!

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