- Floral is Lecien Child Smile Fall 2016 (available soon!)
- Green is Lecien Child Smile from a few years ago
- Linen is Kaufman Essex Natural.
I've long admired Minki Kim's unique talent and love everything she makes. I am in total and utter amazement at her creativity and skill. But doing thread illustration myself? Uh. The thought of it scared me and - quite frankly - stressed me out! LOL!
When Minki and Kristin Esser invited me to be part of this tour, I kinda sorta accidentally said yes because Minki has become a good friend of mine and I hate disappointing people. But then I had many MANY moments of panic when I realized that now I was commited to MAKING something. I stalled, procrastinated, cleaned the house, went on a holiday, and did almost everything else on my to-do list. Seeing all the cute and adorable things that people were making from this book and got even more scared.
But even though it's been a while since I put myself this far outside of my comfort zone, I wasn't going to back out. Not without at least trying. So I pulled up my big girl pants and got down to it.
Now I'm not usually one to practice things. Never really have. Ask my piano teacher. ;) If I want to make something, I just do. If it turns out, great. If it doesn't, I'll pout for a few minutes and then move on. It has to be something really special (or a commitment) that inspires me to learn a new skill. (That sounds dreadfully immature as I read that back to myself ... )
The first task was to choose a project from the book. Every.single.design in this book is adorable and I love ALL of them! But I eventually settled on the typewriter tote for a few reasons. One, I'm a technical writer and I like that it's an (old-fashioned) tool of my trade. Two, I have an English degree so I'm fond of most things "writing" related. Three, my mom had a typewriter very much like this one and I used to play with it as a kid. (Does anyone else remember how heavy the "shift" key was?!)
My practice consisted of two partial executions of this pattern. First time I didn't use interfacing ('cause I'm terrible about reading instructions, I'm embarrassed to confess). And I tried out a few different feet on my machine that were recommended in the book to see which one worked better for me. And then I just worked on getting used to the rhythm of free-motion drawing. Not gonna lie ... as you can see in the photo above, I wasn't 100% confident that I was going to get the hang of it. But I went on to the second practice, which was noticeably better. Interfacing on the back really helped make my lines neater, and my confidence was growing.
After maybe about 20 minutes of practice I got impatient, as I tend to do when I just want to get on with something. So I cut a large chunk of linen, drew the complete design, and went to work.
And that's it. Honestly. No smoke and mirrors required. That's all it took to make my very first thread-illustrated design. And I could not be prouder of myself or more grateful to Minki and Kristin for teaching me something new.
Thank you Ladies! xoxo
Now I need to go somewhere with my pretty, new tote. I was thinking maybe the Apple store ... LOL! Wouldn't it be fun to pull your laptop or iPad out of this bag?
If you're even remotely thinking about trying your hand at thread illustration, do yourself a favour and give it a whirl. In no time you'll be wanting to replicate ... I dunno ... the Sistine Chapel ceiling or the Mona Lisa. Or even American Gothic! LOL! Dive into your stash and start having fun. (This book is available as an ebook from C&T Publishing so you can download it in a matter of minutes and be drawing within the hour.) Whatcha waitin' for! :) xo