Countless times I have walked into fabric shops in search of the "perfect" fabric. Shopping for fabric was like speed dating. Inevitably, "making do" was the prize.
I admit the prize wasn't a the worst thing in the world. After all, it lead to the creative challenge of making the prize fit the vision in my head. I have spent many entertaining hours morphing my prizes using stamps, paint, dye, bleach, solvents and fire.
However, in the end, my morphed fabric satisfied the itch but not the soul. To scratch my soul, I needed to eliminate the middleman, (i.e. someone else's fabric designs/ideas).
I am on a quest to personalize fabric.
In order to achieve my quest, a couple of visuals come to mind.
My first thought was to go all Hollywood.....
As you walk in the front door of a fabric shop, you are greeted with the smell of chocolate, Willie Wonka and a big computer screen. There are no fabric bolts on the walls; just comfy chairs covered with luxurious fabric that you can't help but caress. Willie guides you through the process of designing your vision. With the push of a magic button, the Oompa Loompas prepare your fabric treat. While enjoying your final sip of hot chocolate, your custom fabric would come down a noisy conveyor belt trumpeting its arrival in a pink cut velvet box with a beautiful bow.
My second vision...
Involves a Toshiba TV monitor, Photoshop CS5.5 and an Epson 9900 printer. In my world, cutting up fabric and sewing it back together has evolved into printing whole cloth imagery and digitized machine quilting. My work process has followed the rise in the availability of digital technology. I am excited and want to spread the word. My hope is to share stories as I pursue my quest to personalize fabric.
As a final thought, for those that are not inclined to "pet" fabric, you might ask "Why use fabric and thread?". It is because nothing beats the tactile/visual connection created by stitched fabric.
Until next time.....
Forever dreaming of the pink cut velvet box.
Julie S. Brandon
Where Digital Meets Fiber
Where Digital Meets Fiber
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