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Fabric - Artful Medium

Posted by April Henry on
FROM THE ARCHIVES (2008)...

I used to be an artist... that is, I drew pen & ink drawings.  It has been 10 years since I picked up a pen & ink pen, however. Sometimes, I wish I had the desire to draw again especially to illustrate my children, but thankfully I've taken enough photos so that when their little-ness is gone, I will be able to still capture it in artform. That medium is on the back burner - for now.
Garments or sewn creations (i.e. quilts, crafts, etc...) are my canvas now and fabric is my medium. I've always loved colors. Even in the art stores I would look at all the colors of paint and admire them, read their color names and be fascinated by the different hues, tints and shades. Even as a child, I can remember being fascinated by the color crayon "color names" like 'Burnt Sienna' or 'Red-Orange' (didn't like) versus 'Orange-Red' (liked better); and then Green-Blue (didn't like) versus Blue-Green (liked)- my favorites, though, were 'Carnation Pink' and 'Sky Blue'. Heaven on earth for me was a box of 64 Crayola color crayons. Sometimes I would even color from the wrong end of the crayon, so that the tops would stay all pretty and nice. 
Admittedly, I still look at fabrics and notions and define them with color-names, too... and love it when I can make a perfect match with a button or rick rack trim. I've been told that the average person retains the same color in their memory for 20 minutes. Mixing colors has always been a fun challenge for me, too. I can usually tell what the underlying colors are/were used to make up a color; whether its warm or cool toned, or whether it's tinted or hued.  Having this fascination with color has transferred its artistic form into my world of sewing.  I enjoy having all color choices before me so that I can pick. the. very. best. one. (but still have enough for another project - just in case I might need that exact shade of color for another choice later).  Colors make me happy. I like them. Is it weird to look at fabrics really, really close to see the fibers and how they printed all those colors so perfectly, so beautifully? I would thoroughly enjoy going to a fabric mill.  I like things to coordinate. I can appreciate those who are gifted to be more eclectic in style, but I tend to go the more refined way of matching things... although, I can be swayed (sometimes).
I suppose I posted all of this to make the point that I like fabric and I like colors. And, I like the colors of the fabric prints, patterns, and the like that comprise the artful way of putting it all together.

An early 1900's Printing Room of a Cotton Mill . . . I would totally love to visit this place!


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