Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Playing with Powertex :o)

Hi, apologies for delayed absence, have been really struggling with my Fibro and unfortunately my crafty mojo completely vanished for a while :(  Because of this I have taken the tough decision to step down from the Design Teams at Rhedd's Creative Spirit and Altered Eclectics.  Hopefully though it won't be too long before I'm back up and running and entering their great challenges again, I've missed entering them even though I've really enjoyed being on the DTs.

Anyway enough moaning (sorry!) before I plummeted, I had booked onto a Powertex workshop with Ali-Crafts, and I dug deep to make the effort to still attend, as it is something I've wanted to work with for ages.  Powertex is a fabric hardener that gives you the ability to sculpt with textiles - it's also water based and environmentally friendly - what's not to love!?!

So we started off by choosing what type of figure we would like to make,  they have a selections of head styles; I chose a Masai warrior and Freyesha (a lovely fairy artist) chose a beautiful maiden.  We then fastened this onto a piece of dowel on a wooden block and wrapped it and bulked it out to give it the form we wanted.  Once happy with the basic shape we painted this with the Powertex liquid.

This dried pretty quickly, but once you start coating the fabric pieces, they will take longer to dry.

So then we had to choose which fabric to use as a covering for our pieces - cotton based is one of the best as it still dries fairly quickly but if you're not pushed for time you could use any.  I had a large piece from a linen type shirt, and an edging piece from something like a cardigan (just drawn out of the very ample scrap bag!)  We dunked them in the Powertex and then worked it into the fabric before working out where to position it on the model.  I wanted mine to look like the bright colourful blankets I've seen the Masai wear in documentaries and so I first placed it on the shoulders and then draped it around the front.  Once happy with that I moved on to the woollen fringed piece and positioned this in a similar way.

We then had a break for lunch during which time the pieces dried enough for us to begin working on them with Treasure Gold (gorgeous scrummy product!!) I also took pictures of Ali's (who led the workshop) and Freyesha's figurines so you can see how different they can look.

I used treasure gold pastes which had a reddish tone as they worked really well with my visions of a Masai warrior, and also blend in well with my home decor (!) I'm really pleased with the finish piece which now lives on my sitting room hearth.

If you fancy giving it a go yourself, and you're local to Lincolnshire I highly recommend Ali-Craft Workshops - they are lovely people and really enjoy what they do :o)

Thanks for reading - hopefully next post won't be so long in the writing!!

Stefanie :o) xx