Friday, June 3, 2011

Seasons Challenge

To herald the beginning of Winter, the weather has been cold, rainy and stormy this week, so like most people who live in Newcastle ( NSW, Australia), I have been thinking of that memorable June weekend in 2007, now known as the Pasha Bulker weekend when this huge ship ran aground on the beach during a winter storm ... but I have bigger challenges related to Seasons to contend with.
My doll makers' group, Hello Dollies, has a challenge to create a cloth doll, using the theme " Seasons" as inspiration and with only one rule that the fabric used must be of our own creation. As usual, I have left it to the last few weeks and although I have been thinking about the project for months, it is only in the last week or so that I have been propelled into action. I chose the stump doll pattern from the choice of two patterns provided.
Idea No.1 was to paint fabric and then machine embroider it and use it as the body for the doll and I was going to use the tree template to create the four seasons of an apple tree - spring flowers, summer fruit, autumn leaves and winter branches. Idea No. 2 was to develop the idea of a series of dolls, somehow using the tree concept as well. It is still an idea but it all seems too difficult now with so little time left.
Idea No. 3 was to create fabric with my embellisher machine. Great idea - quick and easy! Using fabric previously made as a sample, I made different textured pieces of fabric in what I thought were seasonal colours. How wrong can a simple task turn out? Spring somehow looked far more like "water", Autumn and Summer were just too dark and somehow looked "tribal". So another distraction or procrastination? I was diverted from the main task, and this week, I felt compelled to use the fabric I made and rejected for the Seasons project into little wearable art pouches. I'm happy with these, but not with the prospect of making more "seasonal" fabric.

The project plan today ( is this Idea No. 4?)  is to make four flat dolls each representing a season, using machine embellished and surface embroidered  fabric. Each of the flat dolls will be displayed as if they are emerging from an archway or doorway. Arches/doors 1 and 2 and 2 and 3 will be connected by a flat fabric tree and hopefully, the whole project will be free standing depicting the transition of the seasons.
If you feel like making a comment, I would love to know what you think of this idea - will it work? any tips for construction? any better ideas? what colours do you think of for each season?


  1. I think that sounds beautiful! I can't wait to see how it turns out!

  2. What a fantastic idea.LOVE those fabrics..and the pouches you made from them. Yes the dolls emerging..ooh so exciting!!

  3. I am just too too excited to find your blog. Wonderful art. I am going to really enjoy the things you make.


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