With a broad assortment of decorative papers, solids and patterns, vintage ephemera, illustrations and photographs, along with a vast array of embellishment, i hosted the beeswax tapestry class in my dining room this past Sunday.
Two enthusiastic students got right to work diving into the materials to gather things that "spoke" to them. As they emerged from the piles - their plans developed. For one - an homage of sorts to her father and his interests in books, architecture and art. For the other, a gift for a friend who lives on a magnificent property on the coast of Maine.
And i tried NOT to use birds in my tapestry - a sort of botanical frolic with butterflies and flowers. But as you can see - one did sneak in. But i should get extra credit for staying away from my typical robin's egg blue theme, choosing instead to stick with greens, yellow and orange!
Working on 16" x 20" stretched canvases - i drew out a 2" grid to help the students with their placement. I also created a bunch of templates in various sizes to help cut out their papers.
Both ladies had some requests for additional papers and elements which i was happy to supply from my vast stash. C. asked for something red - and i gave her a roll of two sided wrapping paper with stars on one side and boats and windmills on the other. It could not have been more perfect ! She chose to create a band across the canvas with the stars. She had fun adding a few images of bathing beauties to evoke a fun summer time beach experience.
Once all the papers and laid out the first coat of melted beeswax is painted on.
Then a quilt iron is used to smooth the wax and give it a glossy shine, which we likened to Venetian Plaster.
Here is my canvas all laid out - "pre" beeswax and final embellishment.
Here you can see C.'s finished canvas with the addition of her chunky embellishments and oil pastel "grout" for the tapestry. She chose a grey blue which worked perfectly with the blues in her piece. The flash washes out the colour a bit - it was much more fabulous in person!
And here is mine. I tried a grey outline for my grid, which was interesting but too flat. So i layered on some soft brown. The results were quite pretty.
Here is J.'s almost done.
And the almost finished product minus the oil pastel outlines - which she chose to add later at home. Below is another shot without a flash. She layered on some mesh fabric that creates texture without bulk. All the elements she chose relate to her father's interests. She gave it to him that night - and he loved it!