Here's the thing, I have a lot of fabric on the walls at my house. None of my walls are painted, yet. It's the first house we've lived in since we were married that we'd be allowed to paint and I'm very excited to do it, but we have had some other, more pressing renos to do first. Here's some examples of my fabric "art":
|This is cheating a little, but it's a cross stitch a friend made for me. She had it framed and gave it to me as a wedding shower gift.|
|Not exactly framed, but Momma made this. It's Styrofoam covered in a cream quilted fabric and cris-crossed with green, gold, and brown ribbons of various textures, colors, widths, etc. It goes with the greens and browns in my bedroom.|
|The right side.|
|The left side and middle.|
|An attempt to use panorama to get it all in. Besides the odd distortion, it kinda worked.|
|From the middle bedroom.|
|Also from the middle bedroom.|
|Most of the wall-from the bathroom.|
First, while I was at JoAnn's eight hours away from my current house, I laid out a bunch of embroidery hoops on the floor in the middle of the aisle until I had a shape I liked. With coupons, etc. I seem to remember all of them costing right at $20-total.
Second, I was given a bunch of fabric by a friend who was cleaning out the samples at an interior design store. Basically I got a whole bunch of expensive fabric, but only little pieces of each. (Oh, and my mom gave me a bunch of doilies that trip. I used one for the other wall hanging above, several for my dining room table runner, one for this project, and have a couple left over. I also got some from a garage sale somewhere in that mix.)
Third, I combined the two!
Third, when I got home, I got some old, nasty, kinda creepy, yellowed Christmas paper out of the throwaway pile (we cleaned out the storeroom attached to our house). I used painter's tape to cover the entire part of the wall I wanted to use to make the arrangement. I ended up having two strips of wallpaper covering the wall from living room doorjamb to the corner by the middle room. There really was no scientific reasoning for starting where I did vertically. But I measured 12" down from the crown molding and made sure the top of my paper was 12" from the crown molding all the way across. Here, I drew a picture for you:
|Notice how everything but the floor is blindingly white?! :)|
Fifth, I put my embroidery hoops on the template in various arrangements, trying to figure out what the heck I'd done in the store that I liked so much. Take a picture in the store next time!!! Anyways, I decided I'd like the arrangement better with a few squares thrown in, so I got the old blue and white checkered fabric covered fabric bolts that I hadn't hung on the wall in this house and added them to the mix. Then, I got a little framed doily Momma had given me and a reclaimed wood square my husband had made (from the same wood as the frame from above, I don't know what he was experimenting with or for but it worked out well for me!) and threw them in, too. Suddenly, it all came together! I ended up with a left over smallish hoop (that got used in the wall vignette above, also) but I loved the shape I had going on. It was symmetrical without being too formal, it was big and wide, and perfect! I had covered the whole expanse of all with my template paper, so I knew if I was sure to center my design on the floor, it'd be centered on the wall. I used rulers, levels, measuring tapes, etc. until I was sure the design was exactly centered.
Sixth, I took a picture (standing on the couch) of the design and then started tracing the shapes on the paper. I labeled each shape with a number and then discreetly wrote the number on the inside of each hoop (where fabric would later cover.)
Seventh, I took my template back to the wall and hung it back up 12 inches from the crown molding. I had taken great care to center the design on the paper, so when hanging it back up to cover the wall entirely, things were centered. To make sure things stayed exact when I took the template down, I wanted to hang the hoops empty first. I wanted them empty so I could put the nail in the wall through the hoop. So, I held each hoop up to its corresponding, numbered place on the wall and, when the hoop perfectly covered its spot on the template, I hammered a nail in to hold it there. Its important to remember that since the hoops are circles, they will center themselves on any nail, so be precise with the nails. This is why I wanted to put the nails in before I put fabric in the hoops. I wanted to see what I was doing, rather than fight with the fabric. Does this make sense?
Eight, I chose fabrics to hoop (and cover the rectangles). I chose colors I used throughout my house but was rather...organic? about how I chose them. I guess I mean to say I went with things that made sense but that I liked. I laid the fabric out on different hoops until fabrics near each other made sense and it all kinda...flowed. I also had to be sure that the samples fit into the hoops I meant for them to go in. The rectangles got covered with the only samples big enough to cover them, but the colors still worked.
Ninth, I kinda got chicken. I loved the design but I could't commit to the fabrics. So I hooped the fabrics but didn't cut them to size and kinda tucked the fabric around the rectangles. Part of me just thought it was too eclectic to work. But a couple friends and my mom loved it, so I took the plunge! I made sure the design was just how I wanted it in the hoop and used pinking shears to cut the fabric. (Actually, I seem to remember my mom doing this...) I stapled the fabric to the rectangles over the old batting and fabric. The doily was already framed and the square got no fabric. We were careful to only take down one or two hoops at a time so we would put them back exactly where they'd been.
Tenth, I did some slight adjusting. You can see in this picture below that there is a thermostat on the wall:
|Also, you can see my finger...|
A really cool design on wall in serious need of some paint and photographed by an inept photographer on a phone camera with no room to back away because it is a hallway!
Whew, that was long and involved and would have been so much better with real pictures instead of drawing and lots of words and better pictures when there actually were some!