Something happened to me at that Fran Skiles workshop while we were cutting, ripping, burning, painting, inking, monoprinting, gluing, crumpling, folding, stitching, and who knows what else to paper: I FELL IN LOVE WITH PAPER, all over again!
How could I forget my childhood sweetheart? The one I cozied up to any chance I got, and produced pictures with my trusty Laurentian Pencil Crayons (I received a new box every September). I have WAY more stuff to use on paper now!
I cannot explain this urge. Yes, I was already adding paper to my art quilts. But I have gone several steps beyond, perhaps several leaps, and am now obsessed with all that I can do with this humble material. Fancy bought papers? Not for me. I have to create the surfaces, just as I have done with cloth. Plain white copy paper, plain white tissue. These are my chosen main materials. I do continue to glue the paper to a plain cotton fabric (with acrylic medium), but it is simply used for strength. I’ll be posting a few pics as soon as they come off the assembly line (ha!ha!).
I’ve noticed that Judy Coates Perez is into the paper quilt thing in a big way, as well. I especially love what she calls Illustrated Document Number 1. She also has a Mixed Media Paper Quilt # 2, and 3.
Teesha Moore has a charming one.
WaterRose shares a very unique paper quilt (hint: Martha Stewart is involved).
As usual, Cyndi has an excellent tutorial.
Deb Silva has a gorgeous paper quilt on her Creatively Amused blog.
I’m intrigued with Dawn Wilson’s work.
Linda M has made a quilt where the top and batting are entirely made of paper (What’s your Fortune?).
Jackie Gardener is doing some wonderful work in paper quilts as well.
OK, I can stop thinking I have to explain, or worry about facing totally incredulous faces, or questions like “Why would you use paper when there is so much gorgeous fabric available?” All I can say is, paper has a different feel, both physically and psychologically. And thanks to acrylic medium, all your manipulations and treatments are preserved . . . for posterity!
Below is my first paper top quilt. It’s about 30″ long, 24″ wide. I’ve kept the edges a little rougher than I used to: I like the way the threads catch the paint and medium to give a “deckled” edge. I call the piece Nest.
Here is a detail.