We have begun to construct the AccessArt Village from the many beautiful stitched houses that have been sent to us and whilst we initially considered joining all the houses together in a hanging, we have now decided that we would like to celebrate the character and diversity of each stitched work and make the textiles into individual 3D models. We thought it would be a fun way to build our Village and it also allows for lots of different configurations of the really lovely pieces that we have received (and hope to receive!).
All ages welcome to join in! Find out all you need to know about the AccessArt Village Project here!
Method for make a model stitched house:
Take the embroidery and carefully cut away the excess fabric around the outline of each house – take care not to snip off any stray threads as these will make the edges of the model more interesting and lively.
Place the fabric house onto a piece of medium weight cartridge paper and trace around it in pencil. Cut within the line of the drawn shape so that the paper house is slightly smaller than the fabric house.Use the paper house as a template to draw a matching shape on mount board.
So that the model house will stand up, add a small flap to each side of the house at the base – the white side of the mount board attaches to the back of the embroidery. We are using cream mount board for our models so that the reverse of all the houses will match.
As the houses are all different shapes and some have lawns or gates and gardens (wonderful!), you will need to consider the shape of your mount board before you cut it, so that the flaps will not visible from the front when the house is standing. For the house in the image below, the flaps will be hidden by the small blue bead fence on both sides of the house.
The outline of the stitched house will probably be a mix of straight and uneven edges. When cutting this shape out of mount board, the straight edges can be cut using a safety ruler and knife. To keep the character of the uneven edges these will need to be cut free-hand.
When cutting free-hand, the hand that holds the card should be placed behind the craft knife so that if the knife slips then there is no danger of cutting your hand. Draw the knife slowly over the pencil line to be cut – it’s much safer to go over the line several times keeping control of the knife, rather than using excess force and trying to cut the card in one go. The uneven lines can also be cut in small segments that join up.
The building in the image below has a front lawn which we wanted to lie flat when the house stood upright, so the mount board was cut to the shape of the house and the flaps hidden behind the edges of the embroidery
To construct the models, the paper is first stuck to the back of the stitched house – we used Bondaweb for this. Bondaweb is a fine sheet of solid glue especially for bonding fabrics. When heated with an iron it liquifies and sticks surfaces together. We decided against using PVA as it can bleed through to the front of the fabric and mark the stitching. The Bondaweb comes attached to tracing paper which makes it easy to cut out shapes.
Peel the Bondaweb off the tracing paper and place on the back of the embroidery.
Once the paper is stuck firmly to the back of the embroidery, use PVA to stick the paper to the mount board. This house has a small lawn so the card is a different shape to the paper backing, so that the lawn will lie flat when the house is standing.
Thanks also to Appletons Wools, whose generous donation of wool sparked the idea for this project.