14 August 2011

White Sand for Franka

It's time for another Franka update.

Since I last wrote about Franka, I've been out hunting for fabric. I needed skin tones, a background fabric (i.e. for the water) and a better green than the one I had at home. It took me two trips to the fabric shop before I had a working combination. Not surprisingly, it was the water that caused me some trouble.

My first idea was to use a very light blue, preferably marbled, fabric for the water. I didn't find a suitable blue that was as light as what I had intended, but I found a slightly darker one that went very well with the other colours, which, after all, are pretty saturated. 

At home, though, I had second thoughts. The blue fabric is beautiful, but there is a problem: I'm a red person. The colours in the room where Franka will hang are dark red, burgundy, warm yellow, warm dark brown and white. Blue would look very out of place there. I did think of this before I went to the shop, but I sort of thought I'd get away with it... Lesson learned.

So it was time to put on the old Thinking Cap. And this is what I thought.

First I thought that I could make the wall hanging even more pop art-inspired, and use black and white for everything except Franka and the flowers. That would make them pop. I decided to try out the colour schemes with the help of a photo-editing software.

The original plan

The pop art plan

Then, suddenly, I realised that I had made a very silly mistake, assuming that water is blue. Water is, as we all know, colourless and takes its colour from the things it reflects or the things that show through it. It looks blue or grey when it reflects the sky. But when you stand in a foot of water on a Thai beach, looking down at your feet, the water is clear and what you see is cream coloured sand around your toes.

The way I imagine Franka is that she's floating in about a foot of water with sand made out of coral and sea shells under her. So I realised that a cream coloured background would make sense. It fits in with the scene, and also with my room.

The third colour scheme

So off I went to the fabric shop again, and I found the perfect fabric for what I have in mind. Today I drew the background on paper-backed fusible web and ironed it onto the fabric. Now I've reached one of the most critical stages in the whole project: cutting out the background fabric in reverse appliqué, and fusing it onto a black base fabric.

The fusible web is in place and I'm getting ready for some precision cutting...

Wish me luck!

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