Have you ever stitched a scroll? It's a beautiful way to explore ideas, sharpen skills and experiment with slow hand stitching, colour combinations and themes.
I decided on a nature theme - a Springtime meadow - so I wanted my background fabric to be in green shades. One great way to dye small pieces of fabric is to use watercolor paint. Check out how I use watercolor on fabric in this video on YouTube. Another option is to use dye especially created for fabric painting. That's what I decided to do for this scroll project.
I chose a thin cotton fabric and dyed it using little bottles of Dye-na-Flow fabric paint. They came in a set so I had a few shades to choose from. On their own, the colours are very vibrant and create gorgeous saturated colours. I wanted a muted, more subtle effect so I used lots of water to dilute the paint.
I documented the process and the results were lovely - subtle shades of yellow-green and blue-green - exactly what I was looking for - a Springtime meadow ready for fabric collage and stitching.
Under all of the stitching you can see the background fabric shining through. It's really worth choosing a fabric you love as the base layer - even though a lot of it gets covered up, the parts that come through add a beautiful dimension.
When I began stitching I didn't worry about "the whole" scroll, instead I concentrated on one small section at a time. When it came to the bunny and the chicken, because I had placed them close to each other there was some back and forth when stitching. I made sure to choose some different shades of brown for the feathers and the fur. I'm glad I made them face each other - it adds a nice interaction and a bit of charm.
Because the heron is wading in the water, on the side with the hen I decided to make the land-to-water transition by adding some mosaic stitching. I like to think of it as a nod to chicken wire. On the other side, I added a tree and some foliage to transition back onto land.
I made the heron and the robin face each other and added stitching to make it seem like they are sharing the same wetland habitat. If you watch the video you'll see that the robin was the last to be stitched. After this final bird was added, it was time to decide on a ribbon for the end. After some auditioning of options, I chose a blue toned ribbon to attach to the end of the scroll.
There's stitching on the back too - spirals and slow stitching lines in plenty of colours. I also stitched-signed the back and added the year. Check out the process of attaching and embellishing the back here.
The scroll can be wound with either the signature and date on the outside (with the animal stitched side hidden), or with the Springtime meadow facing out. So fun. This was such a satisfying project to complete. I created a playlist gathering all the videos for this project. Check it out and maybe you will be inspired to make your own! ~Cheers, Jo