Sunday, September 30, 2018

Art Elements' September Reveal-Faeries

Caroline chose the Art Elements' theme for this month--Faeries!!  I was so excited until I realized that this was such an enormous category and I didn't know where to start. I mean, do you create a typical fairy, water sprite, wood nymph, dragon, druid, mermaid, troll, toadstools, etc.  Such a fascinating amount of creatures and objects that could fall into this theme. My head was spinning....

So I pulled out my wonderful book by Stephanie Law titled 'Dreamscapes-Myth & Magic'  I adore this book. I love to study how she draws and paints these mythical creatures. I still have not attempted to use this book for painting lessons because I am afraid I will fail miserably. But I did use it as inspiration for some very quick sketches to try and jumpstart some faerie magic!
Quick sketches of dryads and water sprite
As soon as I drew the water sprite I knew what I wanted to create. I found some beautiful mottled black/charcoal gray print fabric in my stash that looked a little like branches against a night sky. That was my inspiration for creating the moonlight over a lagoon surrounded by brambles and branches with the silhouette of the water sprite in front of the moon.
Moon and night sky with hand embroidered water sprite

I painted the fabric with textile paint. The water sprite was scanned, enlarged and printed on cardstock to create a template. Once the paint on the fabric dried I used the template to trace the water sprite onto the fabric. Then I hand embroided the sprite-body was done in black and wings in charcoal gray.
Close up of machine stitching on the water
After hand stitching was done, I backed the fabric with quilt batting and used my sewing machine for some free motion stitching. I stitched a horizon line between sky and water with some stitching on the water. Then I added trees and marshy grasses to frame the lagoon.
Water Sprite in the Moonlight
Once all the stitching was done, I stretched the piece on a stretched canvas and stapled it on the backside. Voila, textile art-ready for hanging. Finished size-16"x20"  I am really happy with how this turned out.

While waiting for the paint to dry I decided to grab a stick and make a magic wand. Faerie wand, or witchy wand? Maybe it depends on how I use this wand. But I have been wanting to make one since we had the Dragon theme at AE a few years ago. I wanted to do one with a dragon claw on the end. I still may have to do one like that but this one has a huge optical calcite crystal with a labradorite stone on the end.
Optical Calcite with Labradorite stone
I used apoxie sculpt clay to create the bezel and hold the crystal on the end. I texturized the clay and created some sort of medallion beneath the labradorite. Once the apoxie sculpt cured I played with SO many different colors and paints, inks, etc. Trying to get the color and ageing just right. I tried alcohol inks, regular inks, Pinata paints and StazOn ink pads. In between all those applications I would sand it down with fine sandpaper and try a little more color using different products. Finally, I had to tell myself to just STOP. Leave it alone!! Then I used the Midnight Blue StazOn ink to dab on the stick. I also used Deco Arts Metallic luster in Rose Gold to rub over the painted areas and then buffed it.
You can see all the different colors that I used-midnight blue, lime green, denim blue, verdigris, dark brown and the metallic rose gold.
My magic wand
It's about 12" in length. That little nubby area I have my finger on above is where I broke off a stem. I used it as a design element (it's like a magic button;-)  I used extra Metallic Luster on that area.

The month slipped away as it always does and I didn't get to make anything else, but I am happy with the pieces I did create. The wand was super fun to make. I really want to make a whole bunch of them. And I always enjoy creating with fabrics and threads!

I can't wait to see what all the AE members and our guests have created for this month.

Here's the list of participants, so go take a look at everyone's creations.

Guest Artists


Art Elements Team

Cathy That's me!


  1. OH WOW!!! I LOVE that quilted/embroidered piece that is amazing but the wand...I need to find a stick and make a wand too!!!

  2. I absolutely adore your water nymph embroidery!! The colors, the freehand embroidery .. And it's a good size! I tended to make larger works when I painted.
    The wand is ... what one would expect in a wand. Beautiful stones, iridescent finishes, a 'go' button, I just love it. I definitely encourage making more.

  3. Your textile art amazes me! Especially how you played with light and shadow! And the wand! Yes, I think everyone needs a wand! :)

  4. That painting in rich blues and stunning black is so droolworthy. Now I want to paint :D

  5. The wand is very cool, but I absolutely adore the water sprite scene. It's gorgeous!!

  6. Wow... I'm blown away by your embroidered piece Cathy. It's absolutely stunning! And the wand is beautiful... after all the mixing and experimenting, the colour turned out perfectly. I would love to see more!

    Thank you for joining me in the challenge!

  7. Thank you everyone!! I had so much fun with this theme.

  8. I adore where your inspiration took you as your work amazes me! I just love seeing your process :)

  9. Both of your pieces call out to me. I love any kind of quilting, and your textile is FABULOUS! The fact that you were able to create that image with stitching is a work of magic in itself. And, your wand is just yummy. You make me want to create one now too! Thank you for sharing your process for both of these. It's so inspiring to hear how you worked through them.

  10. Your embroidered piece is just stunning I love how it is framed by trees and how beautifully the moon glows and your wand.... wow! I really love it!

  11. oh WOW! your textile design is definitely my favorite of the entire challenge! Fantastic Job! L O V E it!

  12. I love your textile. The wings are beautiful in the moonlight. Really lovely!

  13. Love, love, love. The moon fabric is luminous! I love the sprite's wing shape - very elongated and ethereal. And her toes! Awesome. I really like your wand as well. the colors look ancient ..

  14. I love the embroidered sprite its beautiful

  15. Here I am late to the party with my comments. I read your blog on reveal day but couldn't get my google account to cooperate for commenting. I enjoyed the sneak peeks of your sprite on Instagram and am in love with the final piece. It's perfectly ethereal. The wand is utterly magical as well.


Wishing you peace, love & chocolate!

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