As easy as 1, 2, 3...perhaps!
So what are the key steps in constructing a panel?
- Take 3 full scale copies of the drawing – one for display and discussion of the historical content, one for tracing the outline onto the calico and one to cut out the individual items within the drawing.Write historical notes giving the background for people to research what colours and styles to use.
- Using a light box, trace the top and bottom banner outlines onto the calico background, together with any key shape outlines to help with later positioning.
- Cut out the individual drawings and create the sewing packs of individual scenes, people or objects. Each pack contains the drawing, ‘making instructions’, bondaweb, calico, carefully selected materials to ensure colour consistency across the panel, threads and background photos.
- Issue the sewing packs to individuals, who can use their own initiative to stitch the particular item they are working on. Each item can take several hours to produce.
- Stretch the calico onto working frames and then stitch the outline of the top and bottom banners.
- Collect the finished sewing packs and trim the excess calico around the item.
- Sew each item in its position on the calico, adding extra details directly onto the background.
- Separate and align the printed lettering, then iron on the title and date range.
- Sew on the felt motifs within the top and bottom banners.
- Mount the panel onto the padded foam board.
…and voilà! that results in a finished tapestry panel ready for framing…now doesn’t that sound easy.