rocket tracking


Saturday, July 21, 2012

Art and Old Lace: St. Audrey

I have been waiting to share this with you since May.     Just 8 months ago, I attended the opening of "Power Suits" at Artistic Artifacts.  While there, I acquired the next packet of challenge bits...this time, it included lace, some buttons, and some white fabric and we were to interpret "Art and Old Lace."

I thought about the idea for a while and thought I wanted to do an icon like figure.  Originally, I thought of doing one of the images of Saint Mary....but the more I thought about it, I decided I wanted to do one of St. Etheldreda who was commonly known as "St. Audrey."

I're saying "Huh?"  Well, it is actually a play on words.  You see, every year they held a fair on St. Audrey's day and often cheap, poorly made items, particularly lace, were sold at the fair.  In time, things which were cheap imitations of things usually used for adornment were called "tawdrey", a corruption of "St. Audrey."  Say it a few times quickly and I think you'll hear it.

So...Saint Audrey and her lace came into being.  The background is pieced black silk and wool suiting samples from the packet, overlaid with polyester lace fused to it with black Mistyfuse.  The halo is a vintage crocheted or knitted (I can never tell the difference) doily which has yellowed and stained with age.
I used my embroidery machine to put the name on the "icon" much as the real icons would have had the name of the saint.....just in case you weren't familiar with the sainted one.

I backed the halo with some quilter's lame, metallic gold fabric made from gold nylon colored threads and cotton.

For her face, I drew it with ink tense pencils...I still don't think I have good control of them....and I need to work harder at getting the stronger color with several layers, blended with water and re-applied.

One of the things I find particularly amusing is that her face reminds me very much of my mother....but I didn't use anything, just drew a face out of my head. Take a look at the pair of them and tell me what you think.

This is mom's high school graduation picture which should have been 1948  I think.

St. Audrey's wimple/veil was made with a vintage bobbin lace handkerchief.  It had a small stain on it, and I bought it at a yard sale for twenty-five cents..  Although I did cut a hole in it for the face to come through, I couldn't bring myself to actually cut the I folded it and appliqued it down. Because of that, it doesn't make a really smooth transition, but at least I didn't cut the fine handiwork someone else had done.

Her crosier (hooky thing) is again the quilter's lame, with a bead in the center.  The pectoral cross is a pendant which I sewed on.  The lace on her "cape" is lace from the package of goodies, and her dress is made from a purchased "tie-dyed" and sequined, rumply sort of synthetic fabric I purchased at the "red tag" sale bin at Jo-Ann Fabrics.

If you happen to be in the area of Artistic Artifacts in Alexandria, Virginia, please do stop in and see all the pieces.  Judy Gula and Cyndi Souder do a huge job in putting this on and I have been amazed at all the places the Power Suit challenge has gone, although I don't know what Cyndi has up her sleeve for venues for Art and Old Lace.  Today, July 21 is the opening from 2:00 pm until 8:00 pm at the annex located at 4750 Eisenhower Avenue, Alexandria, VA 22304.  The show will run there through September 30, 2012 during Artistic Artifact's regular hours:  Tues/Thursday 10-4:00 Saturday 10-2:00
or by appointment.  Please go for me as I won't be able to make it this time!


ann said...

Love this! I have a lot of old stuff I have inherited from my grandmother because I am the only one in the family that sews. All are stained; most horribly. However, the embroidery would be nice to use in a memory quilt. I do hope you will post some photos from the exhibit. Since you are not attending, perhaps you know some one who might take photos.

Vivien Zepf said...

Very cool! An interesting inspiration...