Carol R. Eaton Designs

Carol R. Eaton Designs

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

It's All About Fabric Painting!

I took some books on watercolor out of the local library. There is a huge difference between painting on fabric vs paper but I was inspired to rethink my approach. I decided to think about the fabric in terms of layers so after the paint dried more color was added creating a more complex design.

I initially sponge painted leaving large areas of unpainted fabric showing. Eventually I started to drip paint from the top edge allowing it to run down. I rotated the board so the drips covered the entire surface. 
After heat setting the fabric it was ready for more play time!

Every studio should have a stash of bubble wrap! Using a thicker fabric paint I pressed gold and purple wrap across the surface until it felt right. 

This piece was an experiment in monotone. I lightly dragged the paintbrush across the surface. With a wet brush I went back and painted over with just water to get the black to meander a bit over the fabric.

Although there are only 2 layers in this piece I felt "less was more". 

It was fun seeing the contrast between the black and red! 

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Screen Collage with Thickened Paint!

After reading Breakdown Printing by Claire Benn & Leslie Morgan I've started to soak the fabric in soda ash and water before screening. In the past I've added soda ash and baking soda to the thickened dye mixture but it greatly reduces the shelf life of the dye. With this system I can keep the thickened dye around for days allowing me time to complete more projects without remixing. I'm not sure how long the shelf life is but I plan to experiment and find out! 

Here are a couple of pieces I did this past week... lots of fun to free motion screen! 
I started by creating yellow vertical lines with the thickened dye. Next I laid the screen on top and pulled red and blue across the surface. I repositioned the screen moving it around until the surface was covered. 

Detail: 100% Cotton, 36.5" X 44", $25

For this piece I used yellow and blue thickened dyes. A lovely green meanders through the design as the colors mixed. Overall it a soft bright look. 

Detail: 100% Cotton, 36.5" X 44", $25
If any piece needs to be in your stash please contact me by email and let me know!

Monday, April 10, 2017

Textured Surface + Layering Fabric + Fabric Paint!

I thought I'd try layering fabric over bamboo fencing before painting! It was a quick and easy way to get texture going while experimenting with a new light weight cotton I recently purchased. 
I used Seta Color transparent fabric paint.

The heavier cotton is below and the lightweight cotton on top!

The paint dried very light. I think the bamboo fencing may have
absorbed more than I anticipated! 
Here is a detail of the bottom layer

This is the top layer. It's 36" X 58" and with the lightness
it makes a delicate panel!

I'll go bolder next time now that I understand the mat better
... on to learning new things! 

Friday, April 7, 2017

Screening with a Twist!

I recently purchased "Breakdown Printing" by Claire Benn & Leslie Morgan. I have yet to watch the DVD that came with it but the book is great! When I'm excited to try something new I tend to jump in with both feet. Only after I've gotten my hands dirty and have a feel for the technique do I slow down enough to read the directions or guidelines! 

After mixing up batches of thickened dyes I squirted the dye onto the back of a prepared screen. The bubble wrap and other materials were placed on top of the dye and left to dry. 

The screens are almost dried. I pulled off the bubble wrap and other items. The marks left behind will add an interesting element to the design (I hope!). 

Using a squeegee I pulled clear print paste across the screen. This step is repeated multiple times until the dried dye breaks down and we are left with a fun design. For the piece on the left I added a fern design using a Thermofax screen created by PGFiber2 Art.  

The process was time consuming due to the drying times. I love instant gratification but I'm going to keep at it experimenting and seeing how far I can push this technique!

Have you ever tried deconstructing screens?

Monday, March 27, 2017

Enhancing Painted Fabric!

I love to paint fabric! It's a very free and lose feeling to swish the brush across the fabric surface. Although once a piece is heat set it might not feel quite finished. There may be a piece that's a little too quiet while others need more attention to pull out their full design potential. 

Although the below pieces are not overly dramatic they are good examples of when a painted fabric needs some enhancement before feeling finished!

I started by laying the fabric outside across river stones and painted the entire surface with 2 shades of blues. I was hoping for dramatic textures from the stones but when it dried it was kind of boring! 
I decided to create a fine layer of silver shimmer across the surface. I thinned some metallic paint, moistened the fabric surface and started to paint! 

I opted to paint indoors on bamboo fencing just to see if I could create a bit of texture. 

Granted this is not a great photo but I was trying to show you how the metallic created some silver bling! The blues are much darker and brighter and with the silver metallic bling it's a fun piece!
The second piece started as a typical swirly, swishy piece. It had interesting designs but I wondered what would happen if I added some stenciling. 

Not sure If I'm done yet or not... I'll leave it on the design wall for a few days to see if I settle into the design or if another enhancement starts to emerge! 
 What types of enhancements do you try on fabric?

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Custom Fabric for Fairwinds Hotel!

I was contacted by James Risinger who is an Architect and Interior Designer in Miami, Florida. He had seen images of my fabric online and thought they would be a good option for art work in the newly renovated Fairwind Hotel project he was working on. His vision was to frame ten, 18" x 22" pieces to hang throughout the hotel. James was great to work with and as an artist himself he left free creative discretion to me for whatever I felt would work in South Beach! 

Below are the unframed pieces ready for shipping. 

I look forward to installation photos so I can live vicariously through my artwork... I've only been to South Beach briefly years ago. This may be the closest I get for a very long time! 

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Today's Color Palette - Desert Influence!

With unusually warm temperatures in the Denver high desert area I was able to paint fabric outside. 
I trimmed some branches to create an outdoor creative space. I was happy to find my work table tucked right into the niche. I took a deep breath, calmed my brain and thought about the beautiful desert colors that have become part of my landscape... here are the results!  
1- SOLD Desert with a little gold bling! 

1- SOLD Desert with a little gold bling!

2 - Desert Flow

2 - Desert Flow

3 - Desert Dunes

3 - Desert Dunes

4 - Desert Winds

4 - Desert Winds

5 - Desert Textures

5 - Desert Textures
All pieces are 100% cotton - 1 Yard- $22 each
If a piece catches your eye and must come home to you please email me at 
Shipping extra

Friday, March 17, 2017

The Studio is Up and Running!

It's been 6 months since I packed up the studio in Connecticut and moved 2,000 miles to resettle in Colorado. The relocation has been all things... fun, scary, exciting, challenging and just what we were looking for! 

The basement was unfinished leaving it ready to create a workable space for a studio. I am so thrilled to have a creative space that fits my style! 
Oscar and his crew were awesome - I would absolutely recommend them! 

Sheet Rock made it start to feel like a real space!

Sweet isn't it! 

Although not everything has found a home and nothing is on the walls it feels comfortable and the rest will eventually settle into place!

You have no idea how exciting it is to have supplies within easy reach! 

We kept a third of the space unfinished for my wet area - SO excited! 

Let the creativity flow! 

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Stool Art!

Although it's not wall art I'm going with Stool Art! I needed a pop of color so I pulled out the fabric paints and got busy. 

I decided on canvas to give the stool some durability. Using earth tone Seta Color fabric paints I swirled and splattered the paint.

I sprinkled some salt across the surface at the end to see if I could get a little movement going. 

It was such a quick and fun project my goal is to create multiple covers to change out for holidays and special occasions! 

Thursday, January 5, 2017

The Studio is Taking Shape and Creativity is Taking Over!

Our new community and my new inspiration!
I felt like my wings had been clipped with no creative outlet over the past few months! We moved our household 2,000 miles west, got the elderly cat settled, met the neighbors (they are lovely!), unpacked and got our living space set up. Next up... a sneaky respiratory bug that I am just about to shake! When I put my head up and take a deep breath I feel good about the progress and can't keep a smile off my face when I see those beautiful Rocky Mountains. 

I have temporary studio space set up that is the beginning of something grand! My ultimate goal is to have separate wet and dry work spaces so I can splish-splash with my dyeing and still have a clean designated space for inventory, designing and sewing. The builder quotes are coming in and I look forward to a full working studio in a few months! 

Happy 2017!