Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Playing again

A few years ago I made a whole bunch of these...

I really liked them but I wasn't sure what to do with them... eventually I put them together into a series of mobiles which were shown in an exhibition with the textiles group I belong to.


They were well received at the exhibition, and then they came home again. And sat around in my workspace. The discs are not very robust so some of them got bent out of shape as they were moved from place to place. But I still really liked the individual elements - more so than the complete mobiles - so they stayed around.

I started to take them apart the other day and put some of the smaller elements together into 3-D forms. I'm not sure where I'm going with it but it is interesting to see the different character these strange things take on when put together differently.

I started off thinking I would make it into a sphere(ish) but it's beginning to look a bit like a football, so maybe not.  I dare say there is more taking apart and putting back together again to come!

Maybe I should go back to the mobile idea but on a smaller scale... The original mobiles were 6ft high, fine in an exhibition space but not so practical anywhere else. Certainly not cat-friendly! Or, a bit too cat-friendly, but cats would not be mobile-friendly...


  1. What first struck me about these photos is how the different background colours change the effect of the shapes. Against the dark background they look really dramatic - with a bit of a 50s feel to the shapes. Against the light they look delicate and ethereal.

  2. I like them, the shape you made looks like it could morph into a lampshade maybe!

  3. Uhmmm...a nekclace with them would be very, very nice :))

    I love your works :)

  4. Hello.....How did you make these discs?

    1. Hello! Thank you for stopping by my blog. It's been a while since I made these but I'll do my best to remember what I did...

      The discs started out as a rough circle of wire (0.5mm aluminium wire for most of them as far as I remember). I stretched the fabric in an embroidery hoop and then put the hooped fabric with the wire laid on top onto my sewing machine and zig-zag stitched (carefully!) over the wire. I do remember breaking a few needles when I lost concentration! Also I think I used a satin stitch or cording foot, something that would make it easier to guide the wire. I went round each one twice, once with a longer stitch length just to get the wire held in place, and then again with a finer stitch to make it look a bit neater. Once I finished stitching I trimmed the fabric close to the outside of the wire. I used a variety of fabrics, fine cotton, silk, mulberry fibres, felt, silk paper etc etc.

      That turned into a bit of an essay, I hope I answered your question!



Helen Smith, artist and maker in glass, print and stitch.


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