One of the big challenges of these "Fiber Fall" chains has been to create pieces that won't flop over as they hang. The other big challenge is how to do these kind of quickly, in batches, rather than creating each shape individually. I thought I might use paper for the backing of the earth-themed chain, but didn't find anything in my stash that really appealed to me. I even considered printing photos on cardstock, but decided against that. I thought about using copper wire mesh, which would look really cool on the back, but I didn't have enough in my stash and I wasn't sure I wanted to invest a somewhat pricey commodity for the back of this piece.
So I found this white fabric mesh, above, which I've used in many winter pieces, and painted a sizable piece with copper metallic acrylic paint. It imparts a nice sheen as well as stiffening the fabric. So that's what will be on the back - on to the front!
Luckily, I have quite an array of textured brown fabrics in my stash (not sure why). Many of them are upholstery samples that have stiff paper glued to the back, other ones were given to me by my sister-in-law, leftovers from her home decorating business. I also had a lot of nice brown cotton prints.
I even came across this interesting stretch fabric. It is dyed in mottled shades of brown, tan, and aqua blue and is stitched with a brick sort of pattern and these pom-pom like embellishments. I have NO idea what anyone would use it for (it wouldn't be good for clothing or home decor) , but I picked it up to use as the ocean floor in some under-the-sea pieces.
So I cut up all the different fabrics in long wavy strips, overlapped them, and stitched them together with the top edge raw. I really like the way they look all together, like sedimentary layers of the earth.
The underside is kind of ugly, though, and all that white stiff paper will show through the mesh I painted. What to do?
I went through my stash again and came up with a large upholstery sample among the stuff from my sister-in-law. The brown side is really the right side, but I decided to layer the pieces with this fabric as the batting and the wrong side towards the mesh.
I'm really liking the way all the fabrics interact with each other! Now I have to add some stitching ( I may even add a little hand stitching) and cut this up into rectangles, then link them all together. Almost done with #3!