The process is very simple, yet a little time consuming. I learned about fabric paper in the magazine, "Cloth, Paper, Scissors". This technique was introduced by the artist Beryl Taylor. Her fabric paper was gorgeous!
You start with a piece of white or cream muslin, cut to the size you want, laid down on a piece of plastic (very important). You coat this with a glue/water mixture. Then, you add torn pieces of paper from magazines, wrapping paper, anything with images you like. As you add the paper into the glue/water mixture, you need to tap it down into the glue; make it part of the fabric. That is what I need to do a better job of in my next batches.
After you've placed all of your images where you want them, you coat the entire thing with another layer of glue/water. Then you add torn bits of tissue paper. You can stamp on it or not, but add it wherever you want to fill in some spaces. You can also leave a little bit of the fabric showing; it's up to you.
After you've adhered your tissue papers, you take some fluid acrylics or inks and paint over the whole thing. This helps unify all of the layers and gives a nice contrast. I watered down my fluid acrylics because they are very concentrated. Then you leave the whole thing to dry overnight. That is the most important. You have to wait until it is all dry.
The next day you simply peel the fabric paper off of the plastic. It will lift right off and then you have a sheet of cool fabric paper to use in your art! You can cut it up and use it in collages, you can sew on it (it is a fabric base), you can do whatever you like with it and it's your design! You picked the colors and the images. So, pretty cool, huh?
What I learned from the trial run:
1. Cut and tear your images up before you begin! I was frantically trying to rip and tear pieces of paper and place them into the glue. Duh! Have a stash ready. That way you can spend more time deciding where to place your images! Also, do the same with the tissue paper. Tear everything up before you begin. Right now I have bins of paper that I've prepared for the next run.
2. You really need to tap your paper down into the glue on the first step. I think some of my paper didn't get meshed with the fabric as much as I would have liked. Just bury the stuff in the glue.
3. The thinner you make your glue/water mixture, the smoother your fabric paper will turn out. If you would like a thicker feel to your fabric paper, don't add as much water to the glue. I used Sobo glue (a huge tube) and probably not enough water for my liking.
4. Water down your paint to get a more glazed look. Some of my paint went on too think and obscured the images I wanted to bring out.
So with all of these little lessons learned, now I can start the "real" pages. They will be planned better and hopefully will have a more pleasing look to them. By the way, I used this really cool wallpaper border for my Paris images. I bought it a while back on sale, knowing it would come in handy for an art project! I love images of the Eiffel Tower and anything Paris-related. So that is what I'm using for these pieces.
I've cut 15 sheets of muslin at 12"x12". Starting with a smaller canvas for each sheet will help the process go a lot smoother I think. You only learn by jumping in and doing. These are OK, but not what I would send out. I will probably cut them up and incorporate them into ATC's or some other smaller projects.
Stay tuned for round two...