The first word

NOTE: This is the second in a series of posts documenting my process of creating an installation entitled “Lorem ipsum…”. You can see all the posts about this project using the navigation buttons above. Look under Fine Art > Installation Art > Lorem Ipsum.

"a" from "Lorem Ipsum..." © 2012 J. Thomson, all rights reserved I received the test print on fabric on Saturday, much sooner than I expected. These were printed on 100% cotton “quilting weight” fabric, which is the cheapest Spoonflower offers. It looks okay, but I think in the end I might go with something heavier and tighter, something like the organic cotton sateen or linen-cotton canvas.

Since this is just a test, I only ordered a single fat quarter (which is 18″ x 21″). The largest size hoop I can fit on that is a 16″ word, so I chose “indignation”. That left room for two 3″ words… there’s only one single letter word in the entire quotation, “a”, so I made two of those. (I designed them in Adobe Illustrator, adding guidelines and my signature, and then upload them to for printing.)

Lorem Ipsum project: Indignation

Lorem Ipsum project: Indignation

Of course I still hadn’t received my embroidery supplies, so I headed out to the nearest craft store for a few basics… hoops in the correct sizes, and a few colors of floss. Much to my disappointment, Michael’s did not have any 16″ hoops for sale (they had 14″ or 18″, but no 16″) so I will have to order those online. They were also completely out of black floss of any brand or kind, unless I wanted to spend $20 for a pack of different colors in what looked to be a very cheap kind of embroidery floss. I opted to just get white instead. In the final version of the piece, the embroidered words will use different colors of embroidery floss.

Here is the very first “finished” test piece. It’s a little blurry in the middle because this is a direct scan, and the thickness of the floss makes the fabric stand off the scanner glass a bit. The real piece isn’t as blurry. Enlarged to show detail. Actual size is 3″ diameter.

"a" from "Lorem Ipsum..." © 2012 J. Thomson, all rights reserved

Obviously, I have a lot to learn about the craft of embroidery. Not that I mind the imperfections in this piece… I actually think it turned out pretty close to what I imagined. I think it will be better with the right kind of floss, and some practice. Stay tuned…

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