03 Unconventional Fabric using Threads

U N C O N V E N T I O N A L  F A B R I C
Materials: Threads, Water soluble stabiliser, Sewing machine

We will start of the post with an example demonstrated by Galina. I was really surprised by the water soluble “fabric” as it became sticky after it’s dissolved in water. It kinda make sense as it works like a glue to stick the threads together, and it’s amazing how this thin sheet of paper could hold the shape of the mould. 

So now, it’s my turn! And here are the steps that I’ve remembered from the previous class.

 U N C O N V E N T I O N A L  T H R E A D S  T E C H N I Q U E

  • For this technique, you will need: Water soluble stabiliser, threads and a sewing machine.
  • First, lay your threads in between the water soluble stabiliser. Note that your threads need to overlay on one another so that it does not loosen when it’s fixed.
  • Layer as many colours / threads till your desired pattern has been achieved.
  • Place the other end of the water soluble stabiliser over the threads that you’ve made.
  • Pin them together. Make sure that you have pinned your threads as well, hold them in place.
  • Start sewing over the water soluble + threads that you’ve made.
  • Rather than using one consistent colour throughout, I wanted to remain the gradient aesthetic. Thus, I kept switching out the threads to match the colour on each layer, in order to enhance the effect.
  • Make sure that you have sewn over the threads, or else you might risk them loosening.
  • Prepare a bowl of water.
  • Soak the water soluble + threads into the water. The longer you soak it, more of the water soluble stabiliser will be dissolved.
  • Place your washed product onto any mould that you prefer. For me, I wanted to make a little vase so I chose a hairspray of my which has the perfect shape that I wanted.
  • Lay your wet fabric over the mould. You’re done! Now, simply wait for it to dry. 

Tadah! This is my final product. I am very happy with the results, as the colours came out just as I hoped.  I used the same colour scheme as my plastic fusing technique as I wanted to mimic the sky at dusk. Overall, this technique is quite tedious as I had quite a difficult time sewing the threads together, in fear that they would shift while I sew. I am glad it all came out well! This was a fun and interesting technique nonetheless. 




T O A S T Y     W A R M
made with 108 toasted bread



D A I L Y   B R E A D   &   B U T T E R
made with 80 toasted bread


Journey of toasting 144 breads
time taken –1 hour 50 mins


Woke up at 8am on a Wednesday to start toasting a 9 loafs of jumbo bread, a total of 144 bread which took a total of 1 hour and 50 mins.

I started out with the Toasty Warm installation which is by the poolside. I had to ask permission from the security guards there in case they were to chase me away as they are quite angsty lol. It took about… 15 mins for me to set up 108 breads onto the chair. Pretty long especially it was under the morning sun. I’m toast too HAHA. If you guys actually caught onto the pun of Toasty Warm, technically the toast are sun-tanning! The difficulty I had for this was slotting the bread up onto the chair as I wanted to mimic the action of a toaster. The bread was a little squashed so it keeps falling through the gaps of the chair. From the video you could see my several attempts of trying to sit the bread up-right without dropping it.

Next, the letterbox. This installation gave me more anxiety as I’m technically entering a stranger’s space. I was so afraid that someone might come and check on me, that I’ll be leaving lots of bread crumbs in their letterbox and they would get unhappy hahaha. Thus, there’s no video for the letterbox part as I had to quickly lay the breads out and go.

Overall, this experience a little scary for me as i had to do it in the public alone. Of course, I’ve gotten my fair share of weird stares from the people but it was really fun! I did not get any “bad” response from any strangers, more of laughters and smiles as they see me setting up the bread on the chairs. I guess people aren’t that narrow minded after all 🙂

Sol LeWitt: Drawing #338

Sol LeWitt earned a place in the history of art for his leading role in the Conceptual movement. His belief in the artist as a generator of ideas was instrumental in the transition from the modern to the postmodern era.

So LeWitt believed the idea itself could be the work of art, and maintained that, like an architect who creates a blueprint for a building and then turns the project over to a construction crew, an artist should be able to conceive of a work and then either delegate its actual production to others or perhaps even never make it at all. LeWitt’s work ranged from sculpture, painting, and drawing to almost exclusively conceptual pieces that existed only as ideas or elements of the artistic process itself.


I D E A S  I N  T R A N S M I S S I O N

Early in his career, LeWitt began to have others help execute his wall drawings. Wall Drawing 16 was first drawn by a draftsman, which helped LeWitt to realize his work according to his instructions and diagrams, addressing practical concerns such as the time-consuming nature of the drawings.

More significantly, this choice articulated LeWitt’s belief that the conception of the idea, rather than its execution, constitutes the artwork. He was also rejecting the traditional importance assigned to the artist’s own hand

Now, Sol LeWitt’s wall drawings are executed by professional draughts people from sets of instructions generated by the artist. LeWitt emphasised the idea or concept of an artwork over its visual realisation, hence his assertion that his instructions are themselves the work of art. The artist’s methodology has been likened to that of a composer: the works are manifested by others, and no single drawing is ever the definitive version.

Throughout the late 1960s and early 1970s, LeWitt, turned to site-specific, drawing-based installations in order to disengage aesthetic experience from the autonomous object, foregrounding the institution as its constitutive framework. Drawing’s unostentatious physical presence made it attractive to artists seeking to emphasise conceptual content over material form, while its affordability and provisionality made it well suited to temporary installations.

“I try to make the plan specific enough so that it comes out more or less how I want it, but general enough that [the draughts people] have the freedom to interpret. It’s as though I am writing of piece of music and somebody else is going to play it on the piano.”
– Lewitt, 1971

Drawing #338
So LeWitt, 1971, 
colour pencils

The wall is divided vertically into two parts. Each part is divided horizontally and vertically into four equal parts. 1st part: Lines in four directions, one direction in each quarter. 2nd part: Lines in four directions, superimposed progressively.

From a distance, an evanescent mist of colour appears to hover in front of the wall. I thought it was simply a beautiful sea of pastel paint, but once I took a closer look, boy was I dumbfounded. It was not paint at all. They were endless lines drawn in various directions by colour pencils. Colour pencils!! Are you guys hearing this? It’s a HUGE wall, adorned by colours, made up of little lines of a colour pencil! A pencil thickness is the most 0.5-0.7 on it’s lead, imagine how much time it took. Besides the crazy scale of this, not only was it lines drawn on the wall, they were precise, calculated lines that were drawn in an angle. Math + precision + repetition, that is crazy. Respect is what the professional draught people should get.

LeWitt’s works and drawings are heavily emphasised on the use of traditional medium. Besides colour pencils, he frequently uses graphite pencils to create delicately wavy lines and geometric forms in his art. This reminded me of how we are so used to our Adobe Illustrator/Photoshop that we gradually l forget how it feels to hold a pencil, rather than our Wacom pen. Think about it, when was the last time you truly held a colour pencil or a graphite pencil to create mindlessly?

If you guys could tell from my tone of voice here, I am still incredibly stumped by his work. So here are a loooot of insane close up of his work, and y’ll could see the details there. It’s crazy my friends, i n s a n e . 

The technicality behind the drawing is so fascinating. It resembles a perfectly drawn grid paper or a blueprint that was actually printed from a machine. How can it be so perfect? There are zero mistakes at all. No shaky lines whatsoever. Also, the colours, the colours! The colour pencils that are used are simply primary colours and the combination of them created such beautiful hues of blue, pink, green and yellows. Besides making use of geometric shapes, colour theory is involved too! LeWitt basically went back to basics with his drawings and it’s mind-blowing because it’s such a simple yet complex idea.

Till now, I couldn’t believe that I thought it was just a simple wall paint. 

And here are some of his other works that share similar execution and the same amount of amazing-ness.

Wall Drawing #51
So LeWitt, 1970, Blue snap lines
Architectural points connected by straight lines

Wall Drawing #1180
So LeWitt, 1961, Black marker on wall

Wall Drawing #138
So LeWitt, 1972, Black pencil
Circle and arcs on both sides

Wall Drawing #797
So LeWitt, 1995, Blue, Red, Yellow markers

02 Plastic Fusing

P L A S T I C  F U S I N G 
Materials: Wax Paper, Iron, Plastics

 P L A S T I C  F U S I N G  T E C H N I Q U E

  • Choose pieces of plastics that you would like to fuse
  • Place plastics in-between wax paper
  • Start ironing until you’ve reach your desired fusion results.

Trial 01 – Fairprice Mini Bag

At every asian household… you would definitely have loads of plastic bags chuck at the corner of your house. *thanks mom* So, it seems that I only have Fairprice plastic bags and I guess the colour theme that I’m going with would be White, Red and Blue for now?

I was really excited to try the fusing of plastic as I’ve never really done it with an iron before. Previously I had some experience playing with acrylics only, with a hot air gun. And this iron technique gave me quite an unexpected result!

And tadah! The red little handle was actually from the Kopi that I had in the morning. Guess it came in handy eh? It was interesting how the plastic wrinkles as it stays under the heat for longer. And honestly, I was quite taken aback when it started to shrink! I really had no idea the plastic would shrink that much under heat, and it made me realise that I’ve to be more alert while ironing so that my plastics wouldn’t turn into a dried prune hahaha. 

Trial 02 –  Ink Bag 

For this bag, I knew I wanted to make something circular. I tried to do some mix media by drawing some lines on the plastic with permanent marker to see if the heat would melt the ink or something unexpected would happen. I guess the results shows that it didn’t turn out as I expected it to be hmmm. Now it’s just some wrinkly circle bag!

I realise that the thickness of your plastic plays a huge part in the shrinking process. If the plastic is thicker, it doesn’t shrink as much compared to thinner plastics. *we learn new things everyday*

Trial 03 –  Four Leaves & Fairprice Collab

Since I brought a super huge Four Leaves plastic bag… why not try and fuse it to see where it goes? And here I present you, the collaboration between Fairprice and Four Leaves! Alright alright, the part before ironing is always the toughest as I’ve to try to make sure both of the plastic stays together which is really difficult. I tried various methods of folding to make sure it logo and the shape stays exactly where I wanted it to be before ironing. 

And tadah! Ok this is another discovery. Apparently the baking paper has to be changed quite often as some of the ink from the previous plastic has stained the wax paper itself, thus leaving some ink residue on my plastics. *note to self* And the bag didn’t turn out as adorable as I thought it was gonna be like. Though, the branding on both sides are on point! Haha. I tried, I tried. Next, I’m really excited to try some beautiful cellophane papers! I’m sure the colours would look great. 

I finally went to get my cellophane paper and was so excited to try it out!

I knew the colour scheme I wanted to go for, which is Dusk – the colours of twilight and sunset. I tried to mimic the colours of it by buying similar cellophane paper colours. Keyword… I tried. But it’s close enough I guess? 

Maybe the colours I chose seemed closer to this photo instead… Anyhow, here we go! Oh and I had no idea cellophane papers were so expensive!? It’s like $2.20 per roll, damn I thought it was cheaper. 

Again, the tricky part was trying to make sure the cellophane were flat so I could iron it nicely. They just kept rolling! And again, the results weren’t what I expected them to be. I wonder, why they didn’t shrink as much compared to the Fairprice plastic bags? Is it the heat? It can’t be the thickness as this papers are much thinner than the fairprice plastic bags. Or is it because, it has lesser plastic percentage in it? Hmmmm. But yes, I wanted them to blend well together but I just seemed choppy. I guess one way to make it more smooth was to tear the cellophane buy hand, so it doesn’t have precise cut ends which accentuates the borders. And here are some of my test pieces!

Sorry you might be a little giddy as I’ve to flip the image upside down so that it resembles the sky gradient even more. I didn’t realise that I’ve been looking at it the wrong way the entire time haha, now wonder it doesn’t look like how I envisioned it to be. Now it looks better when it’s flipped!

Test 01
This piece was had a transparent plastic as backing, and it’s cut nicely with a pair of scissors. My first ever Dusk that I tried to captured, it’s the most wrinkly and has the most obvious edges.

Test 02
Still, cellophane paper are cut nicely with scissors. This was ironed against white plastic as backing which I thought would give more vibrancy to the colours as it’s against a white background. And yes, I guess it kinda did? I used more cellophane paper to overlay it, in hopes that it will start ‘blending’. Now it just reminds me of the agar agar jelly that I used to it sigh. 

Test 03
My favourite piece of all! Finally I decided to forgo my scissors for this and started tearing the cellophane paper with my hands. And guess what! It sort of gave a smoother flow as the cut is not as precised compared to the others. This is just one layer of cellophane paper, layered against each other without any backings. Oh and I feel that this piece resembles a silhouette of a mountain! Does it? Please tell me it does haha. 

Test 04
I really liked how the torn edges worked out, so I forgo the scissors again. I placed about 2 layers for the lighter colours, which were the yellow and magenta. And guess what! It turned the magenta into orange. I guessed I’ve accidentally overlayed too much on the magenta. Folded the edges at the side because I wanted the end product to look neater, was contemplating if I should cut it into a square?

I’m gonna bring my cellophane papers and try it with a hot air gun when I’m in school. It could probably give me the blended, warp-y, desired effects that I wanted!

/ Update! *

I’m back again! And I’ve finally tried to fuse the plastics together with a hot air gun. The results are so much better as the plastic literally fuses with one another, unlike when it’s ironed, it’s just layers together. As you can see, I really tried to create a wavy texture, hopefully it could mimic the wispy clouds in the sky. 

Overall, I definitely prefer the effects made by a hot air gun as it’s much more natural. But for the cellophane, I can’t simply use hot air to melt it directly as the cellophane paper will separate from one another. I would have to iron first, to stick them together – then use hot air gun to fuse them together. 

Plastic fusing is a really cool technique as I’m able to achieve various effects simply by using different tools such as an iron or a hot airgun 🙂 I’m interested to see how this technique will help me in the making of my final project!