Sunday, January 25, 2009

New kite project

For more than a year I have a had an idea for a kite but have made no progress other than a few sketches and some mental pictures. One problem I had was how to put some of the complex features together using layers of ripstop and stitches. Now that I have a sewing room, I felt it was time to get started on the project.

To start, I reread some of William Farber's book, Painting with Light and Air. He suggests a modular approach when sewing complex designs and I had been pondering the method but couldn't quite figure out how to use it. But the approach does make sense and I have started to use it to a small degree. Not all designs work with his method but with more complex designs, this is a great way to work.

The kite I made this weekend is not the kite I am aiming for, rather, it was a practice piece, using some of the design elements and colors to see how well they work together. This is the same size kite we made in the kite workshop a few weeks ago. That is a fun size, small enought so you can get quick results and you don't mind if it is a complete failure, not much waste with so small a kite. And, if the kite works, you have a nice little kite you can fly or give away.

By the way, Farber's book is not yet available in the US but he did tell me that the Drachen Foundation ordered a number so it may be available from them soon. It is a good book for kite makers wanting to step up to the next level in applique. His kites have won prizes in Dieppe France as well as Dieppe, New Brunswick.

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