Trapunto!

‘Tra-what?’ I hear you say! All will become clear, I promise.

Friday is one of my favourite classes, Adventures in Decorative Techniques. It is only six weeks long, but each week we will be learning a number of different techniques that can then be used on garments.

Last week we learnt trapunto! (I think it benefits from the exclamation mark, don’t you?)

We started by creating a mood board of images that we liked. Here are a few similar to the ones on my mood board.

'La Gerbe', Matisse - 1953

Madeleine Vionnet dress

'Garrowby Hill', David Hockney - 1998

From the mood board we then designed a simple line pattern to create using trapunto(!).

Trapunto(I’ll stop now) is a technique that uses three layers of fabric – a top layer (in this case we used red silk), a middle layer of stuffing or wadding, and a bottom layer which acts as a backing – you don’t see this.

Layers of fabric for trapunto

Having drawn your design on to tracing paper, you pin or place this paper on to the top of your layers of fabric.

Using a sewing machine, you then sew over the pattern on the tracing paper which transfers it on to the fabric. Finally you tear off the layer of tracing paper.

The layer of wadding means that the pattern is created in relief.

Trapunto detail

My final trapunto design (the white bits are tracing paper that I haven't removed yet!)

Image sources

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6 thoughts on “Trapunto!

  1. I love your new blog! I was oohing, ahing and gently nodding through each of your posts.

    A random selection of thoughts are: I love Madelaine Vionnet’s dresses (obviously from a distance, not having worn many of them myself) and really enjoyed the trapunto! post. Being a bit of a retro nut I love this style, but had no idea it has a name…

    And I’m so jealous you have already made a skirt and a top. I need to pull my finger out! Or rather my sewing machine. I don’t even know if it still works!

    See you in class! Lorna

    • Glad you like it – you can point out any mistakes I make!

      I only found out about Vionnet through the Decorative Techniques class – I don’t think they are even ‘one day’ dresses – we will just have to look at the pictures 😦

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