I bought this remnant of navy fake suede a while back to try with smocking. I mentioned in my previous post that I want to make a bunch of smocked pillows for our soon-to-be-purchased couch.
Here's a bit of info about how to smock, and to show you what's been happening with this particular item...
Here is my cheap-o way to get a grid on the back of the navy suede. I had a bunch of scraps of fusible interfacing. I then drew a grid onto that interfacing. You can buy Pellon fusible grid interfacing, but it's rather expensive (I think).
Depending on the type of design you want on the front, you draw different patterns of lines on the back. If you look to the right side of the above photo, you'll see I've already done some of the stitching: Tuck & tie the solid lines, while leaving loose the spaces between the solid lines. You can see my knots & my loose pieces of thread if you look closely.
I think it is magic. That simple grid & markings, some easy stitching, and Wow! A lovely basket weave 3D design on the front of my suede pillow!
Above are some remnants I got from fabric.com. I wanted to see how these fabrics would look when smocked. The cheetah is a very shiny polyester, the brown is another fake suede. The solid cream & eggplant are linen/rayon blends and the 2 flowery prints are from Amy Butler's Gypsy Caravan Stash line.
However! There is a problem. I love the 2 Amy Butler & linen fabrics so much...but only got a yard or 2 of each. They are all quite wide, though. So now I'm thinking, "Who needs pillows?! I need skirts!" Stay tuned to see what really happens with these!
A few smocking tutorials from around the web. And if you're looking for smocking pics, don't be surprised at how many smoking pics you get. ;-P
Here are honeycomb smocking tutorial & a lattice smocking tutorial from Learning to Fly.
And a pin tuck smocking tutorial from Sew Mama Sew.
There's also a round pillow project in the first One-Yard Wonders book.
Update! Found another great smocking pattern on the Threads.com site. Really cool lozenge looking smocking which would make a great waist decoration (see the photo!).
And here's the blue suede pillow finished! Well, the smocking is finished (watching a movie is a great way to get handwork done!). Now I need to make it into a pillow.
An important consideration is how the smocking changes the shape of your fabric. This was a large square, but now it's a rectangle. I think some planning & thought would be involved if you had a certain pillow shape in mind when you started. Me, I'm going to smock smock away, then find pillow forms that fit the completed work!