Tuesday, October 7, 2008

The Making of Madame Defarge

Those evil knitting needles were the bane of Dickens' A Tale of Two Cities .... now brought to life by our own needles (only this time it's the sewing kind).

Madame Defarge's wire frame is wrapped in old muslin scraps -- a prim dress is cut and sewn from hand-dyed fabric (lots of water stains and prim marks for effect), then sewn to her body, the cuffs turned back and collar added....

Her head is needlsculpted before wool hair is needlefelted to her head. I pulled the facial threads "tight" to create the lines and wrinkles in addition to the tiny stitches that form her features....

The basket o' heads is filled with tiny needlsculpted heads. I daubed red paint at the base of each one, below the chin (the guillotine does leave a mark, right?). A deathly grey paint for skin color and wild Alpaca hair will be needlfelted above their dead expressions.

The finished product below...Madame Defarge

...and her Basket o' Heads


Anonymous said...

Truly wonderful faces! Have you ever made them from dried apples?

I love her name! Madame Defarge. It sounds like there's a story behind it.

Diane :-)

I Play Outside The Box said...

Looking good!! Thanks for stopping by my blog today! Ü

Artfulife said...

Love her expression!

Roses and Lilacs said...

I'm sitting her drawing correlations between that time in French history and our current events in the US. I see distinct similarities between the French aristocrats and AIG's executives.