Creating Lutradur Leaves

Creating Lutradur Leaves

Before I get started on my topic for today’s post, I wanted to show you the finish of Sanctuary. I added some weight to the left hand branches and I like it a lot better. Ann had suggested that I add something to the right foreground but I don’t think I am going to do that. For me, this piece is all about the tree being a sanctuary in a lonely place, a place for birds to perch and rest. So I am leaving it as is.

The photo on the left is when I showed it to you last week. The photo on the right is after I added a bit more yarn to the left side branches. It feels more balanced to me and I’m happy with it so it’s done. (The photo on the left is much more true to the real colors.)

Now on to making some Lutradur leaves. I have been meaning to do this for a while. Ever since Karen L. posted about making Lutradur leaves here. Hers are certainly a bit larger than mine and much more fancy but the process is definitely a simple one.

I had a piece of Lutradur that my friend Sally kindly gave me. The leaves on the left are real leaves and my inspiration source. I have trouble telling the difference between birch and aspen trees/leaves. These are one or the other 🙂 I sketched the first leaf out with all the veins. But after that, I just drew the leaf and stem shape and winged it with the veins.

Here they are after free motion machine stitching. (If you’d like to learn how to do this, I teach on online class here.)

Then I colored the leaves in with a variety of colors using Inktense pencils and watercolor crayons.

I added water with a paint brush and a few more details with more ink and watercolor. I then let these dry completely.

Then I cut/burned them out with a wood burning tool. Then I zapped them with a heat gun. They don’t need much heat and the Lutradur melts quickly so you have to be careful. Karen wanted hers to be much more lacy and deteriorated than what I wanted. I did have a plan for these when I started.

Do you remember these pieces? I had made them quite quickly for an exhibition in September. They didn’t sell and I felt like they all needed something else. So I added the Lutradur leaves.

And here they are with the added Lutradur leaves. What do you think? I definitely think the leaves added is an improvement and it brings all three pieces together more as a group. Hopefully, when I exhibit these again, they will draw more interest and perhaps a sale or two.

Do you rework pieces that aren’t selling or don’t seem to work for you? I would love to hear your solutions. Just join us on the forum so we can all discuss or critique something that isn’t working for you.

15 thoughts on “Creating Lutradur Leaves

  1. Oh yes, the tree is now done and the landscape is beautiful.
    The lutradur leaves really make a difference to those 3 pieces – they will certainly draw interest and hopefully some sales.
    Re-working a piece is always worth a try. If you’re not totally happy with a piece then what have you got to lose?

  2. Ruth, these are so realistic. I enjoyed learning more about the process and will try this out, perhaps making some kelp!?
    Thanks for sharing your creations. JP

    1. Hi JP, yes, they turned out nicely. This would definitely work for kelp. You could just paint the piece of Lutradur and then use a wood burning tool to cut out various shapes. I don’t think you’d really need to stitch the kelp at all.

  3. Ruth – your owl certainly has the perfect tree now, whilst your leaves are delicately detailed both in colour and execution and I like how they lift your previous pieces.
    If I’m not happy with a project I lay it to one side until something triggers an ‘aahaa’ moment! I have a few PINS (pieces in need of something) around. A friend of mine simply throws such works onto the fire!

    1. Thanks Antje! I have a bunch of PINS that I need to revisit. But I am on to new things and don’t usually take the time. But perhaps I will hang them upside down or sideways to nudge me into fixing them.

  4. The tree looks done now. in the right picture the tree is not so close to the edge as it looks in the in the left one. I think that makes some difference as well. It looks like it is about the tree as its not going out of the picture on the left. I hope that makes sense. The leaves are an improvement. They add interest and make them all pop.
    I have definitely reworked hats that were not working. if worse comes to worse the end up inside felt balls.

    1. Thanks Ann, cropping does make a big difference for the tree. I guess I should start making dryer balls with my failures. 🙂

  5. The leaves are amazing, Ruth, the colours are gorgeous and they look so real! They really do add something and bring all the different pieces together 🙂

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