Adding Lichen to the Mossy Driftwood

Adding Lichen to the Mossy Driftwood

My next step in finishing the driftwood piece was to create lichen. I had made lichen before from Tyvek but alas, I had none in my stash. So I looked for other materials that could be shaped with a wood burning tool and that would shrink and make interesting shapes with a heat gun.

What I found was a fusible lightweight Pellon interfacing and nylon organza. The interfacing does not need to be fusible to work, it’s just what I had on hand. I can’t remember why I bought it but hopefully, it would work so I wouldn’t have to buy anything else.

Painted pastel blue green interfacing and nylon organza on white background

I painted the small pieces of interfacing and organza with a light layer of acrylic paint. As you can see here, the paint was not heavy and the shade of blue green was very light in value.

wood burning tool burning lichen shapes into painted interfacing

Next, I got out my wood burning tool and a piece of glass to burn on. I made random lichen shapes in the interfacing. I also did the same with the nylon organza. Once they were cut out, I held the small pieces with a pair of tweezers and used the heat gun to make them shrink up and get curly. I also added a bit of brown marker to the edges of the lichen as there are definitely brown bits on the real stuff.

Here’s the result. Yay, it looks like I wanted it to. Success. Now to add it and the dead teabag leaves to the mossy driftwood. I glued the lichen in place as it was mainly on the wood itself. I stitched the leaves down to the felt in a couple of places.

Textile Art Piece - driftwood covered with felt, stitched moss, stitched tea bag leaves and lichen from interfacing and organza

Here’s the result. You can click on the photo to enlarge it.

And the close up views. I’m happy with how it turned out and it was a really fun project.

36 thoughts on “Adding Lichen to the Mossy Driftwood

  1. Wow, Ruth, your lichen is so realistic I don’t think I could have distinguished it from the real thing. Great job.

  2. This piece is wonderful Ruth. You can only tell that the moss isn’t real when looking at the really close up photos, but you can’t even do that with the lichen, it is so lifelike.
    And thanks for the idea – I’ve been wanting a quick way of making a fabric which could be mistaken for something furry from a distance for a stage costume. I’ve got lots of light-weight iron vilene that I mistakenly used to drape a costume a couple of years ago, now I’m glad I didn’t throw it away but can use it.

    1. Thanks Ann, the lichen did turn out pretty realistic. And easy to make, although it takes some time and is a bit fiddly. Glad I gave you an idea for embellishing a stage costume. I look forward to hearing about your results.

  3. Thank you for sharing your experiments. The lichen is incredibly realistic and I’m anxious to try this for myself.

    1. Thanks Ladies! The burning is kind of magic. When you start out, it isn’t looking like much but you just keep going and magically, lichen appears.

    1. Thanks Ann, the branch does look pretty realistic. I’m sure the lichen will look good in a picture. I can see a tree branch going across the sky with lichen on it. I might have to do that one 😉

    1. Thanks Tesi, I’m not sure about the cleverness but I really like to use up what I already have so making do sometimes creates opportunities.

  4. This piece is a great inspiration to try new things with our crafting. Thank you for this as it has spurred my imagination to experiment with different ways to get the desired results. My mind is whirling with all imaginings now

    1. I’m glad I could inspire you, Veronica. I love to work experimentally and it often leads you to places you weren’t expecting. I always ask “what if…” and off I go.

    1. Thanks Capi, I’m happy to spread the inspiration and love to hear that you have gained more confidence on your fiber journey!

  5. That Lichen is absolutely spot on! The colour and shape is perfect and looks so lifelike on the wood.

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