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Iridescent Butterfly

Iridescent Butterfly

I was hunting around in my craft drawers a few weeks ago, and came across a stack of butterflies I’d made years ago from fusible film – it’s the sheet version of ‘Angelina’ fibre. I’d inked up a butterfly rubber stamp, laid the sheet over the top, covered with baking paper and ironed it. The sheets are iridescent and change colour where heat is applied, and also become ‘3D’ and mould to the shape/texture they are on when the heat is applied. This is one of the other butterflies I found:

It’s hard to capture all the different colours as they are really shiny, but you can see the texture clearer in this close up:

Most people have probably heard of the ‘butterfly bush’, Buddleja, and how invasive it is. I don’t know if it has the same association with railway lines in other parts of the world as it does here, but it always reminds me of days out to the Sefton Coast, seeing miles of Buddleja alongside the tracks. I had an (odd) idea about recreating the view from the dusty train window of a bright coloured butterfly fluttering around the Buddleja flowers. I wanted to use a piece of synthetic chiffon fabric over the top, which would ‘recreate’ the obscured view I’d get because of the combination of bright sun and dirty windows, and also it’d secure the butterfly. There wasn’t a piece big enough at the well being centre, so I made do with a piece of cotton gauze. It didn’t turn out quite as I’d hoped, but it wasn’t a disaster either!:

I even joked with one of the class members that I could pretend I’d meant the gauze to represent a butterfly net! The butterfly kept its shape right until the final rinse, I must have been a bit heavy handed and the slight extra shrinkage crumpled it 🙁

Here’s a close up of the irridescence:

I still have quite a few butterflies, so I’ll hopefully think of another way of incorporating them into felt. Have you used Angelina fibres or fusible film in felting?

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