Fallen Doilies is a series of prints started in 2010. The process is simple and the results elegant. I drop/ lay-down paint drenched doilies on sheets of paper that have been prepared with their edges masked. When laying down the doily I allow for drips and folds in the material. This gives the finished print a sense of movement, of a delicate doily falling through space.
Often these prints are done before or after working on more elaborate mono-prints. I find the process liberating and relaxing in that I have limited control over the outcome. Making Fallen Doilies often spark new ideas for projects. I think of them as printed sketches.
I’m fond of mixing a little metallic paint in with my palate. This gives the prints a subtle iridescence and helps to soften the darker pigments. I never use straight black paint, a little something is always added be it Payne’s grey, a touch of violet or a dash of green.
The Fallen Doilies are made primarily in the summer (all of these are from last June) when my patio is transformed into an outdoor studio. I’d love to try out some larger versions of these and am keeping my eyes open for lovely large doilies to test out this coming summer.
Part of my challenge with this series, and part of what I find liberating, is my attachment to the physical doilies. I’ll hum and haa over which to use and all too often will end up with a pristine store bought doily. When I look at these textiles I don’t just see a circle of fabric, I see the time that when into making them. Envision why and for whom they were crochet. This develops a nostalgic attachment.
While the process of making Fallen Doilies doesn’t destroy the textiles, it does discolour them and leave them stained. Making the decision to “dirty” the pristine little discs remains challenging but a great exercise in letting go (not that I discard the used ones).
On a side note
I’m on Etsy now! If you have clicked on any of the print images you have already figured this out. The shop was set-up in the first week of January and I’m still adding items. If there are any items you’d like to see added to the shop or if you have any experience with Etsy, I’d love to hear from you. If you have any pointers for photographing high-contrast artworks on white paper, I’d really appreciate hearing what worked for you. Documenting these prints is driving me half mad!
You can check out my Etsy store at JahDoily.etsy.com