Some of you I know live in warm places year-round. Lucky, lucky you! I don’t know why I haven’t yet joined you, but for now I’m in the American Midwest under a blanket of snow and cold air. We bundle up here until we waddle like penguins under layers of coats, hats, scarves, shawls, thick socks and boots. Usually all these layers are in drab colors and we look like depressed penguins suffering from seasonal affective disorder. Which we probably are!
Instead of looking like these Chicago people:
Source: CBS Chicago
I’d rather look like this:
Source: Penguin Foundation
So why not wear some happy, colorful and pattern-full layers? As you know, I do a lot of painting with stencils, and sometimes I’ve imagined wearing these patterns! Why not?
Yes, you can stencil on fabric. In fact I stenciled on scarves and shawls recently, including a currently fashionable infinity scarf. Here’s how to do it, in a DIY stenciled scarf post I wrote for Paint and Pattern blogzine:
Hop on over to Paint+Pattern to see how to paint this mud cloth-inspired shawl.
Look for a scarf or shawl with a smooth flat surface. A smooth surface is easier to paint. I found mine at World Market at my local store but some colors are also available online — just search “pashmina” on World Market’s website and you’ll find colors like apple green, orchid, lilac, coral and more. They’re on sale right now for $4.99 and $7.99:
You can also find smooth shawls and scarves like this in lots of places like Target, TJ Maxx, etc.
Here’s another color shawl I stenciled. It’s posing in our freezing cold backyard in front of my dear dead garden:
I froze my little buns off taking photos out there, and then I got back in the house and saw the one little orange tassel is out of place and it is still bugging me! Call that “Design OCD.” Yes I can be a perfectionist and have “Design OCD” pretty bad. That tassel situation is a little too complex for me to fix in Photoshop and make it look natural. Believe me there are plenty of things I fix in Photoshop and you would never know! It was too cold to go back out in the whipping wind and photograph it again. This whole shawl was almost picked up by the wind, flung off the dress form and thrown across the yard to get stuck up in the sticks of the trees. The photo froze this in a moment in time so you have no idea how cold and windy it was! It might look serene but it’s all an illusion.
Even as I write this, it’s sunny out but don’t be fooled — the wind is outside my windows whipping snow around like mad and building drifts against the house.
And that is why, it’s good to have a bunch of warm things like these shawls to wrap around your shoulders and cuddle on a couch in front of a fire with hot cocoa. And when the shawl is colorful and patterned, all the better!
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