In addition to pondering corsetry, I have also been thinking about how I am going to transfer the design of the fabric in the portrait onto the fabric I will be doing the punch needlework on.
Having done quilting before I am familiar with the wax paper method, the transfer paper and pen method, pressure transferring, “prick and pounce“, by use of template or stencil (similar to the prick and pounce method), the grid method, light box transferring, basting through tissue paper and the free-hand method. And to be honest, a lot of these methods are similar in their execution, but just use different tools.
If I was to transfer the pattern in a more historically accurate way I would use the “prick and pounce” method. However, I do need the design on the back of the fabric to stay there, even after being wound around a quilting frame or put in an embroidery hoop. I am afraid that the “pounced” chalk would not last and would likely rub off the fabric.
Light boxes are of course out due to the fabric being rather thick and the pieces being rather large. Basting would also be difficult for the skirt unless I wanted to hand baste every line of the design and frankly, I think I would get so frustrated by it that I would end up hating the project.
The grid method seems to be overkill and I think it has already been established that my artistic talent is nil, so free-hand is out.
I am interested by several ideas, though. My plan is to go to Kinkos and blow up the pattern to the correct size, and/or send the pattern to them in a file and they can print it out in black and white on large paper. I can then use said paper to do the transfer pen method, or the iron-on method. Or I could then put a layer of tulle over the enlarged design, transfer the design to the tulle via marker, and then transfer it to fabric. I have never done the tulle method of transfer, but it sounds very doable, particularly if you get a tiny weave of tulle so it won’t stretch out of shape. Tulle is also very inexpensive and wouldn’t be quite as much money as a very large roll of iron-on paper, or multiple rolls of wax paper all taped together.
I am planning on doing a sample of the pattern in punch needlework using the quilting frame to see how well that will work in terms of holding the fabric tight and to get the correct density of stitches and the correct length of boucle loops. It might be worthwhile to try a couple of different transfer methods at the same time.
Has anyone used a particular method before that worked really well? Or one that failed miserably? I would love to hear your suggestions.