I have ❤‘d Mr X Stitch loooongtime, but didn’t have the nerve to join one of their FFF of F (Fifth Friday Festival of Fabulousness) swaps until now. The theme this time is Movies…something I have not had much contact with of late, though I watched a lot until I left university. Then my movie education came to a standstill, and I am utterly ignorant of modern movies. Which, if you want the truth, suits me just fine. I’d rather read a book, any day.
The Phat Quarter , Mr X Stitch’s community base, is an embroidery, cross stitch, and all ’round radical stitch and fibre arts group on flickr; it’s where all the creative and subversive stitchers you hear about on the Mr X Stitch site—plus their readers and groupies and fans and colleagues—go to post pictures of their work, discuss in forums, and participate in swaps. Subscribe to their feeds to get news of swaps and projects and call outs in the future! However, a word of warning: this ain’t your granny’s stitching…
For the Movie theme I chose a film poster from 1965, Russ Meyer’s Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill! Here’s what Wikipedia says about it:
is a 1965 exploitation film directed by Russ Meyer, who also wrote the script with Jack Moran. The film features gratuitous violence, sexuality, provocative gender roles, and campy dialogue. It is one of Meyer’s more boldly titled and unflinchingly exploitative films, yet unlike most of his movies, it contains virtually no nudity.
Three thrill-seeking go-go dancers — Billie (Lori Williams), Rosie (Haji), and their leader, Varla (Tura Satana) — encounter a young couple in the desert while drag racing. After killing the boyfriend (Ray Barlow) with her bare hands, Varla drugs, binds, gags and kidnaps his girlfriend, Linda (Susan Bernard). On a desolate highway, the four stop at a gas station, where they see an old man (Stuart Lancaster) and his muscular, dimwitted son, Vegetable (Dennis Busch). The gas station attendant (Mickey Foxx) tells the women that the old man and his two sons live on a decrepit ranch with a hidden cache of money. Intrigued, Varla hatches a scheme to rob the lecherous old man, who is confined to a wheelchair.
The poster I did was the cartoon version, featuring a very large-breasted Varla (Tura Satana). The bad-girls image in this movie is laid on so heavily that the whole thing is just a caricature…a supercliché…the camp is so extreme as to have perversely sophisticated appeal. The curves and bulges around the word ‘pussycat’ in this poster brought more breasts to mind, so when I stitched the word I used shades of pink and flesh, and put little French knot ‘nipples’ (knipples!) in the round shapes, to keep in the spirit of “laying the kitsch on with a shovel.”
A swap is a good way to use up small pieces of fabric (incidentally, I used a fat quarter for this project) and a bit of all that embroidery thread that is slowly degrading in the sun and air.
I didn’t take many pictures of the embroidery part, because I was rushing to meet a deadline! But I am a little proud of the way the finished embroidery has been “blocked and mounted” by repurposing a cardboard box, so I took a few shots of this process:
The finished effect is an all-fabric block that is neat, chunky—like a book or a brick—and yet weighed next to nothing and was shipped to the UK, where my swap partner is, very affordably. I was really happy with it…and happy that I could present Babs with something that was ready-to-hang, if she wanted to.