The Fabric of My Life

May Theme
Touchy Feely (Texture)
Week May 2-Week 18
Art Challenge:  Fabric
Journal Prompt:  The Fabric of Your Life

What is the fabric of my life?  I had to sit and really think about this. What is it made of, what is the foundation? What does it look like? What binds it together?  A recurrent theme for me this week has been the idea of HOPE in a world that seems to have lost control; riots in the USA (Baltimore), disaster in Nepal, unrest in the Middle East, to name a few.  I worry that although social media makes access to information faster and easier, at the same time it replaces our connectivity to one another in a physical way.  In difficult times when one just doesn’t seem to understand, isn’t it nice to know that we are “bound” to others through our actions, our thoughts, our prayers, and our love and not just through a text or a message on Facebook.  Our impact on others is part of our fabric – our composition – our constitution.

For this week’s challenge I wanted to illustrate my sentiment using an ancient Chinese myth I once heard.  There are many versions of this myth, but I love the meaning behind this particular interpretation.

I created a background using several shades of acrylic and applied them with my brayer and a baby wet wipe, blending the colors, but not too much.  Using my palette knife, I smeared on some white gesso into the wet acrylic and scratched through it leaving marks and ridges.

Using my trusty Blackwing pencil {it has super dark, thick lead} I roughly sketched in the corners of the pages and used a dip pen and Black Magic india ink for my lettering.  Every time my nib hit a ridge or bump in the paint, the ink would splotch.  But I’m proud of myself . . . I embraced it.

For my “fabric,” I used bright red embroidery floss and “glued” it around the page using gel medium.  I also sealed the whole page with the gel medium to protect the string and make sure it was coated well and would stay put.

And here’s my finished page . . . I sorta love it.

“There’s an ancient Chinese myth about the Red Thread of Destiny. It says we are connected by an invisible red thread to all of those people we are destined to touch in some way. This thread may stretch or tangle, but it wil never break.”

Here’s hoping that we all “touch” each other in a real and positive way.  You never know what one small act or gesture could mean to someone else or how you could change the course of their day {or life}.  Our featured artist this week is someone who did just that for me a few years ago.  She literally altered my course.

In May of 2010 I attended Brave Girls Camp and forged a friendship with Melody Ross and her sister Kathy Wilkins that is remarkable and treasured.  I blogged about Brave Girls Camp HERE if you want to read about my experience.  I am beyond excited to see what Melody shares to inspire us all this week – you can access her challenge HERE!  If you are from a different planet and have never heard about her, you are going to LOVE her as much as I do!  Have a great week everyone.  Dig deep and Happy Documenting!

Share this Post


  1. cindy arrington

    Lorraine, your work is stunning in its simplicity. What a heartfelt sentiment cleverly created. Wonderful. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Lorraine Bell

      Thank you so much Cindy – I’m really happy you liked it.

  2. Sandi Keene

    What a gorgeous spread you did! I love the red thread that connect us. Red= the color of blood that connects us and has saved us. I am so grateful to be connected with you. Love you.

    1. Lorraine Bell

      Yes . . . connected. Except we are connected at the heart!

  3. Lea Ann Barlas

    All I can say is "Wow"! You have made me want to really "dig" deep when approaching this page! Thanks so much!

    1. Lorraine Bell

      Thank you Lea Ann – I hope you do dig deep – can’t wait to see!

  4. Avatar

    Absolutely love this Rae! Your thoughts are perfectly illustrated. Thank you for sharing.

  5. Avatar

    This is beautiful, Lorraine! I love that concept about the red thread. I read a chinese story to my kids and it included this red thread concept. The book is called Where the Mountain Meets the Moon by Grace Lin. Beautiful story.

    1. Lorraine Bell

      Thanks so much Anna – Ooooh, I’m going to have to look that book up – heading to Amazon now! Thank you xoxo

  6. Avatar

    That Chinese myth you featured meant much to me at the moment! Thanks for sharing your page!

    1. Lorraine Bell

      That’s wonderful June! See what I mean about "touching someone else?" You just never know when or how . . . xoxo

  7. Mary W

    What a beautiful tribute to a wonderful Chinese myth. Your pages always have something for me to take away and I appreciate you and your thoughts so much. I thank you for your red thread of destiny!

    1. Lorraine Bell

      Thank you Mary – isn’t it nice to know that red thread connects us too!

  8. Rae Missigman

    ooh this turned out absolutely lovely! I had the vision in my head after we talked about it this week, but it is even more beautiful than I imagined. I am so very happy that I was "destined" to meet you and consider myself very fortunate to have my red thread attached to yours. Love ya. xo

    1. Lorraine Bell

      Thank you Rae – as I told Sandi – we are all attached at the heart!

  9. Avatar

    These pages are wonderful – everything about this spread speaks to me.

    Thank you.

    1. Lorraine Bell

      I’m so glad Jo – thanks for commenting to tell me!

  10. Marta Yarley

    I stumbled across your page and glad I did. Your writing and your creativity are absolutely beautiful.

    Thanks for sharing.

    1. Lorraine Bell

      Thank you Marta! I am so glad you found me too – I really appreciate your taking the time to comment!

  11. Avatar

    I love that you illustrated this feeling, this story. I’m inspired!

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.