Saturday, August 06, 2011

Shisha Mirror Experiments

I have a bunch of kits leftover from when we used to do "What If Wednesday" workshops at Friends Fabric Art. I thought it would be fun to do something with them. It is always fun to play with a technique and see what you can come up with that's sort of new and different. I'm going to do a series of blogs using the materials in the kits and the remaining kits will be given away to blog readers. For this post I'm going to focus on Shisha mirrors and kit give away info is at the end of the post. Kit is pictured here.

Since I've tried the traditional ways to sew on Shisha mirrors before, I decided to try some different approaches. If you aren't familiar with the traditional sewing methods, check out the Rajmahal website's how to info:

For my first experiment, I decided to use some wire mesh ribbon that I got from Rings & Things. It's great fun because it expands and it's a tube so you can stuff the tube with things. In this case I cut a short piece of it and stuffed in a Shisha mirror. This is what the wire ribbon looks like when you first get it.

Here you can see the back side of the Shisha mirror with how I wrapped the excess wire to the backside of the Shisha mirror. I then flipped this over and stitched carefully along the edge of the mirror through the wire so my stitches didn't show much at all.
Here's the front side. The top one is the Shisha mirror and the other is a vintage cabochon that was sewn on in a semi-traditional Shisha mirror stitching way. I also did some chain stitching on the Shisha mirror through the wire mesh of the ribbon which you can just barely see here.

For my next experiment, I used some Glitterati Fibers that I had ironed into a lacy sheet. (using a Teflon press cloth to protect the iron like for Angelina Fibers) I wrapped the fibers around the Shisha and then stitched the Shisha down onto a needle-felting sample that I had started a while ago.

I also did something similar with putting silk rod fibers in front of the Shisha mirror and then stitching it down onto another needle-felting sample. I've added beads to this one as well. I'm thinking that these need to be pins.

For the last one I used Lutradur and Glitterati Film. I cut the Lutradur in a cross shape, centered it over the mirror, and then placed a small square of Glitterati Film on top of that in the middle. I then stitched the mirror down to yet another needle-felt sample which had been covered with another piece of Lutradur. I think I need to add a bit of glue under the square of Glitterati Film because it wants to slide around under the stitching. I may decide to add more stitching over the mirror, too. I haven't decided how to stitch the background area yet or whether to add beads.
I was just going to do a couple, but I kept getting ideas for new things to try. I wasn't even that inspired by Shisha mirrors before. Using my assortment of funky art materials with them made them much more tempting to experiment with.

Shisha Mirror Kit Give-Away
I have two Shisha mirror kits left that are up for grabs. There are enough materials in it to try the basic Shisha mirror sewing method to sew a small Artist Trading Card piece or make a pin with. In my experiments I've used some other materials that aren't included in the kit.

If you are interested in a kit, post a brief message in the blog comments. If more than two people are interested, I'll randomly pick two "winners." (in case you were curious- the geek part of me will assign everyone a number and use the Excel RandBetween function to pit the winning numbers) I'll need to be able to get your address so I can mail out the kit. (I won't save the address after or sell it or anything like that.) I'll plan to check the comments in about a week, but maybe two depending on the interest level and I'll post the winners in the comments section.


Sonja said...

I found two more kits. Since no one has expressed interest so far, the next 4 people that request a kit will get them otherwise I'll take them apart some day when I find the time.

Kit contents:
Shisha mirror
Vintage embellishment
Vintage button
Embroidery threads
ATC-sized Fabric & backing felt
Rajmahal Shisha mirror sewing instructions

Angela said...

Sonja, I love the way you are exploring new ways to use the Shisha mirrors! Especially love the film over it, really adds some depth to it. Combining these with the needle felting really gives some contrast as well, I love it! Thanks for sharing!

Sonja said...

Thanks Angela!

If you'd like a kit please e-mail me at

Jane said...

do you still have this? I am interested.

Sonja said...

I keep forgetting to check if we still have a few kits left or not. I don't remember seeing any in the studio in the spot where they were kept so I think they are gone.