Sunday, 30 August 2015

Daisy Scrap Journal

Fabric books are much on my mind  as next Friday I'm off  to 'Late Summer at Hawkwood' with Frances Pickering.

So I thought I'd share the last sample I made for my December workshop, which is this Daisy Scrap Journal.

Daisies say 'neat and tidy' to me. To represent the feel of a smart, fresh little flower, I made the cover from bonded scraps of  a crisp striped  red cotton. The centre panel is painted abaca tissue, and hand dyed vintage lace. I wanted to keep a simple feel - the stitching is in hand dyed rayon threads and  vintage pearl cotton. The little daisy tag is cut from pelmet vilene - a great tip I  picked up from Frances.

 Inside the covers I went for a scrap book effect.

I used  brown paper for my pages, scrunched and re-ironed - which gives a nice textured effect to  make marks on. A simple daisy stamp was used to mark all the odd pages for a bit of interest..

The back  has a panel with a bit more detailed stitching. 
I enjoyed putting this piece together very much, and I think it's because it has lots of small parts. However hard I try I am always drawn back to the little details. Sometimes it is the obvious things about yourself that you don't see for ages!

Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Thread doodling with bullion knots

Another little doodle, just for fun. I'm really drawn to this colour combination lately.

Saturday, 22 August 2015

Are you another Multipotentialite?

I had a fab playday at the Festival of Quilts with my lovely friend Alison.
It's usually quieter on  Sunday and so we spent lots of time chatting to textile artists Frances Pickering (and husband Jim,) Hilary Beattie and Janet Clare, which was  lovely!  As usual though,  afterwards I was in awe of these marvelously focused  and talented ladies, and felt cross with myself, wondering why it is I can't settle to one discipline.

Then Charlotte introduced me to the concept of 'scanners' and lent me this book 'Refuse to Choose' by Barbara Sher. (Cue King Kong size lightbulb going on over  my head!)
 ''Multipotentialites ( scanners, Renaissance souls, polymaths) generally have diverse interests across numerous domains and may be capable of success in many endeavors or professions, they are confronted with unique decisions as a result of these choices.”
– Wiki Link

It seems like common sense when someone else explains it, but for the last 40 years or so I honestly though there was something wrong with me. I keep thinking I've found 'it',  learn /extract all I can/need to and then, I get bored, loose focus and  'ooh, look, shiny...' I've found the next wonderful all encompassing thing I want to do/learn about.

Naturally, I've become obsessed with finding out  everything I can about this! :)

I've discovered Emilie Wapnick and  Puttylike.  So fascinating and helpful too.  I know this concept applies to some of you, or possibly to  friends and family members, so do watch Emilie's  TED talk below, because I think you might find it interesting. x

Monday, 17 August 2015

Poppy Seedhead Writing folder

This is the second sample for my winter mixed media workshop, and it's very different from my usual approach. I had fun with this one!

 I wanted a particular effect,  which I could see in my head!  I drew a poppy head stamp and used Koh-I -Nor paints to stamp on the fabric. When dry I sponged and splattered the background so it would partly merge and cover the images. Then I took back some of the coloured areas with bleach. I free machined around the poppies and finished  the image using  a little hand embroidery. It was fused onto some hand dyed silk and a piece of vintage lace added for some texture/overlay.

Inside I used some of my naturally dyed cotton to line the case. An unbound strip of silk with more vintage lace holds the hand made notelets in place. They are made from recycling wallpaper lining paper, which has been painted and stamped with another poppy head image.

Finally there's a simple tie with painted wooden beads to finish it off!

Monday, 10 August 2015

Mini Art Quilt - Winter Melody

Last week I finished my samples for my mixed media workshop and they are now waiting to go on display. This is the first one, a simply structured mini art quilt  with a winter theme.  Loving seedheads as I do this was a great chance to use some of my favourite images.

I  made some simple stamps, then used a variety of of fabrics to show the effects  of the paint on different weights/types. I made pearlised paints to give a sparkle of frost and ice.

After preparing the fabrics and stamping them I set out the images in a collage, and then fused them to wool felt.

They were then re sectioned, simply embellished, using  a variety of  threads/ stitches and some beading, and  hand stitched together with a variegated pearl cotton.

Some are overprinted on already patterned fabrics -

some onto heavier weight linen, and  fine, hand dyed silk.

As the workshop is about approaching mixed media without the need to use lots of products and expense, everything was found in my supply stash and around the house. I do  feel that limiting yourself also extends your creativity. Having decided on my colour palette there were a few challenging moments -  which stretched me - but these were the things I liked best when I'd finished. What do you think - does anyone have any projects where constraints meant success?

Monday, 3 August 2015

Where's the hare? Thread doodling a negative shape

 Still playing about with doodles on a bit of unbleached calico. This little fellow started to emerge as a negative shape.

He pricked up his ears -
and sat stock still
Deep in the forest,  
beneath the dark hill.

 I used some of my precious Valdani subtly variegated threads. What a joy to stitch with.

This is the actual size, shown against my favourite, bunny scissors!