Sunday, 30 December 2012

Sometimes you just need to work to a pattern

It's a while since I've used someone else's pattern to make my quilts.  However, Plum lent me her 3 Ricky Tims'  DVDs to watch over Xmas.  I am now intrigued by the Kaleidoscope Quilt method, and have started a project using that technique.

Cutting the strips is a bit labour intensive ( Jacqui Harvey cushions in the background)



P1000485Kaleidoscope first round on the designwallP1000489

Saturday, 29 December 2012

V and A - vanity and artifice or vavavoom and adoration?

A day out on my own at the V and A to see the Ballgowns exhibition within the revamped fashion galleries at the V and A.   I love seeing couture clothes up close, as the manipulation of cloth involved in these garments is  a skill I would love to have at this level.  The gowns are sumptuous, and the contemporary gallery upstairs is breathtaking and bonkers in equal measure - full length, lace-printed latex anyone, with a latex fishtail hem?

( Atsuko Kudo gown worn by Georgia Frost with dresses by Hardy Amies and Worth of London. Lent by the designer. Carlos Jimenez, © V&A, 2011)

NewImageMany of the people at the exhibition commented on how the dull lighting does not show the older garments to advantage  I agree, the muted and pastel colour ways can look very dingy, but there are several photos of the clothes being worn, which helps with envisaging beyond the dull lighting.  On until 6th January, and well worth a visit.

















Then a spin over to the New Acquisitions gallery to see new items up close there.  I love this gallery as you never know what you are going to see there.  In the spirit of the ball gowns , the dress below is incredible, in the construction, the quality of the embroidery and the sheer exuberant use of  colour.  One little lad was puzzled by the fact that the dummy only has one arm. ( Images from the V and A website) 


The embroidery of the wave forms is beautiful, but the dress must be very heavy.


On a completely different line of interest, the New Acquisitions Gallery also has an intriguing expandable sofa, designed by Yuya Ushida.  Needs some cushions if you ask me.

I don't know what is going on with the formatting here, apologies.

Thursday, 20 December 2012

Oh Tannenbaum……………

When you don't have room for a real tree, a fabric panel from Ikea can do a sterling job.  Decorated with Procion P dyed fabric baubles, foiled and then mounted on to red felt, all it needs is the pine scent.  Also, there is no risk of our dog mistaking it for a real tree, as has happened in the past.






Saturday, 15 December 2012

Picture perfect

An end of year baby for friends gave a reason to go back to the sewing machine and stitch up a quick picture.  As this is their second child, I worked on the theme , " And then there were four".
P1000412 Based on the owl pattern from Moonstitches, the owls are felt, with scraps of tweed and cotton, stitched and quilted on to a piece of my tray -dyed cloth.   The moon is foiled, but it doesn't  show up too well here,  The branch is a piece of great fabric by Joel Dewberry called Woodgrain, sadly, no longer available.  Mounted on an 8 x 8 inch block frame.

Sunday, 9 December 2012

Blue series

At last, I got my momentum back to complete the blue series of the Contemporary quilt Group A4 challenge for 2102.  I expected this to be the easiest series, but it proved to be the most difficult to get down to. I have again focussed on using fre-purposed fabrics, dyed of printed at the Morley course.  I'm dashing about a bit today, so individual photos and notes on techniques will follow in another post.


Friday, 30 November 2012

Birthday postcards

A recent birthday brought a flood of postcards on my set theme, which was "Anatomy".  This was interpreted in many inventive ways, shown below.  Apologies for the formatting, sometimes I hate computers.

P1000380P1000381P1000383Postcard swapPostcard swapPostcard swapP1000387P1000377P1000382

Saturday, 24 November 2012

New blog........ " Embrellish"

I've been toying with the idea of moving this blog, or creating another blog to focus on one of the themes appearing here..  I've gone for the latter, not sure if this is a long term move or not, but if you like my embroidery, perhaps have a look at Embrellish.

Sunday, 11 November 2012

A tourist in my own city


One of the advantages of doing my course at Morley is that the participants come from parts of London  with which I am not familiar.  They therefore introduce me to areas that I have never visited in all the time I have lived here.  I am almost embarrassed to admit that one of these is Battersea Park.  Yesterday was the day for that visit, particularly as there is an exhibition in The Pumphouse Gallery that includes some work by Janice Gunner.

First, the park, images fixed now, courtesy of Marsedit ( please fix this photo thing Blogger).



Next the exhibition " Beauty is the Only Test".  This is an interesting exploration of the links between maths and craft.   Some lovely pieces of stitching from Janice Gunner, on silk.  



For the completely obsessional, there is a huge piece of work by Lesley Halliwell, made by drawing with Spirograph wheels. 




The building itself is intriguing, over 4 floors ( no lift) with good views on to the park.  The exhibition is small, but free and worth a visit, on until 25th November.

As ever, some interesting textures

Red, white and blue?


Fractals on windows


Lichen and bark


Home at sunset


Friday, 2 November 2012

A break in Devon

So many bloggers show photographs of their work placed in beautiful, natural surroundings, that I was inspired by our accommodation this week to photograph an ongoing project, " Morley Moons" outdoors.

The weather was predictably wet, but where we were staying, had glorious views which enabled me to watch how the sky changed as I was stitching.

Lots of muddy walks, practising map-reading

and finding some great colour studies along the way.

There was even a sunset, but the stars had disappeared by the time we had finished dinner with friends.

Sunday, 28 October 2012

Black and white ledger for Halloween

In between helping my elder son prepare a costume for his first Halloween "home alone", I have been continuing to explore the shapes from my first ledger exercise. A fortuitous mistake with the Morley photocopier, led to an interesting juxtaposition of a grid underneath the more biomorphic shapes. The paper is reinforced with iron-on vilene to allow reasonably robust stitching on top.
I also used the copier to experiment with changing scale, inverting the colours of the shapes and multiple repetitions. This is such a revelation to me, that design can be worked at methodically to come up with all sorts of interesting variations. Before doing my recent courses, I had this image that design / art just appeared in makers' minds, fully formed and as a result of some sort of cosmic inspiration force. I now realise that this is not the case.

The left hand side has more stitched inserts

and the right hand side has some stitching in glow-in-the-dark thread. Difficult to photograph, but this gives the idea.

Happy Halloween.