Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Back to some traditional piecing......

It's been a while since I've last worked on some traditional piecing. I was given a charm pack and a couple of matching fat quarters and I've managed to squeeze two quilts from it.
Simple piecing is a joy, just stitching almost with the brain in free fall, as the design is already decided! I'm going to combine simple machine quilting with some hand embroidery to echo some of the images in the printed fabric.

Dropped blocks, give me plenty of space to enjoy hand embroidery.

Here I have used the charm pack and bordered each square with strips from the fat quaters and set each block at an angle.
I'll post quilting ideas next.

Thursday, 14 November 2013

Weedon Bec Creative Textiles Group

The last meeting of the group experimented with a technique for creating mixed media collage led by one of the group.
We worked on heavy weight vilene or pelmet vilene as a background and were asked to bring a main image printed onto transfer paper and a collection of paper images that went with it. Foils, voile and machine threads , bondaweb and Fuse Ex were also suggested.
We built up a background using torn and cut collage from our paper images and text, using the bondaweb to attach them to the vilene.
I used torn photographs of landscape and gardens to create a verdant feel. I layered this with black Fuse Ex  and  tore images of Fly Ageric mushrooms to add colour and finally my tee shirt print image which was of fantastical birds. Only at this point did I realise that they stark black and white bird images were going to be too much of a contrast...... But I used them anyway as this was a learning experience and I wanted to try all the suggested techniques. At the last minute I tried adding coloured pencil to my bird to see what effect a bit of colour would have.
Finally with added machine embroidery stitches to the surface.

Since then I have tried another experiment with the benefit of these trials and was better please with my work, using the technique to create individual labels for gifts.
Here are a couple of the labels made second time around. Probably won't do this again for a while but always interesting to try out new ideas and evaluate their place within ones own work.

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

Compton Verney Textile Fair

Along with my fellow members of ICE, we took part in the Textile Fair on Saturday. Most of us have had sales of work through exhibitions and commissions but this was our first selling show.
We set up our wares in the stunning Adam Hall at Compton Verney along with ten other textile artists and collectors. 
We had all produced a range of work from cards to mounted and framed work. Quite hard to create a homogenous look when one has work from a number of artists. 
The event was well attended in the morning with many interested visitors, feedback was positive but sales slow. I'm sure a lot of visitors were there to look for ideas of things they could make themselves and the stall selling materials were always busy. It was the small items that were selling not major pieces of work.
I don't regret the day. I learned a great deal about what makes a good pitch on such events and about the type of work likely to sell.

Sunday, 3 November 2013

The Makers Mark

There are just a few days remaining for this small but interesting exhibition at the Beetroot Tree. Gallery, Draycott near Derby. I went specifically to see work by Gizella Warburton and Helen Parrott.
Both these textile artists' work are abstract, textural and and as the exhibition title suggests all about the mark making.
I had seen Helen Parrott's new book "Mark Making in Textile Art" and coveted it - full of exciting ideas for creating textural interest on fabric, had heard Gizella Warburton talk about her work and was so pleased that this show was close enough to visit.

Helen's work hangs naturally in the space, dominating it, because of its size and impact.

These two pieces of Gizella's are stunning, minimalist and full of tiny details.

I'd so like to own one or two smaller pieces like these, need to think about creating a space to hang them and save up!
I had an early Christmas present from a friend that day and came home with Helen's book! I'm treating myself to a chapter a day! Very clever the way that Batsford have created such a tactile cover to the book, very strokeable!
I have already made one sample inspired by ideas in Helen's book.

Friday, 1 November 2013

Full Circle Challenge

Despite everything else that I've been involved in this year I took part in the Contemporary Quilt Group Full Circle Challenge.
The theme this year was "Something beginning with S" I chose "Spirals and Squares". Each member of the group made an initial piece, based on their own theme, finished size 100 square inches. This was then sent on to the next person in the group. We were also invited to make a second companion piece
I decided to continue working on the Ammonites theme that has been a rich source of ideas this year, and use what little I had left of Esther's Ghanian fabric bought at Festival 2012.

My starting 100sq inches

This piece travelled on to three more quilters, each adding a further one hundred square inches to the piece they received. The fourth was able to add two hundred square inches before posting the piece back to the originator.
I also made a companion piece. Below is the section which approximates to the piece I sent off.
I had a more holistic approach to my companion piece and stuck more closely to the Ammonites theme. This is my completed piece.

Several months later, having worked on three other mini quilt tops in between this was the piece I received back.
The stitching you can see is actually what I added, but then realised I had not photographed it as it arrived!
To this I added two panels of gold silk to echo my initial section and to get a matching size to the companion piece I made.

Here are both completed pieces.

A challenge, to add to someone else's work, be true to their initial idea but with your own flavour. The three other pieces I worked on were all very different, demanding completely different approaches. It made me think and forced me to try things I might never have thought of sticking to my own work.
I recommend the idea to any small group who want to stretch themselves within a manageable sized piece.

Lutterworth Piecemakers Exhibition

The village hall at Walcott was filled with a huge array of members quilts on the 19th and 20th October. The major element of the show was a collection of the Mystery Quilts members had created during 2013.
It never ceases to amaze me that even when the starting point of quilts is the same design, the results can be so very different!
They were very well received by visitors and a number of the patterns have been sold as a result.
A view of one aisle.

There were also many members own designed quilts and smaller items on show.

An effective and simple use of a Jelly Roll.

This quilt reminds me that a more muted Jelly Roll would make a very effective background for applique and embroidery. I used one for one of my Petra quilts a couple of years ago.

Cakes were available all day and a ready supply of tea and coffee to allow us to discuss all that we had seen, sales table, a Tombola and a raffle completed the show.  A very well attended event. More traditional than most shows I attend.