Tuesday, August 04, 2015

Printing, painting and stamping

.... with the NW Contemporary Quilt group to 'decorate' bags for the Quilters' Guild Tombola at Festival of Quilts. 

Friday, July 24, 2015

And my next challenge is ....

aside from the fact that I'm working for two exhibitions, my next challenge is .... thinking of the next challenge. When time is precious it's very easy to keep doing what you can do, but then things can very easily become stale, and it's hard to move yourself forward.
I'm working through my 30 days of sketching but at the moment there is no link between that and my quilting. I'm also trying to develop my sketchbook work and that is throwing up ideas, but only variations on what I currently do. I feel the need to focus more, I still like the idea of Edmund de Waal's 'Thousand Hours' but have yet to think of a stitching equivalent ...

The exhibitions:

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Day 5 out of 30 drawings done

though it has to be said that my choice for today, 'Draw something made of glass' was a little ill-advised:

Far too many shadows and curved reflections for a novice, but I did my best!

Friday, July 17, 2015

30 Days of drawing

I'd like to draw but I don't, it's not something that has ever been part of my life and I don't really know why it should be! As much as anything I'm interested in what my 'style' would be - I'd love to be the kind of person who can capture an image loosely but I fear that I'd get bogged down in detail and accuracy...
Today I picked up a post on Facebook about a 30 day drawing challenge:

It isn't local to me so I can't physically take part but I am going to have a go to see whether I can develop the habit of daily drawing. And in the spirit of things I'll make a donation to my chosen charity, whether I complete the challenge or not. 
I don't intend to make things harder or embarrassing by posting everyday, but here is Day 1 'Something red':

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Monday, June 29, 2015

CQ Summer School

seems to have whizzed by in a flash.
Alston Hall is a good venue for these events which are as much about friendship as learning. I signed up for a mark making course with Isobel Dibden-Wright and we spent our days working in monochrome on paper then fabric, following a series of guided exercises.
I'd promised myself that there would be no agonising over decisions so I found that I even enjoyed being sent out to sketch in the lovely grounds!

Seeing what you've done in a different light whether it is through a mirror or, as in this instance, reading your own blog post is always illuminating. When I was stitching the piece, middle right, those stitches felt quite long, now I'm thinking that if I started over I'd make them at least twice as long to achieve the effect I was looking for!

Friday, June 26, 2015

Looking forward

to meeting up with old and making new friends at the CQ Summer School this weekend ... And wondering whether Mag's door has been restored!

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Tree bark texture

I caught sight of this peeling bark on the way home from a meeting and was probably more excited by the texture of the bark than the meeting!

Friday, June 05, 2015

12 by the Dozen May Challenge

Our colour theme was  lily white and almost up to the last minute I intended to print a sketch that I'd created on my computer using a technique demonstrated by Laura Kemshall. Unfortunately I'd given no thought to how I'd quilt the piece so it fell by the wayside. 
With just a few days left I returned to the original photo, I love the Indian yellow of the pollen and so pulled some fabrics that reflected the colours in the photo. From there on in it was simply a question of letting the fabrics do their thing with little thought for the outcome, other than the fact that I wanted to achieve plenty of open space, which I think I have managed to do:

You can see the original image and the other challenge results on our website -

Monday, June 01, 2015

Mark making becomes ...

.... Book making. A great day with members of the NW Contemporary Quilt group led by Julie Bunter who took us through mark making into book making. I learned about blizzard books and crown spines both of which had me refreshing very dusty origami skills. Julie is a member of our group and generously shared her knowledge and materials.

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Don't you just love it

 when a collection of threads from two different projects wait to be put away, and in doing so suggest another colour scheme:


Thursday, May 14, 2015

Ten Plus Textiles

have an exhibition in Macclesfield at the moment in the Silk Museum see for details.
It's embarrassing to admit that I've not yet found time to visit to see my work there, I need to go - if only to get some photos of the finished pieces!

Monday, May 11, 2015

Another 'New to Me'

- this time textile artist Helen Terry. her work is full of fascinating marks - but so are her studio walls!

Monday, May 04, 2015

New to me

I the work of Charlotte Cornish - her use of shape and colour is masterful.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Does colour give off endorphins?

Every time I walk past this collections of wools I smile! I have to thank Lucy of for inspiring me to have a go at a crocheted hexie blanket.  There are times when I haven't any hand stitching to get on with but  want to do something with my hands and at the moment crochet is it. So yesterday I treated myself to the collection above and take great pleasure in re-arranging them occasionally ... and smiling ....

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Image Search

Searching for images on the web to use as a starting point for a quilt is never easy. Google's usage rights search tool helps, but you are dependent on people actively choosing the right label:

Today whilst searching for inspiration for the next12by the dozen challenge I came across which promises that "You can copy, modify, distribute and use the images, even for commercial purposes, all without asking permission and without paying attribution. However, depicted content may still be protected by trademarks, publicity or privacy rights." In as much as people have to actively upload their images to Pixabay this seems much clearer. I've found a couple of interesting images and have signed up. it will be interesting to see how quickly the inbox fills up, if at all!
Just some of the 181 images shown after searching for 'inbox':

Wednesday, April 08, 2015

2015 Journal Quilts Part 2

I've really enjoyed stitching these pieces. Somehow picking up a ready made background and letting it tell me 'machine or hand stitch' 'fine or thick thread' and then allowing the marks in the fabric dictate where the stitch goes has been a joy. It's far more relaxing than my usual watching as the calendar ticks by and knowing that lack of time will mean compromise! When I took these photos I was playing around with the idea of using the shells beads because I love repetition but I'm still wondering whether they are a bit twee and what else I could use - if anything. Less is more?

With or without?

Friday, April 03, 2015

2015 Journal Quilts

I'm more than a bit cross with myself that I've reached April and not begun my Journal Quilts for 2015! I'm blaming it on the weather - it still feels like January here.
A while ago I decided to use some fabric that I'd coloured whilst on the CQ Retreat in February but was struggling to get started.
Today whilst my room was still tidy from a short spell as guest bedroom I pulled out the fabrics and began to cut. I'd thought that I'd put together a couple of backgrounds to help catch up but became so interested in using sections with interesting marks that I didn't stop until I'd done all twelve backgrounds.
What made this more interesting, but more challenging is that the NW CQ group are working to a landscape theme and I know that several members are using this theme for their JQ's too.  I'm not interested in pictorial but the colours I was working with are representational and some of the marks were too good to resist. So now I have twelve backgrounds which nod sufficiently towards the landscape for me to feel quite pleased with myself.
It's my intention to catch up as soon as I can with the first four then I'll pull one background out each month to work on with a mixture of hand and machine stitching, depending on what the fabric says!

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

1000 Quilt Inspirations

The pages may be turned quickly but I still managed to see a couple of pieces of mine:-