Thursday, 29 January 2009

Blue Chair and Creative Challenge

I decided to join Helen-Suzanne's new blog which requires an immediate response to a title given, no lengthy thought process allowed. The first title we were given was Blue Chair. This has elicited so many varied responses do take a look over there if you have the time. Some have taken the literal approach and some the more conceptual. My response was done in Photoshop and I may well do something with this later in the year. Helen-Suzanne's own blog is also well worth viewing. For anyone who does not know her she is a very talented artist.

The other piece I was doing today was for Shelagh Folgate's Creative Challengers. No one really knows what comes next so it is quite experimental. The stitching should be done with a Tailors Tack foot but not having one of these a kebab stick had to suffice and I only sewed two into the stitching!

One online class that I have really been enjoying over the last three weeks is Ellen Lindner's Adventures in Colour. It has no sewing and is really about developing sound colour theory. Sounds dry I know but far from it. I have done colour theory before and yet Ellen makes it so interesting and also brings out an increased awareness amongst her students. She also does other classes which do involve sewing. Her website is well worth checking out.

That's all for now folks, must go and eat before ER starts.

Sunday, 25 January 2009

Feeling fit and ready for sewing.

Micki gave me this award last week and I have yet to thank her publicly owing to the fact that I have not felt up to a great deal thanks to this flu. I heartily apologise for this as it is a lovely award as it means that this blog invests in and believes that blogging makes us close. Proximidade translated to English means vicinity or neighborhood. I do believe that there are so many people out there who I feel I have come to know through blogging and feel that I share their journey. There are too many that I follow to be able to select just a few to pass this award on to so all my blogging friends are invited to give themselves this award. The blogging neighbourhood continues to grow which is a wonderful thing. Thanks so much Micki.

I had a lovely surprise last week when I received an email from Katy of Popular Patchwork magazine. I had entered one of their contests and won. I had completely forgotten about it and was delighted as I have never won anything in one of these contests before. My prize was Qilt-O-Grams by Cheryl Malkowski which is on fabric postcards. It is a lovely book and arrived at the same time as a copy of Machine Quilting Unlimited so I was set up for a few hours of happy reading.

I have been having a great time today making silk paper, the second lesson in Dale's Ratty Tatty Paper class. I have made loads of silk paper in the past but one of the method is by using fusible web - no water, no mess, very easy and beautiful light and airy paper which I shall look forward to using.

These are casts made from silk rods

I also discovered that the newspaper that I had used to protect the work surface while I had been spraying had turned a beautiful iridescent colour and the paper towel that I mopped up the excess with is just begging to be used.

I have also managed to keep up with the Friday Block Party and finished the blocks for Weeks 3 and 4. I don't think Rotunda will be reappearing any time soon - too many small pieces. I do like the fact that this block party is really making me work hard to improve my piecing - not something much needed in art quilts. May not be obvious to others but I can see an improvement already.
Rotunda block

Dewy block

I have decided to join the 2009 Journal Challenge organised by the Contemporary Quilt Group of the Quilters Guild of the British Isles. The format is 6" x 12" which is challenging but I thought I would post a little snippet of work in progress.

... and finally, the reason that it sometimes takes me so long to get things done on the computer (or anywhere else for that matter). This is Jack who was actually lying on my arm until I reached for the camera, absolute pest but I love him dearly.

Tuesday, 20 January 2009

Almost back to normal

The flu is beginning to abate although the doctor has signed me off for another seven days. Hopefully I will feel able to do a little more - no housework of course, far too strenuous. Thank you to all those of you who wished me a speedy recovery, your thoughts were much appreciated.

Dale's Ratty Tatty papers started last week and has involved creating pieces using napkins and felt. I haven't managed to do very much but thought I would share what little bit there is.

This is a completed piece with the distressed grid laid over the background and slips added on top of the grid.

This next one is simply a collage made to cheer myself up for not having any energy left to sew. The napkin she came from has little else on it except the border so is limited in its usage.

I have also managed to finish my IFQ January Journal Quilt this morning. I have combined it with the Black and White Challenge and also my determination to get to grips with Photoshop this year. It looks a bit scrappy round the edge because I am not binding them. I intend to write the process on the backs and then make a book out of them. Binding the edges would make them somewhat bulky and so this one is satin stitched but the fabric frays badly - hence the scruffy look!

That's all I can manage for now, as the sun is shining I really ought to go and post my certificate off to work. Almost forgot - a photo of my Hippeastrum which seems to have been growing visibly over the last ten days and is almost ready to burst into flower. I love the anticipation at this stage.

Thursday, 15 January 2009

I hate being ill

I managed to get the Pay it Forward packages down to the post office yesterday and about half an hour after felt terrible - I have finally succumbed to the dreaded 'flu. I couldn't be staying in bed all day so decided to do something simple which didn't involve using creativity. I have joined the Black and White Quilt Challenge and also the Friday Block Party so decided to combine the two and audition some of the black and white fabrics I have collected. I quite enjoyed some simple piecing which I have not done for a long time and although the points don't always match there is no place for the Quilt Police here.

This block is called Broken Dishes Variation.

and this one is Foot Stool (slightly adapted from the original) - who comes up with these names?

I also like to use samples done in classes as something useful. I recently did a course with Fibre in Form called Textile Surface which resulted in lots of different technique samples. They have been cut up and have made what I think are very effective bookmarks.

Off now to feed the cat and indulge in a hot toddy - unlikely that it will make me better but I will enjoy trying.

Monday, 12 January 2009

And the winners are ...

BrinkOf Norway



I have also decided to include a fourth person in the true spirit of the Pay it Forward 'rules'. Technically it is supposed to be the first three people who comment but as I bent the rules I feel that I have to include Teri who had sent her comment less than an hour after I posted the blog. Were you waiting with your finger on the button Teri?

If you four ladies would like to email me your snail mail address I will get the fabric sent out to you.

Thank you to all those of you who did not win this time but who expressed a wish for some of the fabric. I would have loved to have sent some out to all of you so will probably have another give away later in the year.

Thursday, 8 January 2009

Pay it Forward

Well today is the day - if you want some hand dyed fabric pieces please leave a comment on this blog. The idea is supposed to be that it is the first three people who respond but I always think that is a little unfair because of the different time zones so I am going to adapt it slightly and say that you have until midnight GMT on Sunday 11th to add your comment if you would like some fabric and then I will do a draw. The only condition is that you offer the same to others - this is one of those things that actually depletes your stash. It does not have to be fabric that you pay forward just something 'textiley' that you think three other people would like to receive. 

***A word of warning - do not leave your personal details on your blog comment.*** I will post the winners on Monday 12th and if you are one of the three I will ask you to email me your snail mail so that I can get them in the post. A quick reminder of some of the fabric on offer.

Wednesday, 7 January 2009

Pay it Forward tomorrow

Happy New Year to everyone. I know I promised the Pay it Forward offer on Jan 2nd but sickness at work has resulted in overtime so I will be doing this blog tomorrow. The first three people who post a comment on tomorrow's blog requesting them will receive a selection of hand dyed fabrics - see blog entry for Dec 22nd for an idea.