Sunday, August 28, 2011

stamps from cheap erasers

I cut some stamps from cheap rubber erasers using the tracings from the heart design from here I cut one in reverse by mistake, duh!

But once I started playing around with the stamps, the 'wrong' one was my favorite and has potential.  Pity about the spec of dust on the stamp, that has now been cleaned off...

dyed and discharged

I bought a thermofax screen at the FofQ and gave it an outing this afternoon.  This was a piece of dyed cotton from last summer, more colourful (orange) than it shows here.  I had some Jacquard discharge paste at the back of the cupboard, I won't own up to how long it has been there but years rather than months..

I love it! 

What potential!, it needs over printing and work and stitch and beads and stuff, but it is a fine start and I doing an teeny tiny happy hop.

I have been reading Leslie Morgan's 'Tray Dyeing' book and if Leslie can tray dye her fabric three times, then I am not dispondent about my limp dyed cloth fiasco.  It can go back in the soda bath and then back into the tray. 

wishy washy

I crammed my washed and soda soaked fabric into a cat litter tray, scrunching and pleating.  I poured the dye over and watched as amazing splodges and patterns formed.  It looked delicious.  I walked off intending to leave it for a couple of days, but it looked so good.  I couldn't wait and went back and rinsed it.  BIG MISTAKE!

I have the most insipid pile of wishy washy nothing cotton I have ever seen.  Most of it is soaking in the soda bucket ready to over dye.  Or do I strip the colour out and start fresh? My impatience is my downfall.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Playing with paper

I have been having a little play following the book 'Finding your own visual language' (Jane Dunnewold, Claire Benn & Leslie Morgan).  Playing with black paper, I cut a heart shape and then cut that into pieces. 

I traced around part of the cut out heart to find this shape

And when I played around using the shape, I had this - my very own angel :)

Just playing around with the one cut out heart and a piece of tracing paper, I have a nice selection of abstract shapes, some have already been cut into stamps using cheap erasers. 

Sunday, August 14, 2011

My day at the NEC

I took a coach to the NEC this year which gave me a couple of hours less at the Festival than usual.  So off the coach and run in and buy white fabric (for dyeing).  Then run to the cloakroom and drop the bag there.  Experience has shown that the bag drops fill up quickly and I didn't want to carry fabric around all day.  I bought some Doughty's pfd cotton poplin and mercerised cotton.  Empress Mill had bundles of Egyptian cotton - I kg for £5 so I bought some of that too.  That is lovely quality and has been scoured in the washing machine today, ready for dyeing.  I wish I had opened the bundle straight away, they are lovely sized pieces and I would have bought more. 

It was very crowded around the competition entries so I shopped for a while.  Oliver Twist perle threads for a special project, then some sari ribbon and hand dyed wool felt.  I also bought procion dye robin egg blue from Ario because I have struggled to mix duck egg blue at home.  I have no idea if robins eggs are the same colour as ducks!

I calmed down then and fought my way to the quilts.  I looked at the contemporary and the Art quilts, then decided I needed a rest.  Lunch and a cup of tea and then I set off to find the 'virtual studio'. 

Claire Benn was demonstrating mark making onto silk.  As always she was generous with information and answered lots of questions.  Someone was demonstrating tray dyeing, and I learned a few more tips - I am so sorry I didn't get her name.  Then I watched thermofax printing, layering the same print but different colours.   Leslie Morgan came back from her lunch whilst I was still hanging around, I asked how to mix up 'duck egg blue' dye. Next thing, Leslie had mixed up some print paste and printed onto a piece of cotton sateen.  I watched, listened and learned.  Then Leslie put the cotton into a bag and handed it to me.  :):):):)  How lucky am I?  I have been very good and left the bag alone to give the dye time to batch. 

I did eventually reluctantly leave the virtual studio, but succumbed to the 'making your mark' book and dvd.  I also bought one thermofax screen.  

I wandered through the exhibitions, drooled at the quilts, then bought a huge cinnamon bun to eat on the coach going home.  I had a lovely day, met lovely people, some old friends and some I 'know' via the internet.  One day is not long enough to see all the quilts, watch the demonstrations and shop.  Next year I think I will book a hotel and stay over. 

Today I got an email saying I had won some fabric in a prize draw - Happy dancing all round then. 

Festival of Quilts - Dyed beauties

I am not a great photographer and not every photo I took is clear enough to upload but here are some of my favorite quilts made hand dyed fabric.  I didn't write down all the information, I simply photographed the number of each piece and tallied the info from the show catalogue, which I remembered to bring home :)

This one is by Dorita Smith, Burgess Hill,  and is titled  'Wonky log cabin'. Made from Kola Nut and Indigo dyed fabrics. 

Delia Cecil, Leiston.  'Indigo Sunrise'
Indigo dyed, free machine embroidery, free machine quilting, hand stitch, machine applique, indigo dyed.  Quilt as you go.

Elly van Steenbeek, Veenendaal 'School Memories'
Cottin, paper, stamps, voile.

Sue Payne, Vale. 'Line over Matter'
Hand dyed Indigo batik on calico.

Susan Jones, Midhurst,  'Reflections'
Piecing, appliques, fabric manipulations and machine quilting using hand dyed fabrics.

Jacqueline Heinz, Germany 'Rosebridge'
Wholecloth painting application of wool.  Free motion quilting on a normal sewing machine.

Would you take a look at the quilting on this???  Oh my....

Festival of Quilts - Regina Benson

If you are going to upset someone, aim high.  That is my motto and I do suffer from foot in mouth syndrome!

I saw this huge piece of work from a distance and had to get to it.  So, knocking a few people over in my haste, I barrelled over.  Oh my - it was as good close up as from a distance and it sang to me.  I asked permission to take a photo and it was granted, so I did.  Then I asked if I could take a pic of Regina's conference badge and she kindly posed.    I said "no, I only want a pic of your badge".  Talk about blunt Northerner.  Regina was gracious but she did have a strange look on her face.  I explained that I wanted the pic so that I would know whose work it was so that I could look her up on-line later.  I think I was forgiven but was perhaps written off as one of those stange English eccentrics ;)

Regina's work on display was gorgeous. She works big scale - something I find very scary and never dare to do.  The piece on the right was floating and moving gently, two layers of exquisite marks. 

These are double sided panels of discharged rayon, layered, appliqued and possibly burned then stitched. 

and a close up.  It glowed.

This one was titled 'breaking ground' and is layered and appliqued pieces of silk and cotton, variously rusted, discharged, dyed, burned and stitched. 

I could have stood and drooled over these all day.  Regina is lovely and her companion was very charming.  She has some more amazing photos on her web site too

Monday, August 01, 2011

Background papers

I made a handful of clingfilm backgrounds ready for the 7 day magazine challenge on ClothPaperStudio.

The Challenge is to find one magazine and make one collage a day using only images/text from that magazine and glue.  Keep going for as long as you can but our challenge is to make 7.

I find pristine blank white paper a bit scary so this time we have added an extra - make a coloured background to use.

My pieces are A5 size pieces of cartridge paper, I used very watered down acrylic paint, slapped it onto the paper and immediately lay a piece of cling film over the top. Let the creases go where they will, just pat the film down. Leave for 10 minutes and peel the film away and allow the paper to dry.

The intention is not to make great works of art, just to make sketchbooky collages to use as inspiration in the future.