Friday, February 26, 2010

Playday 2

Today was a play day of a different kind. Juliet and I went to see a textile and ceramic exhibition at the Mandurah Performing Arts Centre Gallery. There are interesting sculptures outside the Centre.

This is the entrance to the Centre and Gallery. Love that slumped glass.

There was some very interesting work in the exhibition and some attractive wearable art garments. I took my camera, but forgot to take any photos. (The photos above were taken on a previous visit).

Then we went to a newly developed part of Mandurah - Dolphin Quays. It is an interesting area - lots of high rise apartment buildings with shops and cafes on the ground floor. I hope the shops do well - there didn't seem to be too many people around. We had a very nice lunch at a cafe called Moka. I recommend it.

A most pleasant day. Thank you Juliet.

Thursday, February 25, 2010


I started playing with some bits today with nothing definite in mind about what will happen to them.

First I made some fabric paper - 50% PVA glue and water on calico with torn bits from paper napkins (coloured ply only). Then, when it was dry, I sprayed it with some Starburst Stains. I think I was a bit tentative with the colour and it needs more depth. I will spray a bit more and also add some stamping. The napkins have been saved from afternoon teas with the sewing group I met with on Wednesday - it has become quite a joke that I always put mine in my bag at the end. I look forward to showing the finished project off!

I was given this piece of knitting a couple of weeks ago. It is done with three yarns and I had no idea what fibres they are. I decided that I would try felting it. Into a pot with water, onto my new cooktop, power boosted to high and left to boil for rather too long. When I came back the water was gone and the knitting had scorched in spots.

No evidence of any felting so the yarns are obviously synthetic. Never mind - I will try some paint and then the embellisher.

The embellisher was put to work too. I finally changed the needles and it is meshing the fabric much better. There are a couple of pieces now in progress.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Disappearing 9 Patch

I really like this block and I thought it would work well with the hearts that my sewing group gave me.

So this has been my textile effort over the last few days. There are 10 of these blocks.

I was given 9 hearts and I need 10 to make the quilt work. Sheila, who organised the heart presentation, did not have any more of the background fabric, but she found another than everyone agreed was colour perfect, if a bit heavier than the originals.

So what am I going to do for the 10th block? I will try to digitise everyone's name within a heart shape. If that doesn't work - I am definitely not a master digitiser - I will do the same thing with fabric pens. Watch this space!

Saturday, February 20, 2010

I've been published again

I received the new Textiles DownUnder magazine yesterday, but didn't start reading it thoroughly till today.

I am impressed - there is a big gap in the Australian market for a magazine which focuses on textile art. The magazine Machine Embroidery and Textile Art has been going for years (and I have to admit I have every copy - more stuff to get rid of) but the few articles on techniques other than computerised machine embroidery are not usually all that exciting.

One of the features was on ATCs and there are two ATCs attributed to me. However, I am positive that one of them is not mine - I think it may be on the opposite page under someone else's name. Sorry to whoever actually made it - what a shame.

The one I know is not mine is in the middle on the left - the gumnuts. Definitely not my style.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Friday Flaunt

Quilting Down Under, which is one of the Internet groups I belong to, has a "Friday Flaunt" where members who have blogs post examples of work they have accomplished during the week.

I think I need to flaunt something and this is really the only bit of textile stuff that I have finished all week. This was a challenge for the meeting of the Husqvarna Club last Tuesday - seminole patchwork constructed with an overlocker. I made 2 pieces and used them to border hand towels.

The piece of woollen blanket which I dyed with lavender and an iron cog looks great. It has come out in shades of dark olive green/khaki. I think I may dye another piece or maybe two - I have a couple of blankets in different colours and I would like to see how the lavender takes on them.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Another Tree Trunk

I have been taking photos of tree trunks for years - I just love the textures and the colours.

Yesterday we went to Perth to look at a new laptop computer for Helen. The shop was opposite Russell Square which is bordered with huge ficus trees. I just had to take a photo of this one's tortured limbs.

Today I have been dyeing a woollen blanket with lavender leaves and a large iron cog. It is still sitting in the pot, but looks quite yummy.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

A Whiter Shade of Pale

The February challenge for Designing Women was to interpret the song title in a small textile piece measuring 35 cm by 15 cm (14" by 6"). The results were amazing. Here are some of them.

This was mine, made from lace scraps stitched onto Vilene 541

Margaret P used the Flower Stitcher foot for the background and is now adding more 3D shapes.

Linda recycled a piece she made on dissolvable in her student days and added silk paper.

Margaret F thought of a snow white dove as she did lots of stitching.

Helen did some recycling of home decor fabric and lots of stitching as well.

Dorothy has heavily stitched a sandwich of fabrics, then added a feather and some flowers.

Delys has used stitched and stamped water soluble paper, tyvek and printed paper scraps.

And the piece de resistance - Juliet's free machined images from the song lyrics.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Using the dragon leaves

I have finally used the leaves from the dragon tree. I made a coiled pot from wrapped macrame yarn and stitched the leaves to the outside.

It is supposed to be a bowl, but maybe it is a hat?

My hearts

Here are the hearts I was gifted with yesterday. They are so lovely and each one is so typical of its maker.
From Helen, Sheila and Lois

From Jenny and Anne

From Marianne and Jannie

From Fairlie and Mary. Thank you so much, all of you.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

A gift of Hearts

My sewing friendship group presented me with a wonderful surprise today. They had each made me a block with a green heart or hearts. I will take photos tomorrow, they are all quite wonderful. Making a quilt from them will be a priority.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Water ATC Swap

I joined in the Water swap and sent off my ATCs to New Zealand. My swaps came back on Thursday and I am really pleased with them. Most also had a haiku attached - the ones I sent off didn't, but I may consider it for the next one.

From left to right, top line first.
Jan Cotton, New Zealand; Amelia Ruscoe, New Zealand; Diana Bahler, New Zealand.
Sharon Andrews, New Zealand; Karen Dean, ??; Dagmar Kessler, Germany.

I am really happy with the ATCs I received.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

I've been published

The West Australian newspaper has a daily column called "Burning Questions" which invites readers to respond to trivial questions, listed under the response of the day. Last week I decided I would respond to "what is the difference between a herb and a spice?", sent off an email and surprise! had my answer published on Monday.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Doing nothing much

except reading, but I started a textile piece today. It is the challenge for the Designing Women meeting on Saturday week: "a whiter shade of pale". I am using some of my large collection of lace. No photo until the meeting - I want to keep it under wraps.

As for the reading, after I finished reading Ian Rankin's The Falls, which I really enjoyed, I have been rereading Kerry Greenwood's Phyrne Fisher series and am now about to start number 11. But I am also reading the other Ian Rankin which Sheila loaned me so I may give Phryne a break for now.

The pile of books that I have not read, as opposed to those I want to reread, doesn't seem to lessen. I am appalled by the number of unread books in my bookshelves, and I am still buying. Trying to restrict myself to secondhand stuff, though - I bought A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian for $2 at swapmeet last week - I have heard good reports of it and the price was right.