Sunday, October 31, 2004

Socks for my 6 month old grandson. Donald is spending the day in hospital on Thursday being checked out. He has spina bifida and the hospital keep an eye on him. Hope these socks will brighten his day. Posted by Hello

Dyeing socks

I spent a happy hour or so on Friday morning dyeing some socks for my daughter-in-law and 6 month old grandson, plus a few extras in the way of Christmas gifts. The saleslady who checked that the teeny tiny socks were cotton was horrified that I was going to despoil these virgin white socks with something so crass as dye. Perhaps it is my warped sense of personal taste, I think they are cute.

I also handed in my exhibition pieces today, do I hear huge sighs of relief? Ok, I have been stressing about them, next year I will not stash ufos and then finish them in one huge effort just before exhibition time. I will finish each piece as I go, I just made a New Year Resolution.

Saturday, October 30, 2004

Tweaking exhibition pieces

I am really happy with the couching I have just finished round the palm tree wallhanging. Sorry to keep rabitting on about this, but it is one of those things that never looked quite right. I had left the edge raw as I wanted a softer look than just satin stitching round it, but polyester satin does not fray as neatly as cotton, so it just looked messy. In desperation, pawing through my embellishment box(es) I found some silk floss with a metallic strip through it that I had previously dyed, fortunately in an ok colour for this. So I gathered this up, it makes a really neat little ruched strip with the gleam of the silk and the sparkle of the metallic thread, and have been couching it to the edge. I am feeling almost happy about this wallhanging now. When it is light I must take a photo and put it up on the site. Have to hand everything in tomorrow, so fortunately there will be no more time for 'tweaking'.

Have put some strips of ribbon along the backs of my wallhangings for the claw thingies the art gallery use - hope this will work well. Must comb the scrappy shawl for loose threads, but that is all for that one. My daughters think these are neat (makes a change from moaning about my dressmaking skills) and both have one to wear for effect over the party season.

Tuesday, October 26, 2004


Ah, today has been brainwave day. I was a bit disappointed with the 'frame' I did for the palm tree and decided to paint it to add a bit of oomph. So I got out my coffee coloured Setacolour, added a bit of bronze metallic, well about equal parts, and with a fan brush more or less dry brushed all over the green part of the wall hanging. Then added some green glitter with shiva stick crayon. Feel a bit happier with it now.

Then I decided what I might do with some watercolour sandwiched between plastic file sheets. I found this idea in a machine embroidery book and played using watercolours and acrylic. I preferred the watercolour, and found that by adding drops of water in random patterns, the blue/green/purple painted file cover has a gorgeous underwater sea look. Then I ran out of ideas on how to use this in embroidery. Have thought I might cut it into strips and attach to a sea-ey fabric background by adding netting over the top to hold the plastic in place without piercing it with a needle. Then I would like to hang free fabric strips over this to float in every passing breeze plus some fish attached by fishing line under over and between the strippy pieces. Now I have written this all out I must think seriously about starting this masterpiece.

Sunday, October 24, 2004

Me and my youngest grandson, Donald Posted by Hello

Found at last

I have been wanting to take a workshop from Michelle E. Miller at for a long time, but her studio has been in an awkward place to visit. I think she may recently have moved because when we went to get photos taken of the grandchildren I saw a sign inviting visitors to her workshop. I am not on Michelle's email list for a workshop some time in the (I hope, near) future. She is a very talented silk painter.

It was so good to visit with the family and catch up with my grandchildren. They change so much each time I see them; much easier being a grandmother because I relish and treasure each moment with them. Will post a photo of me with my youngest grandchild.

Sunday, October 17, 2004

Stamped and quilted onto dark green satin wallhanging Posted by Hello

Framed palm tree hanging Posted by Hello

Sighs of relief

I have totally finished the palm tree quilt and have one edge of binding on the experimental stamping one to do. Pictures of both below. The palm tree one has a much larger 'frame' which is quilted with little free motion palm trees in metallic thread which sort of blends into the background but adds a sparkle. Each palm tree is beaded to represent the seeds that some palm trees have.

Have this idea for doing a sea theme wallhanging for next years exbibition. O have painted watercolours inbetween plastic file covers and have a really wild looking sea, lovely, so thought I would create a sea-y background, cut this into strips or rectangles and attach to the background using net or silk organza over the top, then float fish in front of it all. Now the floating of free form fishes is a problem, do I hang them from the top of the hanging, lightly trap them in 'seaweed' or just applique them down. I like the idea of them being free to move in some way to bring the whole thing alive.

Friday, October 15, 2004

This is the invitation for our Exhibition of Contemporary Textiles.  Posted by Hello

Going astray

No excuse about being led astray either, I took a ring into a jeweller workshop to get the setting checked, and before I left I had bought another little amethyst ring. Perhaps to compensate for the years of deprivation when childrearing, but pretty glittery things are hard to resist these days.

I got the posters and invitations for Designing Women Textile Exhibition today. Somehow I must find time to get some posters up. People in this neck of the woods are sooo unhelpful about putting posters up, especially for events taking place south of the river - this area is in the far north of Perth.

My pieces for this exhibition are well on the way to finish. I mailed off my list of exhibits today, so now have officially 6 pieces that will be on display and 4 pieces for sale. Selling stuff just before Christmas would be a very welcome bonus provided I keep away from jewellery shops.

Thursday, October 14, 2004

Paints not Dyes

Big Grin, I think you found me out, Sharon. In all innocence I call Setacolours or whatever paint, but Karen Britto, doyen of shibori, says they are officially classed as a dye. So ok, I bow to superior knowledge, dyes they are.

Never being at a loss for words (all that training in my Eng. Lit degree does have some uses after all) I have no problem writing my journal, the biggest problem will be in training myself to use the information in creative ways. I have always collected images in my mind and with the aid of postcards or cards or magazine pictures, but they end up lost or sent out when I have forgotten to buy a card for a special occasion. All I have to work out is how to work the old images into my daily journal without sounding disjointed.

I have just a small amount of binding to hem on two wallhangings for the machine embroidery exhibition. Have been working like a slave to finish these, but it will be worth it so I can go to visit my son and family in Margaret River next week. My free motion machine embroidered palm trees are a sight to be seen, Very Quirky.

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

Visual Journals

Having bought some inspiring postcards and taken a photo of the paving stones in the new arts centre in Melbourne, I decided to listen to Sharonb (mentioned in my blog earlier) and start a journal. Bought a lovely big one today, bit intimidating looking at the size of it, but I will make a start when I can find some glue to stick the pictures in with.

It will be good if it does help me think through some of the ideas that I get, most of them never see the light of day, now I have no excuse.

Monday, October 11, 2004

Musings on husbands and food

I asked my husband to make sure there was some food for me when I returned from my Canberra/Melbourne trip. There was, but it was the healthy food I put in the fridge for him before I went away, so have been throwing out and cleaning the fridge before going to the supermarket. Now he is in the UK visiting his Dad and cramming himself full of takeaway and pub meals (with mega chip portions) I suspect.

Have been working on the satin wallhanging that I stamped and machine quilted, now just the binding to do. I have also solved the palm tree mounting problem. I bought some pale green cotton and am going to machine embroider palm trees all over this in a toning metallic thread, then will satin stitch the palm tree piece to this larger fabric. Sort of like a picture frame, but the worked palm tree will definitely be off-centre to allow for my unfailing ability to get things crooked. Thank goodness for modern art, say I!!! And I finished crazy patching the glasses case and am embellishing. Seems to be easier to do a lot of work when I don't have another person to look after. Cooking is easy when it is just vegetables and very little of the meat and 2 veg type of meal husbands seem to prefer.

Really tangled this time

Ok, I am back from the Crazy Quilt Retreat in Canberra with the add-on visit to my daughter in Melbourne. I had a wonderful time at the retreat, met up with my on-line friends and made some new friendships, learned a lot and just had some plain old fun. The fancy dress and bra parades were so funny I am sure I have not laughed so much for many years. Alas I bought a crazy patch glasses case from one of my friends at the retreat and left it behind at a restaurant on my first evening home in Perth. I think the restaurant found my glasses, but not the pretty crazy patch case. To replace this treasured memento I have been making myself a new case with fabrics that I acquired in the baggie swap there. I had decided to start collecting some red fabrics as I don't have many, but have now used a lot of these up in this case. Just have a little more patching to do then have some embroidery to add. I tried to embed the picture of the case, but the picture got added without the words.

It was so good of sharonb to mention this little blog in her Inaminuteago blog at I constantly visit this blog, but try not to do it if I am short of time as I can lose myself in this wonderful resource for hours at a time.

New Glasses case Posted by Hello