Stitchbook- darning

We were packing to move house when this box arrived and try as I might I wasn’t relaxed enough to enjoy stitching this. I found the fabrics very hard to handle. I finished the box this week.

Part one was darning- making holes and repairing them. I quite like darning so had been looking forward to this project.

It’s adequate, but I’m not thrilled with it.

The second part of the box was to unravel some sari silk and piece togther with running stitch. Now I had been really looking forward to this – I love taking fabric scraps and joining them with stitch. But once again I wasn’t happy. The scraps were minute and very very frayed. Now frayed edges are again something I normally love but these drove me crazy, added to which I wasn’t that keen on the colours.

All I can say is I did my best, and I’ll put it down to house moving stress. I now have three more boxes to tackle and hope I enjoy them more.

Photo Challenge- Textiles

We were lucky enough to have two wonderful holidays a number of years ago in California. On both occassions we visited San Jan Bautista, because it was used by Hitchcock as a location in his film Vertigo, of which Mr E is very fond indeed. Fortunately for me it also houses some rather wonderful textiles, which I thought I would share for this challenge this month.

Museum within this hotel, you can play spot the difference!

Two different visits a few years apart, so there is a move round and a change in the exhibitions.

Subtle change in the bedrooms

Lovely quilt.

Sewing apparatus.

Another lovely quilt

We have such fond memories of both these holidays and I hope you have enjoyed the textiles.

Linking to Wild daffodil for some more textile posts-here

Transfer printing and stitch.

This month we were looking at ways to transfer an image onto fabric. Methods were photocopies transfered using PVA glue, bondaweb and sticky back plastic. Helen had assumed we would all have an ink jet printer and would be able to use that to transfer our own images. Sadly I don’t have one, and as I wasn’t alone on this Helen also supplied some she had done earlier, direct onto fabric, to be used with bondaweb and using t shirt print paper. I’m afraid those samples didn’t come out for me, so I was left making the best of what for me was a disappointing project box- I had always wanted to be able to transfer photos to fabric and was a bit miffed that I would need a specific printer.

I didn’t like the look of the image done using PVA, looked a bit messy to my mind and you had to wait for it to dry twice…

So onto the bondaweb and photocopy. Who knew you could transfer a photocopied image to bondaweb? Not me for sure.

The bondawebed image is on the right stuck to the dyed fabric from a couple of boxes ago. You wet it to get the backing paper off and whilst wet it looked amazing, but it dries like this and if you rub harder off comes the image with the paper.

Determined to get something from this exercise I teamed it with my gel painted abstract fabric, left over from last month.

mmmm- thinks, I turned the inner circle over to get just the fabric, and not fabric plus bondaweb, and stitched.

In close up

Well I tried!

Next up I had a go at using the sticky backed plastic, a photocopy and some more of my dyed fabric. I then had a lot of enjoyment in stitching a background for it.

I have only stitched the body of the butterfly down to the fabric, as it felt as though the plastic would split.

Well we can’t all like everything. I loved the stitching part! And I may have to do some research on how to get a photo onto fabric that doesn’t involve an ink jet printer. I am positve that 20 years ago I used some product which transfered a photocopy of a photo direct to fabric, but I can’t remember what it was called.

I was disappointed with this month’s project, especially has Helen had shown some gorgeous printed hearts on fabric on the Facebook page, and I had been looking forward to stitching them-  turned out to be an example from her gallery.

Next month we are doing visible darning- much more up my street!

Textile Tuesday-February

Once again linking with Wild Daffodil for this photo challenge in which we share pictures of textiles.

My contribtion today comes from the Anne Bronte 200 project to celebrate the 200th anniversary of her life. 200 pages from her acclaimed novel Wildfell Hall were passed to 200 artists to illustrate .

One wall, 200 mini masterpieces.

Some used paint and drawings but many turned to textiles. Here  are the textile ones which caught my eye and inspired me. Do you have a favourite?

Lovely felt work- Angela Anning

by Carrie Wright

If this reads 201 it’s by Nicola Davey

I can’t find a page number for this one to say who made it. I like being able to see the writing behind the images.

247- Maggy Lightfoot. Hints of a midnight ramble in stitch.

381- Joan Currie, looking like mulberry paper, and maybe some machine stitching.

203 Anne Brooke- mixed media, love that Anne’s picture is here too.

Mixed media- by Kate Brooks. I love seeing Anne maybe at work on her easel.

Margaret Creek who blogs here Such detail and texture, love it Margaret.

Lovely horse- not sure of the relevance, but why not?

More felt work, love the wildness of the fell through the window.

Helen Birmingham-  again I like that the words are visible and Helen has added something about Anne herself. In many ways this was my favourite, it had personality.

Mixed media- love it, love the layers. NB to self- buy some netting

Again I love the print and Anne’s pictures- lots of inspiration for junk journals.

375-Gemma Matthews- love the detail of the stitching

49-Jean Stephenson- Scarborough castle as the back drop- brilliant

And that’s them all. Do you have a favourite, and if so which one and why? A truly wonderful project and if you are quick enough the exhibition is in the Woodend Gallery in Scarborough until the end of the month.


Stitching landscapes

I really enjoyed this months Stitchbook box. The gel printing was quite straight forward and very satisfying. Next stage to add some stitching.

I started with this one ripping the brighter of the two prints and applying it to the second and hence less bright piece.

And that’s it stitched. Next I laid a second print over its counterpart the brighter first print

and stitched into this

I think these two are my favourites. The next one was the print in which scrim had been used as a resist.

It didn’t seem to lend itself to much stitching so I stopped.

This is the last one with the brighter first print over the second lighter one.

Now I have to choose which two to put in the stitchbook.

Any thoughts please? I think I shall try this technique in the futre to see what I can do with it.



Gel Plate Printing

Another new skill to learn this month from my Untangled Threads Stitchbook Collection box.

We were provided with a ready made gel plate, acrylic paint , fabric and thread. Brief to paint a simple landscape and an abstract and print onto the fabric and stitch. For years I have collected magazine pictures, so I searched through them and found three landscapes I thought might work. As to abstract , I would have to wing it.

I thoroughly enjoyed this.

The first print is on the left, second on the right and I had added somered and yellow. I much prefer the second print. We were supposed to spray water and do a third print, but there was virtually no paint left on the plate, so I just over printed onto the second piece. The suggestion is to tear one piece and stitch it onto the second I have to decide if it would be better to tear the one I like- the second, or the one I find garish and use it to highlight the other.

Again I only got two pieces from this sample. I like the first brighter piece. But again the dilemna of which to tear and which to keep whole.

This may be my least favourite, so I may start with this as I learn how it stitches up.

We were given some scrim and shown how to use this to take up the paint and mask the calico in a print.. I left some of the scrim without paint, and I think this will be fun to play with the stitches.

Finally an attempt at abstract.

We’ll say no more about this.

I had a thoroughly enjoyable afternoon making these prints. Next onto some stitching. Love to hear if anyone has tried gel plate printing, and any tips gratefully received.


Photo Challenge- Textiles

Sandra at Wild Daffodil ( link  here) has created a year long challenge to share photos of Textiles. I thought I would start by sharing the pictures I took at the Harrogate Knitting and Stitching Show in December 2018. The show is pretty big and a must for us crafters, lots of workshops, demonstrations,suppliers and what interested me most this time, lots of exhibitors. So without further ado, here are the pieces that caught my eye.

CQ London is a group of Contemporary Quilters. One theme was city scapes. I loved them all, here are my favoruite two pieces.

This from the same was called Coram Cloths. Mothers who left their children at the Foundlings hospital back in the day would leave little momentos with them. This quilt was a tribute to them.

Lovely detail from the quilt.

The bees nest really caught my eye.Such skill.

or how about this one?

Fabulous night time scene or

This on e called Out on the Tiles with a crumb of comfort, from the Rochdale Embroidery Group.

Next up , lacemakers- this was my favourite

More quilts

I loved this quilt with scenes from WW2  the blitz

Is knitting your thing? Coming from Denmark and called Unfinished there was a crowd funded project. The artist asked for unfinished pieces of knitting for this installation.

I mean wow.

Lovely details

Felt making anyone?

How about that or

Or the seriously weird, some of these moved- real people

And finally some weaving

but not done on this

I hope you enjoyed my first Textile set of pictures. Do pop over to see the links left on Wild Daffodil.

Stitching on Joomchi

Sample one- joomchi with holes!

We were provided with two skeins of thread- in my case red and green, I began on the yellow and black joomchi, using all six strands of thread and promptly made a hole. So I started again using three threads, and a simple running stitch.

The red and black paper was flimsy so I stitched it onto the calico sheet first using two strands of the red thread, then stitched round the black hole. the holes weren’t very visible so I seed stitched the black paper so the holes showed more.

Sample two- the collage

I had several pieces to choose from.

And fully inteneded to use this one

It looked too like sample one, so I actually settled on the piece I did at the end of my joomchi making session when I threw all the scraps of paper into the mix.

And I finally managed to do what Helen has been telling us- to let the fabric dictate the stitches. I added the glass bead for interest. It comes from a local glass maker, based in Hutton-le Hole.

Thoroughly enjoyed this box of delights, and will probably come back to this in order to gain mastry over the finished piece, and I do have quite a stash of mulberry papers!

The next box  for the Stitchbook  arrived this morning…..



Joomchi- part one

Joomchi is the art of felting mulberry paper. Who knew you could felt paper, let alone it was so much fun to play with paper and water.

I’ll be honest I was disappointed with the selection of papers in my latest Untangled Thread box. One sheet each of orange and black and three near identical ones of green. The thread colours didn’t thrill me either, red and green- far too Christmassy for my taste.

However as it happens I have quite a nice selection of mulberry papers in colours I like, so I knew I could move onto them once I had the tecnhique under my belt.

Joomchi is a Japanese art form and the word translates as “eager hands.” Basically it’s just like wet felting wool but much quicker and easier. Helen Birmingham has made a wonderful video showing how to do this, which sadly I can’t share, you have to buy her box of delights for access.

If you can wet felt wool you can do this, just don’t need washing up liquid, or quite so much water and physical effort.

And you can create the most magnificent effects. I’ll let my pictures do the talking.

and build up collages.

And now it’s onto the stitching- yes stitching paper!

Dyed Fabric collage

Task- to use procian dyes with different fabrics to observe “take up” of dyes. Create a collage from the the three materials- muslin, calico and polycotton sheeting. stitch with floss dyed at the same time.

I enjoyed this exercise a lot. I felt confident with the dyeing process , and I loved the slow stitching- no profound thoughts this time, just mindfullness.

I felt very tranquil whilst I made this.