Saturday, 27 April 2013

Something Different.

Something I 'm not normally drawn to do is paint instead of stitch.  In this piece I've covered the canvas with scrunched up scrim, added some teased out fibres of Mulberry bark and applied gesso, thickly in some places, thinly in others.  I had expected to stitch into it, but found myself using acrylic paints instead.  It is an aberration, but I rather like it.  At present I have it on the wall above my work-bench.  Some days I rotate it, which gives it a different feel.  I quite like that it hasn't yet decided which way up it wants to be!
In other news, my TMA has come back, with the highest mark I've yet had on this module.  This is good, obviously, but it's also bad as I had more or less decided not to bother with the rest of the assignments.  So much to write in so little time means other parts of life are neglected.  I don't need to complete the course, I don't need the qualification, I only started it for fun.

Thursday, 18 April 2013

My New Home!

Three days of sun have given me a chance to catch up with my spring seed sowing.  Previously this would have ment camping out in a corner of the greenhouse, but last autumn I aquired a purpose built potting shed!  My little palace is fully equiped with a bench under the sloping window and shelves on the back wall.  Three transparent bins, under the bench, hold compost and a large potting tray keeps everything tidy.  I've even brought in an old wooden chair for coffee breaks!
The greenhouse is now bursting with freshly sown trays of flowering annuals and early veggies.  All my autumn sown seedlings have been moved out into cold frames until they are ready to be planted in beds and borders.
Last year our tiny village found itself included in a new National Park and I've been invited, by a local stitching group, to produce a few small pieces for an exhibition to mark our new found status.  The idea is to interpret aspects of the Park in stitch, in as abstract a manner as we wish.
In other news my latest A215 Creative Writing Assignment for the Open University has been sent off and I await the result.  This one called for 1,500 words of Life Writing and I was quite pleased with it, but I can never be sure how my tutor will respond.

Friday, 12 April 2013

Experimental Hand Embroidery

James Hunting's stunning embroidery.

Three days have rarely flown by so quickly as they did this week, on a hand embroidery course tutored by the immensely talented James Hunting.  Regular visitors to this blog will know my own work is small and detailed, but James takes delicate to a whole new level.  His stunningly beautiful flowers are worked in single strands of embroidery threads, either stranded cottons or silks.
His teaching covered all the basics of linear stitches, blanket stitches and couching, through a few modified stitches to french knots and raised stitching.  We worked mostly on linen and organdie.  James proved to be a very patient mentor. 
The embroidery I have chosen to show is unusual in that it is beaded and doesn't feature the piecing together of different linens which usually forms part of his larger work.

Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Teeny Tiny Pincushion

Recycling, or upcycling, as I believe it is now known, has a perennial appeal for sewers and crafters.  An accumulation of empty cotton reels was staring at me this morning, begging to be used, so I've turned a few of them into pincushions.
I've wrapped felt around them to hold needles and attached tiny sussex puffs, stuffed with cotton wool, to hold the pins.  The finished article, pins and all, is less than three inches tall, so they are very portable.  Good for sewing on the move.
    Like all bloggers I enjoy sharing my ideas and am happy for readers to adapt them for their own needs, but please don't pinch them for your Etsy and Folksy shops!