Thursday, 20 December 2012

Misty Winter Dawn

Yesterday morning, in the most soft and subtle mist, almost no landscape; yet the sliver, slice, softness of the sunrise, all orange and delicious, over the tangled Winter hedges..
If I could capture this in cloth, I would be truly satisfied..

Monday, 29 October 2012

Fast Friday Fabric Challenge 74

Wrong blog, I know, but the technology is fighting back too firmly for me..
My hand is up, the buttons are all at my house
Small quilt, approx 15 inches tall, with hand-embroidered/quilted stitch holding the layers and the buttons on.  All the woven fabrics (thanks Jude) were grabbed from the scrap box as tones, not choices.. The size was set by the oddment of batting I found under the table.  The background fabric is Oakshott Fabrics Ischia and the binding is another colour I can't name.. All the buttons came from one of the 7 tins-worth I bought the other day, incidental to purchasing a sewing machine table for my little workroom at home..
Sewn in front of the fire to the accompaniment of a programme about wolves and buffaloes.
Finished on Saturday morning, but I can't get to the FFFC blog.. Bah, humbug...

Edited: Monday, got access and am able to post at the Fast Friday blog, but I'll leave this here..

Sunday, 21 October 2012

Further progress

 Unbroken Circle has been sewn to a backing of hand-dyed linen.. It's a bit less soft than it might be, but I like the colour, and the texture is nice.  I've done quite a lot of hand-stitch, mostly rather simple running-stitches, and I think this one is almost done
 Mood Indigo has its Red Spots, and a purplish backing (which doesn't quite work on screen, as its a shot fabric.  I'm going to add more smaller spots and red stitch
And this is Weaving Rust, with stitch in indigo-dyed cotton, plain cotton, and hand-dyed silk thread.. I think this one is almost done, too.. Better in life than on screen, I think..
I haven't decided what to do with these yet - my default is always the art piece for the wall, but I have been making nice books this week. I may add these to other pieces and expand them further.. I'm amazed at how long some of these have taken to stitch, which makes them uneconomic for sale..

Sunday, 14 October 2012

Looking at The World

It's interesting how one's point of view changes.  Working slowly by hand has made me look differently at the cloth I am holding, and all the several sensations that come with this gentle handling are interesting and pleasurable.
This has made me appreciate the softness that I am not naturally drawn to.  And I have been most grateful this week for a level of gentle regard that has come my way from those who care for me.

This little package came from Heather (who now has a blog of her own, follow the link) and was a real treat to open.. Old Japanese fabrics with the most wonderful textures and depth of colour, soft and crisp textures.. Most are woven patterns, with that delightful depth and utter naturalness of indigo..

What has struck me quite forcibly lately is how much one's view can change without any real intention, or without even noticing until it happens.  I have been carrying my camera all the time, catching images as they arrive.  In the making of these, I found a series of images which I have called Roadkill following my fascination with the everyday detritus of life. 
And in looking at the floor, I found Shadows, too

These from Tesco's supermarket this morning.. The first is a bike, the second a row of trolleys, both outside the shop and with the sun transforming their being into this exquisite monochrome..

Sunday, 30 September 2012

Work In Progress

 Unbroken Circle.
The Suffolk Puff came from something I was remaking.  The Blue Square is left over from Mood Indigo (below) because I can't count to 9. The patchwork with the strips inset is from an experiment I made using a technique from a Kathleen Loomis technique. Then there's a bit of "drop cloth"  fabric - used on the table when I dye and print until it's full of colour, then useful in all manner of ways.  Base is hand-dyed muslin, very soft and fragile and airy.. Oh, what fun..
 This is Weaving Blue.  A base, not ready to work on this further, but it feels lovely.  The elephant is in the room..
 Back of the above, showing the stitches.  I love the way these show as a row of spots on the front
 And this is Weaving Rust.  Only part-stitched.
And Mood Indigo.  I have made several pieces like this, more images soon.. Some have decided they need to have Rainbows in them, and some on them, but this one will have Red..

Blessings and Love


Thursday, 20 September 2012

Teaching and Learning

I went to Suffolk, to teach Spirals to a small but keen class on the Shotley Peninsula. 

The Orwell Bridge crosses the river at a great height, sheer and spindly in the sunlight.  Under the bridge, I drive along the estuary, to the skirl of gulls and the glitter of the light around the boats anchored along the shore.  This is England at its most particular and serene; not bucolic, there are boatyards and pylons; in its small and happy way, an island of calm..

I am tired.. My body hurts, and I have much to face soon.. I'm going to bed soon, to sleep.  It's Autumn today, the trees were turning brown and red, and we have put the thick duvet on the bed.. Ah, luxury..

And the chimney is swept, so tomorrow I will light the first fire of Autumn, and sit in front of it..

Sleep well..

Wednesday, 19 September 2012

Two Thousand Miles in Two Weeks.. pretty bad for the backside, to say nothing of the energy levels..
Went to Scotland, with my friend Phil, to attend the Drum Dance at Forres.  We had a fantastic time, Phil's first experience of Professional Camping, lots of lovely sunshine (for once this year) and all manner of magic and good company.  And I got to visit my lovely Stella, and see her house and Peace Chamber for the first time..

I was Drumming..

I love the drum, and to sing, and I feel this may be a place I spend much time in over the next few years, but I am rethinking much of my Life and Art and Practice at present.  I have a fairly major hospital stay in a couple of weeks time..  I'm scared, and not keen to take time out, but I am very determined to look after what needs looking after this time, and not just try to ignore the need to slow down, to rest, to be still.. It's hard for one as frenetic as me to stop, but I must..

Meanwhile, I have had little time to sew, and I'm in need of it, so I'm going to do that..
Snailspace.. At Bamburgh Castle

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

Mood Indigo

Firstly, I had lots of indigoes, on fine cotton, and muslin.  These need red.  I have stitched with red (not very visible) and I'm going to applique' - still basting, as you can see.  I am drawn,  as always, to trees and leaves, so this will almost certainly have leaves..

I'm off to Scotland overnight tomorrow, to pursue the Spiritual Work that has ehthralled me in recent years, drumming for the Drum Dance..

All this requires much practicality, packing-of-tents, charging-of-batteries, and leaving-tidy stuff..

Back soon

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Walking home after the rain..

..actually, hail, thunder, lightning, and big big winds.

So this evening I walked home along the lane, and the smell, sort of mushroomy and growing; and warm and not-quite-dark, not-quite-light feel to the air, was wonderful. It's a magical time of night, when all is quiet, the day is almost done and there is a supper to cook and a cat to fuss, and life is almost not-too-bad after all..
A line from Joni Mitchell runs in my head as I walk
..death and birth and death and birth and death and birth...
I washed out my rusted cloth batch today, and hung it out about 5 minutes before the rains came.  So it's nicely rinsed, at least..

On the corner the twigs washed along by the rain made an image of the force of the water
As I came into the front garden (mostly I come to the back) I noticed that the wonky cotinus tree that we took out last year has regenerated
And this leaf was the most astonishing red in the wet grass

Now perhaps, I shall start to sew

Friday, 24 August 2012

In the Beginning..

 Was an idea, that it would be nice to do more Hand Work; to take the time to be a little more meditative in my work; to follow truly the Idea that Work Is Worship. 
Spirit Cloth 101 came along and captured me in passing. 
This is to document what happens, and what does not, perhaps.  Links in the side bar
 These two drawing happened before the course, and seem to fit perfectly
 Now, like many of you, I suffer from an Excess of Stash, so I arranged a few pieces (indigoes and Chinese vegetable dyes above)

 And some rusts, and silks, both plain and printed, and woven
 Then I got this lovely parcel from Tiggy Rawlings
 ..with muslins
and fine cottons

Here I go...