Friday 30 May 2014


Lovely day in Yorkshire today. We went to the quilt Museum in York where they have some costumes from Downton Abbey, The Duchess (my that Keira Knightly is slender) and some related to the Bronte sisters. There were interesting old quilts from the same time, 200 to 100 years ago and the fabrics used are fascinating.
One had been rescued from being a tractor warmer and another from covering a motorbike!

We then drove through the beautiful countryside to Harlow Carr, the RHS garden on the edge of Harrogate. Not only beautiful gardens, especially the kitchen gardens which were imaginative with innovative willow weaves, but also an excellent shop full of very reasonably priced hand made goodies produced by local artisans.
My talk tomorrow..

Monday 26 May 2014


I'd like to have a go at the Half Square Triangle challenge HSTeria.  I've been thinking about this:


Do I make it bigger, or make another in a different pattern? Is it the start of a quilt or a cushion top?

Wednesday 21 May 2014

Dyeing.. and Cambridge Botanical Gardens.

Dyed and painted linen.
Well it was desperately pale, so along with some other strips of fabric I threw it in a bucket with some mixed colours of dye, then after rinsing, through a cool machine wash. It looks much better to me and I've pinned it to the design wall for consideration.
I like the idea of using different weights of fabric to give the kind of contrast I think the idea of dislocation needs, but I'm also playing with the idea of dislocation in space with my doorway.

I'm liking it much more now.

Here are some pictures from my trip to Cambridge to the Botanical Gardens. Lots of inspiration in colour combinations and pattern.
Birch bark.

Fir in flower.


Speckled Wood Butterfly.

Friday 16 May 2014

A new tack.

Trying something else with the dislocation piece as it began to seem overly complicated.
Found some thin Linen and have been painting a piece.

It looks desperately pale here with the light shining through but will be different with wadding behind I expect.

Monday 12 May 2014

Weekend Work

Jo Budd 

I spent the weekend working hard in Jo Budd's studio overlooking a river valley in Bungay. We painted and monoprinted a variety of fabrics including polyester sheers and I was really pleased with my work up until I had to do the selection and design process, when I had a minor panic attack!

Tree bark was my visual reference so I used colours that were soft blues mauves greys.

My sample pieces ready for the next stage.

Jo Budd's work is very interesting as she is an artist who works with textiles and stitch, layering her work and using stitch to create surface texture which adds enormous interest to the work. She showed us her series of pieces based on ripples and reflected light on the surface of water and it was fascinating to see how she creates those effects.

The garden is wild and full of wildlife, there were lots of small Orange tip butterflies but they were either resting with their wings closed or constantly on the move and difficult to catch with a camera. This one looks yellow but was a much brighter orange colour.

I also photographed the moss and lichen covered apple tree and the wooden seat, wonderful colour in my palette!

I did get my artistic head engaged and arranged several pieces that looked good. I began stitching the first one and it was developing well when I had to pack up and come home.

Friday 9 May 2014

Dislocation progress

I've made more pieces for my Dislocation quilt but not sure about the layout yet so these are up for consideration:

a bit too busy on the left maybe...

Wednesday 7 May 2014

A Day Off

I did some sewing today, having cracked the jersey stitching with the knit dress I made yesterday, I took up a skirt that was 6" too long! Well the machine was already threaded in the right colour with a double needle.

We went for a walk to Sheringham Park, a Humphrey Repton planted garden now National Trust which is full of Rhododendrons and Azaleas. Rain threatened but we didn't get wet. The colours are just beautiful, and its free.

Bluebells and an orange azalea.

Rest hut thatched with fir branches. You can see across to the sea.

Ancient Harry Potter-like twisted branches.

Lovely colour combinations everywhere.

Sunday 4 May 2014


I am continuing to work on strips for my Dislocation piece, and I've also made set of doorways, or portals that will be set into the Landscape-like background. I think that they will be unavailable/blocked so I am stitching barriers across them.

Here is my dining table which doubles as a workbench.
This free piecing way of working is rather more chaotic than my usual mess!
mostly I am working from scrapbox scraps of hand-dyes, batiks and prints that blend with the colours that I am using.
The measurements are given in cm which is not familiar to me and I was pleased to see that the back of my cutting board gives me an idea of how wide 50cm is!
It needs to be 50cm x 120cm so I had better make some more!!

Saturday 3 May 2014

Quilt bags

I've been in church this morning where there is a big crafty event for May Bank Holiday.
I met a new quilter, new to the area and new to quilting, so that was good.

Here are the quilt bags I've been making from some nice stripey linen, ahead of my trip to Yorkshire to give a talk about my work.

Quilt bag 1

Quilt bag 2

They are a simple construction with drawstrings on the long edges, a button closure, and tape for handles. I did most of the sewing last night and then finished off the bottom one this morning.

Friday 2 May 2014

Area Day

Pamela Salter is the lovely lady who came to our Eastern Regional Day on Saturday with 96 beautifully made items for the Tombola! Not a quilter, a long standing member of the Embroiderers Guild! She also made lots of lovely bookwraps last year, as the Quilt Museum has captured her imagination.

On Sunday, at the Bead and Textile Fair we did have quite a lot of interest in the Guild up our end of the table Brenda, one lady very keen as she was most interested in the Contemporary journal Quilts that Jackie and I had on display, and I was stitching a free cut piece for my Dislocation... All our leaflets were taken, and there was considerable interest in the Guild magazine too, as it clearly takes a more intelligent approach to the craft!

Here is a picture of Pamela studying our Journal Quilts

I'm having a quiet day today...

Free piecing, Dislocation

The Contemporary Group of the Quilters Guild has a competition coming up and I would like to enter. The theme is Dislocation and I have been putting some pieces together:

I am plannng to insert the little log cabin doorways into the landscape pieces.
I have stitched a blocking insert into some of the doors and have them for consideration on the design wall..

Work in progress