Friday, July 30, 2010

Review of the week

At last I pruned my roses. The garden is looking rather bare, but I quite like that winter sparseness. I promise I will share a pic of this in spring & summer.And my tulips are all through in the raised bed. On my kitchen windowsill - I love the scent of daphne I also (sit down before you read this Dad!) cleaned the car....both gardening and car cleaning require an iPod - on mine at the moment is Pink "Funhouse" and Lily Allen "Alright, still" and "It's not me, it's you", and some Snow Patrol tracks.
I have been enjoying Audrey Tautou this week in a couple of French Sub-Titled films. Happenstance : quirky interlinked stories of how one decision can have unexpected results.Priceless : romantic comedyI am hoping to re-watch this on the weekend. I remember when it came out it was fabulous. And I have been doing a bit more dog walking :-) Journal page from a few months ago. Looking forward to 2 days of rugby & stitching. Hope you have a happy weekend

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Foiled Velvet Bag

Another Angie Hughes project I recently completed was a foiled velvet bag. Click here for her machine embroidery gallery which includes examples of her bags. Luckily for me, Angie Hughes published information about foiling as a chapter called Exploring Velvet : a Mixed Media Piece in this lovely book (that's her work in the top lefthand corner)This book is fabulous, bringing together lots of great techniques to create Art Quilts. It contains many of the wonderful contributors to Quilting Arts Magazine - I have a subscription to this magazine and look forward to its bi-monthly arrival in my letter box.
Next step for the bag was being lucky enough to discover the basic bag design in this book : Don't be put off by the sheep on the back cover! This book has some really lovely ideas and useful techniques for making art quilts, using lutradur, and creating lovely velvet bags :-) Then we had a Play day...I started by cutting a piece of black velvet.The top of this piece is vliesofix painted with purple lumiere paint, and then ironed to the velvet when dry.I applied fusible web to the back of some easter egg foil, and then cut the swirls out and ironed them over the top of the vliesofix section. For the green section, I ironed fusible web directly to the velvet, and then ironed some Jones Tones foil paper (I just found mine at Spotlight) through sequin waste onto it. The piece below has had more foil adhered through sequin waste, and then the squares and triangles are chocolate foils attached using the same method as the swirls above.I then placed a chiffon scarf over this entire piece, and stitched around and over the different design elements with metallic thread. I cut the scarf away where I wanted to see more of the foil effect, but left it to show the stitching on top of the foil shapes. I added beads, then cut the bag shape and sewed it together adding a lining. The 'handle' is made by zigzagging together a variety of threads.The bottom is finished with a painted silk cocoon case, stitched and beaded, and hand-dyed silk threads hang from it. This is the completed bag. It was a fun project.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Listening, stitching, working

I got myself a job! Back at the Palmerston North City Library - I left there just over 4 years ago to be with the kids, but have decided to get back into it. I have been appointed to a casual on-call position, providing reference services at the main desks. Just have to hear when refresher training starts. I am very excited. Will be a chance to get my practical job skills back, and will be in school hours.
Yay :-)
I decided I should use my spare time today wisely, so have done quite a bit more work on my sitch/paper journal. I have been having fun adding a variety of envelopes to pop tags and memorabilia into. The above open spread has a normal heavy weight envelope with the flap tucked inside before stitching around the edges. The black butterfly is a rub-on. Another Erte image :-) The page below is shiny because it is a clear envelope. When empty, you can see the image I stuck behind it. It has a sticker on the envelope flap and the bottom corner of the envelope.
The blog of Rachel Emilie Jackson is worth exploring - the pretty pocket below was created from sheet music inspired by this blog post. The instructions are in the comments section of that post. While you work you have to listen to music right? (well I do!) Sara Bareilles has a new single on the radio, which got me listening again to the album I own :And somehow these 2 CD's came out as well. Regina Spektor is quirky and sweet and, I think, seriously cool. She is quite different from anyone else.

She also appears on this : clever movie - great soundtrack.
Talk to you again soon :-)

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Paper and stitch

We finally went to see Toy Story 3 at the movies was great. If you haven't seen it, and you loved the first 2 movies, you should definitely go. Some nice new characters, most of the old fav's, and a good plot. I especially loved the Ken/Barbie story - the closet scene was hilarious :-)
On the creative front, I have been very happy to complete the bases for more pages for my stitch/paper book that I shared with you on Friday.The image of the woman under the tree is an Erte one from a small diary that my friend bought me cheap cos she knows how much I love his art - thanks Katherine :-)And I am loving the decorative stitches on my Janome machine. Such fun to stitch on paper - I have been wanting to do it for so long, and now I'm wondering why I didn't start sooner!This is the pile of bases - there are 14 of them which are folded in 1/2. Once they are sewn as signatures, they will give 56 pages to the book. Next up is embellishing the pages, and I would like to make a start on the cover this week.
And I am continuing with my Art Journal. I normally do my collage and image first and then decide what to journal about. We had lovely weather today, and the yellows on this page were fittingly warm. Most of my bulbs are up, so the journalling is about lovely spring days full of newness and hope.
Talk to you again soon :-)

Friday, July 23, 2010

Review of the week

School holidays are over, and the kids went back to school on Monday - I tidied and cleaned the house and it stayed that way for the whole day!
Monday night I had quilt group at my house - made a coffee cake that was really yum
It was the series final of "Grey's Anatomy" - I cried a little bit
Back to swimming lessons and rugby practice again for both boys
I started reading this book : I have enjoyed reading many of Margaret Forster's novels in the past, so this looks promising.
Saw this at the movies :The book is better, but still a good evening out with a girlfriend
Finally got the worms to start the worm farm that I got for my birthday
Met some friends on various days for coffee
Thinking about library work again - I left 4 years ago to be home with my kids
Spent a morning with my sister-in-law and nephew - Hi Nicky & Harry :-)
Traced this pattern (to the right) and selected some materials.
The pattern is available here - click on the tab for projects
It is a design by Piece O' Cake - click here for their blog
and here for some of their lovely books.
I love their work and have made other quilts of their design...will share them in another post.
I started stitching paper for a new book project.

They don't look much yet, but if you click on the below links, you will see the general direction of where I am headed!
Mary Ann Moss : Dispatch from LA
Emily Falconbridge
Julie Ann Shahin
DJ Pettitt
Kelli Nina Perkins
Susie LaFond

Hope you all have a good weekend :-)

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Watching and Reading

Today's journal page. Have been wanting to use that image for ages.
Have been reading this book, finished last night I liked the characters and the plot, and it was told with different voices so the story evolved (some of it was in flash-back) from different points of view. A nice read about families and on the cover to get to Amazon's info about it.

Still thinking about this movie which I saw last week on DVD: It is a lovely costume drama - gorgeous to look at, well-acted, and the female lead stitches! I want to own it. Click on the poster to go the IMDb site with photos from the movie.

And the other DVD I won't to own is this : It's just been released for purchase here. LOVED this too - beautiful colours, wonderful design, and good plot line. I especially enjoyed how they managed the costume changes for Alice. And Johnny Depp was wonderful as only he can be.

What are your current fav's that you are recommending?

Monday, July 19, 2010


Do you know the work of Angie Hughes? She is a wonderful textile artist who has inspired a couple of projects from me lately. The first, a velvet bag, I will share with you another day. Today I am going to show you a book that I completed yesterday.This started life as another play day, with an article from Quilting Arts mag, October/November 2007, as our starting point. Click on the cover for info about that issue.This issue featured an article by Angie Hughes on making textural book wraps. We started by roughly weaving fabrics.I decided to put a chiffon scarf over mine to keep it together, and then free-motion stitched it over felt to create the cover. This is the inside felt:and the outside: Mine turned out less textured than Angie's examples, which is okay this time, but I would like to try again and make it a bit more unfinished looking. Also the proportions weren't right for a wrap, so I turned it into a book cover. I gathered papers and painted some watercolour pages, and edged some too. These are some of the internal pages. I sitched the pages into the cover, and attached ties of different fabrics, finished with paua buttons. Not sure what I will put on the pages yet, but it is lovely to hold this completed book.
If you liked the look of Angie Hughes, check out her book too.
Lots more wonderful things to try.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Christmas in July

I have some good friends with the same quilting/mixed media interests as me and we meet every month or so for a play day. We pick a theme or project, and work on it together. This latest one was to each come up with ideas for a wee project to start us on the way to Christmas!
My idea came from Ruth Rae's wonderful book, which I recently got for my birthday.
Her book is fabulous, with very clear instructions. We made cards from scraps. The coolest things was sewing organza over text or music. I will definitely be using this technique again.Left to right : Katherine's, My card, Lisa's. It is cool to see how we each approach things and how the finished cards are individualised. We always learn lots from each other.Katherine showed us how to stitch felt and organza together to make lovely christmas stars. This is mine finished. The velvet is layered over felt, and free motion swirls are stitched with metallic thread over the top.
Lisa's technique was to try a stencil with moulding paste pressed through. We cut a simple shape out of acetate, and then smoothed the moulding paste over the top. When dry, we coloured it with chalk. I tried letters too.Not a great pic, but hopefully you can see that the moulding paste is raised and is textured so creates a cool effect.
Another fun day, with some lovely friends. And lots of ideas to pursue in the future.
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