Tuesday, 11 August 2015


The decorating is done.    Downsizing contents of room, tick.   An amazing amount of paper work, reference materials (collected from the early '90's) about to be shredded in our new shredding machine.  I mean, ideas move on and the internet is a wonderful resource.

Boxes of materials hoarded over the years.   Oh, so 20th century!   Just let it go.

Now lean and mean in the studio.   Space to think creatively.   

All the fabric in boxes has been sorted and are (a) on holiday in the textile bank, or, (b) washed  and ironed ready to be used.

I am down to two boxes of bits and gatherings.    This is where I am going to have to be very strong!   There are just some things you can't let go.   

So it might be that this collection can be reduced and then stored in the loft.  It is fortunate that Keith has decided the time has come to get rid of old studio paperwork in the loft.  Good timing!

There have been days off to get out and about.    A wonderful day in Bath with Amanda;   a family visit to Kimmeridge  - fishing, rock pools and fossil hunting

a stone with seaweed impressions on the shore at Kimmeridge
it looks as though it is printed and is quite beautiful
(size 19 x 19)

hope you are all enjoying your summer, whatever the weather

Wednesday, 29 July 2015

under wraps

the time was right

it has to be done

decorating my studio

just one corner

the rest of the contents are shared equally around the house

light  shadow and a beautiful jade green

my room faces north so can be a little gloomy
three walls are painted white, but the west facing wall glows, when the sun shines(!)

In Udaipur I acquired a pot of pigment to add to emulsion
it's gorgeous

so, decorating done   new carpet arrives tomorrow
meanwhile, and probably for a few days I am going through my boxes
off assorted stuff no longer required on journey

already a shed load of assorted papers, including references from magazines
gathered pre internet have been discarded   then there are boxes and boxes of 
fabric, bits and pieces that can, no doubt, be recycled elsewhere   

it feels good saying goodbye to stuff that has been lurking far too long!

Time for a glass of red me thinks!

Saturday, 18 July 2015

Mr. Ben and the Larmer Tree Festival

my boys and Mr. Ben are having fun at the Larmer Tree Festival this weekend

camping gear packed  
the sun is shinning


 t shirts dyed for Mr. Ben

high viz

and one for hiding in a summer field

Thursday, 16 July 2015

making marks

As you know when the sun shines and it's hot and humid, what else to do but set up the indigo vat!

Saturday ticked all the boxes for an indigo workshop.    Fantastic results.   Wonderful cloth on the washing line.

Everyone produced a mega amount of cloth which was stitched, tied and pole wrapped.
And then I became so excited I forgot to take photos, except these.

bound marbles with soy wax dots

soy wax design on bags

all designed by Babs

the wax pot always comes out on dyeing workshops 
soy wax is fantastic   the washout leaves the fabric with
a soft 'handle'  so much better than the traditional wax

Monday found me in Sherborne, Dorset taking another Indigo workshop with the lovely ladies of North Dorset Embroidery Guild.    A return visit.  Last year the day was perfect  unfortunately Monday was grey, a little damp but humid.

We made the most of the day working under a porch!  There was a lot of huddling around the vat, dipping and dyeing.   Good blues and bundles of cloth.  What a difference Saturday!

I have my last indigo workshop here on Saturday 22 August 
there are a couple of places available.

in lieu of indigo dyed fabric, a blue pot!

Friday, 10 July 2015

away days

Last week we took a three day break in Normandy, which, happily coincided with the 'heat wave'.

A splendid trip on Brittany Ferries from Poole to Cherbourg.   The sea was so calm I sunbathed on deck all the way.   There were dolphins in the outer harbour at Cherbourg.

We didn't travel too far, just an hour away to Port en Bessin, via Bayeux where this poster was spotted

empty beaches

colourful shop in St. Vaast

Barfleur harbour

at Cape Barfleur the magnificent phare de Gattevile 
one of the highest lighthouses in France

apart from the big towns and fishing ports France appeared to be empty
beautiful golden beaches to ourselves, wonderful country side
suppers at a small cafe in Port en Bassin watching the fishing boats coming and going

nice to be busy doing nothing 

Thursday, 18 June 2015

shades of

the remains of Saturday's indigo vat

it didn't rain
could have been warmer
still a garden of blue at the end of the day

today the vat has revived itself
it's hot, hot, out there
so I can give this a couple more dips

it doesn't look too exciting does it?!!!

I bought about ten pieces of Khadi cloth from a small shop in Wagwam
to the surprise of everyone    why would I want so many dusters?
Khadi cloth is hand spun cotton which is then hand woven
the cloth is really chunky and gorgeous, and yes it took the dye well

I only brought a couple of pieces home with me, the rest are in a
cupboard at Samshu's house, waiting their fate either as dusters or.......

found in my Chinese steamer, dried acanthus flowers

finished    my therapy quilt,  Dentil

Dentil n. architecture

one of a series of rectangular blocks projecting like teeth 
from a moulding or beneath a cornice 

Ha, ha.   The dentist is my new 'best friend'  
in between appointments hand stitching was very comforting, and now it's done

one or two appointments to go
I feel another quilt coming on

Monday, 8 June 2015

fun in the sun

This last week the sun has been shining, there has been a little rain to make the garden grow, and an occasional day without the chilling wind from the northeast!

The first of three indigo workshops takes place on Saturday, fingers crossed that the weather stays fine      in warmer climes at least you can be sure for at least nine months it's always a perfect temperature for an indigo vat.

All this reminded me of our visit to Arkola to see our block printing friends.  My camera battery died, step in the professional, Mr. R, with a spare camera.   Marvellous.

a vegetable stall on the left  on the right bullock carrying felled tree(s)

I looked left - stop the car!

an old indigo vat

sign of many years usage  the building behind is being renovated
I suspect this wonderful vat will soon disappear

meanwhile, next door

a lovely lady at her treadle sewing machine
the cupboard behind is piled up with quilts

through the centre of the village block printed fabric is drying in the sun

at our printer friends the indigo vats are ready to go

dyed cloth being resisted - that's difficult!
bandani of course

a group photo, taken by Mr. R obviously,
I'm looking happy especially after a little retail therapy followed
by chai and a delicious cake

If you are interested in one of the indigo workshops, contact me

finally, a photo that nearly got away
it's from our nine hour train trip from Bhuj to Palanpur
as mentioned in my post (26.02.15) there was never a dull moment

everyone was so friendly and very inquisitive
the seating is just one up from wooden seats 

I think this was taken very early in the morning as I am
still well wrapped up - we started our journey at 6.30am
the benches hold four people, in theory, though usually eight
are accommodated    for the family party there is always the 
luggage racks to stretch out on, never mind all the bags
and baggage

Good idea to sit on a single seat?   Forward thinking!