Tuesday, 31 August 2010

Lost Fragments

My horoscope for today tells me that a gathering of lost
fragments allows you to connect to your higher self.  My
workroom is littered with fragments, lost or otherwise.

On my "to do list" for today is to complete two Journal
Quilts to meet the deadline.  Over the summer I collected
sketches and ideas for said quilts, well there's one set
of fragments.

Blue Pithoi

With remembrances of sunny days
in Santorini,  Blue skies and turquoise 
seas.  Museum full of pithoi and
fragments of wall paintings.

Bundi Bird

Looking into the file of pieces from the
mixed media workshop I took with
Cas Holmes at summer school.
More fragments. Images of Jodpur,
a piece of tissue with an embroidery
pattern found in Udiapur.   Fabric
buttons, who knows where they
came from.  Then the Bundi Bird, one
of several to be found on wall paintings
in the Palace at Bundi Rajasthan.

Time for lunch, and then to tackle the
seriously lost and found on the
workroom floor,

Monday, 30 August 2010

Jambo Kenya

The last of the summer events for families at Walford Mill.
They say travels broadens the mind, so I had to delve into
African/Kenyan images - printing fabric for flags.

On Saturday I had a real play day making stamps.
Recycled foam board (knew it would come in handy)
and sticky backed thin craft foam found in a charity shop.
Elephants, lizards, jungle leave and flowers, symbols, etc.

They all worked like a dream, even after being covered
in acrylic paint, twice.   Over fifty flags printed in two
45 minute workshops.   Oh, we did have fun, and the
sun was shining, an added bonus after the last two
weeks of rain.

Here are a few prints

My favorite

The stamps have been washed one more time.
I have scrubbed up, kicked my shoes off
and might just have to have a glass of red,
and relax.

Wednesday, 25 August 2010

Something completely different

On Sunday a chance to visit the Festival of Quilts.
I admired the quilts from contemporary to traditional,
the separate exhibitions from well known makers,
and groups, from all over the world. I wandered
through the traders' area.   Found there was a lot
of things I didn't need.

One exhibit I adored was the wedding blankets
of the Marsh Arabs of South Iraq.   Camel wool
base, embroidered with wool - chain stitch
using a tambour or ari hook.   They were joyful.

Monday, 23 August 2010

Blue Mist

Dyeing in tropical mist/drizzle, crazy.  The vat made up
in the Big Shed, kept warm by a heater.  Great vat, deep
blue.  Fortunately the excitement of producing indigo
cloth overcame the weather.   Too exciting.

An indigo string nest - perhaps it will hatch
next year.

At the end of the day, looking out of my
workroom window.  August - really?!!

Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Another washing line

Yesterday, Tuesday, dawned dull stormy and cold.
Not an indigo day at all.  Fortunately the children's
workshop was today, altogether better weatherwise.
It was warmish, with a little rain.  As we were in a
marquee, busily preparing t shirts, and the washing
line sheltered by trees, it mattered not a jot.

Eleven children kept me and Sarah my helper,
very busy, what with supervising various resists
and attending to two buckets of indigo.

I love the surprise and amazement when the
t shirts come out of the vat and are not blue,
then watching the change before their very eyes.

Photographs almost an impossibility!  
There were t's on washing lines, over bushes 
and laid on the grass.   Here's a couple of pix 
I managed to grab.

The usual method is elastic bands, with or without
chickpeas, t shirt on left.   The other has actually
been bound with string, which I think was pretty
good and not the easiest option.

Left t shirt over dyed olive green.  It looked great, and
the olive green stitching, which didn't take the dye,
toned in nicely.   The blue polo shirt fabulous -
note detail of circle in the middle of the pocket!

My last indigo workshop in the conservatory, 
possibly with the aid of The Big Shed is 
on Saturday.  Sun dance everybody, please!

Saturday, 14 August 2010

Hurrah for The Big Shed

So far this summer my workshops have been
blessed with sunshine.  Not so today - and it's
indigo.  Oh, no!   It poured down during the 
night and first thing this morning, with the 
promise of a dry afternoon and some sun.

Big shed to the rescue.  Work still in progress, but it has 
a roof.   This is possibly the first time I have taken over
a new space that is still being built.   Indigo vats at the
end of the day, sitting in black buckets with hot water
to keep them going.

Some photos from the washing line

Catherine's batik with a springy egg cup - nice

Spooky clamping - pegs and bulldog clips
by Chris

Jill's stitched resist

As I write the heavens have opened, torrential rain
and it is cold.   Fingers crossed for Tuesday, another
indigo day with children, and the forecast is not good!

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Time out

Well, for a couple of days anyway.  Time to
tidy up workroom, sort out paper work, even
consider domestic duties. Oh, no!

A good clear out of cupboards today - just
amazing how 'stuff' accumulates.  I find I
have a big bin full of rubbish, with little
sign of extra space.  Life was ever thus.

I found this photo, taken in the late '50's

it appears and disappears
I'm the dark haired one in the middle
a play based on an Indian story

I am often asked why I am so obsessed with
India.   It was all down to an inspirational
teacher.   My first two years at school were
idyllic.  Living by the seaside we explored
beaches and marshes, looked after the
school's vegetable plot and generally
enjoyed freedom and nature.  Maths, 
English, reading - nada.  Along came
Miss Carter. She grew up in India and told
such wonderful tales - I was spellbound. 
Still am.   And she had me seriously
reading within weeks - another obsession!