Saturday, 29 June 2013

Sample Project 2013 - June


Week 23: Orange Tip butterfly wing
(Photo of male Orange Tip)
White felt over green, free machine veins.
Then embellished from the back to create green mottling on the white.

 Week 24: Lady's Smock
(Photo of Lady's Smock wildflower)
Eight different names for the plant, free machined on hand dyed cotton using the colours of the flowers and the photo background. 

Week 25: Afon Lledr, tumbling water
(Photo of Afon Lledr rushing through narrow chasm)
Bamboo sliver embellished onto blue Kunin felt.

Week 26: Red-throated diver
(Photo of bird largely concealed amongst cotton grass)
Simplified head free machined on patterned fabric.

Friday, 14 June 2013

Sample Project 2013 - May

A little late - but I had a good excuse, see previous post!

Five samples this month, some more literal* than others.

* They're inspired by the photo for that week in a 2013 John Muir Trust Wild Nature Diary.

Week 18: Frost-shattered rock
(Photo of jagged summit rocks of Glyder Fawr)
My own handmade  mottled grey paper over black cotton fabric. Machine stitched then cut back.
Week 19: Dipper
(Photo of dipper bird with moss in its beak)
White felt embellished onto brown for the bird's distinctive "bib".
Its Latin name Cinlus cinlus free machined across this in moss green. But not boldly enough!
Week 20: Larch flower
(Photo of larch flowers - cones-to-be)
Green Lutradur "petals" free machined then burned out with a soldering iron and hand stitched together in overlapping pattern. Hmm, potential...
Week 21: Mupe Rocks at sunset
(Photo of Mupe Rocks, Dorset)
Black cotton bonded to pelmet Vilene. Very long straight stitches in Stef Francis space dyed fine cotton threads, leaving rock areas unstitched.
Week 22: Wood sorrel leaves
(Photo of wood sorrel plants)
Tweedy fabric embellished with scrim from the back. Heart shapes cut from green paper and hand stitched to the background in threes. I resisted doing the flowers because I did so many wood anemones recently! And because the leaves are wonderful on their own.

Wednesday, 12 June 2013

The Contemporary Craft Festival, Bovey Tracey

Last Friday I was lucky enough to finally visit this amazing event - thanks to a family visit not too far from Devon combined with a free ticket courtesy of exhibitor Dionne Swift. I'm just sorry I didn't make it until  its 10th year, it really is wonderful.

A sunny day in a park, huge marquees bursting with craft talent - 200 of the very best designer-makers, plus demonstrations and talks. What more could you ask from a day out? Good food and ice cream? Tick - even for us veggies. Yet more excellent crafts? Tick - the Devon Guild's Riverside Mill is just a short stroll away.
I can't possibly describe all the beautiful work I saw, so I'll just mention a few favourites with textile connections.

Dionne Swift, at the fair and in the mill too, had new machine stitched work that I loved. "Coastal Stitches" had bold sweeps of colour, "painterly" as they say - but for me stitch adds an essential extra dimension that paint lacks.
Laura Thomas sets loosely woven colourful threads in blocks of acrylic, creating gorgeous effects with reflected light. We've admired her work for years, but this time she had smaller affordable pieces so we now have our very own little piece.

I'd only seen Zoe Hillyard's "ceramic patchwork" in magazines - she takes broken ceramic vessels, covers each shard with fabric and then stitches them back together. Fascinating.

I'm always drawn to paper cuts - I think they relate to my own work, lacy, light and full of space. I fancy doing it, but the cutting is agony, have you tried it?! There must be a knack I haven't got. So I'll leave it to the experts...

Lucy Large had framed landscapes, birds and flowers in several colours, not just the usual all-white.

Caroline Rees is really a glass designer, but the stencils she makes for sandblasting are appealing in themselves so she does some as art in their own right.  

We've all seen (maybe even tried) crocheted wire jewellery - trouble is the wire won't let you pull it tight, it ends up quite loopy. Ebba Goring's solution is to use fine cotton to create crochet or lace and then use it to make a mould and cast in precious metal. Ingenious, beautiful.

Gilly Langton's bangles also used textile techniques - they're hand knitted in elastic, then dyed to give a shaded effect, and finished with a silver clasp.

And for Judith Brown it's haberdashery - she creates jewellery from hooks and eyes, press studs, etc., stitched together with wire. The all black ones are stunning, you don't realise what they're made of at first. 

And, and, and... I could go on forever but why not check out all the makers for yourself on the Craft Festival site! Inspiring.