Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Samples 2015: Week 33, Treeconomics

Wool yarns embellished onto brown felt. Hand stitched sequins.
Source picture
"Introducing 'treeconomics': how street trees can save our cities. As a fight over 11 lime trees in Sheffield escalates, activists in cities all over the world are making the case for urban trees – to cut pollution, increase land value and even make you feel younger.”
Plane trees might be London’s most famous tree, but the city’s most common species is the apple tree, mainly hidden in gardens. Photograph: Robert Hardi/REX Shutterstock/Robert Hardi/REX Shutterstock
Sample design
A section to bring out the contrast between the tree foliage and the straight trunks interspersed with round lights.

Thursday, 20 August 2015

Samples 2015: Week 32, Railways

Hand dyed wool-viscose felt backed with pelmet Vilene. Free machined lines in silver grey echoed in black, plus a few French knots in stranded cotton.

Source picture
From this article in the Saturday Guardian 08/08/15:
"Andy Burnham’s right: railway unity would get Britain back on track. The Labour leadership contender’s commitment to renationalising our railways is welcome, but hardly radical.”
Train tracks near Clapham Junction station in London. Photograph: Matt Dunham/AP
Sample design
I liked the curves here, but what a lot going on! I settled for simple free lines to capture the essence of all that movement. To jazz it up a bit I added the paired lights as amber French knots.

Monday, 10 August 2015

Samples 2015: Week 31, British Library

Pieced cotton and polycotton fabrics with automatic machine stitching and hand stitched buttons.

Source picture
From this article in the Saturday Guardian 1/08/15:
British Library awarded Grade I-listed building status. Structure once called ‘one of the ugliest buildings in the world’ in parliament and denounced by Prince Charles now ‘one of England’s finest modern buildings’.”
The British Library, the largest public building to be built in the UK in the 20th century. Photograph: DCMS/PA
Sample design
I chose a little square using the old L-shaped cards.
Then one thing led to another…
Having taken so little of the source picture I thought the colours at least should be fairly true.
So the materials and technique depended on what I could find in suitable colours. I’d have liked felt, but had nothing close – but I did have some cotton and polycotton. And then it became about sewing, not the embellisher.
And the three circles called for buttons, so the buttons I found then determined the scale!

Sunday, 2 August 2015

Samples 2015: Week 30, “Olive ebola”

Running stitch in doubled fine wool on a piece of birch bark.
Source picture
“Olive oil prices surge due to drought and disease in Spain and Italy. Producers say this year’s harvests are worst they have seen, as consumer demand begins to outstrip supply.”
Red crosses painted on olive trees that need to be cut down to contain an outbreak of ‘olive ebola’ in Puglia, southern Italy. Photograph: Max Frigione/AP

Sample design
I’ve never tried stitching on real bark, so this was my chance! Even I wasn't going to try this with the Bernina though, it had to be hand stitch. All I could find was birch, and it was a bit tricky – both tough and brittle. The little scar marks pop right out if you try and push a needle through so I had to stitch between those. A bit of fun but once is probably enough.