Sunday, 20 March 2011

This week I have...

As so many of you have been  so encouraging in my 'Teach Yourself Textiles" venture I thought I would keep you up to date.  However I am pooped.  Yesterday I helped Mr T spring clean the green house, which involved empying it out, scrubbing it down, and then refilling again.  Mr T did most of the initial work, but I was involved in driving off to Homebase for supplies,  the scrubbing part and putting everything back!  Today I have been switching our e mail address, contacting etsy, paypal, and so on, as well as friends and other contacts. It  has taken hours, so I have nearly had enough of comouters for today.  I did manage a short break hanging out our laundered gardening clothes from yesterday and a quick tidy up on one of the small flower beds. So this is what I have been doing textile wise this week.
On the left are a couple of pieces of couched threads from Pam Watts' book. catching the threads down with sheer fabric and then top stitching and on the right some experiments I did ironing plastic sweet wrappers between sheets of baking parchment - great fun!

These two pages record my last workshop session with Marian Murphy. We concentrated on free embroidery using a zig-zag stitch.  She showed us lots of effects and textures which can be achieved.  We also zig-zaged onto butter muslin which gives a drawn fabric.  This is great fun. The muslin must be stretched in a hoop first and a wide zig-zag is used to make a grid.  The stitch pulls the muslin threads together. You can then 'darn' over the squares giving them texture.  
We also zig-zagged over lengths of knitting cotton and other yarns to create cords,  Marian then showed us how we could join these to make braid and mesh.

Going back to the Kim Thittichai book 'experimental textiles' I took one of her design ideas and played around with it. The theme was Spirals.  I was rather taken with the shapes of spiral galaxies and anticyclone cloud formations. I also stitched a couple of samples

This is black voile on black felt machine stitched with a silver thread on the bobbin and a tight top tension to bring up the silver thread with beads added. 
This one is my favourite french knots on felt.

Not sure what I will do this week - rest?  But I'll let you know.

Have a good week,  and let us hope the news is more hopeful for all of those living through times of revolution and disaster.