Sunday, 28 June 2015

Another month goes by

I started this post at the beginning of June, but  stopped as I didn't have a lot to say, but June has proved to be very eventful, and now it's nearly over. At the end of May news brought me up short. My old friend from college and then work rang to tell me that her partner of over 40 years has died after a short illness. They lived a very busy life and I had only bumped into her  couple of times since I retired. However I have seen her lots of times since and we have spent many hours laughing about our mis-spent twenties, before our social lives went their separate ways. All the clichés about old friends has proved right and we have a few outings planned for the summer. How sad that it took tragic circumstances to bring us back together.
I shall be glad of her company as I have lost a regular slot in my diary.  I was totally shocked when Gina contacted the group to say the Spectrum was folding. I suppose it is only natural that these sort of groups run their course but as I am a 'new' member I had no idea things were running down. I feel at a bit of a loss as I had lots of ideas buzzing around for our Gothic theme.  I'm going to try to follow them through. I've lost my motivation at the moment. I hope that eventually I can find another textile group to get involved in as there is nothing like working with like-minded people.

First here is a 'Gothic sampler' quilt I made using lots of the experimental bits of fabric I accumulated trying out techniques and patterns. it is approximately 16x20 inches.  I used a method as described by Jane LaFazio in her blog JaneVille. It was very straightforward and a good way to use up lots of bits. I may do another one.

Here is a collage of my latest Gothic sketchbook pages.

This is another experiment - this time in stitch only. Following on my interest in the work of Beany and Littlejohn and revisiting the work of Julia Caprara. It was inspired by a page in my sketchbook based on a photograph taken in the garden.

It is worked in layers of cretan stitch.  I now need to decide where to add the  pink highlights. it measures about 8x11 inches.

Meanwhile we are very happy to have had regular visits from a pair of hedgehogs..  We haven't seen any in the garden for years. I've been taking a spot of cat food out every evening to encourage them, but not too much as we have a copious supply of slugs and snails. Mungo has taken to being a night cat since our garden has been taken over by a ferocious blackbird - nicknamed 'Cocky' by me.  Cocky is extremely territorial and started off chasing off all blackbird rivals from his patch. Now he has a family in the shrubbery he is picking on the cat who only has to step into the garden to incur Cocky's wrath. At first Mungo just took to skulking in the shadows, but Cocky soon got to spot him, so Mungo just sat in the conservatory and looked out.  However he was too close for Cocky's liking, and he charged at the open door, 'pinking' at full volume causing the cat to mew and run for cover.  We are very glad the blackbirds' family appears to be safe, but the cat may need to go for therapy!

Have a good week, and I try to catch up soon


Printed Material said...

I was only thinking about you today as our first opium poppy of the year opened up. Not sure if it is a dark red or a burgundy colour, so it could be one of your seeds or one from somewhere else. They've been dormant for over a year and then this year they've sprung up! I'll let you know.
So good to read a post from you and see all the beautiful drawings and textiles that you're producing. I've just read Gina's post about her future path so I can understand your disappointment, but in the same way that she's identified the way forward, I think you will find something else too. There will be other groups who will bite your hand off to have such a talented member join them. Seek and you will find. I'm positive about that.

busybusybeejay said...

Love the Cretan stitch!Had a chuckle about the cat but great news about your hedgehogs.We havn't seen any in our garden for years.I am so jealous'Barbarax

ju-north said...

Sadness and humour - these curved balls can be tricky. I'm sure good things (textile-wise) will come along and even Mungo will be left in peace one day! My textile work ceased when I couldn't find a group to join. Šometimes I regret it but still enjoy seeing others' work

Gina said...

I was sorry about Spectrum too Jill, and like you had no idea that a third of the group were planning to leave. I hadn't been my intention to bring it to a close but under the circumstances it felt the only way forward. I'm sure you will find another group and the motivation to continue with your fabulous work.

Emma said...

Great to have you back, I too have re emerged with a post! So sorry to hear you lost your group & sympathized with Gina, too. Can you not take turns, those of you who are left, to lead it? I will be doing something similar with my Yoga group while teach goes off to do an art degree! Meanwhile, I need to get better at blogging as that's my main creative focus.....

Amanda said...

Hi Jill, I've come in from WOW to see what you're about! Loving the Gothic. The mad antics about the garden are worth every moment wasted watching aren't they. I hope you find another group.

Maggi said...

I'm sorry to hear about Spectrum and hope that you get your motivation back again. There are some lovely pieces here. I'm sorry too that it took a tragedy to renew a friendship but glad that you were able to reconnect.

What is it about cats and blackbirds? They really are the most ferocious creatures when they are being territorial.

vintagerockchick said...

Just catching up with some blog reading - yes it's a pity about Spectrum, but I'm always up for a workshop somewhere if you are!