Pink Day for Cancer

Our local netball will be holding a pink High Tea day for cancer on Mother’s Day weekend.

I have the welcome task of creating the inaugural perpetual trophy for the A Grade game.

A local Op Shop yielded a fantastic supply of ‘bibs and bobs’ for this trophy: a brand new pink lacy bra, lots of glitzy dance fabric, some cute bias binding and some pink perle cottons. Added to my existing supplies of beads, sequins and notions, they will enable me to create what I hope will be a spectacular and memorable trophy.

The beginnings of a trophy for Pink Day

The beginnings of a trophy for Pink Day

Stay tuned.

 

April 18, 2015 at 8:25 pm 1 comment

A day at the AQC 2015

I had a very enjoyable day wandering around the Australasian Quilt Convention in Melbourne yesterday.

I tend to attend once every few years, but there were a couple of incentives this time. A friend had entered her quilt in the AQC Challenge, which had the interesting theme of ‘True blue’ and I needed to stock up on some threads. I didn’t get  pictures of many quilts, it was quite crowded, but you can see them all here. The other quilt exhibits were also very interesting. There are a couple of highlights below.

Gallipoli

Gallipoli

Best of the best Queensland

Best of the best
Queensland

It is also good to go every few years to see what is new in gadgets and to try a few techniques to see if I am interested in adding them to my repertoire. My first step is to check out the brochure (which I’m registered to receive in the post each year) and work out which workshops or talks I am interested in trying.

First up I decided to have a try at traditional English paper piecing (which I have not done before) on a pincushion. The tutor was very good and I have now learnt how to make a ‘fisherman’s knickers knot’ and also found out I probably wouldn’t progress to making a quilt! Another tip, which the purists won’t like, was to use the polyester bobbin thread for the stitching. It will last much longer than cotton and if you are putting this much effort into the piece you want it to last!

This was followed immediately by a free workshop run by Toyota sewing machines on FME. Although I would say I am fairly proficient at FME it was great to have a go on their dedicated FME machine. If you are looking for a low cost entry to a machine specifically designed for FME (the workshop participant cost for these was A$599) it would be a good machine to buy as it made the process very easy. As I have just purchased the Janome 6600P I have a few extra ideas on how I can use my new machine in the same way to make FME much quicker and easier. Once again the tutor was very helpful and had lots of her interesting works on display.

Wendy Hicks

Wendy Hicks

We practiced straight stitch first, then the zigzag which automatically adjusted size according to the foot pressure. Finally we started working on some simple bookmarks like the ones above.

Straight & zigzag practice

Straight & zigzag practice

By doing a bit of price checking between stalls I managed to stock up on some good quality machine sewing threads and the show specials enabled me to get some sample packs of a few threads I’ve been wanting to try.

Threads

Threads

I also picked up a handy roll of bag stiffening material and my buy of the day was this great rotating cutting mat. We used these to cut the templates for our pieced pincushions and it was a very handy piece of equipment. Show price was A$49.95 so a pretty good buy.

All in all a fun day out.

 

April 18, 2015 at 4:24 pm 1 comment

The Bridesmaids

Screen Shot 2015-03-09 at 10.41.18 AMOn the way to the wedding.

March 9, 2015 at 1:01 pm Leave a comment

What a wonderful wedding!

Just a quick post, only a few photos edited by photographer Patrick Britt as yet. Here is a great one of the gorgeous, wedded couple.

C&JwithHR

After numerous fittings the dress was perfect, the silk draped beautifully and the Paris bought lace looked amazing. Bernie’s highly polished classic car was also perfect, Carly travelled around in this car as a baby!

And this lovely shot of Carly and her best friend and cousin Elle shows the back of her dress.

Carly&Elle

 

 

What an honour to sew your own daughter’s wedding dress, I loved every moment.

March 8, 2015 at 8:12 pm 1 comment

Studio update

I managed to finish my ATC  and Fabric swaps on time and all have now been posted . I won’t blog about the fabric yet as it will take at least a week to arrive at destinations in USA and England. The ATCs should have arrived as they were local.

The theme for the EGV December ATC swap was green. I started with vliesofixed strips and scraps of sari silk, dyed silk rods and other fabric onto a cotton sheeting that had paint overspray from an Angie Hughes project. This was overlaid with green organza and then fine black netting. I have used FME and Flower stitcher over the layers and then burnt back sections using the heat gun. The whole piece was vliesofixed onto pelmet vilene before being cut to size and then zigzag edged. They are named ‘Eucalyptus Forest’.

ATC 1

ATC 3

ATC 4

ATC 2

Now I need to do some cleaning up in the shed so that I can start on the wedding dresses.

I have also finished off the tiling above the sink in the studio. I sourced tiles from Restorers Barn, Mill Markets, Bunnings and some beautiful handmade tiles from Gillian’s gorgeous shop, Leaf & Stone, at Wintergarden. I am really happy with how they turned out given it is my first wall tiling attempt and I chose a variety of sizes, shapes and thicknesses of the tiles. Kind of reminds of Mexican adobe style.

I also used some vanilla coloured grout out of the garage so a good, cheap, recycling effort all round.

Tiling

Tiling 2

Close up showing the different thicknesses-lots of fun grouting!

Tiling c-up

January 5, 2015 at 3:23 pm 2 comments

ATC and tiling

My November ATCs for the EGV swap have been received so here is the process I followed. The theme was music so I did an image search for soundwaves and came up with several stimulus photos. I had fabric from a resist dyeing challenge which had great patterning.

The fabric was ironed onto pelmet vilene and then FME with three different metallic threads to form the soundwaves

ATC 3Next step was hand stitch, using a lovely hand dyed perle and space dyed silk perle. The stitch is Sharon Boggon’s TAST Beaded barbed stitch.

ATC threads

ATC 4

ATC 5

To complete I added ‘speakers’ using buttons and a buttonhole stitch covered washer.

ATC 1

The backing was formatted in text box on a word doc and printed onto canvas.

ATC 2

December 25, 2014 at 1:56 pm 2 comments

Johnston Collection Christmas

The Johnston Collection Christmas exhibition ‘Twas the Night before Xmas’ is up and running so it is now okay I think to put up photos of the items I made to contribute to the front hallway. Our brief was to think about Mr Johnston’s travels and the focus was India so the colours chosen were the rich vibrant colours typical of textiles in that region.

As my contribution to the 12 days of Christmas I decided to FME in gold thread. As the size was limited I opted for one piper and the musical notes are in multiples of 11.

Drying the FME on a meat tray after washing out the solvy

Drying the FME on a meat tray after washing out the solvy

Backed and framed

Backed and framed

The main piece I contributed was the Christmas tree. I had hoped to light the tree using a battery operated tea light but it was deemed to be too tricky. The first step was to dye the silk fibres and shiboried silk. While I was dyeing I also dyed some silk thread and silk rods.

Dyeing

Shibori dyeing silk

Next step was making sheets of silk paper from the dyed fibres which were sewn onto a wire frame I constructed using the dyed silk threads.

Top of the tree showing wire to hold the dome

Top of the tree showing wire to hold the dome

The shibori silk was steamed to heat set the paints. I had intended to use my Flower stitcher foot to embellish the edge of the silk, but even with paper underneath it was not successful. So I used paper and FME’d in gold thread along the edge of the silk.

Attaching the shibori silk

Attaching the shibori silk

It was then attached by hand stitching to the frame and silk paper with variegated red silk thread.

The next stage was constructing the dome using silk strips, gold mesh and beading.

Constructing the dome

Constructing the dome

Back to the sewing machine then to make a FME gold thread skirt, this time I did use the flower stitcher to embellish.

Flower stitcher on solvy

Flower stitcher on solvy

I also made gold tassels which were added to the bottom after washing out the solvy.

The completed tree

The completed tree

Close up

Close up

Next item was a casket to join others made by various Geelong Artisan groups at the base of the tree. The casket was to feature the colour green. The gold motifs were made first using gel stamped onto vilene, embossing powder added and then heat gunned. Other materials used were silk fabrics, the dyed silk rods, braid, beads, FME gold thread, handstitching threads and cricula silk cocoons.

FME on the casket

FME on the casket

Front of casket

Front of casket

Attaching the lining

Attaching the lining

For some reason I didn’t take a photo of the casket when it was finished.

Claudia also contributed, making some embellished decorations for a small elephant which is to be in a gift box.

She drew up her design, painted the calico elephant and then used lots of embroidery and beads to embellish (unfortunately I also did not get a finished photo).

elephant rug design

elephant rug design

Elephant headpiece design

Elephant headpiece design

We are hoping to visit the display after Christmas, it is reported to be an amazing exhibition of the talented the artisans of Geelong, the Bellarine and Surfcoast.

 

 

 

 

December 19, 2014 at 10:00 am 1 comment

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