Tuesday, 30 August 2016

So where did July and August go?

Well once again it seems that I have left it for ages between posts; I just have no idea where the time flies off to and all the good intentions to write something more regularly just disappear.  The last few weeks have been spent doing all the normal stuff - boring housework, back breaking work in the garden, having my nails done (my special treat), taking the dogs out, meeting friends and family and of course, sewing.  The other time consuming activity in my life just lately has been my own craft fair - we are about to have number two this Sunday and the tables have been filled very quickly each time I'm pleased to say, with no vacancies for the next two in October and November ..... and a lengthy waiting list!
I have been doing more activities with Kathy Shaw and her free online classes on the crazy patchwork theme - the last module was painting, dyeing, and all manner of colouring all types of things including the metal charms that are used. And eager beaver me has now signed up for the next module which is more embroidery based and will involve stitching motifs - first task.... trees.

The next year has started at Weymouth with Kate Paterson and I'm sorry to hear that due to family issues, this will be the last programme she will run - we are working on the poem by Sara Coleridge - The Months of the Year and the workshop for the month of August is linked to harvest and sunflowers.

I've also linked up on Facebook with a group set up by Hilary Beattie - she is a textile artist who likes to use mixed media wherever possible - the August challenge was to make a piece about A3 size of whatever you like, using any technique - I have a sort of on/off sketchbook on the theme of woodland, so I made myself a fabric collage of various fabrics; fat quarters, dyed fabrics, transfer paint dyed lace, washi tape ... and a feather!?, covered it with a piece of green chiffon and machine stitched it to form the impression of tree trunks. I had some very positive comments.

I'm going to Maria's tomorrow for a stitching day - still don't know what I'll do - I will try to write up something again before six weeks is up ;-)
The way to gain a good reputation, is to endeavor to be what you desire to appear ~ Socrates 

Friday, 15 July 2016

Where Bloggers Create

This blog is being written for the 'Where Bloggers Create' party which is set up by Karen Valentine at My Desert Cottage: http://www.mydesertcottage.com/2016/06/where-bloggers-create-2016-will-be-in.html

The idea is similar to some of the other 'get togethers' arranged at various times, by various bloggers - but the beauty is that some of the interesting blogs that you may like to follow can be found in one place - this saves time trawling the web that should be spent creating instead.

I have taken part in these before but never 'Where Bloggers Create' - I live in England, the south west and in particular in the county of Somerset; it is rural, with pretty villages, farming communities, roman roads, abbeys, the Royal Naval Air Service, beaches on the north coast facing Wales across the Bristol channel and, of course, Glastonbury!!!

I love anything textile - I sew, embroider by hand and machine, felt, knit and recently I've started to do crazy patchwork. I dye and paint fabrics, I use mixed media, incorporate paper and metal - in other words I love to create and I soak up anything around the textile world like a sponge.

I enjoy spending 'stitchy' (or shopping) days with my best friend Maria, I like to walk my dogs - Indie and Moosh (he belongs to my son who's in Australia at the moment) and I try to get over to France once a year now too.

Scattered amongst this post are photos of things I have done and I'm now looking forward to spending time finding new blogs to follow - after this weekend which will be spent with my oldest son and daughter-in-law.

I hope you enjoy some of the things I've made here and perhaps you'll read some of my other posts.

Gilli in Somerset, England 

Sunday, 3 July 2016

Back from Holiday and getting on with bits.

Our holiday in France was amazing but my camera was stolen and so I only got a few pics on my phone! Coolest temperature was 26 but mostly 32, although we did have some rain. Luckily it didn't affect us too much as it fell on the days we were travelling. Driving was fine, did over 2000 miles, crossed the Cevennes - 1132 metres above sea level. Went to Vallon Pont d'Arc, Avignon and Pont du Gard - a viaduct built by the Romans to bring water to the city of Nimes (famous for the indigo dyeing of cotton - hence demin - de nimes). Both dogs coped really well - I think ice creams helped!! We couldn't go swimming in the rivers because all were so swollen following the downpours experienced in France during May. It was just great though! Planning the next one!!

Straight after the holiday was the village fete; a red, white and blue affair in honour of the Queen's 90th birthday. Then on the Sunday my good friend Maria came to stay for a week and we spent the time at summer school with Lesley Irving working on design and stencilling for a piece called Repetitive Repeats.
Today I have taken the dogs to Nunney Castle in Somerset for a walk about.


Sunday, 29 May 2016

Holiday Time

Well here I am with just under a week to go until I go to France on holiday with my eldest son and daughter in law.  I will be driving all the journey myself this time, as my other son is away travelling in Australia. I am taking both the dogs! 
Indie and Moosh
I have been busy setting up my own craft market at a local town and that is progressing along very well and the first will be in August. I am selecting handmade items to be sold by the makers.

I have also been following along with Kathy Shaw again and have just completed another of her fantastic online crazy quilt courses. This module teaches colour theory, design of blocks and piecing of blocks. I have pieced together a block using the 'strip sewing' method . . .  but it seems I should have angled the strips more - but that's the point of the exercise - to learn.

And so I shall start on more after my holiday and a very interesting experimental embroidery course that I shall be taking with my friend, Maria, at a lovely venue nearby. 

Monday, 2 May 2016

Books, Bears and Linen!

Photo heavy post of my activities just lately - book covers, teddies and linen fabric gems!

He that plants trees loves others besides himself.
Thomas Fuller

Friday, 29 April 2016

Crazy Quilting Again

I have joined Kathy Shaw for another online course through her blog to progress with crazy quilting. This course is going to be about learning to piece and make patterns and there also seems to be a very interesting piece about printing onto silk/cotton with you printer and stitching into the lovely vintage photos. Looking forward to this very much!


Tuesday, 29 March 2016

Busy for Easter

I spent most of Good Friday morning busy in the garden, getting more tidying done and planting some pansies and wallflowers - and I saw the first butterfly of the season, a brimstone. Such a beautiful, sunny spring day!
Well how can two days be so different, Easter Saturday - strong winds and downpours. Why does the British weather know when it is Bank Holiday time when families are supposed to have fun. Well after getting soaked in the rain whilst out with the dogs, I had a good long soak in a hot bath and then made this little bear in the hoop with my Pfaff machine (thanks to OMA designs) - then I snuggled down and tackled some more projects waiting to be finished and some long overdue knitting that needed to be completed.
Sunday started a lot brighter again and so the dogs had a well deserved long walk.

I also had time to finish this piece of work from a Weymouth workshop with Kate Paterson - layers of sheers, free machine embroidery and cutback with a soldering iron - can't decide which side I like best. 

Easter Monday started with storm Katie tracking through during the early hours; rain, rain and winds up to 106 miles per hour in some parts of the UK with flights transferred from Gatwick airport in the south east. With the new system in place of naming our storms now, that makes 11 already this year. Another good opportunity to catch up with some more sewing. 

Finished this cushion which had been hanging around for a while, so feeling happy.

 Most "impossible" goals can be met simply by breaking them down into bite size chunks, writing them down, believing them, and then going full speed ahead as if they were routine.
Don Lancaster

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