Friday, 23 November 2007

Quilt 2007

One of the highlights of the Knitting and Stitching Show for me was Quilt 2007 which I managed to miss at FOQ. I am starting with Quilt Blog by Sarah Impey. I just love Sarah's quilts and this one is so appropriate for me as I have just started blogging!

As you can see the quilt contains a message - hope you can read it from the photo - several people laughed out loud when I watched them reading it!

This quilt is called Tiree by Elizabeth Brimelow and I chose this as one of my favourites partly because I admired the work and partly because I spent a holiday in Tiree in 1988 - it never stopped raining all week!

A close up of Tiree.
This quilt is called The Wonder Pin by Jennifer Hollingdale and I picked this as a favourite because I just love vintage textiles and collecting old needwork items.

This photo shows a close up of the quilt - I loved the way she incorporated vintage textiles into the quilt.

Finally the winning quilt - Shakti - The feminine form of divinity / cosmic energy by Padmaja Krishnan from Calcutta, India.

Since starting my City & Guilds I have enjoyed looking at quilts and other textile arts in a totally new light. Looking forward now to all the quilt shows of 2008 - wonder if I might even manage to submit one of my own? I'd love to try - I'll have to start burning the midnight oil even more than usual!!

Knitting and Stitching Show Harrogate

I had a fab day yesterday at the Knitting and Stitching Show at Harrogate yesterday with my dear friends Sheila and Barbara. It was very busy and the parking was a nightmare but it was worth it for the retail therapy and the inspiration.
I met a lovely young woman called Rebecca Shreeve who very kindly allowed me to take these photos. She had won the New Designers Embroiderers Guild / Coats Craft UK award and her little creatures were just so charming! I particularly liked her shrew blanket - the shrews had been appliqued on and then stuffed using a trapunto technique.

Tilly the shrew.

Milton the bat.

Neville the mole sitting on the shrew blanket.

Hope you have enjoyed these photos.

So what did I buy? Lots of things for my City & Guilds - dyes and transfer paints, fabric for dyeing (next months topic), loads of threads for dyeing from Empress Mills which is a shop I really love, some Sashiko panels, pattern for a cat doorstop and pattern for a kitty pincushion. Also I got a darning foot for my Janome so I can start work on free motion quilting which I have only had limited sucess with so far.

Tuesday, 20 November 2007

Module 1 - Resolved Piece.

At the end of each module students are required to submit a resolved piece. This is a piece of artwork which shows how you can interpret the theme of the module - Line in this case - into your designs. Frankly this frightened me to death so I got up very early one morning and sat at my dining table determined to get it done in one sitting. Or put another way - stop pontificating and just do it. As said previously I am a scientist so I approached it like this - I chose a photo showing a good example of line - trees in this case, I then looked at in terms of how I could use this design to develop ideas for designing a quilt.

I then did several pieces of art work in acrylic paint, pastels and water soluble pencils to develop the idea coming up with designs for strip pieced quilts and finally a design based on diamonds. Anyway to my great relief my tutor really liked it and gave me very good feedback for it. Not only am I pleased to have successfully completed this but it has given me lots more confidence for my next pieces and I already have an idea for my resolved piece for Module 2.
The pieces are actually in a zig zag book which I made for the purpose and they follow on in a line - I just had to photograph them in two photos. Hope they are not too faint for you to see - I'm afraid that the colours are quite pale.

Another thing that we did as part of Module 1 was to make books. This first photo shows a kind of origami book - it is actually only about 2 inches square. Back and front are alike covered in fabric which has had an ivy leaf print appliqued to it. The next photo shows the inside which contains fabric samples.

This last photo shows a book we made using satay sticks. This book is then to be used for collecting photos and info on exhibitions we have visited etc.

Completion of Module 1.

I am delighted to report that Module 1 has now been completed and assessed. I attended college for the third weekend this last weekend. Got my log book this weekend so now feel a bit clearer about what I am supposed to achieve. There are actually 8 of us on the Patchwork and Quilting - sorry I seemed to have missed someone on my earlier post. We are on the first year of the Certificate or Level 3 City and Guilds in Patchwork and Quilting. I do feel its all rather confusing so thought I'd clarify this again for those who may just be joining us.

I appreciate that there are many different styles and methods of teaching this course so I wanted to record my City and Guilds journey so that others can compare and contrast. Also I feel that there is so little info out there for people who may be interested in doing the course that I thought that my experiences may be useful. Mainly though this is an exercise for me to record my own progress so that it will be an ongoing record of my work. Also with two teenage sons in the house I recognise the value of an e-portfolio in modern education and it will also help me develop my IT skills. You may be interested to learn that a friend of mine is doing C&G Embroidery at another college and they are doing no sewing at all in the first year!! Seems a strange way to keep the interest of an embroiderer. Even though I am new to all this I have now grasped the importance of the art work and design element of the C&G and in future I will post up my artwork with my samples. At this point I must point out that I am a trained scientist not an artist but I would like to share my work - even if it is only as an encouragement to other novice artists out there. As it says in my profile I am a further education teacher - I forgot to say my main subject is Biology (here I have something in common with Sandie Lush - shame my hand quilting is not up to the same standard!!). However as an FE teacher myself this makes me even more interested in the development of the course for me.

Friday, 16 November 2007

The story so far continued......

Here are the samples for the second half of the first City and Guilds module - Line.
This is a sample of Broderie Perse. Our design source for this weekend was leaves and I have printed using real leaves onto calico. The leaves were then bondawebbed onto the background and appliqued with machine zigzag. I confess that I was inspired by some leaf prints one of my fellow students had done - thanks Jackie! I decided to place the leaves in a pattern inspired by Hawaiian applique as that was our next topic. Found the leaf fabric in my local Hobbycraft - it is by Makower - and couldn't resist as it is perfect for my leaf sample background!!

My first Hawaiian applique sample which is based on the ivy leaf. It is only a small applique but I had dreadful problems with my internal corners as I had clipped my seam allowances. I then decided to blanket stitch around the whole design which looks good but is very time consuming - don't know if you can see it in the photo.

I am now working on a larger design from Lynne Edwards' book on which I have not clipped any seam allowances as advised by her and this seemed to work much better. Thanks to Judith Barker from BQL for the advice and postcards she gave me on this topic.

The next topic was secret garden which was very fiddly. After lots of practise attempts I decided to use Lynne Edwards method as published recently in one of the patchwork mags. It seems to work best if you do not bring any of the stitching through to the back and use a hem stitch to catch down the curves.

Finally we had to do 3D flowers and I did not like the suggested sample so I did my own thing. This is based on a Jennie Rayment design found in Magic Patch magazine. It is really quick and easy to do and very attractive.

Thursday, 15 November 2007

The story so far.....

I started my City and Guilds Level 3 in Patchwork and Quilting in September and have just completed my first module - Line.
I am studying at Craven College in Skipton North Yorkshire which is a 100 mile round trip for me - but this was actually the nearest course for me.
We meet one weekend a month, Saturday and Sunday and so far we have met twice and covered 8 topics.
There are 7 of us on the course but as with many other similar courses we are studying alongside an embroidery group and there are 2nd year students and the level 4 students all studying at the same time - a mammoth teaching task for our tutor and her assistant. There are actually 8 courses running at the same time - 4 patchwork and 4 embroidery.

I have been doing embroidery for many years but am relatively new to patchwork and quilting, having made my first quilt in 2003. Quilting has become an obsession and for the last few years it has been my goal to complete the City and Guilds.

The following photos are of the samples I have already completed and I hope to post them as I go along in future. I have also completed my first resolved piece but I am not going to share that until I have checked that I am on the right lines as I have never done any artwork before this course. But more on that later....

This is my first City and Guilds sample which is English pieced over papers, appliqued onto a background and hand quilted. It is based on a paperweaving of a magazine photo of a garden.

The next topic was strip piecing and for this we used a sample of transfer printed fabric which had had a leaf placed under it before ironing to give the effect.

This is my more traditional strip pieced 12.5 inch block using the colour palette of my original photo.

Our next topic was trapunto which we did using our own original silk painting. Mine is based on a photo of an orchid. The drawing for the design was the most scary part of this but I was very pleased to accomplish it.

I also used trapunto on this transfer printed sample which has voided ivy leaves. The leaves are outline backstitched in gold thread and after stuffing they were embellished with sequins and beads. I really enjoyed doing this one!

This sample is another silk painting done from my own drawing of runner beans climbing up a pyramid of canes. It is hand quilted using a thick gold thread. That's the first 4 topics but as it is getting late I will post the second 4 samples tomorrow.
So glad to have got the blog started!