Monday, 31 August 2009

FOQ Purchases

These are some of my purchases at the Festival of Quilts. Plenty of messy stuff for me to play with. I am really anxious to get on with some rust dyeing - now I have no excuse. Stitching patterns for shibori and some strong thread. I need this for my impending dyeing day with the Spinners, Weavers and Dyers dyeing day.
I was delighted to find the 'Roses from the Heart' stand and came home with three kits for the bonnets I have signed up to make. On the list of convicts I managed to find three with the same names as friends. More about this project in an other blog.
And this is the fabric that I wasn't going to buy!! Lovely Japanese fabric fat quarters from 'Seven Islands' who come from Los Angeles every year with the most irresistable fabrics.
Last but not least the reproduction mid 19th century prints for the two quilts I am contemplating. Doesn't seem a lot but it made a serious dent in my wallet!!!!!!!!

Sunday, 30 August 2009

Adventures in Cornwall

Linda and I have just returned from 3 days in Cornwall. We have been at Cowslip Workshops again with our vintage French textiles. We had decided that we would leave earlier than usual and give ourselves some extra time to have a look around instead of going straight to Launceston. We set off about 10 a.m. Thursday morning in beautiful sunny weather and decided to go to Port Isaac as neither of us had been there before. We arrived there about 1 p.m. and were looking forward to a good lunch. We drove into Port Isaac and saw lots of people on foot ascending and decending steep hills but thought nothing of it. I saw a sign that said 'Beach Car Park' so said we might as well go and park there!!! Alarm bells started ringing as we slowly inched our way down the steep narrow road swarming with visitors. At the bottom there wasn't room to swing a cat and the car park was the beach and it looked as if the tide was coming in!!!!!!!! My poor car was groaning with the weight of its load of textiles and would definately have sunk into the sand if there had been room!!! Oh dear, what to do now?? No room to turn around so the only way out was up the virtually perpendicular road on the other side of the port!!! The sign said 6' wide. I had no idea how wide my car was but the chap in the car behind said we could get up there, so up we went - in 1st gear!!!!!!!!!!! Poor old Renee - the old girl did good and made it.
We decided to follow the coast and went on to the next village, Gaverne, I think it was. We hung around waiting for someone to move off so we could park and watched a Boat being towed into shore by a Tractor. After parking we went to the Pub only to be told we were 10 minutes too late to order any food. The joys of England!!!!!!!!! So that was it - feeling absolutely starving we decided to high-tail it back to Launceston where we knew we could get something to eat if we got there before 4.30 p.m. We were not disappointed, we tucked in to the most delicious quiche and salad, all made with their own produce grown in their organic garden. Then it was time to get to work and unload everything and set up for the morning customers.
We had a busy couple of days and it was lovely to be in such peaceful surroundings. The nights are so still and quiet. Jo gave us a lovely home cooked meal Thursday evening and Friday evening we ate in the Restaurant. It is always a treat to be at Cowslip where we can truly mix business with pleasure.
This is Jo our lovely hostess with her two boys! 'Winston' the Golden Retriever and 'Mr. T' the Flat coat Retriever. They absolutely adore her and she them. Mr. T takes 'Ducky' everywhere with him and when they went on holiday to Exmoor recently Ducky went too.

Festival of Quilts and More

Well I am back from Birmingham and four exhausting days enjoying myself!! I had a foul cough and sore throat for most of the time but still managed to enjoy myself. Some of the quilts were more than amazing and the individual exhibitions were just fantastic. I spent quite a time at my favourite place 'The Virtual Studio' watching Leslie Morgan and Claire Benn produce amazing surface design fabric. The fabrics produced in their workshops are an art form and just need to be hung. Cutting it up doesn't come into the equation.

Chunghi Lee, the Korean Artist had a wonderful exhibition of Pojagi and her fabric installations screen printed with 'the ordinary worman' were amazing. I went to her lecture Friday afternoon but the dreaded cough meant I missed some of it. Needless to say I made quite a few purchases but didn't get the books I wanted as they had sold out on the first morning before we arrived!! I must confess that I did buy some fabric - more American Civil War reproductions - I have a couple of quilts in mind to make and need a big stash of these.

I helped on the Little Gems Tombola stand, this was very busy every day and a huge sum of £9,700 was raised for the Guild Museum at York. A very satisfying reward for everyone's hard work.

Saturday evening we went to the 'Strictly Come Dancing' Cabaret evening. This was great fun and after our meal we all had a chance to test our dancing skills!!!!!!!!!

We drove home on Sunday morning without any hold-ups feeling tired and exhilarated with everything we had seen.

Sunday, 16 August 2009

Sheds and Stuff

Linda has been talking about sheds on her Blog recently and asking for photographs of others sheds. Well here is the inside of mine, nothing fancy, frilly, or girly twirly in here (lady in the corset excepted!). This is where I go to work and to escape the infernal television.
As usual I have too much stuff. Everything but the kitchen sink is in here. Not a lot of working space but on sunny days like today I work outside. I have been working in my shed all day today on my Journal Quilts. Trying to catch up before the end of the month.
This is what has taken me most of the day! I cut strips from some of my hand printed papers and fabrics and wove them together. The Air was fairly Blue during this process! Then I printed over the whole thing with Indian printing blocks in acrylic paint and gold paint. It is another of my 'Earth from the Air ' series and the original photograph is of Indian hand dyed cloths laid out on the ground to dry. I have the stitching to do yet but I think it will be OK.
Of course once I had got out the paints and printing blocks I had to go on. This is a gold acrylic paint print on some fabric I put in my Indigo vat a little while ago. Now - what to do with it???
This smaller piece I could use as a Journal Quilt. The printing block is the same one as I had used to make a paper cast which I used in a previous Journal. I need to be speedy as the end of August will soon be here and that is the deadline for this phase.

I am off to the Festival of Quilts next Thursday - whoopeee!!!!!!!! I can't wait. Three days staying at the Hilton, swimming in their lovely pool. Not to mention the Quilt Show. Note to myself - DO NOT BUY ANYMORE FABRIC!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, 4 August 2009

In the Wars

This is my Ginger Tom 'Gerry' asleep on a half made corset! recovering from a battering this morning. He had to be rescued by my husband!!!!!!!! Locked in mortal combat the two cats had rolled over and over down next door's garden steps. Now Gerry has a poorly leg (not too bad I hope, can't afford a Vet bill at the moment) and a cauliflower ear.

Journal Quilts for Festival

These are the four 2008 Journal Quilts that I have chosen to be exhibited at the Festival of Quilts at the NEC in Birmingham as part of the display of 2008 Journal Quilts on the Contemporary Quilt Group Stand. I stuck to a theme last year which was the Jurassic Coast. As I live and breathe it every day it was very much a personal experience. I already had a huge sketchbook on the subject made for the Creative Sketchbooks City and Guilds course that I did a couple of years ago and I was able to draw a lot on that. It was a very enjoyable experience and now I have twelve little quilts which illustrate the wonderful coastline and all my favourite places.

This year it is a different format which is also great but I am having to be strict with myself to stick to my subject. Hopefully some of these will go on display at Exeter Stitchcraft Show in September.