Archive | Sewing

My Christmas present!

This was my Christmas present to myself – an extension table for my Janome sewing machine.  I wish I’d got one years ago – it is wonderful!  I’ve already sewn some curtains together which was made much easier (as well as stitching a superman logo on to a tshirt for DS3’s fancy dress party, but that’s another story!).

extension table for sewing machine

Another present is something I have to defer until the spring – a few hens!  Hence one of the books I requested for the book reviews was a book about hen keeping!  So that review will probably be the next blog post.   I’ve wanted to keep hens for several years now, ever since I met someone who kept them in their back garden; I always thought it was strictly for farming folk.  But since then I learnt that my grandmother kept them during the war, so I will look forward to following a family tradition…

More dyed fabric … and a jacket!

I have been slowly washing out more of the fabric.  In between buying some gorgeous teal coloured boiled wool/viscose fabric and making it into a jacket!  More later on that…

I printed this piece of silk with corrugated cardboard (the yellowy bits) and then overprinted with a gocco screen made with the same stamp that I used for the maroon coloured fabric in the last post.  I think this one changed the least when I washed it out. 

screenprinted fabric before washing

Here is the washed version:

screenprinted fabric after washing

And a detail:

detail of above

For the next piece, I used these ochres from Clearwell Caves in the Forest of Dean, and soy milk as a binder, made from soy beans. 

ochres from Clearwell Caves

This is what it looked like when I painted it.

ochre painted fabric before washing

And here it is washed … I like the way you get more definition in the washed version.

ochre printed fabric after washing

Here it is on my design wall, next to a piece which had been previously rusted dyed and which I overpainted with the ochres, giving some subtle textures.

fabric on design wall 

This one looked the most unpromising when I printed it.  I’ve got a feeling I used it as a wiping-up cloth and then screened over the top with the gocco screen made from the image of a letter.

more fabric

It definitely looks more promising now!

all washed out

Last week I had a break from washing out fabric and did some dressmaking for a change! I went shopping in Cardiff the previous weekend and bought this gorgeous teal coloured boiled wool fabric from the newly opened John Lewis.  This jacket only took a morning to make! I did make a practise version with some green cotton/viscose fabric I had lying around and actually this one was easier to make because the curved seams were a doddle with this stretchy fabric.  Also, I didn’t have to hem anything as it is boiled wool and doesn’t fray!  It’s super warm and cozy and I’ve already worn it a lot.  Which is more than can be said for a lot of my previous dressmaking attempts!   I bought the pattern a few years ago meaning to use it with some of my dyed fabrics and I have even more incentive to use it now I’ve made it twice.  It’s the swing fever jacket from CNT Pattern Co (no affiliation).

wool swing fever jacket boiled wool swing fever jacket

Happy New Year – and Bloggers Meet!

Happy New Year to you all!  I don’t know where the last week went, I seem to have been sleeping a lot; we went up to Stoke to see my parents and on Monday,  I had a lovely day because two people who I have known online for several years now came to visit me. 

Sara Lechner from Austria, who blogs at The Fabric of Meditation, was visiting her daughter in North Wales, and she had a three hour train journey to see me!  Wales may be a small place, but it takes a long time to travel from north to south… And Sue Krekorian of The Magic Armchair Traveller came to join us.  We had a lovely time chatting, visiting a local cafe for lunch and wandering round Newport’s shops, chatting again… and having the obligatory photo in my studio!   DS2 kindly obliged and took this photo of the three of us:

bloggers meet up!

While I was trying to upload that photo, Live Writer decided it wanted to upload another one and it’s such a nice one that I decided to let it stay…. This is one of the leaves of my avocado plant.  I thought the veins with the browning edges makes for a very interesting photo:

brown edged avocado leaf

While we were in Stoke we saw this ferris wheel which is in the grounds of Trentham Gardens factory shopping village (I think it’s called something else but since it was Trentham Gardens when I grew up, that is what it will forever be in my mind).  I had my first summer job there, working as a cashier in the open air swimming pool.  Sadly, the said swimming pool was demolished some time ago…

ferris wheel in Trentham Gardens

I thought the centre of it would make a good Gocco screen…. (without Stoke City football club’s sponsorship medallion … or maybe even with it)

centre of ferris wheel in Stoke

I wonder what 2009 will bring?  DH is going to India again later this month so I’m planning to do some gelatine plate monoprinting and some more screenprinting while he’s away.  So look out for lots of fabric photos.    I meant to do a blog post about 2008 and what had happened in it but time somehow flew away from me.    I think I will remember it for the Gocco and for getting involved in Etsy.  And for my two magazine articles in CTDG.    And for those of you who subscribe to Fibre and Stitch, look out for the January issue because I’ve got an article in there too!  Here’s a bit of a teaser…


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