Sunday, December 31, 2006

Happy New Year

Christmas come and gone, and here we are on the brink of another New Year. Strange time, looking back, looking forward. I would like to wish all my friends old and new a year of contentment, fullfillment, achievement and all the other ...ments they wish themselves.

I have spent some of the time during the holiday making fabric postcards. The idea was that I would try out all those techniques that I have been promising myself to try.

This one is using a nappy liner as a background (the scan does not do the texture justice) and this one is using a table napkin as a background.

I do hope that Sharon manages to sort her spammer problems before Tuesday, (who are these sad people?)

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Someone just can't wait.......

Electra seems to think that the soul purpose me spending a day decorating the Christmas tree was so that she, when bored, could dismantle it!!! This is something she hasn't done since she was quite a young cat and as she is now an elderly lady. It is lovely to see she still has a sense of mischief.

I see that Sharon says she is deliberating what stitch to use to start TAST. Not starting at the very beginning then........

Tuesday, December 19, 2006


Here are my finished blocks from Sharon's class. After some thought I decided to turn them into cushions for my spare bedroom it keeps them together and I hope any visitors will enjoy looking at them. Now plotting and planning for TAST.

With TAST in mind there was a good way of keeping sample stitches together on embroidery overlaps and a tutorials on how to make beaded Christmas baubles in Camille's Place. They are lovely but maybe next year.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

I'm so thrilled.....

I have just heard that my sister has a painting on exhibition in the Lowry gallery in Manchester. It was a competion with Football as the theme called One Love.It was to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Lowry winning a competion with "Off to the Match"? My sisters painting is called Who Me.....?, the gallery link is link is and the painting can be found in the shop under Art for Sale.

There were 900 entries and only 100 were selected for exhibition, I am so proud and thrilled for her.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

I have a dream..........

I have been giving a lot of thought to TAST and how I would implement the stitches. Now, until it starts, I don't know if this is going to be feasible but this is an outline of what I am mulling over.

I have a room full of "stuff" and I have been searching for something to combine all the things I love doing, ie stitching, painting, collaging etc. For some time now I have had the idea of filling a box with things I have made, I want it to be magical and exciting, the sort of thing that would delight a child on a rainy day.

At the beginning of this year I started making a book of the months of the year, which was a collagey thing,which only made it to February before my butterfly mind turned to other things and is therefore a "UFO".

Do you see where I'm going here?

I found when I was doing the encrusted CQ class that it would seem that everything I do has to have a "story" and though the sensible part of me knows stitch samplers would be a wonderful resource, I know it is not for me, my dream is to use Sharon's challenge to make something beautiful each month to put in my box, and perhaps finish the book I started.

Picture is one of my digi collages.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Take a Stitch Tuedays

Take a Stitch Tuesday is the inspiration of Sharon Boggon. Starts Tueday 3rd January 2007. It sounds to me like a wonderful way to expand and hopefully improve my embroidery skills. She has asked those who have signed up to spread the word on the basis of the more the merrier. It is a huge undertaking for her as she has promised to collate links to everyone's work. It should be very insteresting and if her class was anthing to go by great fun. Go have a look at the explanation

Here is a little seasonal example of what you can do with needle and thread.

Wouldn't you just love that beret!

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Nice find...

Just browsing through my favourite blogs and came across this link on ULLABENULLA. I love this blog because you never know what you are going to find on it. She finds links to some wonderfully artisitic sites. This one is on Flickr and is called Aunty Vanya's Photos and has some wonderful textural photographs. The photos of peeling paint make me want to reach for either paint or threads to start creating a wonderful background.
The photograph below is one of my own, it was taken in Rome.

Friday, December 08, 2006

CQ blocks

Christmas cards finished(but not sent), I have managed to get back to the blocks from Sharon's class. Here are the second and fourth block completed, I think. Just have to work out how to present them.

I have found it very difficult to get a good photograph of the fourth block,just can't reproduce the depth of it.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Where do thoughts come from?.....

When I was wakened my by feline friend at 5.30 this morning I turned over and snuggled down because it was dark and the wind was howling, I then realised that I was thinking about sailors on the "hulks" carving scrimshaw . Now where did that one come from???
This is the sort of image I had in my head, this is drawn (I use the term losely)by me in paintshop pro.

Monday, December 04, 2006

Roses are blooming in..........December

Here are the roses my DH presented to me yesterday from our garden. The funny thing is that they look as though they are made of wax, perhaps they are mutating into some sort of "winter" rose species.

Christmas cards nearly done, only three weeks from today.

Gone shopping!!!

Friday, December 01, 2006

Where am I?

1st of December. Parrakeets in the trees and roses blooming in the garden, some tropical north west Kent, England. I know we have has the odd rose out at Christmas in other years but the hanging baskets look better now than they did in the midddle of summer when we had a hose pipe ban. It has been said before " No wonder the British talk about the weather"

In an effort to get into a Christmassy mood I offer you my party hat which I made for our get together at the EG.

The penguin is a promotion item for the film "Happy Feet" which I can't wait to see, a dancing penguin......right up my street.

Back to the card production.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Living Dangerously - Time Magazine

I have just found an article on "Time" magazine,,9171,1562914,00.html which I found both amusing and thought provoking.
While the article suggests a governments duty I wonder if he has underplayed (ignored) the media's responsibilty in over-hyping "scares". I feel it certainly is the case in the UK when the tv evening news will be full of "special reports" and the tabloids will banner headline it and drag up every tenous link they can find.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Beading and me....

In the last lesson Sharon asks us to examine what we feel we have learned. I now know that I am rubbish at working with beads. All the blocks would be finished if I didn't have to keep crawling round the floor picking up microscopic pieces of glass!!!! It doesn't help that as soon as I am settled my ancient old gentleman cat wants to sit on my knee. I have done all the things one is supposed to like a tin lined with felt but I ALWAYS manage to drop it. Ah well...back to the floor. The picture is a page from my skinny fat book.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Block one finished.....I think

I thinkthis is finished, I have said this about ten times over this weekend and each time I have gone back to a dd a little more. I have added a little suprise to it under the bead that is supposed to represent the crystal ball.

I still am amazed how the piece took on its own identity and suddenly found myself thinking of a poem from childhood, I could only remember the line "Old Meg she was a gipsy..." I had to look it up and found it was a poem by John Keats called Meg Merrilees. Just incase you can't remeber it all this is it.
Old Meg she was a Gipsy,
And liv'd upon the Moors:
Her bed it was the brown heath turf,
And her house was out of doors.
Her apples were swart blackberries,
Her currants pods o' broom;
Her wine was dew of the wild white rose,
Her book a churchyard tomb.
Her Brothers were the craggy hills,
Her Sisters larchen trees--
Alone with her great family
She liv'd as she did please.
No breakfast had she many a morn,
No dinner many a noon,
And 'stead of supper she would stare
Full hard against the Moon.
But every morn of woodbine fresh
She made her garlanding,
And every night the dark glen Yew
She wove, and she would sing.
And with her fingers old and brown
She plaited Mats o' Rushes,
And gave them to the Cottagers
She met among the Bushes.
Old Meg was brave as Margaret Queen
And tall as Amazon:
An old red blanket cloak she wore;
A chip hat had she on.
God rest her aged bones somewhere--
She died full long agone!

I wish I had remebered it earlier because it would have helped with the motifs. Perhaps another day......

Saturday, November 18, 2006

This is the

This is UK. I am supposed to sort report......but I haven't bothered what I was going to it was warmer in the..... this afternoon.

I would have thought that one of the main qualifications for a television news reported was the ability to string together a sentence!!!!! It ranks along with sportsmen(paticularly footballers) who say "you know".....don't get me!!!!.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Nearly there

Week five of the encrusted CQ course. These are my four blocks before the last stages of beading.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

We will remember them.......

Today is Remembrance Sunday in the UK, when we remember those whose lives were cut short by war. Four more British soldiers were killed today in Iraq. Yesterday many young men of Iraq were killed as they applied for work. Where is the reason? In over two thousand years mankind has learned nothing! At my age one knows only to well the shortness of life.

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Block progress

These are the additions to block#s two and three?


I have given my daughter the hussif which I made for her so I can now share it with everyone. A hussif is a corruption of the word housewife and is simply somewhere to keep all your sewing requirements. (Well not quite ALL as most of us have whole cupboards full of the stuff)
I would like to thank the contributors to CQ Magazine where I first heard of a hussif. If you link to them and search for hussif you will see the beautiful things that inspired me.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Ugly Bug Ball

Another great day with Sam Beresford at the Sevenoaks Embroiders Guild. This is my bug after some skilful surgery by Sam.

I like to think that I will finish the second one.........

Sewing frenzy

My husband must think my needle is welded to my hand!!! The third of Sharon's lessons arrived and this is the result on the first block, (Gipsy gold). So now my gipsy has a basket of pegs, a caravan and a violin , the motif in my corner made me think of the signs gipsy's used to leave on gateposts to show whether a house was friendly or not. The centre and the corner are waiting for lesson four!

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Visit from a stanger

A very colourful visitor to our bird feeders, unfortunately in my excitement didn't manage to catch his wonderful red beak.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Progress report

Here we are a bit more embellishing, fell I'm getting the hang of this now. For those seams which are still empty I am waiting to see where lesson three leads me.

Happiness is...

Thomas and Elcectra or, as they should be known these days, Darby and Joan sharing a sunbeam!!

Monday, October 30, 2006

Better than Google.......

I decided to search for some crochet motifs to make for the later stages of my Encrusted CQ. I paticularly wanted a fan, so into Google it went and what should come up but a reference which had the inaminuteago url. I smiled and clicked and lo and behold I found Sharon had already done all the work and there were all and more motif instructions that I could ever want.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

This is the first block with the seam stitching. It looks sort of bitty and I'm not too happy with it but I am hoping that I know where I am going with it. In my mind I have called it "gipsy gold" a bit more inspirational than 1st block!! When we get to the motifs, beads etc I hope I can spice it up a bit.

Now going to try second block which is now called "gilded cage". Hoping I can get to be more spontaneous on this one.

Friday, October 27, 2006

I'm on a roll........or not

Sharon suggested that we make a sample of stitches on a roll of material. I'm not too patient so I started but then the desire to get going on my blocks won so I turned to them instead and that is where everything ground to a halt. Talk about stage fright.... Now let me say here I do know a few stitches (not very good at them but I do know them) and being left handed I have had to teach myself how to do them. (Domestic Science teacher at school wrote me off as useless) so I thought it would be easy, but no, you see now I have all this added information about texture and paths etc. It took me ages to get going.
I think one of the main reasones is trying to visualise what it will be like when it is all encrusted and what you would like to put where. The other thing is because on three of the blocks I have used images I feel I need to tell a story with the embelishments. This probably comes from altering books which is what I have been doing for the last year.
Anyway I finally took the plunge on the basis that if I don't like it I can always pull it out. Here is roll and story so far on first block.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

The great Lace Debate

I sat for hours with my bits of lace and my blocks trying this bit here and that bit there. These layouts are the story so far. They are only layed on so things may happen when I start Stitiching.

Just printed off the second lesson, all 49 pages of it!!! Should keep me occupied.