Monday, October 1, 2012

T'Arts Display

I spent yesterday setting up our display and sale at T'Arts.

T'Arts is an art collective in Gays Arcade which runs off Rundle Malls Adelaide Arcade.

My stitching friend Margaret Marsh is a member there and invited several of her fellow stitchers from the South Australian Embroiderers Guild No Limits group to join her for the month of October.
I was thrilled to be one of those involved.

I decided to remake a nuno felt vest I made some years ago that I'd never worn as it was to big and just didn't look right on me. Of course once I'd finished remaking it I fell in love with it and it looks great on me now. Isn't it always the way.

You can just see the buttons I agonized over which do look great. Below is a close up.

 I used this photo for some cards that are also for sale in addition to the books I made.

This one is my favourite

If you are in Adelaide and would like to see more of the amazing art works including wearables and some beatuiful bags, glass and wood please head along to T'Arts.

Thursday, September 13, 2012


I am making some books for our display at T'Arts in Gays Arcade Adelaide. A group of us have a display there for the month of October and I was thrilled to be invited to be involved. I am exhibiting (and maybe selling) the felt vest I have been fiddling with for so long and a group of hand stitched books. Here's a little taste of the books I made. this one is a page a day journal - that means there is a page to use every day for a little drawing or some words. I am thinking of making a little bag to store it in, what do you think?

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Goolwa Beach Walk

I took a day off from the creating today and we went to the beach. It's been one of those amazingly perfect weekends weather wise. That was our reward for the horror weather we had all week. I did do some painting for another book cover before we went but the chance to walk on the beach and eat some delicious seafood was to great to resist. I found a lovely piece of driftwood and brought home some shells. In the photo you can just see the sea mist in the distance.
The boronia will be amazing in a week or so

If you'd like to see what we ate and some more photos pop over too my other blog Peta Eats

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Artists Statement Part 3

This is it. I am not going to look at it again for a few days. I tend to fiddle with something so long that I end up wrecking it. 

Re-Use, Re-New, Re-Purpose.
Love of textile art is part of my life. My type of meditation is to create something and that feeds the creative yearnings of my heart.
My artistic journey has travelled through many genres including art and bookmaking but always leads back to textiles. My favorite pieces are thoses that combine the impractical into something practical. My latest pieces combine new work with Ephemera I have rescued, creating tangible works of very personal art. Those transformations are equal parts joy and frustration.

You might also beinterested in
Artists Statement Part 2
Artists Statement Part 1

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Artists Statement Part 2

The photo above has nothing to do with this post but I love this piece of work I did in 2010 so I thought I'd show you again.

I am still pondering and procrastinating over my artists statement. I did find these websites Artists Statement'  and Molly Gordon's advice which I am intending to peruse in greater detail. This is what I have so far - a big improvement on 'I like to make stuff and if I sell it Yay for me.'

Re-Use, Re-New, Re-Purpose.

A love of textile art has always been part of my life - To pass time, to feed the creative yearnings of my heart and as my own personal type of meditation.
That journey has travelled through many genres including art and book making. 
I love creating pieces that combine new work with rescued Ephemera.

That's better isn't it.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Crocheted Edges

 I am adding some ornametation to the felt jacket. I've crocheted a braid and added to one of the collars.

I've also blanket stitched along the other edge to add a crocheted edge. It was taking so long to try and just crochet it.

I am still working out what type of button to use.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Finishing touches?

In my search for the right way to finish my jacket I have been looking at some amazing Irish crochet. I know I have a couple of books on it somewhere in my messy library.
My favorite sites so far are
Outstanding Crochet

The Sheelin Irish Lace Museum

There's lots of Pininterest

and on the Antique Pattern Library Priscilla section.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Artist's Statement

I have been giving some thought to my own artist’s statement. Is it a form of self-advertisement? Is it a description of my own artistic journey? Is it a way of filling the back of a swing tag? 
Perhaps it is something I write and then print out and put on my studio wall to keep me focussed and inspired when I just want to re-read a novel for the tenth time instead of getting on with a piece of work.
Artist Rebekah Joy Platt description of herself is “I float happily about with my fingers in the water. I draw all day and write all night”. Rebekah is the author of the wonderful “Invest in Artists” print that is available from her website. For the full quote you need to go here but I’ve pulled out a few lines for you.
“When you buy from an independent artist you are buying more than just a painting or a novel or a song…….. You aren’t just buying a thing, you are buying a piece of heart, part of a soul, a private moment in someone’s life…… something that put’s the life in living”.
Darn, I wish I’d written that.
I’ve been working on improving my own writing. I read a lot. I completed a professional writing course that left me depressed and wondering if I have any talent for writing at  all. I am filled with self doubt and nothing kills off creativity like a bad case of self doubt.
Vincent Van Gogh said "If you hear a voice within you say ‘you cannot paint,’ then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced."  

That, of course, applies to anything but sometimes that voice is really loud. 

So I shall write my artist’s statement. 

Something a bit more than “I like to make stuff and if I sell it, Yay for me!”
Actually that does sum up my creative journey. I just need to make it a bit more highbrow, then again maybe not.
It is a good starting point isn’t it.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Felt and silk jacket Buttons

Buttons make or break a project. I need some sort of closure on the jacket. Previously I had big handcrafted wooden ones on it. I took those off some time ago and put them somewhere safe. Needless to say now that I need to see if I will use just one I can't find them. Plus I think it needs a bit more ornamentation. I am considering adding some crochet on a couple of edges, a few smaller bits of crochet and a crocheted button. So off to the net I went.

I love these vintage crocheted buttons

by Nancy Nehring and couldn't resist buying her book on my kindle 

and these  from Mademoiselle Chaos.

Then there are these really easy ones from Craft Stylish

Or I could make some Dorset buttons  or some like these  from Burda Style 

 and there is a brief history of them on P8 Buttons and Fabrics  Craftstylish has a dorset button tutorial
For the crocheted ornamentation I thought of doing some crocheted ric-rac like this from Foxs Lane

I've just spent an hour shuffling round the net so I should go and do some of this. I'll show you tomorrow what I've done.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

"Do or do not -There is no try"

It was with some trepidation that, today, I finally cut into my felted jacket. 

I have lost a lot of weight since I made it 4 years ago and it didn’t sit right on me anymore. I love the colours of the felt so I didn’t want to ruin it. As a result I have spent some months looking at it and thinking about what I could try to do with it.
I need a major piece for an exhibition in October and I've already promised to do something with this jacket so it had to be done. 
The new pattern was drawn on interfacing, fiddled with and pinned together to make sure it fit. Next step, feeling slightly nauseous, was to cut into over 30 hours of felting meters of silk and wool together.
The result is good.

I took off the white silk ribbon embellishments. Adjusted the neck and armholes and cut quite a bit off the hem and sides. I may play with those off cuts and make a matching bag so as not to waste them. The seams have been tacked together and I will machine over those tomorrow. Then decide on a fastening for the front. There is still quite a bit of the skein of silk ribbon left so I may or may not include some of that. At least I have made a start and I am fighting my way out of the funk I have been in. 
The starting instead of looking at it and thinking of what I could try has been inspirational and I am fairly sure of what I am going to do.
As Yoda would say “Do or do not – there is no try”

Monday, July 30, 2012

Bits and Pieces

Bits and pieces to use in my art are found every where. My wonderful friend Emanda brings me treasures from her Antique shop. These are from a dead cuckoo clock. I am not sure what I'll include these in but they'll go into something. Any suggestions?

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Sari Silk stuff

More on the sari silk - I am still using the first of 6 hanks of sari silk ribbon I bought from the Thread Studio.
My goal is to see how many items I can make from one hank.
I am now making book covers from it. Here are 3 that are still Works in progress.

This is a section of the first piece (I need a better scanner).

For this one the ribbon was ironed flat then woven on my ironing board. Next a piece of vliesofix was ironed on. That's as far as this I have gone on this one.

This is a smaller piece - I wove the ironed ribbon, vliesofixed a piece of thin cotton onto the back and then went crazy with my flower stitcher (from The Thread Studio). I hand embroidered the section on the right with button hole circles, cast on roses, fly stitch leaves, french knots and stem stitch

This piece has the woven ironed ribbon. I backed it with aquabond and then tacked a piece of solvy on  top with the pattern for the paisley drawn on top. I then freehand machine embroidered on to it with a variegated purple thread. 
I didn't need to use the aquabond I should have just attached a piece of thin cotton with vliesofix. As I couldn't see what was happening between the layer of solvy and aquabond I ende up with some holes I now need to cover and I have to attach something onto the back to stabilise it. I am going to add some more embellishment to this before it is made into a book.

More to come and there is still quite a lot of the hank left.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Sari Silk and Alpaca

I am inspired by my decision to see how far a skein of sari silk ribbon will go. I have finished the beret and scarf that I started a few months ago.
I bought the alpaca in Victoria when we were there last year. It is from a black alpaca and was already spun when I got it. I crocheted the beret and scarf without a pattern so I can't share those. Ravelry has a lot of patterns both free and available to purchase.
For the beret I crocheted a circle starting with a ring and working out in double crochet and then 5 rows of treble chain mesh. When it looked big enough I reduced down to a hole that fit easily over my head then without reducing crocheted a band. Next I threaded the sari silk through the mesh. For the scarf I crocheted a chain about 1 meter long. Then some rows of double crochet. Then the 1 treble 1 chain mesh for 5 rows, repeated some more rows of double crochet reducing over the length then some more rows of double crochet until the yarn ran out. More sari silk ribbon threaded through.
This is in no way meant to be a pattern.

Friday, June 29, 2012

A Sari Silk Challenge

Firstly apologies for my lengthy absence. Work, study – I have been doing a professional writing course on line, my daughter’s wedding and a variety of other stuff have been in my way, including my own mood swings.
On to important things. Back in April I promised a draw for these. 

Gina and Jules if you send me your addresses I shall mail them to you. I will be handing one to Bronwyn (She is my daughter and lives up the street from me). They are scarf clips and I suppose you could use them in your hair too.
I am involved in an exhibition at T’Arts in October. For those of you who are unfamiliar with it T’Arts is a gallery in Adelaide that specialises in handcrafted art. Originally textile art but it has now diverged into other beautiful OOAK works.
For the pieces I am displaying, which will all be for sale, I am keen to use what I already have. To that end I am diving into the stash. Practically nothing will be overlooked. I make no promises as to what else I will buy but I’ll try to be strong. 

Here is my challenge to myself.

What and how much can you do with 1 skein of sari silk ribbon and stuff I already have. OK mostly stuff I already have.
This skein came from The Thread Studio, to be truthful I bought 6.

Stay tuned for what I make with this first skein.
If you'd like to join me in this challenge please do so. There shall be no prizes given but there will be a great sense of acheivement in actually using stuff from our stashes. Leave me a comment and we will take it from there.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Mixed Media Art

The class I did at Fibre Arts Ballarat was Mixed Media Art Books with Jen Crossley of A Mark in Time
Jen is a fantastic teacher and the 5 day class was so much fun I wished I could stay another week.
The class was for 2 books. A cloth spined photo book I haven't finished yet. I didn't want to rush this so I just worked on the pages, this is one of those pages. 

I bought the cabinet photo from an antique shop in Ballarat, the lace and glass buttons are from my collection, the little butterfly came from one of the traders at Ballarat Fibre Forum last year and the page is from Jen.

I have nearly finished the metal covered book, I added a concertina fold section for some art work in the back. I also want to add some more embellishments to the spine. I am planning to use this as part of an exhibition I am involved in later in the year.

I also bought one of Jen's books - for no other reason than I loved it.

I can highly recommend the Ballarat Fibre Arts organized by Glenys Mann. I have been going for 4 years and love every minute of it.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Home Again

We are home, as you may have guessed from the title. The Husband and I have been to Fibre Arts Australia at Ballarat. This is an annual expedition for me, first time for The Husband. A great time was had by all. Here's a teaser of just what I got up to.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Mix It Up at Yankalilla and possibly free hugs

Looking for something amazing to do at Easter? I know just the thing. There is an amazing exhibition and sale at Yankalilla. Well truthfully there are 2. One is the Annual Art Exhibition in the hall at the showgrounds. Beautiful traditional paintings type exhibition.
Next door in the little hall is the place to go. A group of amazingly talented local and sort of local mixed media artists will be having their annual exhibition and sale. Not to be missed.

I had plans for lots of things but didn't quite make as much as I wanted too. Here are some of the things I will have on sale. They were whiet short sleeved business shirts and a few T Shirts. I bought them all ready made and have hand dyed them, none have been worn.

and these thingeys that Greg made.

If you leave me a comment with what you think these are I shall send one to everyone who gives me a correct answer by 5pm on Friday 30th March (My time). (Little hint - They are not a hair slide)
For everyone else I shall have another draw and send one to the winner.
Winners selected on 16th April.
I am going to be at Yankalilla on Easter Saturday Morning. If you see me there and mention my blog I shall give you a hug for free.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Professional Writing

I have started a professional writing short course at the Adelaide College of the Arts which is part of our TAFE (Technical and Further Education) System here in Australia. I am not sure what the equivalent would be overseas. Here in Australia TAFE train apprentices and offer courses in a variety of subjects from Certificate 1 or entry level right through to Advanced Diplomas. To work towards a degree you go to University. 

Well my first assignment has been submitted. The assignment called for an article that was showed ‘skill, ingenuity, professionalism and objectivity’. I also had to write a cover letter to accompany the article.
This is an online beginning freelance journalism course and I am afraid I am not impressed so far. If I knew how to do all that I wouldn’t be doing the course. There were no examples to work from and so I am winging it. It is early days yet though so we shall see how things develop.

Pass or fail? I went into this to learn something. I have already so regardless of passing or failing I am learning. After a quick email to an e-friend who has been published and a bit of work counting in some of my preferred magazines I now know approximately how many words are on a magazine page and the length of feature articles.

I would love to be able to get work as a freelance journalist, as a change of career would be great. I am not getting my hopes up about that. I spent quite a lot of time in the local newsagents and I only found one magazine that takes unsolicited submissions and you have to write to them with an article outline first.
I want to improve my writing skills in my blogs. I can see how I have improved over the years so I am at least getting better there. 

So we shall see how this goes. Hopefully the lecturers will be gentle and I won’t get to the end feeling like I have wasted my time and money. 

Wish me luck.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Run Fat Bitch Run

Part of my textile journey is the battle I have with my weight, I am sure you wonder why this is so. When I am over weight my knee aches, I am lethargic and severly unmotivated. Over the last 5 weeks I have put some serious effort into getting back to my preferred weight. As a result I am 8 kilos down, I've been back on my treadmill and feeling great. I can run again, although not far, and my knee doesn't ache. Yay for the diet.
I also bought a new diet (lifestyle) book from The Book Depository called "Run Fat Bitch Run". Ruth Field shares her "Fuss free and foolproof" weight loss regime in this book for the "Seriously unmotivated". There are only three rules - Drink lots of water, Eat less Crap and Run. Ruth guides us from being a sofa sitter to a lean mean running machine. Her eight week guide to running helps avoid failure and injury, I am two days in and so far so good. The plan is easy to follow and no huge expenses or complicated diets means this is something I can do.
This is a book of tough love, there is no looking in the mirror and saying "I am beautiful". There is a lot of contacting your inner bitch and saying "Run fat bitch Run" to yourself when you look in the mirror. Ruth does warn that letting your inner bitch loose on those around you is not really a great thing to do.
Sometimes , though, you need to let your inner bitch give you a bit of tough love to get you off you ever increasing butt and into exercise.
Ruth's story of her journey through fat and unmotivated to healthy and energetic is personal and entertaining as she shares her ups and downs on the journey. All in all a great read and one of the easiest diet/exercise regimes to follow I have found. 5 stars from me.

The weight loss and self-motivation has given me the boost I need to actually make something. I will share that when it is finished. I am also going to return to last years policy of finishing one of the projects I have had sitting around before I start a new one. This worked really well for quite a while so is worth reinstating. I have also signed up for a short course on freelance journalism to improve my blogging.
2012 is going to be a great year for me. My inner bitch will make me do it.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

To Tear or Not to Tear

Is it right or wrong to tear up or make over old books. I know, I know, A lot of people are doing just that and making incredible art - Some incredibly awful, some incredibly wonderful - I don't know if I can do it.
My wonderful friend Emanda is going to bring me a couple of dead books from her second hand emporium. They might be possibilities, still I do believe I will struggle.
We are off to Fiber Forum in April, I am not using the Royal "We" here as The Husband is coming with me to partake of a class making a reliquary with Christine Atkins similar to the photo above from Chris's site.
This year I am making a book with Jenny Crossley of A Mark In Time.

I have to tear up and/or remake books too.
Part of our requirements lists are old books to tear up. We agreed that the thought of that, let alone the actual act, is just wrong and we don't think we can.
So I have spent some time today downloading a few old books that appealed to him as possibilities for his class and I am looking for some for ancient needlework texts for mine.
Here's a site I've been too courtesy of Feeling Stitchy's list of downloads.
Web. Archive Org   to have a look at "A booke of curious and strange inventions" which is actually a book of needle work patterns.
The wonderful book selections from Pin Tangle.
Patterns from the 1886 pattern book from J. F. Ingalls
Therese Dillmont's Encyclopedia of Needlework
The Digital Scriptorium
and some beautiful plates from BibliOdyssey

Yes, I do believe I would rather download and print reproductions of individual pages than tear up a book. For me it is definitely "Not to Tear".