Thursday, 19 December 2013

Chapter 5. Cord making.

This chapter took us through the making of cords using fabric and threads plus a wonderful range of diverse materials in our colour scheme [in my case turquoise and red / orange].

The chapter is divided into 3 sections:

A. Machine stitched cords

B. Twisted cords

C. Knotted, plaited, wrapped methods

 Machine stitched cords

I selected a variety of core materials and contrasting threads to make the machine stitched cords:


I love the effect of the cords together en masse, a wonderful array of contrasting colours and textures:


Twisted cord experiments:


Knotted, plaited and wrapped cords which I found very challenging, I found it helped me to draw the knotting processes. Wonderful effects achieved with the juxtaposition of colour and texture:


The Turks Head Knot. Really challenging but the results are so rewarding:


Plaited cords. It’s fascinating to learn how different materials can bring such diverse effects:


Wrapped cords:


This was a fascinating chapter and, other than the machine stitched cords, many of the techniques were new to me and therefore time consuming as I found some of the workings very challenging. I was pleased to have the  opportunity to learn how to create many beautiful effects using the juxtaposition of colour and texture.

Thursday, 17 October 2013

Chapter 4 Design with Stitchery

In this chapter we have to decorate our dyed fabrics with stitchery both by hand and machine.

I’ve documented my work on my sketchbook pages and so they are posted here.


Hand stitchery:

I used a piece of random dyed velvet and threads for my hand stitched sample and felt instantly mesmerised by the colour combinations and the blending / vibrancy I could achieve.

This is new to me so I feel very pleased with this result!


Machine stitchery:

I worked a lot of small spiral patterns using a range of free machine  stitching techniques:


The back of the work is also  beautiful:


Bigger spirals shapes using free machine embroidery techniques and experiments with trapping threads, couching and the combination of hand and machine stitching:


And the back:


I’ve been experimenting with dried flower petals and tried arranging them in a spiral shape, bonding them to fabric and then adding free machine stitching. I decided to leave the thread between stitching as it reminds me of the Golden Section [Fibonacci] and gave a stronger spiral effect!


Further experiments with dried petals [this time roses] :


I’m very pleased with this chapter and have particularly enjoyed the opportunity to play with colour and love the seemingly endless possibilities of working with spiral patterns which are emerging as I work through the module………

Friday, 6 September 2013

Chapter 3. Fabrics and threads

In this chapter I have to sort out my fabrics, threads and other items such as buttons, beads and sequins etc. according to my chosen colour scheme. I started with what I had in store  before dyeing and monoprinting more of my own.

I’ve photographed pages of my sketch book showing my work and have posted them here in order

I started by sorting out the various types of fabrics I had already in my studio in my colour scheme:


And then my threads, buttons and beads. I also coloured various other items using silk paint to give an interesting range of effects:


I needed to produce a batch of fabrics in analagous colours in each of the colours I’d chosen earlier and then another with the colours mixed to give a more diverse range:


The dyeing processes:



I then selected some of my dyed fabrics for monoprinting:


Some further monoprinting effects / experiments:


Pressed flowers fused to a dyed fabric with Bondaweb:


I will go on to make up some more dyed and monoprinted fabrics and to produce more effects especially using fabrics in colours not in my colour scheme to see how they take up the dyes.

I’ve also started stitching into some dyed fabric with my dyed threads for ch. 4 – it’s magical as all the colours are beautifully harmonious / vibrant. I’m very moved by colour so this is particularly exciting for me…………

Tuesday, 6 August 2013

Summer School 2013

This  year we were lucky to  have Sue Dove as out tutor who taught us a new approach to collage. Sue also supported us by making her teaching relevant to our module [in my cases spirals]

We started by tearing strips from glossy magazines – any which were attractive to us – and then stuck them down onto cartridge paper with PVA. We then coloured in the spaces around the papers with oil pastels changing and blending colours / tones as we went.

Then we chopped up the collages and re-arranged them. This meant that the movement of colour became important forming abstract shapes and colours. whatever pleased the eye.

My first attempts:



c2 cropped again2


c2 cut

Another try:




And one of my favourites:



c3 cut c3cut2

We tried adding text:




I love the clock!

And this:  Too nice to cut!


We also tried adding a stencil and stippling over it with black acrylic paint:


Then I added spiral shapes from magazine and a border made up of oil pastels over painted with black acrylic and then scratched away to form a contrasting pattern:

c9cutand stencil

Next we made some monoprints and used a stencil shape as a resist before adding some more monoprinted spiral shapes on top.

c10 stencil and monoprint

Monoprinted paper overlaid with monoprinted tissue paper plus cut spiral stencil.

c11 stencil and monoprint

Monoprinted calico overlaid with tissue paper as before plus printed spiral shape:


The underlayer here is calico which has been monoprinted using a tile base and then monoprinted tissue paper added on  top:


We then chose a piece to which we would add stitching [monoprinted calico with fabric spirals and strip added on top:


And with stitching:

014 012

When I got home I was concerned that I’d needed to keep what I’d learnt alive and so I decided to try and make a collage a week. I also want to get into the habit of using my sketchbook to record my thoughts or response to the world around me.

Collage 1

Brighton Seafront…….A walk along the Prom


Collage 2:

Inspired by my garden…..

I forgot to photograph this before I cut it so have placed it back together!




With this on the facing page:


Collage no 3:

Memories of the Costume Museum in Sevilla……..




I had some papers left over so …..




Collage No 4:

It’s been a summer no-one saw coming:



So far so good!

Now I will return to Module 3 course work and keep my weekly collages going…….