Tuesday, February 26, 2008

New Book

I received this book in the mail yesterday from the Thread Studio and I must say it is choc-a-block full of great ideas.
As it says on the cover--"A Handbook of Surface Design-Recipes and Creative Paper Projects" and it is true to it's word.
A lot of the information may not be new to some people but I have found it hard to put this book down and I can't wait to start on some of the techniques--but not today.
I would suggest that if you can't find it locally then contact Dale at The Thread Studio and I am sure she will be able to help you out.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

TIF February Challenge

I have finished the February block for the TIF challenge and I am very pleased with the end result.
I am also pleased to say that I have still only used things from my stash and I was surprised at what I could find that fitted into the colour scheme.
I did have to use a light green silk ribbon and thread which was not in the colours but I needed to add stems and leaves in a couple of places.
I love the gold charm of the lady in the bonnet that I have had in my stash for some time and this seemed to be the right place to put it.

The block is not quite as dark as it appears in the photo but after taking 20 photos this is the best one that I could get--thank goodness for digital cameras.
Now to get ready for March

Saturday, February 23, 2008

More mail

This week I also received from Mary Anne in Canada a crazy patchwork block that I am going to embellish and then send back to her when I have finished -- if you look here you will see the block that I sent to her which she will embellish and send back to me.
The photo colour is a little lighter than in real life but no matter how I tried it still came out this colour.

Mary Anne also included some gifts for me which included these wonderful prints on fabric--I can see lots of uses for these.

And a piece of fabric and lace and also a beautiful card.....................

And 2 ATC's--one for me (on the left) and one for Ebony..............
Ebony loved her ATC very much seeing that it was unexpected and also that it has a fairy on it.
Thank you MA your gifts are very much appreciated.

I would also like to take the time to thank those bloggers who have swapped ATC's with Ebony.... she loves her ATC collection and is becoming very proficient in making art to swap..in fact when I suggest something to her that might look good on one I am politely told "I know what I am doing Nanny I don't need your help thank you"....a very determined young lady indeed and she won't be 8 until next month.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Mail this week

I received lots of mail this week the first one being from Debbi who sent me this beautiful ATC.
I love the delicate design and as usual Debbi has created a wonderful little piece of art.
Thank you Debbi I love it.

The next one is the ATC that I sent to Debbi in return--it is worked on a needle felted background and is hand stitched in variegated cotton thread and finished off with alittle button.

And lastly the card that I received from Helen Cowans from a swap we were involved in last year.
Helen has worked this on her embellisher and it is a work of art.
Thank you Helen

I will post the rest later on today............

Sunday, February 17, 2008

TIF February challenge

Progress has been slow this month on my TIF challenge but now I have started the surface stitching things should look up from now on.
I am trying to stay within the colour choice and so far I have been successful---I have silk ribbons and buttons and lace motifs that will come within the colour range so things should work out ok.
I am hoping to have this finished by the weekend but I have a busy schedule this week so time will tell.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Calendar Girls February Postcard for Debbi

This is my February Postcard for Debbi-----------------
The base fabric is a piece of royal blue felt on which I ironed some Gossamer Fuse and then added the heart shaped vase which is a cerise colour.
Over this I placed a piece of an old navy sheer scarfe with tiny white flowers and then ironed it all together.
I worked 2 rows of navy and 1 row of aqua cotton thread in running stitch to outline the vase and then I stitched by machine the pattern that is on the pink vase in the calendar picture.
Next I embroidered the flower using Lazy Daisy stitch in 2 different shades of aqua added a French Knot in yellow for the centre of the flower and in green I worked the stem using Stem stitch and Lazy Daisy leaves.
I then echo quilted around the vase and flower on the machine.
I wrote the word "Friends" with a Fabrico fabric marker pen and hand stitched it onto the vase.

To see the other Postcards that have been made for February click on the Calendar Girls badge in the side bar and it will take you there.

I hope you like it Debbi

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Cyber Fyber Exhibition

I dropped by the Cyber Fyber blog today and I was amazed to see just how many people have signed up for a trade with Susan.

She started out with 163 postcards that she had made for the swap (details here) and now has only 44 left- so if you are thinking about swapping a postcard with her I would suggest that you do so soon before they all go.

Also there were 130 ATC's available in the beginning -but now only 52 are left.

You may think that all the good ones would be gone but don't be fooled because they are all good which is a credit to Susan's talent to be able to produce such works of art.

The time that Susan has spent preparing this swap in conjunction with the Cyber Fyber exhibition in January is amazing and yet she still manages to create beautiful works of art at the same time.

Well done Susan you are truly one remarkable lady.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Crazy Patchwork blocks

I seem to be doing a lot of Crazy patchwork lately- firstly in the TIF challenge and also I am involved with several swaps whereby I piece the block and then I forward it on to my swap partner who will embellish it and then return it back to me and I will do the same for them.
The first block I am swapping with Maureen in Queensland (Aus.) and is in pastel silks and lace.
I like this square as it is soft and delicate.
There is no time limit set for the return so we will be able to stitch at our leisure.

The next block is totally the opposite in colour--very strong and bold and Autumny-(is there such a word?).
This is made of silk -linen-brocade and velvet.
This is a spare that I have pieced together and I will either swap it at a later date or do it myself.
I love working in Autumn colours but I think that even I will find this one a challenge ---we will see.

You can see in my previous posts some of the other blocks that I have made already.

Friday, February 8, 2008

ATC's a Crazy Square and a New Blog

I received these 2 ATC's yesterday from Anne L who lives in France but she doesn't have a blog which is a pity because she does the most beautiful Cross Stitch ATC's'.
I have traded with Anne before and I really enjoy opening my mail from her just to see what she has stitched this time.
I was surprised to find 2 ATC's in the envelope as we had only arranged to swap one but to my surprise one of them was for Ebony.
Ann had heard that Ebony has been making and swapping ATC's and had sent one for Ebony and asked if Ebony's would swap with her in return-Ebony is very happy to oblige.
Being the good(huhum) grandma that I am I let Ebony choose which one she wanted and she chose the pink one and I am happy with that deal.

And here is the Crazy Patchwork block that I have made for my swap with Mary Ann of Magpies Mumbling fame.We are both making a block and swapping them for the other person to embellish--I think this will be a challenge for her -but knowing MA she will not be phased one little bit.If you want to see the block that she is sending me just click on the link

And now to a new blog--my friend Suzanne has started a blog--well to be honest she started it last year but got sidetracked along the way-but I am glad to say she has begun to blog again.
Drop by and see what she has been doing with background ideas for her mixed media work.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Cyber Fyber and TIF

Today I received my ATC and Postcard that I traded with Susan Lenz as part of the swap that she is holding in conjunction with the Cyber Fyber exhibition that she is organising in January 2009.
The colour is not true here but they still look fantastic to me.
And you wouldn't believe it or maybe you would --I forgot to take a photo of the ones that I sent her but if you go to the Cyber Fyber blog site you will be able to see them --the Postcard is number 5 and the Atc is number 17.

Also in the mail today I received these hand dyed threads from Sharon B for guessing the reason why she joined all her samples together --aren't they beautiful --all hand dyed by Sharon.
Now I have a question--am I allowed to use them in my TIF challenge?--because I have stated that I would only use "stuff" from my stash--that I would not purchase anything new---but I didn't purchase them did I--and they are now in my stash--so does that count ? ? ?
Thank you Sharon you are a very generous lady.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

February TIF Challenge

This is my pieced square for the February TIF challenge colour concept--I am not happy with it but this is 3 hours work and it will have to do.
I seem to have a few square shapes that I don't like but I will try to conceal these with the embellishments and there are dark sections but if you click on the picture you will see that they are different textured fabrics and again I think they will work ok once embellished.
The other part of the challenge was the question "What are you old enough to remember?"
I can remember plenty but the best memories I have are my childhood ones.
I remember as a toddler picking up the pins off the floor for my mother and putting them in the pin cushion--she was a dressmaker and as the other kids were at school I had to be with her in the sewing room.
I remember my first day at school and didn't know that there were different boys and girls toilets and I went into the wrong one.
I remember being a Brownie with Brown Owl and the Toadstool that we sat around in a circle.
I remember the day the war ended in 1945 and my mother grabbed me by the hand and dragged me up the street because everyone was celebrating.
I also remember the food coupons that we had during and after the war because of the food shortage--I used to trade mine with my older brother for money.
The Chinese grocer who had a shop on the corner--his brother had the laundry on the opposite corner.
We had a copper that mum would fire up every Monday so that she could do the washing--I am glad I don't have to do that now.
Sunday school picnics and school holidays where we went on the train to visit our Aunty--it would take several hours to get there but it was only 40 kilometres (25 miles) away.
Ah (sigh) what great memories they are and I wasn't even 8 years old when this all happened.
OK back to the real world and now to start embellishing this months block.

Monday, February 4, 2008

Postcards 1 received and 1 mine

I am a member of the Calendar Girls and we are making postcards from the pictures on a calendar--just follow the link for details.
Here is my February postcard I received from Joanna --it is made from hand dyed fabrics with a hand painted flower and bud.
Joanna took her design from the pattern on one of the vases in the picture.
Thank you Joanna it is so beautiful.

The second one is my sample for this months challenge with the Creative Group at the Embroiderers Guild.
You would think that I would have had enough of stitch samples after the TAST challenge last year but no I am at it again and there are only 12 of them so that should be easy.
I have decided to do postcard size samples this time.
The first stitch was running stitch.

I have started the Creative year out well and in january I completed 10 things that I had set out to do.
If I can keep that up all year it will be fantastic.

Saturday, February 2, 2008


Susan Lenz from Art in stitches has announced a wonderful exhibition in the US and has invited me to exhibit a piece of my art.
To say that I was honoured would be an understatement and I thank you Susan for even considering me.
Susan has also planned an ATC and Postcard swap in conjunction with the exhibition.
Below is the introduction to how Susan has set up the exhibition and Card trades but if you click on the Cyber Fyber link it will take you the the blog and all will be revealed.
If you would like to trade with Susan you can follow the links and it will take you to all the ATC's (130)and Postcards(163) that she has made for the trade.
They are truly outstanding and she has even cut up some of her previous art works to make them into the cards.
So if you would like to own a piece of Susan's art then go to the CYBER FYBER blog and trade.

Extract from blog---------------------

CYBER FYBER is an exhibition scheduled for January 8 - 20, 2009 at Gallery 80808/Vista Studios, 808 Lady Street in Columbia, South Carolina. (The gallery's blog is here.) There will be three sections to the exhibition:

1) traded fiber postcards

2) traded fiber ATCs

3) artwork by invited fiber artists...each representing a specific aspect/benefit to Internet/blogging communication.

Saturday, February 10 will be "Fiber Day", a partnership with Creative Sewing of West Columbia...complete with demonstrations
Saturday, February 17 will be "ATC Trading Day", a chance for artists of all ages and media to gather and trade ATCs.
Also, there will be an International Random ATC Trade...a chance for all artists in any media to mail ATCs with self-addressed, sufficiently stamped return envelopes for a random drawing trade (arrangements are being made for out of the USA artists!)...and it has been suggested that I learn how to "live broadcast" this! (I've got eleven months to figure this out!)

Congratulations Susan for having the courage to firstly come up with the idea and then to follow your dream of uniting the creative bloggers into one big family.
Thank you Susan

Friday, February 1, 2008

February 1 and the TIF Challenge

Sharron B has just announced the February concept and colours for the TIF challenge and boy are these colours different--I think this will be a real challenge.
If you want to read all about it just click here and it will take you to the appropriate place to read all about it.
Here is the colour palette for February so now I am going to have to delve deep into my stash to find what I need to make my crazy quilt block- but I am sure I will find something and I have to remember that I am not allowed to buy anything new (my self challenge) I have to only use what I have.