Blogging from A-Z April Challenge

Apologies for the abrupt ending of this series. I had some really good ideas for the rest of the alphabet – but sadly health issues meant the challenge had to end.

I’ll post the rest of the alphabet as separate posts during the forthcoming weeks.

In the meantime – very slowly – I have been able to continue with crochet. An update is coming soon.

 

Blogging from A-Z April Challenge – G is for

Grids

I find grids very useful. Squared paper is easy to obtain, but better still – the grid you draw.

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Measuring isn’t obligatory – and I often start by drawing a rough grid by ‘eye’ in my journal.

Are you a quilter? Quite an interesting way of developing your own personal quilting pattern is to begin with your intials. Firstly – fill every alternate square with the initial of one of your names

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Then choose a second initial and complete the rest of the boxes.

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This simple pattern is based on an M and an h – upper or lower case can be chosen at will – and the shape of the letters doesn’t have to have any bearing on your signature.
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Once ‘inked in’ the line becomes more apparent. The above needs a little touching up if it’s to be programmed into a quilting module – but for freehand quilting, either by machine or by hand, it gives a good indication of the final result.

I love using grids. You never know what you will discover

You can also find my chatty A-Z posts here

 

Blogging from A-Z April Challenge – F is for..

French Knots

There are many embroidery stitches – but one of my favourites is French Knots. There is nothing better for creating texture.

The secret to a perfect French Knot is twofold. Firstly NEVER wind the thread around the needle – manipulate the needle around the thread whilst holding the loose thread fairly taut. Secondly – keep hold of the loose thread until the very last moment while taking the needle through to the back of the fabric. 

 Posted for the April A-Z challenge. All posts for this challenge will relate in some way to my creativity.

You can also find my chatty A-Z creative posts here

Blogging from A-Z April Challenge – E is for..

Embellisher!

Do you know about the Embellisher? It’s the most wonderful machine for making texture and more!

It looks like a domestic sewing machine, but instead of having a single needle with a hole for thread it has a head with multiple  needles – no holes – just barbs. As these move up and down the fabrics or fibres placed underneath the needles become meshed together creating new surfaces. There are several different sorts – but they all work in the same way.

Many fabrics and fibres can be used – including cotton

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which will finally produce a very interesting fabric (shown above nowhere near finished)

Knitting yarns are also a good source of inspiration. They can be used straight from the ball, or knitted or crocheted before being changed by the machine

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Above are workshop samples – and so too are the ones below.

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but finished results can be both fun and unexpected.

 

Posted for the April A-Z challenge. All posts for this challenge will relate in some way to my creativity.

You can also find my chatty A-Z creative posts here

Blogging from A-Z April Challenge – D is for..

Dyeing!

I love colour. It’s been my pleasure to work with it for over 30 years. I’ve been producing a range of hand threads, fibres and fabrics since I was first introduced to the process in the late 1980s.

Over the years I have developed a number of techinques to produce many mixed colours.

The above are cotton embroidery threads, but I also dye wool, silk and alpaca, which require a different method.

I’m not suggesting you watch the whole thing – but there is even a video of me dyeing here. It shows the first basis of one of my techniques – of course, I have developed it much further for my own use. I sell my threads via my own website and also Etsy, but mostly at shows as I know customers love to handle the goods before purchase 😉

Due to family health problems and the recent death of my mother the shops have been relatively inactive for a while. However, Etsy will have stock before the end of this week.

 

Posted for the April A-Z challenge. All posts for this challenge will relate in some way to my creativity.

You can also find my chatty A-Z creative posts here

Blogging from A-Z April Challenge – C is for..

Collage

I enjoy working with paper. It began as a design tool for textiles – but after discovering that it was also a useful base for stitch it has more and more become an integrated part of my work.

Paper is so readily available! It doesn’t need to be expensive. The cover of this book is just plain old painted newspaper.

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I’ve built up the surface on cardboard from a cereal packet – glued it down with Matte Medium and added a protective coating of the same on top. Doodles featured heavily on some of the painted surfaces before being cut or torn and laid dowuse pn. Really simple zigzag stitches were added – more as surface interest than anything else. If you are going to try it – just make sure that any paint or glue is well dried before you start.

I use paper for my daily nine patches too. These might seem a waste of time – but the colour combinations have seen their way into other peices of work, so nothing is wasted.

 

Posted for the April A-Z challenge. The posts on this blog all relate to creativity in some way. ‘Chatty’ A-Z posts are appearing here.