Monday, 21 December 2015

Taunton exhibition

 I managed to get a couple of pictures from a friend, two of the general exhibition space and one of mine which unfortunately has a lot of reflection in it. You can also just see one of the pair of my other pieces.
Its a great space for exhibiting in.

Sunday, 20 December 2015

What a plonker. Happy Christmas and Happy Solstice.

I don't think this expression is used much these days but I felt like a right plonker when after finally managing to get the South West Textile Group exhibition at Taunton Museum I forgot to take any photos of my own work or anybody else's for that matter. I wanted to show all you kind people out there my finished pieces finally hung.
Its a good exhibition beautifully hung by the museum staff and well worth a visit if you live near though it finishes on the 2nd January.
I am hoping that a friend might have taken a photo they can send me, otherwise I may be able to take a couple when we collect our work next year.
Happy end of year in whichever form you celebrate it and thank you for reading my little offerings and for your lovely comments throughout the past year.

Friday, 4 December 2015

Experiments with iron water

1 Eucalyptus dyed on silk noil
Quite a few images this time, the colours arn't great in the photos and don't really show the subtle variation in colours of the last few photos of iron dyeing.
The first four images are of dyeing I did on holiday in Rhodes, they were bundled and placed in a plastic drinking water bottle and left on the balcony for about 12 days, no direct sunlight.
These are not before and after photos but the undipped ones are very similar to the ones I dipped.
2 Eucalyptus dyed and then dipped in iron water

3 Eucalyptus dyed

4 Eucalyptus dyed and dipped in iron water
 The dark ones were soaked in the iron water for about an hour and then washed immediately. The proportions for the iron water are completely random, I did measure anything. These are all on silk noil and were dipped when I got back.
5 Cotinus and maple leaf dyed then dipped in iron water
Images five to nine are all on wool and dyed with leaves from the garden, again the undipped piece is to give colour comparisons. I wish I could get more true to life colours on these but I can't. piece 5 was dipped for one hour the others slightly less all were washed immediately afterwards. They had all been previously bundled and left to dry before being soaked in the iron water.
6 Maple leaf

7 Cotinus and dipped in iron water

8 Cotinus and maple and iron water

9 Cotinus, maple and iron water

I am very pleased with the results it good to get something other than brown. I will probably dip all the silk pieces and make them into a cushion as the colours go well with my with my sitting room furniture.

Monday, 30 November 2015


I have just potted up my mincemeat for this year's mince pies, a little late but hey I've been busy.

I am not visiting my studio today even if it is just down the hall, I have been sitting down there for the past three days hoping against hope that somebody might be brave enough to come and visit despite tipping down rain and storm force winds. I wouldn't visit me either. Better luck next weekend I hope, it is all looking so good and I have some wonderful work from other artists as well.

Thursday, 26 November 2015

New work and some cards

I have enjoyed sitting and stitching in the evenings, this piece is going in my Christmas fair which opens tomorrow, I have some great artists taking part and the studio is looking very good, just praying for visitors now and for the weather forecast to be wrong.
The cards are also for the studio openings, I meant to take photos before I put them in their cellophane wrappers but forgot so they are a bit difficult to see.
Eco dyed and stitched

Robin card

Eco dyed and stitched fabric on card
I have also been experimenting with use iron water on previously leaf printed fabric, will post the results when I get time.

Monday, 9 November 2015

And the winner is

I left doing the draw until Monday to make sure everybody had finished Sunday in various parts of the world.
The winner is Eyreka, please send your details via and I will have your gift in the post by the end of the week.

Tuesday, 3 November 2015

A giveaway

its really green
I have just noticed after months of having 29 followers I now have 31. I think this calls for a celebration so I am giving away this small woven silk purse with recycled glass bead closure. More decorative than practical.
I always think it is a bit strange having followers it sounds like a cult.
Anyway leave a comment and I will pull a name out of the hat on Sunday 8th November.

Studio openings

Once a month in summer and near Christmas I have open days at my studio, I like to support and try and sell work of other local craft makers as well as myself. These are not that successful but I persevere. I live a bit out the way but on a beach so we get many visitors in the summer. They prefer the beach to visiting me, why they can't do both I don't know, I would, anyway I digress.

Small bag
I may not be weaving, apart from a few cards, but I am still making christmas gifts for sale. These are made from the off cuts of my dyed fabric that I have made into clothes. Silk noil which I love and which takes natural dyes very well. The strap on the bag is made from a blouse placket so ready made buttons and buttonholes for adjusting the length.
I am hoping to make some shopping bags out of remnants of bought cloth now that at last we have to pay for plastic carrier bags. Again the government has made this very complicated, instead of just charging for every bag you use, it depends on what you are buying and how many staff the shop employs, ridiculous.
Save keeper bags

Reverse side love this print

Friday, 30 October 2015

Stuff I need to write

Ok I am not writing this to elicit a response I just need to write it. I read this week that my favourite yarn company has gone into liquidation, a sad day indeed, But it got me thinking, I have been in a rut for a while with my weaving I seem to have lost my sense of direction, maybe in my life as well. I enjoy hand stitching but my eco printing isn't going so well either. I have masses of yarn to use so do I feel obliged to use it. Maybe I just need to take a step back. I am raising more questions than answers which is not why I started on this, I was hoping to find answers, I am not doing that.
I probably shouldn't post this, maybe one red wine to many but we all go through this from time to time, don't we?
I wish I could write like Grace, talk like India and Jude, express my feelings more often.
Should I post this, probably not but fate takes a hand every so often.

Wednesday, 30 September 2015

Still Life

A small selection of the marrows and squashes we have managed to grow this year. They are always so attractive its seems a pity to eat them.

Friday, 25 September 2015


The flier for the next exhibition I am taking part in. My three pices are based around Criniods, the work had to be based on exhibits in the museum. I have shared close ups in previous posts but won't have any final images to show until the end of October.

Sunday, 20 September 2015

Monday, 14 September 2015

Bristol Whales and some weaving

Recently I passed these amazing whale sculptures in the Millenium Square in Bristol, the waves are made out of recyled plastic water bottles, read more about here -

 Last week I went on a wonderful two day course with the talented Susie Gillespie in
Devon Her work is a mix of fabric and tapestry weaving, this is the piece I made,
I have to say I am very pleased with it and have learnt lots of new techniques to incorporate into my own work.
There were four people on the course, one local woman and the rest of us stayed us stayed in
 beautiful accomadation in the barn. I would call Susie's style of decor minimalist rustic, anyway very 
comfortable with linen sheets on the beds and all mod cons.
Ok blogger is acting a bit strange, hope this all appears.

Thursday, 13 August 2015


I am feeling very industrious at the moment, its a good feeling but may not last long, it often doesn't especially as it involves lavender bags and another five chair covers.
Anyway today I have been making lavender bags, you need the patience of a saint and a high boredom threshold, this is just over an hour of work, all I could manage. The lavender is from my garden and is actually last years but still very pungent. This years will be made into more professional looking lavender bags and pillows which will be for sale nearer Christmas.

Tuesday, 11 August 2015

Calm sea and some sewing

 While sorting through my stash of dyed fabrics I came across two pieces that were almost big enough for tops so after a bit of manipulation of pattern pieces, fiddling around with fabric, shortening and thinning down I managed to cut out two tops, same pattern, slight difference in design due to manipulating the available fabric.
Top one had to have an added section in the back to make it wide enough which worked out quite well as a design feature.
Top 2 is shorter and has vents in the side per the original pattern. I cut this one out first in a size 12 which was too big so had to be altered with larger seams and extra darts. It seem Simplicity patterns are very generous, even the 10 is quite large.
Top 1 front

Top 1 back

Top 2 back - the right colour

Top 2 close up

Top 1 close up
Top 2 front

Sunday, 26 July 2015

Recovering chairs

Finished chair

Pad removed

Original cover looking the worse for wear

The fabric that I am using to cover these eight dining room chairs is now in its fourth house, having resided twice with me and twice with my Mum. They were originally curtains made for us when we lived in Dubai. They have since been unstitched, restitched and altered several times. One pair is still hanging in the dining room. The covers are made from another pair that were very short, after being altered for a smaller room and the others are being remade for my daughter's house, so that will be their fifth rehanging. Now that's what I call recycling.
Our furniture moves round between all our houses as well as our needs and space change, the chairs we had made, again in Dubai but the sideboard and table once belonged to my Mum.

Sunday, 19 July 2015

Chaim Potok

I would just like to say thank you to whoever's blog it was I was reading who recommended the book My Name is Asher Lev, its brilliant, I am now looking forward to reading the sequel. In the meantime I want to look up several of the Jewish references with which I am unfamilier. Having been for the last week in an area without internet I was unable to do this whilst reading the novel.

Friday, 10 July 2015

The dress

Lovely sunny day for the wedding, in fact the church was extremely hot so looking a little rumpled.

Thursday, 25 June 2015

Summer again and some sewing

We keep having glimpses of summer a few lovely days, hot or warm and then the cloud takes over and rain is forecast for tomorrow. These roses are beautiful they start out this rich yellow and then fade to yellow and pink. If I wasn't so lazy I would find out what they are called. My son gave them to my mum for christmas and couldn't understand why she wanted a plant that looked dead, we sent some photos.
Roses from my mums garden
Having finished the work for the exhibition I am now sewing a dress for my nephew's wedding in two weeks time. Its posh, morning suits for the men so I thought I ought to have a posh frock.
Patterns have changed so much since my early sewing days. Everything machine stitched, no facings, turn overs and hems sewn before the side seams. Had a lot of trouble dealing with the neckline just a 1cm turn over, I fear I have stretched the fabric but hopefully a good press will sort it. I have decided after just having done the armholes that less care actually works best, they worked quite easily. Also Vogue patterns seem to be made for very tall women, so had to take about five inches out of the length so hope it still looks like the original when finished.
Vogue pattern
Sixty pounds worth of fabric to cut, nerve racking but it would have cost a lot more to buy a dress like this. The fabric is not pink it is burgundy wine coloured
Silk Dupion
By the way for those of you living in the UK it was actually cheaper to send off to the States for this pattern, even with postage.

Wednesday, 17 June 2015

Pictures from an exhibition

My work
 The lighting wasn't great but here it is our exhibition in the Weston Quarry gallery.

The first day was a Sunday so not that busy but quite a bit of interest.
My work

My work and Liz Hewitt's vessels

My work

My work

Liz Hewitt's work and my weaving

Liz Hewitt's work

My weaving, Liz's eco dyeing

My eco dyeing Liz's prints and rust dyeing