Sunday, March 30, 2008

English Patchwork - A "Filler"

When I finish a major piece like the one in the previous post, I quite often feel on such a high that I need something to bring me "down". I still need to stitch, so I usually look for something that I consider "mind numbing". The above piece of English Patchwork is just one of those types of pieces. The only thing I have to think about is choosing fabrics to put together. I have started a collection of these to one day put together into something usable. This is the second "flower" in the series, the first one is here, so the finished something might be a long time comming.

A Pulled & Drawn Piece

Today I made the final cut to my latest finshed piece. This is the piece that I started way back in December and was supposed to be like this. I showed a small snippet of it in January after I had discovered my mistake when I made a slight adjustment in design. This small adjustment led to the counting error & the fact that my border design would not fit. I had a great long list of things to try to fit into the resultant space & ended up with this Pulled work stitch. The fact that I was four threads out ruled out a lot of the things that I really wanted to do.

On the positive side, I have delved into the world of Pulled Work & I have learnt to check the whole design again after redesigning. Now the piece is finished, it may not be as I would have liked but it is finished, & now I can move onto the next piece which has yet to be designed. I think there might be a few "filler" pieces to keep me busy over the next few weeks.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

March TIF Challenge "And There Are Spots"

I Finished the March TIF Challenge yesterday. My inspiration came from the little spotty details on the insects that live in my garden. I rummaged in my fabric stash trying to remember the colour pallete & came up with these. There is some red felt, green satin (though it looks very blue here), three shot organzas (red with black, red with blue, yellow with pink) and a bright pink crystal organza.

I then layered strips of the satin & organza over the red felt taking care to overlap the pieces so I got the colour changes happening, finishing with a whole layer of organza.
This sandwich was then hooped & my basic "spots" were stitched. I then cut back through the top layer (reverse applique) to expose the colours underneath. I had to be very careful here as the fabric was still hooped & had to remain that way so I could then stich the outer section of my spots. The stitching had been digitized & if the fabric moved in the hoop then my outer spots would not cover the basic ones. This is the first time I have tried digitized reverse applique and it was my first time at playing with the textured edge feature of my program. A fun way to spend Easter Monday afternoon.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Deadlines, 2008 Personal Challeges Update & March TIF Thinking

Back in November I set my personal challenges for 2008. The year is ticking along, the deadlines are getting closer & my challenges are well & truely happening so I thought I would post an update.

The wedding is progressing. I have measured two bridesmaids & the bride, made the patterns for the bridesmaid's dress & made one toile. This has been fitted on one BM & changes have been put in order. This afternoon I will start the patterns for the wedding dress.

Quilt No 1 is nearly finished, just a little more quilting then the bind. Yippee! I am at the point that I am tired of working on it so I am glad the deadline is close. ( Only a few weeks.)

Quilt No 2 has fabric bought & washed ready for cutting but that is it. I have a design in mind but that may change. The recipient of the quilt knows how much work I have on & has gladly said it can wait untill the next big birthday. That would be in just over ten years time, so that will give me plenty of time to finish. Nothing like deadlines that move.

The piece of Reticella, yes well.......... we all know the story about that one. For those readers who don't, the story starts here. It has turned into a piece of counted thread work which is well on the way to being finished. It needs to be finished by April 14th for an exhibition. It may just make it.

The filet work has started. I have had a small play with the needleweaving, & linen stitch but that is all. I haven't really the time to play at the moment with so many other looming deadlines.

Then there is the TIF Challenge. I have managed to produce one for January & February. So far so good. I am not sure about March, other things that are higher priority are taking over. This month's challenge can be read here & I have managed to do a little thinking. At the moment I cannot get past the little things in my garden, like the grasshoppers, aphids, worms, spiders, ladybugs, butterflies, beetles, wasps, etc etc. Without these little things, the bigger picture of my garden would not function. They all play a part somehow, from airating the soil, to pollinating the plants, to eating predators.

The one thing that I have noticed about all these small creatures is that they all have spots in some way, shape or form. It might be spots for camouflage, spots for eyes, or spots for decoration. So maybe spots will be the theme for the March challenge.

Saturday, March 01, 2008

March TIF Challenge

The March TIF challenge is out over on Sharon B's blog. The above colour scheme is it, and the theme is all about paying attention to the small details.
I have been paying attention to the small details of my garden of late, like the weeds that have over-run all the plants because of all the rain we have had. So maybe the small details of my garden will be my inspiration for this month. Time will tell.