Saturday 28 August 2010

Questing for Colour

There's been some much needed rain this last week, so I went outdoors to see if my plants had been re-invigorated. They have. After so much singed yellow, I never complain when it's raining now.  I especially love this image of a white camellia nestled in amongst the wet branches.
I think it would work so well as a wall quilt.

Even the pavement looks alive

I love the contrast of stone and green

This is also a favourite and has made it into my 'colour files'       The blending is perfect! 

I like the texture here

Even the yellow bruising is in tone harmony
So often when I'm stuck for colour pairings, I like to see what nature has done. It always inspires me and gets me thinking of new combinations. This is usually enough to get me over any colour dilemna. Readers of my blog will know that colour is something I am always exploring : working with it, harmonising it and especially selecting the right 'tones'

What do you do?

Tuesday 24 August 2010

Hip to be Hexagon

As a woman with more UFOs than I like to admit, I probably don't need any more hobbies. This time of year brings out the chetter in me, it's the season for a warm wool blanket. And a crochet blanket is something you just can't buy (well, not easily at least.) My rules are that it has to be useful, beautiful and (most of all) something I can pick up and put down whenever I want. Something than can be bundled into a bag without too much fuss. Here is my Crochet WIP...

Before starting a new crochet blanket, I like to work out a sample block first to see if I like it. I do. I think it's really sweet and a nice variation on the granny square (which is also on my list). Here I've worked it in a left over green wool. It will be in 3 colours: the centre flower, the flower petals and surrounding leaves.

This is my colour inspiration at the moment. This project takes 40 balls of wool and I havent commited yet, but I'm considering this cherry pinkish hue with glossy darkish leaves... I am currently on the lookout to see if I can find some wool to match.

 These colours just speak to me. Such vibrancy. I can imagine throwing out this blanket on a cold evening and being delighted with it again and again... This pic is from my 'colour files.' When I stumble across beautiful images, I picture them for later reference. When I saw these camillia's in bloom I just knew I'd want to remember these colours at a later time.

The best thing about this block? It takes 15 minutes to work up. Yes, 15 minutes. At that rate, I can chet one each evening for just 2 months and have a beautiful work to show for it at the end. Mini projects that add up. I like them!

Do you have a favourite knitted / chetted piece? or a WIP?

Friday 20 August 2010

Danni finishes In The Pink!

I do believe that Danni from Germany is the first to finish In The Pink.

Phew Danni, you must have been working overtime! I actually received this pic from Danni in my inbox on Tuesday, so she has been very speedy.

I love a quilter who finishes what she starts....I could use some of that vim myself!

How are you progressing with block 5? I know a lot of you have printed out this pattern over the months to make at a later date. As a quilter with a UFO list longer than my arm, may I suggest that there's no time like the present???

Wednesday 18 August 2010

Spring Cleaning the Studio

Thanks to SeaBreeze Quilters who took my Tulip Delight Table Runner workshop this past weekend. Each time I teach this table runner, I just want to get stuck in and make one myself! I had a great time teaching the talented ladies in Altona.

Here is a pic of me preparing the paints ahead of the class. It's a messy business and it's also that time of year when I think about clearing out any 'non essential' supplies in my studio.

Spring Cleaning Time is the only time of year that I suddenly become attached to things I havent used in I don't often part with as much as I should. My DD's have loudly suggested a major throw out. But I don't know if I'm up to it. If feels like I need 'everything'.

What works for you?

I have also updated my workshop 'trolley' as my trusty old model died the night before. Luckily my DH went out and found me a replacement.

Sunday 15 August 2010

Block 5 is launched

This month ITP comes together as you work the centre applique panel. It's an intensive and rewarding block.

I've been lucky enough to see the first 'finished' ITP, how is your's looking?

You can download this block from my website

Wednesday 11 August 2010

Great Work Danni!

 I Love It!

Here's the first finished picture of In The Pink which I have seen and it belongs to Danni from Germany. Her blog is here:

So I always say this, and now I have to say it again: a great part of sharing patterns is seeing them come to life in ways I would never have imagined myself.

Danni selected colours which I would not have used...except that now I see the finished result (which I love!) and it has again taught me to expand my own colour selections. I love these colours, she saw them working together when I would not have. And they do work.

It's super! I was so happy when I received my email from Danni with her pic, she's made a beautiful quilt top.

And of course, for everyone else taking part in In The Pink, the 15th is fast approaching and this month in the 5th installment, you will be making the centre tulip blocks. I think this is the most exciting part of the quilt and I have saved this best bit for last. This is a pic of my centre and the blocks you will be putting together this month.

This 5th installment released for free on the 15th, is the largest block so far.

I'm looking forward to seeing more finished ITP's in the coming weeks.

How is your's coming along?

Monday 9 August 2010

A dose of William Morris does the trick

Yesterday I brushed away my creativity cobwebs with a Michele Hill Workshop. I am so glad I did.

Runing so many workshops myself, it was so nice to be a student for once! Such luxury!

Michele Hill is of course, a fellow devoted fan of William Morris and has just published her second book focusing on WM inspired applique. She is also featured in this month's Inspirations Magazine (one of my favourite magazines!). There's also her fabric range, patterns and of course, workshops. A visit to her blog is a must because I simply cannot do justice to her work in just a few words.

This is a pic of what I worked on in the workshop. The design is inspired by a detail from "The Forest Tapestry' designed by William Morris 1887. Although I havent done much, just sharing our experiences along with this great pattern was pleasure enough.

Happily, I stash busted for this workshop. I found an old print from Nancy Crow. I love how the colours wonderfully swirl on the tail. Currently the background is the new Miss March's Collection but I may yet change it (of course). Thinking of maybe a dark blue background? I will investigate the original and see how I can do most justice to the era.

I am not sure where this piece will take me. It's supposed to be a 'bell pull', but knowing myself well enough, it may yet turn into a cushion, table runner or wall hanging. My DD is actually working on a William Morris tapestry (Strawberry Thief 1881) so I may co-ordinate when I see the finished results.

Being as generous as she is, Michele Hill also gave away a lucky draw  - and I was pulled out from the basket of names! I was really pleased as I never win any lucky prizes. What a treat. The pattern was this pic featured right - it's called Springtime. Oooh something more to do, and I can't wait!
I'd better polish up my skills to do the pattern justice.
Thanks Michele...will keep you posted on my progress.

In other news, I am eagerly awaiting several postal deliveries. The postman on our street is being tardy again. I had just adjusted to receiving my mail every 2nd day as well as having it rescued and re-delivered from my neighbours mail boxes... and now it's suddenly gone quiet again. Don't postal workers get training?

There's fabric expected: yes I know I am commited to stash busting, but I have a few new designs that call for fresh prints so I had to shop online. I am also expecting some great books from The Book Depository.

Hopefully some packages arrive tomorrow...

My Fabric Wish
I have been dreaming of the following type of fabric. It seems I am forever looking...and still wanting.
The type of fabric I am looking for is a background fabric:

  • Charcoals
  • Indigos
  • and not quite orange with tiny specks of blue
  • Ivory with very feint specks of blue and grey
brush strokes, or a mottled wall but too mottly, a washed out stroked milk brushed wood

Am I dreaming? Does this background range exist? Or do I have to do it myself??

I wish designers would give us more depth and character in our 'simple colours' so we can applique it to our heart's content.

All this talk of William Morris has reminded me of what I am really after from my fabrics (we often have to 'make do' to match our ideas, don't we?)

I think I was born in the wrong era! All my Art Nouveau and Arts and Craft's devotion is just a symptom.

Ok, back to the real world (and my dishwasher)...

Tuesday 3 August 2010

Lists of things TO DO

I'm having one of those days. I have so much to do that I can't find any motivation to buckle down and do any of it!

It should be a pleasure, but it all feels like a chore. I'm bored with all my fabric and annoyed that my computer skills don't match my 'visions'.

I am spending the rest of today reading and RE-reading the EQ7 book and hopefully I will come through it feeling more positive about finishing some UFO's and commiting some sketches into design.
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