Thursday, 31 March 2016

Ramshackle: Country Community

Ramshackle: Country Community

h-109cm x w-89cm
Part of my series of Ramshackle houses about neighbourhood and community. This piece recognises the rural community. Distances and even differences do not matter when someone is in need of a neighbourly hand.

Interesting to see the difference with Ramshackle Villages, which uses the same fabric backing. Because the houses start bigger here, I think the lines can be discerned easier, so I didn't have to do anything to knock back the print. I considered colouring the sky, but wasn't happy with the colours I tried and decided it is fine as it is. it submitted a day before the deadline!

Wednesday, 30 March 2016

Ramshackle: Country Community

Just a quick post. The new Ramshackle is finished and submitted, but I have had a head all day and now it can no longer be ignored.
So, just a detail.

Also very saddened that a dear friend has gone. I will miss her encouraging comments here about my work. Glad that she was my guest at the fashion show last year. But I will miss setting up the SAQA exhibition with her each year.
Farewell Maggi. Tears I guess because I was just discovering how special she was.

Sunday, 27 March 2016

And the bead keeps going on and on... 20-26 Mar

Week 12 March 2016


change to third set of bugles





switch to the gold bead accent

Saturday, 26 March 2016

Ramshackle: Country Community

All the pieces laid out, trimmed, and fused.

As you might have recognised. This is the same fabric as Ramshackle Villages. Somehow this time the print is not bothering me. But I need to hang it up on my cupboard and see how it looks before I decide on using crayon to knock back the print.

I really, really need some way to raise my work table. My back has been protesting dreadfully at leaning over and positioning wee pieces of fabric.

Friday, 25 March 2016

New Ramshackle started

This one will be about community in the country or rural neighbourhoods.

If I can get it done in time, I will submit it for Wide Horizons V, the regional SAQA biennial exhibition.
If not, then Festival of Quilts?

Monday, 21 March 2016

And the bead keeps going on and on... 13-19 Mar

Okay, the beads went on, but the weekend had one or two too many things in it for me to get time to post them. So, here are the delayed bits for the past week.

Week 11 March 2016




switch to the silver bead accent




Wednesday, 16 March 2016

Cuff 'em

Eventual progress on wardrobe...3 days to do 6 cuffs sets.
Basically, the continuous bound plackets take more time than you would think. Especially when I hadn't added them to my break down list.

But here are the dresses and blouses ready for hand work. I like to hand stitch things like cuffs, waistbands, collars and etc after stitching and turning to inside.

As you can see collars are to come. But I need to work out the fit. I have lost a little of that medicine weight gain, so may need to trim a bit from the CF before adding the button stands. (I added a little there after finding the last set of blouses were just a bit snug over the tum. Now they aren't. Hurrah!)

Continuous bound plackets and cuffs now can be done in the dark. Or something.

Sunday, 13 March 2016

And the bead keeps going on and on... 6-12 Mar

Week 10 March 2016
switch to the gold bead accent





change to second set of bugles


Saturday, 12 March 2016

ticking over

I am still here. Just dealing with too many headaches this week. If not at the start of the day, they come later. So, by the end of the day, I haven't been too motivated to find something to blog about.
However, I am making good progress with sewing the wardrobe.

Also this week, I started working with the daughter of a friend who is getting married. She brought her dress and I am going to do a few alterations for her.
Including working out a bustle so she can dance in it in the evening. The train is pretty heavy. After some time, we got something near enough to what I will make it so she could see how it would look.
Yes, it will be even and the buttons done up over the zip! She also wants the 'eyelashes' on the lace edge trimmed off. I think you can just about see them at the bottom of the train.
I haven't seen her for ages, but she has turned out to be a very lovely girl. I won't show you the whole dress as she wants to keep it fairly secret/

And then today I spent a few hours at the an Easter Fair at the community centre, organised by the local councillors. It was mostly a craft fair, but I had a table with a few of the pieces from the TVCT Worn Threads exhibition.
work from left to right - Mavis Roles- 'A Fading Bloom', Annie Hamilton- 'Ten Thousand Apples', Mavis Walker- 'The Blue Toddler' and my 'Seams' wax paper piece.
As I had these pieces with some of the others stored here, I thought it might be a good plan to take them! No catalogues sold, but there were several people interested in the group. Since we meet at the community centre, I thought it might be good to interest local people.
The stand must have been interesting as the Mayor decided he needed a photo along side of it! So I got them to take one with my camera, too.

An extra thank you to my friend who showed up just when I really needed some help!

Sunday, 6 March 2016

And the bead keeps going on and on... 28-29 Feb 1-5 Mar

Week 9 February and March 2016



All of February's beaded fabric squares

Beginning the beaded tassels for March.
Design development work was posted here.

I quite liked the idea of using daffodil colours for March.






Saturday, 5 March 2016

a little selfish sewing

I wanted to fill a few gaps in my wardrobe. I haven't much by way of clothing that works for in-between winter and summer. I started some last year, but only got so far when my brother died. Okay, I could finish off some of those blouses and the black linen skirt. But instead I decided to go along with this year's Pattern review wardrobe.

Because it is 2 months this time, I worked out a plan to sew clothes 2 weeks in Feb and then finish the Refugees. Then sew 2 weeks in March (hopefully finishing the garments) and then work on a possible entry along the same lines for Wide Horizons V. But let us keep in mind that they want you to do 10 garments and I don't sew knits. I am not signing on the dotted line until I know I can do it. This will become important in the story, so hang in there.*

Okay. Here were most of the fabrics I had out to choose from to start. I decided to get a bit of colour in there, but the black and white can go with other things I have.
A few on the left side were deselected because of the amount of fabric needed for what I thought they might like to be. I was able to get 9 garments to the point where the main body was complete by the finish of the 2nd week in Feb.

Required: 2 bottoms (skirts, trousers, etc.)
As of today, I have two red skirts to the point where they need the waistband stitched down and then after trying them on, the hem taken up.
red cotton moleskin is flared gored and dark red corduroy is trumpet style.

Required: 2 tops (blouse, shirt, etc)
I have 4 blouses to the point that they have all the vertical seams and/or darts done. Not a little amount of work, I tell you.
Photos when they look better!

5 your choice:
Along with the extra 2 blouses,
3 dresses. one with cap sleeves done and needs hem. The fabric isn't in the photo above. It is a burgundy with small flower print.
one with sleeves about to be done, but needs cuffs and hem
one to the point of vertical seams. This should be lined, but may be an after thought!
Photos when I get the sleeves in at least.

Required: 1 topper
1 jacket not cut - had to change plans because I realised I was thinking cap sleeves and nearly all the blouses/dresses have long sleeves and my gorgeous silk velvet remnant won't do. But I have just the right amount of a black velvet offcut someone gave me.
This should be lined, but also may be an afterthought.

*The bit of the story that goes with not signing up I heard my dad has fallen again. Broke his leg below the knee. They are waiting to hear from the surgeon as to when he can go to the big hospital for surgery. As it happens, both my sisters are there, as my sis from Alaska is visiting, and my sister's son was staying overnight with mom and dad. So, my mom had someone there last night when dad fell.

This leg is the one that he fell and the hip was broken around Easter last year and they had to do a partial hip replacement because he carried on a week with pain killers then asked his doc for something strong and carried on another week before my mom made him go to hospital.
This leg is the one that he fell and the thigh bone was broken just after Father's day because he was using his walker to hang onto while bending down to get wood.
My son said they should just give him a wooden leg so they don't have to worry about it any more!

So, today, while waiting for word about Dad, putting in a sleeve in a floppy viscose fabric was a good distraction. Whether I can deal with the tension and the sewing for the rest of the time, I don't know!

Wednesday, 2 March 2016

Developing bead tassels for March -and creating a new word?

On my plan for the year for my daily bead project, I am doing beaded tassels and then the little fabric squares on alternate months. However, I am not keeping the tassel pattern the same each month. That would be too easy boring!

No, really I decided I wanted to develop different tassel designs. I sketched out several ideas. After all, I would only need 6, and I have already done one month.

So, March and time for the tassel for March. What I didn't realise is that this challenge to myself would be so stretching.
I will let the photos speak.

I thought to do 3 pieces dangling from the top part. I used beads that would go with, but are not exactly matching the rest of the month.
First thought... the little dark bead needs to come into the bottom section of the tassel, too.

Second thought...not sure I like the uneven hanging. The bottom bit/string/tass * (?) to the left is actually meant to be hanging from the middle because the short tass to the right is the bottom.

Try adding a tass from the other green set between the bugles.
Third thought...Well, that is just awkward. Like some running man.

Try balancing the top tass and the middle tass with companion tasses.
Fourth thought...Okay, we have lost the simplicity I was trying to go for with one 'string' that has a few tasses hanging off.

And besides, I might run out of the green and yellow crystals I want to use.
Fifth thought...Ah yes, this is better.
and oh, hang it on a pin? Also looks more tassel-like.

And so there you have a story of development;

*a new word. Tass (Better than saying bit, piece, string, whatever and totally confuse us all.)

and I might still run out of the yellow and green crystals I have chosen (come back Sunday!), but I can use the type I have here if I can't find more.
Because this 'sample' will become the bead for March 31. For January I put the sample at the beginning, but then me and numbers...well I kept losing track and having to get them all out of their little pot and count them again! (Have I made 18 or 19?)

Tuesday, 1 March 2016

Refugees - finished

I actually wasn't sure what to call this piece when it came to it. But as I have been saying 'the refugee piece' or similar when I talk about it, I realised that 'Refugees' says enough and lets the viewer think about what it means.

So here it is.

h-58.5 w-26.5 in.
h-148.5 w-67cm.

Put yourself in her place. No home left. The best of what she rescued has been taken. Unmentionable trauma. Loss or death of family members. Walking day after day... to where? Where is food? Where is water? And what will happen then? Will it be safe? Will she return? Will there be anything left to return to?

Various stitched marks and raw fraying are used to depict the turmoil going on inside of a refugee.

Materials – cotton British muslin, thread
Techniques – rust dyed, fused, frayed edge reverse machine appliqué, hand stitch

and another detail

For this particular entry, one sided is what they want. I haven't climbed on chairs pinning and unpinning to photograph the other side yet. I took the day off to catch up the bead project.

I am not sure the photos are the best - the top photo colour is accurate. But if the work is not required for SAQA's Turmoil (and Tranquillity) exhibition in November, then I will enter it for something else. I have an idea of how to expand the idea and perhaps develop it for another call for entry that is looking for large or unusual work.