This blog should be called "The Adventures of a Fabric Junkie!". I am passionate about fabric, threads, colours and textures. I can record my crazy quilting, sane quilting, embroidery and everything else that I consider important in my life.

Photo shows my block for the Hurricane Katrina fund-raising quilt "All That Jazz".

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Farewell Pugsley

I feel so sad to say goodbye to Pugsley tonight but he was over fifteen years old, had heart problems and lately, fluid on the lungs which made it very difficult for him to breathe. He has suffered a lot the last few days and I'm sure he will be glad of the release from the stress at last. He has gone to join our other gorgeous dog Winnie who used to look after Pugs when Pugsley was younger. Winnie died two years ago aged fourteen and a half. Here's a photo of our lovely boys, Winnie (short for Winston) and Pugsley. When I stop crying long enough, I'll get myself a stiff drink and try to remember the good times, of which there were thousands. Here they are,Winnie on the left, Pugsley on the right.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Fibres for Paper Making

I arrived home from work today to find a yummy looking big parcel on the kitchen bench. I bought a lot of mixed fibres on eBay from Teresa Simons of Mountain Shadow Ranch. The photos just don't do these beautiful soft fibres justice, especially the Mystery Batt. My mystery batt which Teresa had called "Wizard's Magic" contains several different black and grey fibres (no two of her mystery batts are the same mixture) intertwined with vivid sparkly hot pink, turquoise, purple and gold Angellina fibres. I also bought a bag of Dragon Waste which come in the most gorgeous colours and also a bag of "Forest Green" Angellina Fibres. I am really thrilled with my booty and can hardly wait to start making fabric now. I remember buying wool tops before but these are from Cotswold sheep and are soooooooo soft!

When I did the silk paper making workshop with Judith Pinnell and Nancy Bellesteros several years ago, I remember laying the fibres one way (north - south), then a second layer over the top of the first at right angles (so east - west) and finally a third layer in the same direction as the first. Then we manipulated the fibres with the textile medium. It made a lovely fabric about the thickness of lightweight felt.

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Close-up of Angel's dress

This photo is a close-up of the broderie anglaise embroidery on the bodice. It is a creamy colour and not stained yellow as in the photo, I think the reflection is from the yellow wall (which will be a lovely colour called "Double White" tomorrow). This whole christening dress was hand-sewn, all the seams, the feather stitching trims and the lace. Once upon a time, it was a gorgeous garment but unfortunately, 100+ years plus some rough play by children dressing dolls resulted in some stains, little tears in the fragile cotton fabric and some stitching around the neck being undone.

Not to worry, I manage to dress this doll plus there is enough fabric and lace left to make another outfit for a smaller doll or teddy so I think I got my value for the couple of pounds that it cost me. I love working with old fabrics and vintage laces, they look and feel so much nicer than the modern ones.

Ugly Angel cloth doll

Today was one of those quiet Sundays when everbody was busy doing their own thing around the place. Eddie spent most of the morning taping the door frame, skirting boards and window in the bedroom in preparation for painting the walls tomorrow then in the afternoon he framed a print of his favourite railway engine "Hull City". Pippa spent the afternoon busy at the computer downloading images of galleons and underwater creatures because she is painting her brother a picture for his birthday next week and needed some reference sketches. I decided to cut up an old, stained, torn, antique christening gown which I bought in England for a song due to the horrible condition of the garment and make an ugly Angel doll to hang on the wall.

It was great to use all the best bits of the christening gown including some wonderful hand-embroidered broderie anglaise and tiny featherstitching on the bodice and also some of the tucked skirt bottom with another hand-embroidered broderie anglaise edging. The embroidery is so fine, even the buttonhole stitched scalloped edge is gorgeous. I cut out the bodice for the doll leaving it attached to the skirt so that I could use the lovely even gathering at the waist and the featherstitched border. I tea-dyed the doll but not the dress and used some ghastly silk thrums for the hair. When I finished the doll, she was hanging around looking a bit lost so I made her a stuffed heart and covered it with very vintage Mother-of-Pearl buttons. Anyway, she is hanging on the wall with her ugly face, her beautiful dress and her button heart. Not a bad effort for a boring old Sunday......