Friday, 21 December 2012

Woodgrain and mountain path on silk viscose and linen.

Fabrics compared, linen and silk viscose satin. I like how differently the dye spreads on the cloth depending on the fibre it is made from.

The previous post is before and after photos. These ones are front and back.

Since breaking up for the holidays I've been trying out a few basic shibori techniques on linen and silk viscose satin. I used my indigo vat to dye them and I love the way it dyes. Most dying processes seem a little magic to me, but I've not used indigo before, and it has a special quality that I'd not realised previously. 

Some more fungus growing in my garden

Friday, 14 December 2012

University term is finished. I have a small indigo vat to play with, and lots of ideas. And my dissertation to finish writing. A lovely silk warp to dye, but not with indigo. And some hanks of silk bourette to colour as well. 
Christmas may be a little late for me this year as I have builders in, and my house is crazy disorganised and dirty to boot but it will hopefully be done by christmas eve when I shall light a candle and give thanks.
Blogging today, mainly to post the link to the Jake and Dinos Chapman exhibition at the nuca gallery. I went with a friend this afternoon and it's good, It reminds me, a little, of an exhibition of Odilon Redon prints that I saw at the Fitzwilliam in Cambridge a few years ago. Definitely worth a look if you are in or near Norwich.

Colouring book sketch

Saturday, 8 December 2012

This morning in my garden, I happened upon these beautiful, velvet-y fungi. I think they are called Ear Fungi, which kind of figures.

Saturday, 1 December 2012

A few images from my last project, small stitch and dye samples. I wanted to see how I could change a piece of cloth using these simple processes. I really liked how the stitch altered the fabric so completely, not just visually, but physically too. And sewing with different fibres and using cross dying, over dying, tie dying and devore I am beginning to find out how many colours I can get using simple processes.

Saturday, 24 November 2012

Last night I went to see Matthew Bourne's new ballet, Sleeping Beauty. It was utterly wonderful, if you get a chance go and see it. It was entrancing from start to finish, a really lovely re-telling of the story. I have a bit of a passion for fairy tales. And the dancing and costumes and set were just great. I particularly loved the fairies. I have come home really inspired and feeling lit up inside. 

Heres a link to an interview with Matthew Bourne from the bbc, which also has a little bit of footage from the ballet. 

Friday, 23 November 2012

All my uni project work handed in, so I'm chilling with some music. Thank you you tube and spotify. This little animated video lifted my heart, gentle and quiet, very, very lovely.

Friday, 16 November 2012

I've just handed in my written work for uni, and anticipating the need for a celebration of that, and my birthday a few weeks ago, I had bought tickets for myself and a friend to see Atelier Lefeuvre and Andre at the Garage. 
There were two pieces, mostly contained within in a small, square room, with a television as a major prop. They were performed by Didier Andre and Jean Paul Lefeuvre, who I think would be described as clowns. The first was this, a quietly told story about life, and love perhaps. And the second was this, a more athletic exploration of the world. 
It's too easy to stay home on wintry nights, if I had, I'd have missed these guys, and they were both brilliant from start to finish. 

Monday, 12 November 2012

This quote came from a book I'm reading for my research report for uni, it made me smile 

"Words are like living organisms, they evolve to match the expressive requirements of those using the language." 
Andrew Juniper  "Wabi Sabi the japanese art of impermanence"

Sunday, 4 November 2012

I've been making little collagraph prints, and this is one of the print blocks, before rinsing the ink off.

Friday, 2 November 2012

A scratchy tune, and I'm not usually a fan of opera, but I heard this half an hour back and loved it. The animation on this little film is exquisite. And I think the rough sound at the beginning, kind of fits perfectly. 

Thursday, 1 November 2012

My weaving is off the loom now, I think I have over a dozen 6 inch square samples using different yarns to inform my next weaving design. Today I plan to write up my notes on each sample and then I'll need to be brave and wash and finish them.

I began by looking at making loops and pile. Then I was observing how the colours changed and intensified as they crossed. And finally, trying out a satin, I got these rather nice stripes, which folks seem to like.

Saturday, 27 October 2012

Near to where I live, there is an underpass which is used by graffiti artists. The work changes regularly and is well done. But I quite like to look at little bits in detail. The other day I passed thru' and there was a very beautiful paint effect, which I'm guessing will be covered over soon if not already.

Earlier in the year I took some photos of the lights which had been covered in paint. These have now been cleaned by the council.

Tuesday, 16 October 2012

Just beginning to weave, the two warps are spun silk 2ply, both are 40 e.p.i. I'm trying out velvet and plush, all very experimental but I quite like it so far. 

Sunday, 14 October 2012

I'm researching for my 3rd year essay, this is beautiful.

On our way home we passed an interesting looking barn/cafe, so we turned around and went back for a pot of tea for two and a bowl of ice-cream each.

The coffee shop was called Poppylands and is well worth a visit if you happen to be passing. The ice-cream was delicious, and there was a small, quite eccentric gift shop above the cafe.  

The sun was shining yesterday at Horsey Gap. I have a love affair with shadows, and those tiny tender moments that are very easy to miss. I often leave my camera behind but I was with a friend who also photographs, so here are a few small shadows.

Saturday, 6 October 2012

Been back at uni for a week now, we have a lovely studio space, light and warm, with windows looking out onto the river right next to it. There's been so much to take in my eyes feel like they are going round in circles, but I'd like to stay grounded and quiet inside, so I'm really trying to hold my centre. 

Last year we didn't really have individual desks which meant our studio often got untidy and difficult to work in. This year we have been given plenty of space and a desk each and the mood is more upbeat, I think, as a result.

I am using British Butterflies and Moths as the starting point for my project work this year and spent several delightful days at the Castle Museum study centre, drawing and photographing butterflies and moths.

The collections I have been drawing from date back to the beginning-middle of the last century. I think that historical context is important to me. I Have also been looking at some beautiful photographs of living butterflies published on the internet, on sites such as and

Saturday, 29 September 2012

Yesterday, I spent a gentle day, learning to make an A-line skirt. I have no dressmaking skills and I'm not really competent on a sewing machine, so it was quite challenging. The day workshop began with cutting a pattern, adapted from pre-made blocks to fit our measurements. I've never done anything like this, but always wanted to, and it is difficult learning a new skill, but the teachers Sue Maton who runs the Mercerie  and Pat were patient and very helpful, and we all went home with a skirt that needed not much more than finishing touches to be ready to wear. I feel that although I am far from being able to make my own clothes, I have begun to make tracks along that way, and I am looking forward to attending the next workshop with Pat and Sue. 

Dressmaking workshop, little girls dresses

Sunday, 16 September 2012

And lastly september seeds and berries from the Shropshire hedgerows. Hawthorn, rosehips, snowberries, a sloe and a rose gall. And willowherb and scabious seeds. 

Lovely rolling Shropshire countryside.

Summer is drawing to a close. The air is just a little nippy at nights, and the hedgerows are full of seeds and berries. The cornfields are mostly gathered in and baled. And the schools and colleges and universities are back in business. 
I've just spent a last summer holiday in Shropshire, which I've not visited before. The countryside was beautiful, rolling hills and fields, bathed in light, and quiet, but for the birds and insects, and farm animals, cows and sheep mainly.

Saw so many buzzards they almost became common place, their call was the sound of the week, haunting, ethereal, wonderful.

Saturday, 15 September 2012

I saw Breakfast at Tiffany's for the first time last week, and now I can't get this song out of my head, lovely.

Thursday, 6 September 2012

Last few weeks of the summer holidays. There's a nip in the air in the morning and evening. And the hedgerows are full of seeds and berries.

These photos were taken on a good walk from Sheringham station (Norfolk), along the beach to East Runton, and back inland through woodland and along the cliffs back to the station and home. A wonderful day shared with my son.