Hedgerow harvest

Hedgerow harvest

Friday, 22 December 2017

Merry Christmas sparrow.

Hope you all have a very Merry Christmas, a peaceful, relaxing time with laughter and fun with your nearest and dearest. Thanks for reading my blog and sharing my stitching journey. This sparrow is my Christmas card this year, a common, ordinary, brown bird from the garden that is everything but common and ordinary.

Wednesday, 20 December 2017

Looking back 2

 Some more winter work from my past. Winter footpath. Hand and machine embroidery on felt.
 Photos taken through the glass of the frame so a few funny reflections of colour here in the detail.

These winter seed heads also on felt - machine embroidery- lace applique, french knots and sequins.

Tuesday, 19 December 2017

Looking back.

 It's the usual bustle and busyness of Christmas preparations before the holidays and not much time for new stitching so I have been looking back at some older work. This one is gold machine embroidery on soluble fabric. It is sandwiched between 2 sheets of glass and framed that way. Created way back when I was making textile jewellery and little purses.

A couple of snowy landscapes and textures- both machine and hand embroidery.
This piece was a favourite so I kept it. I have kept the pieces that I thought were significant milestones and would shape future work. The New Year will probably bring further musings. Good luck with all your preparations. I am nearly there!   

Wednesday, 13 December 2017

Winter in the Enormous Field.

 This may be familiar if you are a regular visitor here ( thank you as always!) I started it earlier this year but now it is finished and in the right season and weather. This is the field beyond our garden that anyone can walk around and has so many changing faces. Bleak this time of year but usually interesting flock of birds around- redwings and field fares or sparrows or yellowhammers.
 I have used my own invented loop stitch. So, recently taking it out again after a long rest I backed it, added more running stitch footmarks around the edge - because it is very popular now with dog walkers- and stitched a little bright yellow green to lift the colour and refer to the peculiar colour that sometimes happens when the farmer sprays around the edges. ( yes I have put it in the furrows - poetic licence!)
I rather like the close up of the loops. It gives the 3d effect that photos tend to flatten.
P.S. snow here now turning to slush.

Tuesday, 12 December 2017

Snow in the Cotswolds.

 Sunday morning we woke up to this! It doesn't happen very often. It snowed all day.
 Our Lane under the snow.
 Yesterday it was sunny but cold.
Some blue sky over the hills. The school was closed and the children were out on their toboggans. This morning everything has frozen, our coldest night yet. The weather forecast says it is to get warmer today.

Saturday, 9 December 2017

Real live reindeer!

 Just had to share these with you! Oh the excitement at meeting a real live reindeer. So furry and soft to touch- furry antler too! They came to our local farm shop " Jolly Nice" last night.
 We were allowed to feed them lichen, imported from Finland. They were very gentle and well behaved with the tiniest of children ( and the grown ups ) carefully taking the food from our hands.

Well they need to feed up for the big night a couple of weeks ahead. Honestly, I was more excited than the children present. What a treat!

Wednesday, 6 December 2017

Leaves underfoot - finished!

 This piece finished at last! It seems like a long time because I have made other things between.( 24 x 30 cm)
 The photograph, taken at Newark Park on our Autumn visit, that I worked from.
And these are some of the sedimentary samples mounted onto pages for a book or a beginning at least. It always feels good to make a little progress especially when the days are short and cold. The bird cafe is very busy outside my window and that is good company when I am stitching.

Thursday, 30 November 2017

drawstring bags.

 I have been making some little drawstring bags to sell at The Guild at 51 for Christmas ( or any time!)

Sunday, 26 November 2017

Sedimentary layers - experiments in paper, fabric and thread.

 I took a little time off from the Seasons work to begin some experiments on the theme of sedimentary layers inspired by those cliffs and rocks I saw on holiday in Devon.

 Just playing around with some ideas with textures.

It's a great theme and good to go abstract for a while. Layers of rock beneath our feet, laid down over the centuries buckle and distort. Layers of meaning, layers of textures. Hoping to produce some work for an exhibition called Transformations : Earth Matters.

Tuesday, 21 November 2017

Back to Autumn leaves.

After a hectic weekend in London, I sat quietly with my Autumn leaves stitching calm and peace into the fabric. I have put a snail shell as the focal point for fragility and the spiral could also be a symbol of the turning of the seasons.

Thursday, 16 November 2017

Winter into Spring- birds fly in.

 Wrong time of year I know but .............. the swallows fly into Spring.
 Winter end.
Spring end. I have spent days on these tiny birds. They are a symbol of hope flying into the spring, migratory creatures flying in from warmer climes. I love our different seasons but the Winter can be long wet, cold and gloomy and the birds and splash of colour signals summer to come.

Monday, 13 November 2017

Machine Embroidery for cushions.

 2 pieces of embroidery that my sister, Jill, has made into cushions for me. I must have made these pieces 15 or 16 years ago and they have been in a suitcase for all those years waiting to have their day. She has given them life and colour.

Taken on a very cold and frosty morning but they had to be outside for the best light. Free machine embroidery with applique using various fabrics- felt, silk, shiny organza etc.

Wednesday, 8 November 2017

Stitching in the shadows.

 Hours later, more stitches, slow progress, working on the Winter end.
Stitches now spilling onto the background silk and french knot drifting into the branches.
A strip of calico painted with gesso or white acrylic paint to prepare ( it is stiff but I can still stitch into it), then mixed media- silk dyes, water colour paint, water soluble crayons and hand stitched with a variety of threads. Appliqued onto a white silk background. Painted strip is 14 inches x 4 ins. I am working it stretched onto a wooden frame.

Tuesday, 7 November 2017

Patches of colour between the trees.

Slowly adding hand stitching, enjoying the colours and ripples of shade and light between the trees.
Brighter Spring colours on the right, colder Winter colours on the left. The long thin format creates a story line. The slow change of the seasons.

Friday, 3 November 2017

Winter into Spring.

 Early morning in the studio, a tangle of threads and 'Winter into Spring' on the worktop. Misty morning. I have dangling bits of glass in the windows to try to stop the birds flying into the glass- always distressing.
Trying some stitches on this piece to see if they work. I painted this in March so about time I got down to working on it. Note my daylight lamp next to it, very necessary now and good to sit by for extra light ( especially if you get S.A.D. this time of year.)

Wednesday, 1 November 2017

Redwing in progress.

 My next bird is a redwing. Painted onto calico that already had some splodges of colour on because it is the back of a painting that wasn't successful.
 I put on some twigs with machine embroidery. Lots here to hand stitch.
 The redwings ( and fieldfares) come over here for the milder Winters and the berries.
 We see them passing overhead this time of the year and in mixed flocks in the fields, very occasionally in the garden on the fallen apples I put out. Not very many apples this year, I dare not tell the blackbirds. Last year we had enough stored to last all Winter. Well I can always buy them some.
This is a new printing block that I bought in May and have only just tried out. I love the pattern, so simple and so effective. I bought because it reminded me of the gate posts at Newark Park. I have printed a long strip to stitch as a quiet meditation piece.