Archives for category: Quilt fabric

I was tagged by Alex from underatopazsky, http://underatopazsky.wordpress.com a great source of encouragement and inspiration to me, I get a regular fix of looking at her work for real at Scunthorpe Embroiderers Guild. Its good to spend time with like-minded creative folk in reality and in blog land. Thank you all for hopping over from her site.

I also live in North Lincolnshire, in a village with woodland on the doorstep. Regular walks whatever the weather all the year round are a great source of inspiration for me. My blog name of debbidipity was chosen because of the way I dip into all sorts of art and craft techniques with varying degrees of success. I finished a B.A in Fine Art Practice at Hull School of Art and Design as a mature student last year.

1.What am I working on?

As usual several (many) different projects: quilts; embroidery; painting; canvas work; finishing off lots of small mainly Embroiderer’s Guild projects; decorating; sorting, filtering, re-arranging and tidying my work spaces; writing; preparation for a large mosaic; a few little books; plotting, planning and designing new work; several running sketchbooks.

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quilt inspired by woods

 

 

 

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old suitcase retrieved from Dad’s loft cleaned up

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vintage fabrics etc yet to be explored

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fabric washed ready to use for a quilt inspired by a stained glass lampshade

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designs with paper for above quilt design

 

2.How does my work differ from others of its genre?

I always have several projects on the go at a time, this keeps the ideas fresh and lets the work develop further, one thing leads to another and techniques from one media lend themselves to others. This transfer of skills across different media is what makes my work my own.

 

3.Why do I write / create what I do?

It’s just an integral part of me as far back as I can remember. I’m a doer, which isn’t to say I don’t think, but the thinking is best when my hands are busy too. When I see somebody else making something I want to have a go, not to copy what they are doing but to put my own slant on the process. It always has to be a challenge, part of the learning curve. I may make more than one of something (quilts for example), but everyone is different. Some of the things I make have a repetitive element to them, but this is good planning and problem solving time for other stages of the project or for another project entirely.

 

4.How does my writing / creating process work?

I don’t write a great deal other than “my pages” every morning, something I have done for many years now, since reading Julia Cameron’s The Artists Way. It sorts out my head, letting go of the dross, the trivia and trivial, processing things that are bugging or worrying me, which in turn helps make space for the creative things in my life. Some days the muse just flows and as I’m writing ways to solve the project in hand just end up on the page.

The creative process mainly works in a couple of ways. Occasionally I wake up with an image in my head of a finished piece. This may sound great but usually when this happens I have little or no idea how to execute them. Often my creative writing comes this way, but usually in the middle of the night with words chasing around my head, going round in circles until I jot them down, and once I have I go back to sleep, if I resist they just keep me awake.

A large felt sunflower piece came to me in this way. It was only the second piece of felting I had done, and by far the largest piece of work, other than a couple of quilts, I had taken on at this time. I had no idea how to make this piece but once I set up the pre-felted background 1 metre by 2 metres and had the fleece to hand it just flowed, and once it was hung in the pre-determined place it looked just as I had envisioned it.

 

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felted sunflowers

 

Far more frequently some “treasure” be it a leaf, a thread or a piece of quilting fabric will inspire me to create. Sometimes this is sketched, planned and designed before the process begins, at others I make a start not knowing whether it will end or how it will look. It evolves as I go along, analysing and assessing each stage as it progresses.

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ladybird fabric just had to go in my garden inspired quilt

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nearly finished garden inspired quilt

My nominated blogger is writer Lois Elsden, http://loiselden.com  She is as intrigued by words and their meanings as my language teacher husband. Lois has published several e-books and continues to write all day every day.

Also take a look at Jean Pierre  http://jpgraveur.com a french friend printer, he can’t take part in the blog hop, but well worth a look.

For some reason I have not been able to get into my blog in the last few weeks. Time has been pretty tight, and on the odd few occasions when I’ve tried to blog, it just wouldn’t work. Frustrating!

This is one of the things I’ve worked on and finally finished. It needed sequins and beads, lining and cording.

I used two different size gold sequins put randomly around the embroidery. I seen one or two others finished and realised that I needed to keep the sequins in quite tight to fit them on the front and to keep them away from the seam at the bottom.

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A selection of beads in the same  and toning colours as the stitching were used to anchor the sequins down.

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This lemon printed fabric came with the kit for the lining.

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Much as I like it, it wasn’t right with the colours of the embroidery and the design was too large.

The burgundy and gold from my rose window quilt worked much better. I used the burgundy for the french knots and beads for the flower centre.

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The embroidered piece was machine stitched to the lining with right sides together, leaving a small gap for turning through on one side which was hand stitched. The two sides were hand stitching together to make the back seam.

The same burgundy stranded cotton was used for  cording that edged the seams across the top and down the back.

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Detail of the corded back seam.

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The finished scissor keeper. The end of the cord made a tiny tassel at the bottom.

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While I was patiently (!) waiting for my canvas work to be thoroughly dry, I decided to pick up another UFO.

My first quilt. This was started in 1999. Yes, you read it correctly, and I really did start it 15 years ago. I’ve done the main part of it (I’ll post that another day). I’d abandoned it when it needed a lot of careful hand-stitching to applique the letters and numbers on it. Something more exciting must have distracted me, I’ve no idea what.

But as with many of my returned to projects I’ve learnt new skills in the interim that will improve the finished result. At Embroiderer’s Guild early in the year we had a talk and demonstration by Jean Proud of her Baltimore quilts. She showed us how to make an invisible stitch to applique with, I’m still trying to perfect it, but it’s an improvement on my earlier appliqued letters.

Back to the quilt – it’s a memory quilt of a holiday in Tucson, Arizona at Easter in 1999 with a very dear American friend, each patterned fabric telling part of the story. The patterned quilt fabrics were all bought in America. All that remains to be done is to finish off appliqueing the “Easter 1999” across the bottom. The letters were already made, a hundred plus 1 inch squares of paper with a 1 1/2 inch squares of soft green (the colour of the saguaro cacti) tacked round each square of paper, then invisibly joined together as the letters for “Tucson” and “Easter 1999”.

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The pile of letters ready to put across the bottom of the quilt.20140709-171729-62249711.jpg

The back of the letter “R”. This was the tricky one as I had to make two triangles to make it look like an “R”.20140709-171730-62250732.jpg

I recently bought a metre metal ruler and this proved invaluable when lining everything up, and centring it all. I used a water soluble pen to mark in my guide lines, working from my long age drawn out pattern.20140709-171730-62250193.jpg

Ready to start stitching. You can see a bit of the main part of the quilt, but I’ll show the rest when I’ve photographed it all.
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At the top you can just see part of the already stitched Tucson.20140709-171730-62250442.jpg

Although my first quilt is not finished yet, I must have made about 20 others all of which were finished relatively quickly.

Since I last posted we have had no phone and no internet for 3 weeks, then French twinning visitors (great fun) for a nearly week,  then just over a week in the Czech Republic (fantastic), a day at the Quilt Show at the NEC (inspiring) and then intermittent internet for the last week.

One of the French guys is a printer (http://jpgraveur.wordpress.com). His studio is fabulous and I’ve had the privelige of a tour around it twice now. He also helped me learn a bit more about how to blog on a rare internet connection, so hopefully this entry will look better than my first couple of posts.

The Czech Republic visit came about by inviting two Czech guys that were at university with our son for Christmas, as they weren’t going home. I couldn’t bear to think of them alone on campus and would hope that if our son was away from home someone would invite him for Christmas. They were both delightful guests, the only problem was they only came for a couple of days. Anyway we were all invited to visit the family of one of the lads for a few days after staying with him in Prague for a long weekend. His mum also quilts (she had admired one of my quilts on the back of the chair during a skype session). So I knew what to take as a pressie – quilting fabric.

The morning we were leaving for Prague I had an inspired idea: to take half of the fabrics I had ready to make the matching one she had admired. OK, OK. I’m always last minute, but the French had only left the previous morning and then I worked all day. Anyway, as usual I had far more fabric than I needed for one quilt, so to halve it all and to see how differently we each use it will be interesting and an incentive to get on with it. I have a few ideas but haven’t started it yet!

A selection of my half of the stash.