Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Heat transfer dyeing

I'm tutoring a Dispersal dye workshop in May. I've had these dyes mixed for ages so needed to test them in case I have to re-stock. They are still fine but some will need topping up. I used a fern as a resist when transferring from painted paper to the fabric. The same leaf can be used many times and it picks up colour which also then transfers.

The dyes can be applied in layers, especially if you want to tone down the colours which can be very bright. Below: yarn as a resist

Wednesday, April 02, 2014

Some thermofax printing

 These prints are over the top of  previous sample pieces, now I think they are usable fabrics with some depth from the layering. The small hand drawn circles were my first thermofax screen - still holding up well. The larger circles are more recent screens.

Below: my print table cover - it's starting to look interesting. Must do something with it!

Sunday, March 30, 2014


We've just returned from 2 week's holiday in Tasmania. The photos are from 2 gardens we visited in Hobart and Deloraine. I have a bit of a thing about cactuses, love these ones in their pots.

We had a great time, rented a car and saw parts of Tassie that we missed last time, including Ross, Bruny Island and the Great Lakes. We made sure we were in Hobart on Saturday for the famous Salamanca markets where I found a few things to buy.

It's good to be home again - I've been doing some printing today, will post pics next time.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Sculpture by the Sea 2014

Monday we made our annual visit to Sculpture by the Sea, Cottesloe, which is always worth seeing. You can see it was a beautiful day - not too hot and we also had a delicious fresh fish lunch at the Cottesloe Hotel. These are my collection of photos - I haven't added most of the artists names but if you want more info, go to the website here.

Above: by Kerrie Argent who is guest speaker at WAFTA soon.

Crocheted rhino by Mikaela Castledine who was a winner last year.

On the way to Cottesloe we saw another fantastic exhibition 'The Importance of Being a Stick' by Christine Atkins (invitation front below) it's at Linton & Kay Galleries, Subiaco until 23rd March. Her work is exquisite - highly recommend.

Saturday, March 08, 2014

New Toy

This is my new Brother Scan n Cut machine. I bought it a couple of weeks ago - had been thinking about it for a while, then received a 40% off voucher from spotlight so that made my mind up! I've played with it a little, cutting paper, card stock and drafting film - so far, I really like it. I bought a fabric cutting mat so that is the next thing I'll try.

There is a new post on the Designing Women Blog today - some great work to see HERE.

Friday, we had a lovely lunch with family at Genesis in the Hills vegetarian café to celebrate DH's birthday. Our daughter Kathleen is now running this business and is doing a great job. There are still the delicious cakes, breakfasts, lunches, coffee & fresh juices, art exhibitions and monthly live jazz.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Quilt and a sketchbooking online course.

This is my quilt, Roses are Red... made for 'Living Colour' but not selected again (detail below) Oh well - try again next year! The main red fabric is wool, screen printed with thickened acid milling dyes. The print was from my charcoal drawing which I made into a photographic stencil. The rose leaves were printed with a thermofax screen while the green fabric at the bottom was sun printed then over printed with the rose leaves. The red cloque rose buds were appliquéd on and the whole quilt was machine quilted.

Foe the last couple of weeks I've been doing an online workshop with UK artist Dionne Swift called Developing Sketchbooks. I've really enjoyed working through the video lessons and interacting with the other students via a private facebook group. I would definitely recommend the workshop and Dionne as a tutor. It was a bit expensive - the exchange rate is not great for us - but I found it really worthwhile. It will be a useful method of developing ideas for future work.

A couple of photos of my work from Developing Sketchbooks
I've done a new post on the Designing Women blog - check it out here

Tuesday, February 04, 2014

A little gelli plate printing

I had a quick printing session in the studio this morning before it got too hot. I also bought a Getting Started with the Gelli Plate mini workshop from Julie Fei Fan Balzer which I thought was worthwhile and good value. I watched most of it last night but will need to watch it again to absorb it all. You get unlimited access to these. I've also done one on deli paper.

These are my prints from today. I used liquitex basics acrylic paints and mediums and printed on watercolour paper, deli paper and manila folder card. 

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

new journal pages

A couple of new pages - above is done with water soluble crayons - below left: print, stencil, paint etc. Right: tissue and other papers collaged in, painted and drawn over, metallic wax added.

I finished and entered my quilt for 'Living Colour' - whether it will be chosen is another thing all together! At least we don't have to wait very long to find out.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Dyeing day

Yesterday I dyed the fabric for the back of my quilt - while I had the colours mixed, I dyed a lot of smaller pieces too cottons, linen, velvet as well as some pieces of lace and ribbon. (above) Close up pics below. I used Azoic dyes which are very quick - only a couple of minutes in each dye bath and you can get lovely markings with them.

I've done 2 new pages (see tabs at the top of this blog), The first is a page showing most of my designs for thermofax screens, the other is a tutorial on the care and use of thermofax screens. I would like to know if you think my instructions are clear enough to follow or if you have any questions I didn't cover. Would appreciate any feedback.
Welcome to any new followers - I like to receive comments!

Monday, January 13, 2014

Hot Hot Hot!

Much cooler today - to everyone's relief, but we've had a couple of days 44 and 41C with our hottest night on record at over 29 minimum. A horrible bushfire in the Mundaring/ Parkerville area yesterday caused around 50 homes to be destroyed. We live in the hills too, so I really feel for the people affected. It must be devastating to lose everything and most people had to leave so quickly there was no chance of saving anything much. The flames were up to 50 metres high and some people still don't know if their homes are gone.

I did some test prints of my rose leaf thermofax screens today and was happy with them - some shown on my print table above. Below: this was meant to be a book cover but didn't fit the book. It's been in my box of bits for ages until I had the idea of making it into a purse. I cut a slot into the spine area, finished the edges with satin stitch and inserted a zip, then sewed up the other edges. The sleeves to hold the book cover form compartments inside the purse.

Another bookcover.

Thursday, January 09, 2014

Sun prints

I had some pressed rose leaves which I used to make 2 thermofax screens so I thought I would also do a sunprint with the idea of possibly using it in my 'Living Colour' quilt. I may over print it with the thermofax screen too. The circular print above is a different kind of sunprint - I painted the fabric then layed it over a silicon mat and left it in the sun to dry. Below: a notebook cover made from free form pieced small scraps with a machine embroidered applique. Stella gave me a whole heap of small quilting scraps which I sew together when I'm uninspired to do anything else.

Sunday, January 05, 2014

Gelli Printing

I bought my Gelli plates quite a while ago, last year and hadn't done much with them but today I decided to get them out and spend some time experimenting. I used the smaller 6" plate with Liquitex acrylic paints and mediums and had some fun. One thing I discovered is smooth paper works best.

I can only really work in my studio in the morning or evening when its hot so didn't do too much today but I really enjoy the process and will continue exploring. We've been lucky over the holiday period with great weather but now we're in for a hot spell.
I also made another quilt block similar to the last. I'm thinking about doing more and combining them somehow in a quilt. My quilt for 'Living Colour' is in progress. I'm making a thermofax screen of rose leaves for it. 

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Happy New Year!

I was meaning to tidy up yesterday but was distracted by some scraps of fabric and ended up with this block so the mess was still waiting for me at the beginning of 2014 - minus a few scraps!

I hope 2014 brings good things for you: health, happiness and lots of creativity.
Posted by Picasa

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Back to my work

I'm back home now after spending most of the last 2 months staying at my parents' home so I could look after them while my brother was having a break. I'll still be going back and forth, but will have time to get back to my own work. We had a lovely Christmas with all the family - apart from my brother and Kana, who is in Japan visiting her family. We even had relatively cool weather over the Christmas period - 35c today though. I started the fabric collage, above while I was away - still a long way to go.

While at Mum's, I altered some shirts for her. She was going to throw away their 4 shoulder pads but I thought I could use them so yesterday I sewed 1 of each pair together then stitched scraps of fabric over to cover - using a free motion zigzag. Underneath, I had a lining fabric which was attached at the same time. They will make the front and back of a small bag. Below is another piece I was working on over the last month - I finished it today. Not sure what I'll do with it - it is big enough for a book cover. These are good projects to get me back into making.

My next project will be a quilt for a juried exhibition. The theme is 'Living Colour'. I was thinking I wouldn't be able to do this one as the deadline is Jan 31, but now I should have time to get it done. I have decided what I'll do - hopefully I'll have better luck than usual with juried shows!
Posted by Picasa