I played with increasingly complex mandala designs some time ago.  Life got in the way, as it sometimes does, but I am now ready to finish them and get them up on the website.

This is a free design for you to play with.

I have stitched it out on calico (muslin) in white thread, so it was very difficult to see in the photo. I am now going to color it, using water soluble coloring pencils. I will use some textile medium with the pencils (Jo Sonya, Liquitex…)

You are welcome to download the design and stitch it.Please send me some photos of your designs when you have colored them.

It’s all about Colour

I dyed all the fabrics for this quilt – Procion MX dyes, low water immersion.A progression of shades from cool Yellow to Red to Blue and then a second progression from warm Yellow to Red to Blue; then the same progressions replacing the Yellow with Black.It’s difficult to see in the photo, but there are some absolutely beautiful colors in reds, purples, plums, chocolates.It was a really interesting and worthwhile exercise in dyeing fabrics and done in such a way that I can reproduce any of the colors whenever I want.

Notebook Covers – naive Birds

I have used some of my hand-dyed fabrics, but you could use any fabric that you like. The patch is raw-edged and fused to the cover, then the bird outline is embroidered in the hoop.The bird could also be done as a raw-edge fused applique. I have added a strip for the spine, incorporating a tab for your pen or pencil.  There is also an elastic strap, holding the book together, when it is closed. The notebook that I am using is a spiral back A5 Visual Arts diary that I occasionally use to sketch ideas.  Any A5 notebook will fit; it is also very easy to adapt the size to any other notebook. The leaves are lantana leaves, painted on the back with Silver Lustre paint from Genesis Creations, an Australian company that specialises in Liquid Radiance fabric paints and conducts wonderful workshops teaching how to use their range of products. leaves are placed on the fabric, painted side down, covered with a sheet of paper and then rubbed to transfer the lustre to the fabric.

Postcards from Australia

This is the first of my Postcards from Australia series – featuring our ubiquitous Laughing Kookaburra (sometimes called  a “jackass, or jacky”).

I am going to fine-tune it a little before it goes on the website, but I am quite happy with the way it is shaping up.

I’ve taken a photograph of a kookaburra, played with it in Photoshop, added the background and the text, then printed it on an EQ Printables cotton sheet.

I have added the sketching embroidery on the bird and digitized the Airmail, Postcard and stamp, so that it can all be done in the hoop.

Not happy with the stamp; I think I am going to replace it with a stamp featuring gumnuts or gum leaves.

I went to a workshop with Kathryn Harmer Fox a few weeks ago. She inspired me to work on this series of Postcards. In her workshop we made postcards, using small pieces of fabric, netting and free motion embroidery.

You can see Kathryn’s work on her Facebook page:

She is a very talented lady and a great teacher.

I have taken a different approach, working with a photograph, adding texture and color to the background in Photoshop, so that you can print the image on fabric and then add the embroidery in the hoop. The embroidery on the bird does not cover the image completely, but rather sketches over it loosely.