Monday, 30 June 2014

Still June Twilight

Every year at this time I try to get out into the garden with my camera on a still evening as the light is fading,

I love the way colours and forms take on different meanings and emphasis in the dying light. Enjoy!

Sunday, 29 June 2014

A weekend away - have quilts, will travel...

I have spent most of this weekend away in a little cottage in the middle of the countryside...not that far from home, but very different. I was asked to take part in the Chiltern Open Air Museum's Arts Fest Weekend and I got to spend the days in this fabulous little cottage. Built of a very area specific material, Wychert. Nearly 200 years since it was first built and the re-build at the museum is almost completed after several years of painstaking craftsmanship. It is an extraordinarily beautiful domestic building. No space is wasted, light comes from more than one direction and the three rooms are all different shapes, which somehow makes them feel larger than they are. What really struck me was how the cottage somehow worked best with people who were shorter, people the size it was built for. Anyone close to 6ft looked like a giant and just did not 'fit' the rooms, but 5'4" and under- perfect. The proportions worked. It was a real pleasure to sit listening to the ticking clock, enjoying the view through the rooms,

admiring the textures of the original tiled and hand made brick floors and wychert walls whilst stitching all weekend.
What was I stitching? You will find out later this week!

Monday, 23 June 2014

Mid Summer Madness

 We are having some proper flaming June weather here currently. The Tay Berries and Raspberries in the garden are ripening and there are loads of baby birds about, washing is drying in minutes on the line and comes indoors warm, crisp and sun-bleached. The prefume out there is glorious- Seringa, Jasmine and Roses combining to make a heady mix. I love it.
 BUT....what am I busy working on Dear Reader? Christmas. Yes, you heard correctly. Projects for Christmas. I have been sewing on the snowflakes whilst watching Wimbledon and here are the two quick 2 hour projects I have designed especially for the West Country Quilt Show in November...

Sunday, 22 June 2014


Open Studios over for another year. Busy this weekend, but very quiet the week before. Did get quite a bit of work done in between the visitors, today this little chap was stitched up. Not quite right yet, but on the way!

Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Hot lino

Warm sunny days are brilliant for cutting lino- it warms up and the tools just slide through it fast and easy. Time to get messy with the inks and play with repeats/overprinting.

Monday, 16 June 2014

Sunny morning

Today it is a beautiful June morning- sunshine,puffy white clouds, bit of a chill breeze but the Blackbirds have been shouting since around 4am so they aren't worried. Why is the weather so lovely today? Because it is my 'day off' from open Studio. Grey and mostly raining all weekend when I was open! The 'Curse of Open Studio' is working its weather magic again this year. A few brave souls arrived through the persistent drizzle yesterday, but it has been very quiet. So quiet I got some lino cut- it was noticeable that the temperature dropped during the day as the lino got harder to cut- but by the end of the day I had finished cutting and played around with some trial prints.

Saturday, 14 June 2014

OPEN STUDIOS- in with a bang!

I have joked before about 'the curse of Open Studio' and the vile weather that will set in almost exactly to the minute I open the studio doors. We have had GLORIOUS weather this week,textbook June gorgeousness. Last night, all night, we had crazy mad thunderstorms right overhead. When I say right overhead at times it felt like the thunder was happening inside the house. It was so loud, everything shook.
I think I am as ready as I can be. Here we will note from the photos that the surface of one of my work tables can be seen- this is startling in its unusualness.


Can you spot me taking the photos in my py-jys? oops!
Have a fun weekend.

Friday, 13 June 2014

New quilts

There are several designs in the pipeline, the one I am really enjoying- in a slightly scary will this work? sort of way- is the latest embroidered quilt, destined, like the wool quilt, for the nec this August. Piecing and first layer of stitching completed on the central section, now for the real fun bit! Trying out some new linen threads- love the way linen fibre shines, makes the colours really glow.

Wednesday, 11 June 2014

New woolfelt leaf brooches

Frenzied hand stitching going on here currently, two quilts to finish for the show in Brimingham in August that need to be completed this month, various class projects I am working on and some new felt leaf brooches ready for Open Studio. My needle is positively hot from all the action!

Off now to layer the central section of one of my nec quilts so I can then put more embroidery on it- about which, more later....

Sunday, 8 June 2014

Why did the chicken cross the road?

To get to the Quilting Shop on the other side!

The design for this new Knee Quilt is inspired by the old joke and is developed from my Chicken and Egg Mug Mat and will, by Wednesday, be a completed knee quilt with stitching outlining the applique chickens and eggs and some bold quilting.

Friday, 6 June 2014

June Garden

We have had rainy days and sunny days, sometimes it feels like more of the former, and the combination of wet and steamy warmth have made the garden grow like crazy....turn my back for a day and it is FULL of leafage! Today was a glorious June day- textbook June weather. My wild bees atop the high chimney are thinking of swarming again this year. I love that wild honey bees live in my house. They are no trouble, they live right at the very top of a really tall, unused chimney and are so helpful fertilising my plants as they look for nectar and pollen. I have them to thank for the little apples swelling on my apple trees and the currants and berries on my bushes. I can't wait for the first berries to ripen- fresh picked berries for breakfast, warm with the morning sun. Fabulous!