Monday, 18 June 2007

In off the top board

Well, this is a new departure and I'm embarking on it with enthusiasm while muttering about Dale Rollerson. She talked me into it so, if it all goes pear-shaped, I shall blame her. It may not be a 'post every day' blog as my life is a little hectic but I'll do my best.

I write books on textiles, edit and write for magazines and also travel a lot doing teaching and talks. In fact this first posting was compiled during a 1500 mile trip to Dundee for a wonderful weekend with the girls from the local Embroiderers' Guild.

I stopped off on the way to review the Guild's Riches of Stitches exhibition near Wolverhampton. A bit patchy but with some little gems like this piece (Tropical #14) by Fiona Rainford. Full review in the next Workshop on the Web.

The Scottish workshop was great and excellent work was produced. We were exploring techniques for producing frescos, rock paintings and the like. Had a lovely time bonding crumpled tissue paper to felt and then painting it with walnut inks and the fabulous Moonshadow mists. I love the effects that are possible with these paints. Below, you can see my Little Book of Walnut Ink and a page from the book.

We also discovered new things to do with the melting pot, especially dripping it onto stamps. Freehand dripping became known as the 'Dundee dribble' and I'm now experimenting with hand-stitching over the top of the embossing powder. Here's the beginning - I'll show the finished piece if it works.

Dashed into home for a night to give the cat a cuddle and then off to Ipswich Guild for a dayschool. We left home the day before the class (it's a 200 mile journey) and had time to go to Ely Cathedral where we found an interesting exhibition in the Lady Chapel. Called Bride it is an installation by Emily Haysom and forms part of the Lantern Dance Theatre latest production. The mobiles are formed from wedding dress remnants and reference the church as the bride (and thus a body of people). Thought provoking and good to look at in this large empty area. The sun filtering through the sheer fabrics changed the aspect, too.

It brought to mind Lucy Brown's stripped and woven wedding dresses. Obviously a trend in the making.

It's wonderful to be home - the cat thinks so too - but tomorrow I'm off again. This time to see my friend Jane Lemon and do some work on the exhibition celebrating the life of Val Campbell-Harding we are curating. This will be touring with the Knitting & Stitching show at Birmingham, London and Harrogate.

As if I don't travel enough, from there, it's on to Windsor for the private view of Jan & Jean's Diploma students and the City & Guild work. I'll bring you news of that on Wednesday. At least I get to sleep in my own bed tonight.