Saturday, September 20, 2014

Layers and Textures

I recently did a workshop with Ro Bruhn at the Berry Retreat where we started to make a mixed media book or journal. I love Ro's work and it was great just to be able to play with no pressure. That is me hiding up the back.

In my usual style I got a bit hooked and without any major deadlines pressing me I was able to spend a few days just playing at home.

I chose a limited colour palette as I have enough stuff already and I didn't want to have to pull everything out but it was great to work in these bright colours. I think I have been a bit earthy in my palette lately.

In the workshop we played with paper, fabric, ribbons, lace, buttons and generally anything we could find but again I limited myself to fabric, paper, some non woven products, felt and beads and threads. It was very scary that whatever I felt I needed - I had ample supplies.

I also tend to buy a lot of books which I read and then put aside - for another day. One such book was Magaret Beals latest Fusing Fabric book, so I pulled it out - along with all the bits and pieces I needed and played around with sheers and felt and layers too. They made a great textural addition to the book.

Anyway - I ended up making 12 pages which bound together into a fairly substantial 'book' and got me kick started on a whole lot more ideas for some textural work.

Here are some of the pages.

 And here is the finished book

Another book is already starting to bubble up in my creative thoughts.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Blue Corridor at EPM

My quilt Blue Corridor is part of the Australian Exhibition at European Patchwork Meeting 2014 which has just opened, I thought I would go back to show you how it was made. It was one of my biggest challenges and took quite a while to make.

If I knew now what I knew then I would probably do it a lot differently but isn't that what it's all about.

If you click here it will take you to the original blog post.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Barcelona Modernista

My latest quilt completed this year was a bit of a labour of love.
I have always been fascinated with the designs of Anton Gaudi and found a book of (copyright free designs) tile designs which were popular in his period in Barcelona when encaustic tiles were just being created.

Using the technique I use in my Opulent Overlay workshop which involves quilting a design first and then painting the pattern.
 I spent many hours quilting and painting - sometimes in the garden which was lovely. 
First I had to audition colours 
I was really lucky to work with my friends at Kraftkolour who had developed these beautiful Gems Fabric Paints . These are an opaque metallic fabric paint made without plasticisers which leave a really beautiful hand to the fabric
It's a very relaxing techniques and although I was always worrying about spilling paint - I didn't.

When the quilt was finished it needed blocking and here is Peter spraying it with water before pinning it to foam tiles. This technique was a great discovery and made blocking so much easier.
Here is a detail of some of the painting
Here is the quilt hanging at the Sydney Quilt Show. It didn't win any prizes but I really enjoyed the journey of creating it and have another in my head already

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Let's Start Again

I was amazed when I realised I hadn't posted anything to my blog since January! Not that I haven't been busy - I have - but blogging has obviously not been high on my priority.

I think the two main reasons were that I got hooked on Facebook and love the immediacy of it. Using my iPad when I travel also created problems in posting but I am sure I can get around that.

I have made a commitment to myself that I will restart my blog with a fresh image and hopefully interesting content. I have had an up and down year but have some incredible new adventures starting so I plan to share them here in more detail than the instant Facebook posts. Of course I would love to see you on my Facebook page as well.

I have spent the last few days working on a little fabric book which I started recently in a Ro Bruhn workshop. What an inspiring lady and definitely a kindred soul. Although I am not a journal writer  - I really enjoyed the process of testing new techniques and just playing. I usually don't have any idea of what I am going to do when I start something and this time was no different but it's been such fun.
These pieces were fused with a soldering iron and then stitched down
 My sewing machine provided lots of interesting stitches I'd never used before and this is a layer of  dyed gauze and lutradur
 As it was all about Layers and Textures I incorporated these words into some of the pieces.
I kept to a colour way that I don't  usually use which was great discipline in itself and definitely plan to use this combination again soon.
I am nearly finished my first book so will show you more soon.

So yes - I am back blogging and would love your feedback.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Sun Printing Video

I have decided to (try and) film a video each month to be released with my Newsletter so for the last few days Peter and I have been having a lot of fun filming and editing.
Here it is - I promise our technical expertise will improve with more experience

This first one was on Sun Printing with Transparent Fabric Paints and the weather was perfect for it.

Here are some of the resulting fabrics which really are so easy to make.
I've had such lovely feedback so far on the video and am always happy to get feedback as well as suggestions for future ones.

If you want to hear about them earlier please subscribe to my Newsletter or follow me on Facebook which is where I usually announce things first.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Dye Day Workshop

On the weekend I ran my first workshop of the year and it was my new Dye Day and I was very pleased that it filled up so quickly.

We had perfect weather which is a great thing as we were working in the garden. Peter had cleaned up the garden which is always a plus.

We did a 12 step Rainbow, a 6 step gradation, a two colour run, parfait fabric, dyed threads and multicoloured pieces.

Everyone seemed to really enjoy themselves and of course Peter made a delicious lunch.

As it was so much fun I have already booked another on the 29th March and it is half full already.

I am also doing my new Print and Paint Workshop the next day where we will be creating Thermofax screens and working with different fabric paints to create our own original fabric. This one is also over half full so be quick if you want to join in the fun. Click here to book.

Thursday, December 19, 2013


Sometimes you just need to play. I often see interesting techniques or ideas online or in magazines and mean to get back to them sometime but just never do.
I have some time to experiment now so today I had a go. Amazingly I actually had everything I needed, Sari yarn (have had that for years and years), sheers and even a heat gun (unused I think)
So first up I knitted some of the sari yarn with big needle
and then fused it to a piece of green cotton with Misty Fuse (love this fusible) and covered it with a few pieces of sheer polyesters
Then did some free motion quilting to hold it all together

Then I hit it with the Heat gun to melt the sheers. Took it slowly at first but it took a while so then just kept the gun close. I'm quite pleased with the overall effect but it's a bit thick. Not sure what to do with it but might try the technique again with a finer yard.


Thursday, December 12, 2013

Velvet Embossing

I really love playing with different fabrics and Hand Dyed Velvets are just so luscious to work with.

Embossing velvet is a lot of fun and I recently demonstrated this technique at Houston at the Mixed Media session. It was a lot of fun once the power came on. It is a bit hard to demonstrate with an iron if there is no power.

First I brushed some thick fabric paint onto a rubber stamp. You can use wooden, perspex or any stamp which can take a bit of heat. I have stabilised the velvet with some iron on lightweight stabiliser/interfacing. This makes it easier to cut and sew the velvet later. BTW - it only seems to work with Silk Velvet - I've tried it with cotton velvet and it just doesn't seem to work as well. My velvet is 18% Silk and 82% Rayon and works perfectly.
Place the stamp with the paint surface facing up and the velvet facing down and with a warm iron (no steam), press gently moving the iron around for 10-15 seconds.
Peel off the velvet off the stamp - it will stick a little as the paint should have now dried a bit.
Repeat over the surface of the velvet
Now it is ready to be cut up and used in your fabric creation. 
If you want to try this yourself I have put together some little kits of hand dyed velvet, Lumiere paint, a Sherrill Kahn Rubber stamp and a foam brush. Of course we have a rainbow of hand dyed velvet fat quarters too all on the

Sunday, December 8, 2013


Time for a refresh for me I think so I am offering these four older pieces for sale at reduced prices.

Contact me if you are interested. Overseas postage costs will be confirmed by email.


Hand dyed cotton with sliced agate featured piece embellished with beads
Frame 11" x 11" 
Artwork 7" x 7"

$100 + postage ($12.50 Aus)
Detail above



Hand dyed cotton with organza overlay and embellished with beads

Frame 11 1/2" x 9 1/2"
Artwork 5" x 5"

$60 + postage ($8 in Aus)   



Hand made felt with organza overlay embellished with beads

Frame 11 1/2" x 9 1/2"
Artwork 6" x 5"

$60 + postage ($8 in Aus)



Layered organiza embellished with couched yarns and embellished with beads

Frame 15" x 12"
Artwork 10" x 8"

$110 + postage ($12.50

in Aus)