Friday, August 26, 2016

Sydney weekend for a break from work

 Last weekend we went to Sydney for a weekend's break. It just happened that the rugby was on as well. We checked out the Archibald paintings at the art gallery and watched the lorikeets having a great feast on tables outside. Obviously people tip out sugar for them.

 I visited Tessuti Fabrics and bought a couple of patterns and Italian linen for my wedding frock for November. I haven't sewn for myself in 20 years but I do have September to get it right.

 On Saturday we had a lovely day out on the Sydney Harbour. Grant's friend Andrew has a boat and we hopped on at Lane Cove and collected the NZ contingent in Darling Harbour.

 Then we spent the day exploring the inlet of the harbour. Beautiful weather and my geography of Sydney improved. Not sure about the NZ boys swimming though. They did look a little blue around the gills but then if you live in Otago you probably wouldn't even notice!

 Of course the highlight of the weekend and the main reason for going was the Bledisloe Cup game All Blacks vs Wallabies. We had very good seats dead centre but they were very  high up - just as well I know the players from theri shapes and movements.

Started with the haka and got better  - actually it was a blackwash - 42 - 8

 On Sunday we checked out Grant working on his Moth at the Woolhara Sailing Club - glorious day

And same spot - lots of people out and about and we followed it with lunch at 18ft Skiff Club with a cousin and his wife. Then on Monday we came home again......

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

SAQA Oceania Blog Hop 2016

This year I entered a piece in the SAQA (Studio Art Quilt Associates) Benefit Auction of Art Quilts (not that I consider myself an Art Quilter but rather a player) - in the Oceania Collection
36 people from Oceania took part - the auction begins on September 16th and there were over 430 quilts submitted.

 A full list of all participant artists can be found here on the SAQA Oceania blog

My piece is titled Kimberley Dreaming inspired by my often r and r trips to Broome and the Kimberleys. Many people who read my blog will know that we go to Broome at least once a year and since day one I have been inspired by the colours. First time looking out of the plane I couldn't believe it - now I know it. We relax - swim - read - and I play with a pile of stuff. I always put down newspaper for working on as I spray everywhere and I use local newspapers. It gave me the idea to use newspaper in my work. Once you have sprayed lovely colour with mica all over newspaper there is no way you want to abandon it.

My work is always personal and relates to things which matter to me so I have done a lot of work on this theme in many other textiley ways. I do not have working details of how I made this particular piece but this is the general idea.

 I bond sections of newspaper to fusible webbing - taking the bits which appeal and including text. Then I bond this to scrim and soak it and rub the back of the newspaper off to leave me with a new fabric. I spray colour over the top and on this particular one above I have twin needled over the surface for a background.

On this particular one I have created this new 'fabric' and then coloured it with mica and dye spray and printed a screen over the surface of the boab tree and machine stitched.

This one has the features of above but I have layered chiffon scarves over the top, twin needle stitched over the surface and zapped it with a heat gun. I have stamped letters onto a newspaper surface bonded to kunin felt, carved them out and hand stitched them back onto the surface. The piece for the SAQA Benefit auction is very similar to this.

This is one of the ways that I enjoy working and I hope someone when bidding at the auction is intrigued as well. Everyone who loves colour should visit the north west of Western Australia if they can.

Don't forget to check  the next posting in this Blog Hop by Catherine McDonald on 19th August

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Niagara Falls

 We only allowed ourselves 1 extra day in Toronto so caught the bus to Niagara Falls - I had no preconceptions but I guess one always imagines other than what things actually are. We somehow missed the bus and walked from the bus station. A week of working hard and no drink just about caught up on my me and I think my sugar levels dropped dramatically but after a stop on we carried. And it was amazingly hot as well. We hopped on the boat with the thousands of others but admired the falls as we were boarding - or rather - waiting.

 Quite spectacular.

 On the boat - it is am amazing sensation. Didn't think that much of the town- full of tourists but we enjoyed the experience and glad we went.

Little creative photo as we headed back to the bus and back to Toronto.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Teaching in Toronto

 From San Francisco  we flew to Toronto where I was teaching An Artful Journey at the Canadian Embroiderers Seminar Inspiring Threads - this was in my bag full of delightful goodies.

 And just so you know we were there, Ian spotted this in downtown Toronto.

 On my free day we caught the train to town and road the street car and wore ourselves out walking along the shores of Lake Ontario - it was a very hot day and we got sunburnt. A beautiful lake indeed.

 Alison Cole was also teaching - in the next classroom actually - I am always amazed at the work she does - so productive and so fabulous. I popped into check how hard at work they were. And we appeared to have been shopping at the same shop back in Australia.

 I had a delightful class and they produced some wonderful work. I didn't collect it all together at the end which was bad - on the last day they seemed to be wandering and some left early and caused me confusion. But this is Pat who came tp my class in Victoria.

 Some of the work - we played with silk fibres, prefelts, sari ribbon, paper napkins and lots more.

 We wove, stitched, added metallic flakes, sprayed colour, used stencils

 Everyone created different samples and I hope they all go on to use them in their work. SOme of the work was exquisite.

 Another piece.

 There is always room for paper napkins - they are so versatile for creating layers

 And we laid and couched and buttonholed.

those mapkins can be added in tiny sections or wherever.

 Some more pieces
 And I loved these - you would never believe that this was a napkin with elephants or bears on it - it ended up being perfect for a glacier theme.

 I love this piece - layering and complex detail

This was part of my class - they dispersed all through the last day so I missed the bus on getting them all together. What a delightful group of creative people - Deb - who was our teacher liason and until sharer - was the most wonderful person to have met. This is the last time I have or will teach An Artful Journey - I have developed some different workshops now so I shall cherish my time there.

Friday, August 12, 2016

en route to Toronto

 In May we went to Toronto where I was teaching at the Canadian Embroidery conference. It's a long way from Perth so we flew via Auckland (spent the day relaxing in the Koru Club where they actually had chaise type lounges for those of us who arrive at 5.30am can have a wee nap). We stayed one night in San Fransisco to make the flight less painful not far from the airport. We spent our day at Burlinghame rather than rush around. Found a lovely shopping street on a lovely day weatherwise.

First stop trying to find coffee but did a decent walk up and down

Found the cigar shop with all these great boxes outside and after I took this photo someone came along and bought most of them

 Had some lunch to go with our coffee

 and later on we found a tea shop full of amazing types of tea

at the end of our day back at the top waiting for the bus.

 We were staying at the Westin and walked along the bay both nights first to a Mexican restaurant and the second night to a Thai restaurant which served Mexican food. Figure that out. But for Ian it was aeroplane heaven as we could see across to the airport and watch the flight path - planes coming in at the rate of knots and loads lining up to go out. I love the colours my phone managed to capture.

So a relaxing time good for the weary travellers - the hotel was good too.

Tuesday, August 09, 2016

Guests at the WA Craft Show

At the show this year we had three wonderful guests near us - one was Michelle Mischkulnig with her gorgeous work - visit her website to see lots of glorious things -

This is one of Michelle's pieces. It is always wonderful to see artists work in the flesh and Michelle had many people watching here at work and talking with her. I do believe that she is returning to Perth next year to teach. It was great that she could come.

The second guest was Katie Dawson - I know her mum Pam from the day she appeared at the trade show with Cottage Garden Threads - she reminded me that we were her first customers and now we have all 222 of the floss and a giant new stand to hold them all. I had never met Katie only emailed but she is a delightful and very creative lady (and has 5 kids) - love the concept of the Inky Stitches. Visit her page and be inspired

And our third guest was the o so creative Jacinta Leishman - messy - yes - but so many wonderful things happening. It is always lovely to catch up with Jacinta and I know lots of people loved seeing her at work. i just want to know where my box full of stencils has gone to.....

There were other guests around the venue but these were the three close to us and therefore close to my heart.

Monday, August 08, 2016

The Show is Over

2016 - well it could be any earlier number but this year once again we attended the WA Craft Show. Many weeks of preparing - ordering new goodies - topping up stock - packaging - thinking - planning etc. Then on the Monday we go get the van if it is available early and on Tuesday we load it - well Ian does all the hard work - I just stack boxes and pack boxes and all of that stuff. This year we have a lovely new stand for our Cottage Garden threads and 3 lovely new stands for the different Eleganza weights. you probably cannot imagine how much easier that is making my life. Because we don't have a shop we don't usually have stands mostly becasue we don't have room. Our 4 giant stencil stands only come out for this show.

 Then on Wednesday (after I had been for a hair cut) we drove the van to the showgrounds and with Oliver's help and 2 trolleys. unloaded everything in 2 hours. That was our best ever unload. SO we spent extra time with Ian making up all of the stands and I was able to stock the stencil stands before we left. That is rather a large task and a boring one so it was good to get it out of the way.

I know many people think we get there and set up all ready to go by some morphing but let me assure you it is hard work.

 On Thursday it is set up day officially but we could never manage it in one day. Remember there are but two of us and apparently we are actually mere mortals. To add to the day I had pulled a muscle in my back a couple of days earlier and Ian had done something to his foot which was very painful so we were able to whinge to each other. There is nothing like dropping a tiny spool of thread on the floor and spending time wondering how to retrieve it. It's a big stand and we try to make it as good as we can.

 There are all of those stencils - we sure have plenty.

And all the beautiful hand dyed flimsies and fibres etc.
And then once the show started I didn't seem to have time to take many photos but Lisa took one of me to show that I was at work. Playing with ArtFoamies and Opulent paints. Ihad other thingsbut I didn't get that far.

People ask all the time why we do not do any shows on the eastern seaboard. I am trying to show by this that it is one awful lot of work and for a week before basically our mail order stops and for a week afterwards (from today) the shop is closed for personal shoppers. It takes me the entire week to get everything back into order - to count - to reorder and all of that boring stuff.  We just cannot do any other shows. I will take my magic suitcase when I go away or we will trade if I am teaching etc but sorry folks that is it. There are only the two of us. I am on a mission to get into my studui every day to play.

Was the show good? Of course. What went well so I can learn .

Textile Art Supplies
We sold heaps of ArtFoamies - Opulent Paints - Sun Dyes

Lots of all of the fibres but especially hand dyed silk laps - these are so fabulous and you can lift layers off to work in water soluble or spin or layer for scarves and add to felting etc etc

Loads of hand dyed flimsies (prefelts ) - of course  -but also lots of felted wool stacks and velvet etc etc

Hand Threads
Everything but lots of Cottage Garden floss - Eleganza - Painters Threads - Jacinta's silks etc

Machine threads
Muchness of Victory rayon and also Spagetti and The Bottom Line

Load of our needles in their special own containers and buttons and braids

So very happy and I have lots of new ideas to play with. Many people asking for on line and hands on workshops. We shall see.
The all important pay station.

Then when the show was over we packed it all back into the van and drove it home and unpacked - not without our fabulous and tireless works - Grey and Marion - Kazuko - Jaslyn and Oliver. All done in a couple of hours and it rained as soon as the van doors closed and stayed that way until we opened then. Then it started again the minute we finished. Must have been our day. Topped our evening off with a visit to Three Coins for a fabbo dinner.

today I have boxes and stacks all through the house and will soon start my next phase of work.

Hope you are having a great week too! Thanks to everyone who came to the show.


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