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Monday, June 25, 2007

Fabricate 2007

I have just returned from seeing the Fabricate (2007) exhibition at the Embroiderers' Guild. It is their (as of last year) annual 'textile art' exhibition which showcases more contemporary stuff than the Guild is usually associated with.

I thought it was just a tiny bit more amateur than last year's, when there were a few big names involved. There was only one person there this time I had heard from (not counting two exhibitors I recognised from last year) and I was disappointed with her piece, which I thought was a little forced.

Having said that there was some very inspiring work and one in particular that gave me some fantastic ideas. I had a problem choosing my pick for the best of show, there were two I liked equally for it!

There was very colourful stuff (including a great, very PINK piece), some with lovely personal histories, and some that just left me cold. That's fine, that's how all exhibitions should be. The things I found plain boring are probably someone else's favorites, and the ones I liked the best were probably scoffed at by others. It is is good to see the Guild showcasing contemporary, and in some cases very innovative, textile art for at least a few weeks in the year.

I haven't mentioned any names or particular pieces because I know these are my own opinions and all these people and alive and well and likely to get personally cross with me if I diss them. Plus the textile art world is one I am trying to break into, not make enemies within!

If you're in Melbourne or its environs and like this sort of thing, do pop in and see it. Hopefully you too with find something to inspire you like I did. It;s also going to Ararat later on, which is great for other people!

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

The Passion of Christ - full-length

Two full-length photos. It currently hangs in the family room and spooks people who brush up against it.

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Hearts and Thorns - The Passion of Christ

My first soft sculpture mobile - an art form I have been fascinated by for years (soft sculpture AND mobiles - though I have only recently considered combining them).

The brief was to produce a textile piece using symbols (we had done a unit on symbolism) which incorporated three of the same symbol, and using only fabric, paint and stitch.

I have learnt, among other things, some valuable lessons in construction, and also just how difficult it is to photograph the silly things! I will also post a full length picture of the whole thing, but these are the components. There are three stuffed hearts of various sizes, each with stitching on both sides. The fabric is cream homespun that I sprayed fabric paint onto through lace and then added some gold paint - in drips, by painting the outline of one of the flower shapes, and then using a toothbrush to do a fine spatter over most of it.

I'd done a whole lot of research on hearts and flowers and ended up doing the Passion of Christ - interesting where symbolism can take you!

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Sunday, June 10, 2007

More Fun with Embellishing!

More stuff for Yarnfest. More fun on the embellisher.

Top pic: Gum leaves I had knitted and crocheted and had hanging around (ha ha ha) waiting to be made into something. Felted all over with the machine to make them more solid and then felted onto a backing of bright polar fleece to make bookmarks.

Middle pic: More of the gum leaves - these were thicker and I thought they were a big too thick for bookmarks, even before felting, so I felted them thoroughly to make them stiffer and sewed brooch backs on them.

Bottom pic: Lengths of yarn twisted together and felted to make more bookmarks. The one on the far right is twisted yarn with a small crocheted spirally thing felted onto it, the others are just all twisted yarns curled into a spiral at the bottom and felted firmly together.

I will be making more brooches and bookmarks and trying them out on Etsy and wherever else I can think of. They are fun and addictive!
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Saturday, June 09, 2007

More Yarnfest Stuff...

...and first use of the new embellisher! Both of these were things I had knitted in the past that were sitting in my wardrobe, unworn. I did some practice emebellishing on them and decided that I would put them in for sale at Yarnfest (see previous entry for URL).

Embellishing is fun!!!
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Thursday, June 07, 2007

Oddball Scarves and Hats

I have been busy making things to (hopefully) sell at Yarnfest at The Highway Gallery in Mount Waverley. If you're in my part of Melbourne and fancy some nice knitted/crocheted bits and pieces, drop in between 9th and 20th June and see what takes your fancy.

These are oddball scarves and hats that I had a lot of fun making. My stash contains A LOT of oddballs and they went into making some nice colourful things.
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Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Curley Whirly!!

I've just knitted a Curley Whirly scarf! Or rather, a Short circuit Scarf from Taphophile.

This is a birthday present for my sister-in-law and it wasn't finished quite on time, so she was allowed to see it halfway through and then I whisked it away to finish it. She loves purple and blues and pinks. I dyed this wool a couple of years ago and had been hanging on to it till I thought of the right thing to do with it, and she was the obvious recipient!

Specifications : 4 x 50g 5 ply, not all the same brand but all pure wool. Dyed by me in Landscape dyes with much glee. Knitted until it ran out. It measures over 3 metres! She can wrap it round her neck at least three times. Apparently her pupils (she is s secondary school teacher) delight in checking out her handknits so this one should keep them amused for a few minutes. It was fun to knit but I couldn;t have gone for any longer, I was starting to go a little stir-crazy! Brilliant pattern, thanks Taph, easy to memorise and looks fiendish but isn't at all.
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Friday, June 01, 2007

Sheeprustling Brooch

I bought this today from a third year student at TAFE. She claims it was an abstract piece (as all hero thers were) but to me it immediately looked like sheep - so appropriate for the Sheeprustler! Funny thing is, no-one else can see sheep in it until I mention it. It's hand needlefelted.

And guess what - I got an embellisher today! I may not have much time to play with it for a couple of weeks - I have to write a plan for a 12 hour workshop to be finished by next week (for assessment purposes - I won't actually be teaching the workshop, though I do think I have come up with an excellent idea, but I'm a lousy teacher) and the next week there will probably be tons of homework too, but after June 15 I am free as a bird for several weeks until Semester Two - expect to see some embellished pieces in that time!
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