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Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Geelong Fibre Forum 2014

I still don't have any embroidery pictures to show from Fibre Forum. I have been too busy studying and, since my last exam last week, slobbing out, to finish my embroidery. But it's next on my list of fun things to do, so maybe photos will come soon!

On our first morning we went down to Limeburners' Lagoon, a little bit of Corio Bay that is very close to Geelong Grammar, to sketch. The idea was to work on something inspired by our natural surroundings. Now, I still maintain that I 'cannot draw' but I can cobble together vague ideas which was all that was required. We spent a lovely three hours in mild sunshine sketching the bay and flowers/plants that were growing around us. A number of us also took photos to give us further ideas if necessary.

I really loved the bark on this eucalypt. In fact it was this photo that I ended using as the inspiration for my main piece (we also did a sampler which was quite prescriptive but very useful for practice). I sketched it when we got back to the classroom, fiddled with a bit of colour (also fiddled with some of the original sketches) and eventually, with guidance from our tutor, I narrowed down to a section of my sketch and used it as the basis for my embroidery.

I took quite a lot of pictures. I especially loved the lines and texture of this cracked mud. Over the years I have taken quite a lot of photos of interesting textures and things and this workshop gave me the confidence to think of them as being potential inspiration for other pieces in due course.

The Geelong Wool Museum is always worth a visit. This time round there was an interesting exhibition by Australian (though resident in the US) textile artist Ruth Marshall, whose exhibition Vanished Into Stitches is still on till 7 December if anyone is interested. She knits perfect reproductions of endangered animal pelts.  Her work is pretty stunning. I really liked her tiny reproductions of native marsupials.

And for some bizarre reason, the Wool Museum has this lovely exhibit above - Super Croc I think it was called - the skull of an extinct (thank god!) giant crocodile. Nothing to do with wool, but native to the area, possibly. With cool lighting. Very strange.

And of course there is yarnbombing outside the Wool Museum!!

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Citron Blue

This shawl pattern is actually called Citron Grand, but to me 'citron' sounds as though it should be yellow or orange or green, and obviously it's blue!

I knitted this on and off for months. It's an easy pattern but slow work, especially in very fine yarn. I enjoyed knitting it, and would make it again in a thicker yarn, perhaps sock weight. I knitted this one in Morris & Sons Laceweight, which is actually more of a cobweb weight, which is REALLY REALLY fine.

Despite the size (the picture of it on a bed is after blocking, on a queen sized bed) it only took 62 grams to knit!  Which is about a squillion metres.

I finished it off on the trip to Alice Springs and Adelaide in July. It possibly the only time I have ever used an iron in a hotel room - to block it!

And although I did not intend to produce a wedding ring shawl, when I wore it at Fibre Forum last month someone commented that it was so fine that it probably counted as one, So I gave it a go. And it does go through my wedding ring! This picture of it (photographic proof) was taken at Gloria Jeans in Box Hill at a knitting group meeting - they call it my party trick :)

It's as light as a feather and squashes into a tiny ball that can be carried about in a bag if required. Love it!!  But I am never knitting with cobweb again. I;m knitting something else in real* laceweight now, which is still very fine, but preferable. Goodness knows when that project will be finished but I willl photograph it when it is.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Lest We Forget

The 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month. The guns stopped on the Western Front. Now Remembrance Day commemorates all war dead. 100 years ago many still believed that the war, which started in August 1914, would be 'over by Christmas'. How tragically wrong they were.

Nearly 90,000 ceramic poppies at the Tower of London this year.

I can't find an origin for this affecting picture but it seems to have been used by a wide variety of organisations, often in connection with quotes from 'In Flanders Field' by John McCrae.

This seems to be a poster to advertise poppies for Memorial Day in the US (I hope I have that right, that's what Google suggests).


And this is an alternative to the poppy in the buttonhole on sale for Remembrance Day that I bought the other day. 

Lest We Forget