An Indulgent Weekend

16864106_1186849991433338_4226166083667145784_nI spent the weekend in Saltaire at textile artist Hannah Lamb’s studio. The workshop title intrigued me, “Patchwork and Place” seemed to fit so well with my own current work in progress, which aims to record places and events through stitch and textiles. My Garden Remembered (working title) project to record our own garden now continues into year two and the techniques and ideas sparked by my weekend with Hannah have moved my plans in a different direction.

16939544_1186850018100002_2624248069481218477_nOn day one, Hannah introduced us to the technique of cyanotype printing and immediately it was obvious to me that this could be the ideal way to record the flora and fauna of the garden in a way that complements last year’s experiments with solar dyes. I came home and searched through my old “teacher box” until I found some sun print paper. Using the leaves I pressed last summer along with bird feathers collected from the garden I managed some very pretty first efforts. I am now planning a whole series of pieces – once again  harnessing the power of the sun seems to be the theme of this years “garden captures”. Hannah is running an introduction to cyanotype course at her studio in May, if this is a technique that intrigues you I would definitely recommend Hannah – she is generous with her knowledge – and encouragement.16996267_1186849834766687_4976128420989220223_nThe second day was spent constructing patchwork and stitched pieces using the fabrics we had prepared on Saturday. This was tricky for me as I have never done any patchwork. I watched, asked questions and after some perseverance I did manage to finish my sample at home on Monday. I’m not sure that formal / traditional patchwork comes naturally to me. It requires patience, straight lines and a degree of accuracy that doesn’t come easily.  Like all hand stitching, the slow, meditative process of joining one piece to another was a joy. I shall definitely be working on my English paper piecing skills this year.

16998031_1186849881433349_3778062752372984237_n.jpgMr T kindly paid for my workshop as part of my Christmas present. Secretly I think he was glad of a weekend to himself, to watch the rugby uninterrupted and not be nagged to do weekend chores. For me, it was a lovely chance to observe another artist at work, to learn new skills and spend time with a lovely group of sewing enthusiasts. A weekend away might seem like an indulgence, but I think that time away has “recharged my batteries”, given me permission to be creative without the pressure of making a commercial design or a product to sell. Today I’ve been hard at work researching a new textile project that won’t involve crochet or knitting, it’s early days and so I have nothing to share yet (just scribbled notes in my sketch book , a rapidly filling Pinterest board and a shopping list that reads like a chemistry lesson). I’ve also been researching the mills of Cockermouth and discovering what a huge part linen cloth and thread played in the development of the town. There are exciting times ahead, and they definitely involve stitching…

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  1. OOh what a fabulous way to spend a weekend Tracey – how great to learn new skills and be inspired by other artists! Love the mention of your sketch book and look forward to your explorations in stitch! Happy fabricing! x

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  • My favourite make - this woman - my daughter. Wearing handmade of course! Celebrate spring with a floral pin cushion! There's a link in my profile with all the details, free pattern & more ideas for Mothers Day gifts 
#crochet #crochetgirlgang #crochetconcupiscence #crochetaddict #crochetgifts #freepattern #bakingandmaking Finally some crochet! Five years ago I designed these little bags for the  wool shop where I worked I  still make them for wrapping presents - so much nicer (& more sustainable) than paper or plastic.  Link in my profile for details & free pattern. 
#crochet #crochetgirlgang  #crochetgeek #crochetaddict #bakingandmaking #mothersday #giftwrapping #reducereuserecycle #zerowaste Sunshine on a rainy day. I've hung this on my kitchen wall, rather pleased with this simple print of 3 plants from my garden (the middle one is from the tiny christmas tree we were given in December at Delamere Forest) 
#cyanotype #sunprint #surfacepattern #inmygarden #bakingandmaking #delamereforest Garden plants & British wool = a beautiful washing line! Hurrah for fresh young nettles, alder cones & winter onion skins!
#britishwool, #plantdyes #handmade #handdyed #nature #plantdyedwool #foraging ##inspiredbynature  #naturaldye #slowstitch #knitting #crochet #inmygarden #bakingandmaking Day 17 of #marchmeetthemaker is feedback. This was posted today so seems appropriate.  I love seeing people use my books & sharing their makes. Thankyou everyone who takes the time to share & give fedback.
Photo credit @konyvutcablog
#crochetdesigner #crochet #amigurumi #booklover #bookreview Eco print "before" shot. Now bundled and simmering. So much colour in the garden this week, had to capture a memory. #springday
#ecoprint #ecodye #naturaldye #plantdye #inspiredbynature #mygardenrightnow #nettles #bakingandmaking #bundledyeing #theartofslowliving #surfacepattern Scrappy cyanotype. Still experimenting, still learning, still loving this process. Even tiny scraps of fabric aren't being wasted - perfect for testing out ideas...
#cyanotype #alternativeprocess #textileart #surfacepattern #alwayslearning #stitchcraftandscissory #bakingandmaking Love getting press packs from @sugru . I'll be reviewing this new kit for crafters on the blog later this week. You can never have enough Sugru in your life!
#sponsored #ad #sugru
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