Saturday, September 09, 2017

Paper, old lace, trims and vintage fabrics

What materials are you using at the moment???

Right now I love paper, old and new, coffee dyed paper, old lace and vintage/antique fabrics.

If you read my previous post you'll know I'm loving sewing paper. Ideas are flying around in my head, what type of book shall I make next, and how can I incorporate textiles into those books???

Since my last post, in between orders, I have made another book (technique fom MAM's 'Stitch Bookery' course). I'm really excited about this one! I'll blog about this in a few weeks as it's not quite finished and needs to arrive to it's destination first! Here's a sneek peek though to give you an idea!

I have other ideas for these wonderful stitched books and am itching to get started! Some special travel journals as a gift. Many images have come from Pinterest! Maybe I will be able to work on these this weekend??? Orders first , then I can play!

Back to my main passion, textiles both old and new! I'm always looking to create new items with these wonderful pieces and give them new life! Recently I made these cushion for a market I participated in. They are so florally and feminine! They will be going in my shop in the next few days.

I recently revisited some other items I used to make for little girls. Sweet pillows and girlie totes. These too will soon be listed in my shop. I'm a little slow at keeping things up to date. I keep getting distracted!!!

Finally, the weather has cooled to the mid to high 20s, thank heavens no more high 30s, I couldn't take it anymore! This my favourite time of the year, the weather is perfect! It's an inspiring time to work!
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Saturday, September 02, 2017

Stitching paper journals with Mary Ann Moss

Have you ever admired Mary Ann Moss of Dispatch from LA? If not you should hop over to her blog and have a peek!

As a stitching person I am always in awe of people who work with a different medium. Mary Ann Moss ( or MAM as her students call her) and Pam Garrison at two very talented ladies whose work I love love love!

Personally I am very intimidated by paper and painting. What you need to know is before I started sewing I tried to teach myself to paint with oils. Hahahahaaaa!!!! My favourite part of the painting process was mixing the colours. Sometimes I would then find I had no time left to paint before work so I had to store my new colours in the fridge so they didn't dry out!!

Here's a floral painting I did way back in 2001.

At the time I did not sew, I could only crosstitch! I was absolutely determined to learn to paint. This painting came from one of my favourite painting books by Patricia Moran 'The oil painters ultimate flower and portrait companion'. I just love this book. If you're a painter it's wonderful.

Anyway let's get back on track, recently I have been dabbling in junk journal making. See a past blog post here. Of course I don't keep a journal (another thing that intimidates me) but I certainly like making them!

When I saw Mary Ann's posts on Instagram about her Stitch Bookery course I just had to sign up. I managed to do so by the skin of my teeth as enrolments closed that day. Never fear, I believe she will reopen enrolments later this year. Anyway I thought this would be perfect for me - sewing old papers, letters, ephemera ( old and new) and fabrics together. What a combination and what fun!

So far I have completed week 1 and I think week 2. Two sweet accordion books and one little fold up book (I'll show this later possibly on FB or Instagram).

It's a new experience for me to make something 'just because'. Usually everything has to have a function. With this course you can make books with a function, to draw or for writing a journal, or you can make them just because they are visually pleasing to you. A great collection of bits and pieces you love and need to put somewhere.

It's so cool!!!!

I am so in love with this course! Each little book I make is carried around the house for days! I just can't stop looking at them! I think my husband has decided I'm more bonkers than he previously thought!


I also made some little cards with photos of a recent trip that slip into 2 pockets.

Of course my lovely 11-year-old Lulu likes to participate in any new thing I do and had to have a book of her own. As she says she was the brains and I was the hands!! She chose what she wanted included and I sewed it. I was not allowed off the chair until it was complete!

I love the way the little book turned out and we had great fun including some of her drawings as well. What a fun little memory keeper it is for her, very clever indeed!

Can't wait to start working on some other project ideas Mary Ann has provided!!! 

Has anyone done any of Mary Ann's course? If so I would love to hear about them! 

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Thanks for listening!!! Rachel

Friday, August 18, 2017

Markets in Switzerland

Earlier this week we popped up to Switzerland for ASeminfesta in a small town Semione, Cantu Ticino. Yes I did say 'popped up', that's the amazing thing in Europe you are so close to everything! This always amazes me that you can drive 4 hours and you are in another country with a different language, culture, money, landscape and architecture!

Instantly, when we crossed the border, the vegetation was greener and the architecture changed! The mountains are amazing, I just couldn't stop looking at them. Lucky I wasn't driving we may have gone off the road!

The market was fun! Great to do something different and have a couple of days away. We met a lot of lovely interesting people who spoke Italian, English and German! 

I did mangae to have a look around the village. I left my dear hubby to hold down the fort and headed off to explore with Lulu! Here are a few pics of the town.

We decided not to sleep in Switzerland but instead drove back to Italy and stayed in an wonderful historical hotel, Palace Grand Hotel, Varese dating to 1911. I just loved it! The building was amazing and the grounds beautiful.

Rather than rush back home we checked the internet (what would we do without the internet??) to find out what there was to see in Varese - Sacro Monte di Varese seemed like the place to go!!! It's one of 9 sacri monti on the UNESCO World Heritage list. Definitely worth a visit if you're in the area.

We headed up the hill to visit the amazing old hill town:  Santa Maria del Monte (on Sacro Monte). Let me say it did not disappoint, definitely one of the prettiest towns I have ever visited!

Everywhere I turned there was a photo opportunity, so picturesque! I went a little crazy taking photos, I think my husband thought I'd lost the plot!

It is a fascinating town with incredible views of the Alps on one side and lakes on the other! It is full of little lane ways, some of which are totally covered, like this one! 

At the top of the the hill there is a stunning church full of beautiful frescoes to admire.

 We finished off our visit with a wonderful lunch at Ristorante Montorfano. We sat on the terrace eating prosciutto crudo, burrata and gnocchi fritti (absolutely to die for!) and drinking sparkling Rosè wine. I would say the perfect way to end a super fun couple of days away!

What fun things has everyone else been doing this summer??? I would love here what you've been up to!

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Saturday, August 05, 2017

What's on your desk today?

What's on your desk today? I know mine is a complete and utter mess! That's nothing new! I think it's impossible to create and be tidy at the same time.

Can anybody do that? If the answer is yes I would love to hear how you do it!!! 

This summer is a first for me, I've never  had to deal with 40°C heat before! Not for one day but for 5 days in a row! I swore I wouldn't leave the house for 5 days terrified of what I might feel when I walked out the door! Well yesterday I did go out and the heat hit me like a ton of bricks! Won't do that again!

Today I'm back inside trying to keep my creative mojo going but it's tough! As a result I have many things on the go but nothing is finished. When I get to that part I stop! Total blockage!

I'm working with inspirational words printed onto antique linen. Who knows where they'll end up!

Maybe I'll use some on this work in progress! Still not finished! 

Above is a piece I possibly started more that a year ago! I have resized it and put it on a new base. I think it's going to be for the wall. Maybe on a canvas or something. I'll share it on Instagram when it's complete!

More progress is being made! Woohoo maybe it will be complete by the end of the day! Then again maybe not!

I had forgotten about my little vintage fabric stash! They have come out to play and are enjoying being made into some new goodies!!!

You'll have to wait to see those! Writing is making me hot! 

What's on your table today???? 

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Friday, July 28, 2017

Mandy Pattullo 'Textile Collage'

I'm thrilled to share with you today one of my faves by Mandy Pattullo 'Textile Collage'. I love, love, love her work! Have you seen it before? If not pop over to her blog 'Thread and thrift' here or you could even check out my 'Mandy Pattullo Style' Pinterest board! There are lots of her 'lovelies' saved there all in one place ready for you to drool over!!!!

I'm going to share some pages inside the book and show how we have been inspired by Mandy's gorgeous work. This photo gives us a sneak peek of her work area. Wouldn't you just love to go and have a sticky beak in there???? I know I would!

There are pages in the book about hunting and gathering, old quilts and all kinds of other yummy stuff to get the creative juices flowing! Looking at this photo I'm feeling a little bit of antique quilt envy! How I would love a pile of those. Would you????

Now to the exciting part some examples of her work and projects!

Mandy does a lot of textile collage with old pieces of fabric and quilts. I so love them! A while back I started these little pieces. Of course they have been sitting in my sewing room for about 6 weeks and remain incomplete! I even forgot about them until I pulled out her book today!

If you already know Mandy's work you will have already seen the gorgeous animal collages and embroideries she does. I can never get enough of these when I see them on her blog or on Pinterest!

In this photo you can see one of Mandy's gorgeous hares. Below the book is something I'm working on inspired by Mandy's work. I can't reveal it in it's entirity yet as it's incomplete, of course! So what's new??? It's also a gift for my dear friend so I'm afraid no revealing until it's complete and safely in her hands! Who knows when that will be???

A future project on the cards for me are Mandy's wonderful wallet fabric books. I have been collecting old wallets for a while and can't wait to get started on one of these treasures! 

Finally but not least Mandy's beautiful fabric books! Treasures to behold! I NEED a pile of these too!

Mum has started off my collection. She is also a fan of Mandy and has her book. When she found out the book was due for release she was bursting to get her hands on one!!!

I received this beautiful work of art from mum for Christmas. Oh how I treasure it!

What do you think about Mandy's wonderful pieces? Do you already have her book???

That's all for now, I hope you enjoyed this post!

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