Twiggy bits

Oooh, there’s a nip in the air these mornings, a whiff of Autumn round the corner, and I feel a little like a squirrel stashing away things for the coming months. I have been getting ready for a few workshops – making samples and gathering resources. It’s rather exciting and I’m looking forward to seeing what people come up with on the day.
It’s also allowed me to test out a few techniques and learn some more about what works and what doesn’t, and I’m continuously making new connections with my ideas. However, Hillstone Fibre Arts has a couple of exhibitions coming up for which I need to be disciplined and get cracking. I have two and a half bower houses finished but I’d like to create a couple more if I can. I haven’t started my piece for the mining museum yet, but it’s planned.

This is a small area of one tree house wall. It’s been to Ireland, Shropshire, Hampshire and back to Yorkshire! I’m not sure the little ‘leaf windows’ will be so visible once it’s made up but it’s still in process and may well change again before I’m finished. My intention is to use some silver birch twigs applied to the outside. The tree sheds a load at particular times in the year and nice bendy ones are easy to find on the floor. I will need a fresh stock for the houses which will be part of our exhibition.

And just look at these little surfaces – these four from along one fallen twig

And this is the top and bottom of another fallen twig. So fascinating…

We usually take a short walk on a fairly daily basis. On saying ‘hello’ to the local bull and a few of his ladies, I remarked that one had grass sticking out of her mouth, whereupon she decided to sneeze it all over the bull’s nose and the jeans of Him Indoors. Now he doesn’t do mess so I braced myself, but happily we had a chuckle. However, I think I noticed a different pair of trousers at teatime.

I’ve been making samples for October, and this looks much better than it really is. It’s a bit smooshed inside and as half of it came away first time, it’s too thin. I was expecting it to have collapsed overnight but it didn’t. Anyhow, it will be used to explain what went wrong and how it was salvaged – it doesn’t come easily to show the less than beautiful bits but I’m trying to practice what I preach and show that mistakes, failures, unsuccessful pieces, call them what you will, are all part of the learning process.

I bought a soldering iron recently.  Who knew the delights of burning when you have the proper tools for the job?  This bit of messing about has got me thinking. I think more will follow…

And on another note, I decided to rise to the challenge at our guild. We had to make a casket with lots of different types of stitch  and techniques. I based mine on the four seasons.

The need to involve measurement, precision and planning very nearly finished me off, I can tell you. My brain just doesn’t do logical. I ended up with two sets of card templates, I cut bits out too small or forgot to back them before stitching on the beads, Autumn got sewn the wrong side of Winter (I mean who does that?) and I forgot to pad all the panels so they had to be re-sewn along one side. I’m still feeling twitchy thinking about it, especially as I’ve just been looking at Michelle Callagher’s website with her amazing Game of Thrones embroidery.  I don’t know how many hours it took – at least twice the length needed for any self-respecting embroiderer but, hey! Dah da! It has pride of place in my downstairs loo. Well, not in it exactly…yet.

I have spruced the site up a bit, hope you like it.  See you in October.   🍃






3 thoughts on “Twiggy bits

    1. Hi. Thank you! I have worked with clay before but this is teabag paper with a little conversation tissue. Both have wet-strength and are fabulous for printing, layering etc. You can stitch into it and it’s pretty strong, especially when layered up like this. I use CMC paste (like wallpaper). I was testing how rubber stamps would work on insides and outsides.

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