This week – it’s a week at home doing some teaching at The Quilt Cabin in Hebden Bridge catching up, doing lots of admin, and a couple of meetings.
For the many years I have been teaching, I don’t really think I have been a thread snob. I used to say “I used any thread and I bought charity shop thread, cheap thread etc then I started to used Aurifil thread, first I used the 12 wt Lana thread for making my machine stitching look like hand, then moved on to 12 wt Mako cotton thread for making my quilting really stand out and for making my machine embroidery look a bit “folksy”.
I loved them both.
I became an Aurifil Artisan and was lucky enough to be sent some “just” ordinary thread. A friend was in my studio when the box arrived, she laughed at my face when I opened the box. I was (at first) a bit disappointed – lots of boring colours eg beige – everyone knows I don’t really do beige.
That box has been so useful.
I have used the beige thread almost all the time as bobbin thread and I can’t say enough times how much better my machine has performed since I started to use it. I can get away without having to change the colour.
With my new Photo to Stitch workshops I am using dark grey and black thread to stitch the outlines before colouring with paint and inktense.
So, now, I am going to ask Aurifil if they will provide me with some thread for my workshops so that I can spread the word that it will make a difference to your stitching.
Now I need to decide “do my quilts look better using 28wt, 40wt, 50wt, or 80wt black or dark grey thread?”….more experimenting needed. I think perhaps the 28wt might be too thick and 80wt might be too thin. I like the fact that students on workshops get to understand about thread weights and the effects the different weights give. I want to give students the chance to experiment on workshops, with the equipment I bring.
There are times, I know I should say “No – I’m not interested” when I receive an email but with such good opportunities often coming my way, I can’t resist getting involved.
Several months ago I received an email from someone who knew I had been to the Balkan countries, a few years ago, and knew I was interested in the textiles. She had been on holiday in the Balkans and had carried out some research about Edith Durham.
We met up and with another friend we have had a couple of meetings since. Yesterday we had a meeting at Bankfield Museum and we will be setting up an exhibition at Bankfield – Women Travellers featuring Edith Durham and her textiles, including other women travellers from the Calderdale area.
It will open on November 24th and be on for 6 months. There will be workshops, lectures, gallery tours etc.
Do you think I need a return trip to follow in Edith Durham’s footsteps? I do!
In 2009, I went to the Balkan area, travelling from Dubrovnik to Istanbul via Kotor, Ulcinj, Ohrid, Tirana, Skopje and then on to Istanbul.
I made a few quilts based on my travels and made my 4m long washing line of socks that will be displayed at the Grosvenor Shows in the Autumn and if there is space at Beaujolais in France in April. I would love to take them to Australia with me but I don’t think I will be able to fit them in my bag.
I’m thinking, this time, maybe of going to Kosovo, Skopje and Tirana to visit the Ethnographic museums, to look at the textiles and take lots of photos.
It make me think….will my quilts be displayed in 50 or so years time as work of a Travelling Quilter? My Journeys in Stitch quilts will be at the Grosvenor Shows in the Autumn and will also be at Melbourne in April, Beaujolais in France in April, Karlrshuhe in May and possibly UWE in Bristol in September
I have set myself a goal this year to do, not just 12 JQ’s but 52 ie one a week. The size this year is so small. I really want to make them more like a diary and with a busy schedule I want to be able to remember where I have been, and have a reminder. I have made a few for January so I have made up to week 4.
This is inspired by the small crocheted wash items that the women in Morocco make. They were displayed in a shop like this
My daughter jumping in the air in the desert, our camel guide (lovely guy) took photos of her, saying “This is Africa” as she jumped
I photographed this girl when we stopped at Todra Gorge. The background and eyes are painted.
Festival of Quilts
The workshop timetable for Festival of Quilts has been released and I am teaching this year, as promised, how to make my quirky Polish birds and my Interchange class again. Designing a class that you can do something worthwhile in an hour is hard, lets hope these sell well. You can’t buy tickets until April – I think.
Floral Old and Worn
I’m working on a new project for my students at Hebden Bridge, using old textiles, making new ones etc. Here is one of my teaching samples using old tray cloths, with new hand stitching incorporated and new machine stitching using Aurifil Mako 12.