Textile Artist

What I am doing now…..

After the emotional commitment to the last piece of work, I needed an easy therapeutic piece of sewing and, as I have done before, turned to a quilt pattern by Anita Hallock  from her book Scrap Quilts using fast patch.

Old Scrap Quilt – September’s Quilt
New Scrap quilt in progress

Ebb and Flow is the new SWTG subject for an exhibition in Stroud in May 2018

The sea and shore are subjects very close to my heart and in recent years I have researched, sketched, photographed and worked on pieces inspired by the theme.

This time I wanted to create a more meaningful piece and am very aware of the shocking state of our shorelines littered with jetsam. Dots of manmade bright colour peppering the beauty of nature’s stones, rocks and sand. A deeper worry is what it is doing to marine life that gets caught up in it and tries to eat it.  Last year, somewhere I saw a painting of rocks with one piece of bright red rubbish glowing out. I do not know who it was by or where it was but the image remained with me. What especially struck me was the power of its effect and how it said far more to me than mobile installations I had seen made up purely of jetsam.  To me less was more. The red also reminded me of the little girl’s red coat being the only colour in ˜Schindler’s List.

I have been constructing fabric stones as an experiment. I will need to find a good technique and have decisions to make.  I think sketch will be my next step.  My current idea is to have a tray shaped base into which I make sea, sand and stones.


Materials for stone construction
My first stone

Deconstruction I am never quite sure what people mean by this but I have taken to bits an old work base on the shoreline and salvaged small pieces. I gently washed and dried them in the hope I can recycle them in this piece.


Festival of Quilts

I managed to attend the Festival of Quilts this year, being in August we are generally away and was able to steward our SWTG gallery.

The most inspiring thing I saw was the June Wells exhibition.  I loved the quality of her quilts with colour set against neutral backgrounds, print and a feeling of inspiration. I spoke to her and found her to be a lovely person. I have now bought her book Intuitive Colour and Design and am reading it with the aim of learning some of her techniques. My friend Madelaine paid a visit and she too was taken by Jean’s work and s going to order her book.  I forgot to take photos of the new piece Madelaine is working on.


Yesterday, we were lucky enough to meet up with old friends from Suffolk.  I always admire the fine, precise needlework that Rosanna does. Her eyes and patience are astounding.

Rosanna Canvas work 1
Rosanna 2




Catching Up

September Blog
It has been a while since I blogged and there are a things to catch up on. I am going to do it in two posts – work I have done and work in progress.
Monet’s garden
I am still in love with my ice dyed fabrics and will be part of a three corner evening at my local Exeter Quilters in November.
The question was/is what to do with the fabric? When there was a call for some extra A3 quilts for the Contemporary Quilt Group’s suitcase exhibition with the subject of your favourite artist, I thought Monet and my fabrics! (He is only one of my favourites).
I researched his garden paintings and came up with a design. This was to be machine appliquéd.
It took days to work out which fabric should go where and most difficult was finding sections the right size.

Monet’s Garden using Iced Dyed fabrics

Mexican Wave

South West Textile Group were exhibiting at The NEC Birmingham with the theme ‘Strip Show’ and members were asked for a long narrow piece in bright colours. Eventually, I decided to wrap dowelling with strips of my own dyed fabric. Placement was a problem and I ended up using a wave formation and thought of the colours we had seen on our trip to Mexico.

Mexican Wave Hanging

Svinafellsjökull Glacier.

Having had a lot of fun, I was now ready to really put my heart into serious work again. I had been saddened by so many stories of global warming and thought that the recession of glaciers provided a visible and terrifying measure of what climate change was doing.  We had visited Iceland a few years ago and the Svinafellsjökull Glacier.  I began to design and work to this theme. I had also been moved by the story told to us of how 2 German youths disappeared while hiking in the region, another tragedy.

I blew up some of my photographs for reference and went through my stash of dyed fabric bringing out any colours that I thought would work. I also dyed and painted more. As usual the laundry room was covered with painted, dyed and rubbed fabric scraps.  I made a sampler of all the techniques I was auditioning.


Shapes and forms emerged and I had to fit them all together. Once again I found it like solving a cryptic jigsaw.

Glacier Fabric Trials
Glacier Sampler

Then at last the real thing

Final Piece
Detail One
Detail Two
Detail Three

That’s all for now, hopefully before long I will be sharing my current work.