Thursday, 27 August 2015

Festival of Quilts 2015

Earlier this month I visited The Festival of Quilts which is is something I never miss. There were over 1000 competition quilts along with exhibitions of individual and group textile artists.  A great way to immerse oneself in the joy of stitch and  of course a great excuse to stock up on bits and pieces for the studio/work room/sewing room/girl shed and add to your stash. I love the art and pictorial quilts and it's hard to believe sometimes that they are quilts and not paintings but here are a selection of my favourites.

There was an amazing exhibition from Through Our Hands, a group of affiliated textile artists, curated by Laura Kemshall and Annabel Rainbow, with a mix of stitching, print, paint and mixed media.  

Genevieve Attinger

Annabel Rainbow

Jenni Dutton has created a series of drawings called The Dementia Drawings which evolved from the time when she was a carer for her mother.

The drawings are actually darned portraits using thread sewn through netting stretched over canvas and are based on family photographs from albums that she and her mother looked through and became a way for Jenni to explore the themes of ageing and her mother's gradual loss of memory.

This was one of my favourites from the group category where here each artist has sewn a panel each for form one large quilt.

This textile group had based all their quilts on images of food.  I love these tomatoes.

This was just a small selection of my favourites and I could have included many more but the blog would have been a mile long if I had. It was another great Festival of Quilts and I always come away with masses of inspiration not to mention more fabrics to add to my stash. I couldn't do a FOQ either without visiting my favourite art suppliers Art Van Go and this time I treated myself to a Gelli Printing Plate which I have always wanted. I just need to learn how to use it so lots to get on with for the coming Autumn and Winter months.  Happy stitching!

Monday, 17 August 2015

Journeys #7 - Masking Tape just got Better

Every artist has a roll of masking tape in their kit.  We all know how invaluable it is for its adhesive qualities but did you know it can be used to make your own decorative tape rather like Japanese Washi Tape.

For my 'Journey' here although I have used the masking tape as it was originally intended, for sticking, you will see that it has been painted over.   This was achieved by using a great technique I learnt last year on an Art Van Go printing workshop.  

The object of the workshop was to create colourful printed textiles so masking tape was stuck onto large squares of white cotton in a grid like pattern to mask off areas which were then printed over using fabric paints and various printing blocks and stencils.  

The masking tape was then peeled off. 

The process is repeated several times with the masking tape each time reapplied in a different grid pattern and using different coloured paints.

You are left with a colourful decorative surface printed fabric which can be used in various projects such as patchwork and quilting.  The lovely decorated masking tape is therefore actually a by-product of the whole technique but rather than just throwing it all in the bin once it has been peeled off the fabric, Viv from Art Van Go suggested we stick them in a sketchbook as they are just too nice to throw away.

For this one I cut an apperture in the preceding page which then forms a frame to what is underneath.  So for something that was destined for the bin I think it's a great way of creating your own Washi tape and can be used to decorate any surface. Masking tape just got better!