Saturday, May 30, 2015

Embroidered picture - Grape Sign

Work on the Lone Tree picture is coming along - in fact I am finding it hard to really get stuck into other 'must do' embroidery jobs.

I will show you the progress later but in the meantime I thought I would show you this picture. This is the first embroidered picture I did a very, very long time - in fact I have only ever done this one, but it might give you an idea of where the next one is heading.

I use whatever thread is most suitable from my stash, colour more important than fibre, and rather than using thread painting in the traditional sense to create a flat picture, I see stitches in every surface and try to translate each into stitches; satin stitch bricks, stem stitch for the smooth area above the window, a bit of card padding helped make sharp edges of the window frame...

The Old Town, Aarhus, Denmark
The picture is based on a photograph Adrian had taken on a family outing to The Old Town, Aarhus in Denmark. It is an open air museum with 75 historical building collected from townships in all parts of Denmark - a great place to visit if you are ever visiting that part of the world.  

Anyway, Adrian took photos of some of beautiful old signs including this one outside the wine cellar. My version is only small - the size of the photo, but I think it is one of my all time favourite pieces. 
Now I REALLY must get some 'work' done. Submissions for Beating Around the Bush, 2016 are due so I'd better get to it!

Have a nice weekend,

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Morning Tea with May Morris...

...not literally perhaps, but almost.

Afternoon Tea with May Morris by Michele Hill

Yesterday my friend Michele Hill released her third book 'Afternoon Tea with May Morris'
I have known Michele for quite some time and she is one amazing lady! A talented quilter and William Morris devotee, not only has she now produced tree books of beautiful applique and quilt designs inspired by the Morris & Co legacy, she has lead tours through the UK and is at the forefront of promoting the amazing Morris & Co collection (the biggest outside the UK) housed the Art Gallery of South Australia. If you ever want to know more about William Morris or his daughter May, just ask Michele! 

With Michele Hill at the launch of her new book 'Morning Tea with May Morris'.
Yesterdays book release was held as part of the Australia's Biggest Morning tea - a fundraising event for the Australian Cancer Council, hosted by the Port Elliot Patchworkers. You can see more photo's from the event on Michele's blog.
As an embroiderer, I am rather excited that this latest book focuses on May, William's daughter.

Embroidered panel designed by May Morris, Morris & Co 1890s
May Morris was an extremely talented designer and competent embroiderer - in fact she became head of the embroidery department of Morris & Co at the age of 23. Michele's book includes an overview of May's life and there is a brilliant little online exhibition here at the Arts & Craft Museum at the Cheltenham Gallery & Museum's website if you are curious.

I am not a quilter or patchwork by any stretch of the imagination, but the way Michele puts her designs together is just fabulous and the projects in this collection are all quite manageable in size - besides, the patterns could very, very easily be used as.......embroidery patterns.

Enjoy your week,
Anna x

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Embroidered pictures: Lone Tree

Work in Progress...
Just a little bit of progress - there now is a tree.

I have quite a bit of writing and preparation to do for the embroidery course that I start the week after next - but I can't help but to steal a minute (or an hour) here and there...

The trunk and branches are quite high, padded with tightly packed perle cotton. The plan was to cover the padding with raised stem stitch, but I had to give up on that idea. The stitches holding padding are so tight it and the angles so steep it is impossible to slide the needle under without making a mess of it.

I am still using stem stitch - it gives such a smooth even surface - but I am having to take the stitches all the way to the back. The padding is tight enough so I don't loose any hight as long as I place one stitch over each couching stitch and don't pull it too tight. It is hard on the fingers and slow work. Still, seeing how it is coming along, it will be worth the effort.

Enjoy your week.
Anna X

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Back Home...

...but oh what a trip!

First day of classes in Bangkok. Great to meet up with old friends, Pao my delightful host and Gib my fabulous and sweet interpreter.

Perhaps my youngest student ever? Baby Me, hanging out with grandma while mum is busy stitching.

 I still pinch myself that I get to share my love of embroidery with these incredible ladies (and gentlemen) who are all so welcoming and eager to stitch. We may not speak the same language (I don't quite know what I would do without my fabulous interpreter Gib!) but we still manage to have a fantastic time together and share some great times and good laughs 

Students brought last years project to show. This one made into a fabulous work bag. 

After 4 full days in Bangkok it was on to Chiang Mai, getting ready for the last day of classes.

Great night out with friends at the most amazing Thai fish restaurant. Super delicious!
and then...


I didn't have time to be a tourist last year, but this time, Adrian flew up to join me and we had a few days of doing very, very little...

...starting with the best coffee I have ever had! 

...waking up to this visitor right outside our balcony...

Visiting a silk place, this one geared towards tourists - next time I want to find a smaller place. Did I buy silk?... silly question really, isn't it???

We did a few touristy things...

 - the silver temple was mind blowing. Completely covered in pressed tin inside and out!

Sent a day on the mountain...

... visiting a coffee farm...

...all on downhill mountain bikes! Sooo much fun!
The best way to finish an amazing time away.