'If you make happiness your goal, then you're not going to get to it… The goal should be an interesting life."

Dorothy Rowe

Saturday 11 September 2010

Back to business.

For the first time for a few days I had the energy last night to do image more than simple knitting [can’t think why not <g>]– so I finished this, which I started a while ago. It is one of my collagraphs on a piece of fine polyester fabric, backed with white felt and worked in running stitch in two strands of embroidery floss.

I had been reading an old WOW interview with Olga Norris in which she talks about her use of running stitch – see here for some examples. She uses two different coloured threads in the needle, and works the stitch to introduce controlled distortion to the pieces. So that's what I tried.

There isn’t very much distortion, perhaps because of the felt backing, but I like the way using different thread colours allowed me to introimageduce more shading to the piece. I'm very pleased with it!

That was last night – today I made a book. In my internet wanderings I came across this tutorial, and knowing I had a piece of scrap leather somewhere, decided to have a go.

Serendipitously, by the time I'd cut the irregular edges off the leather, it was just big enough to take pages made from brown paper packaging. [I’ve got a ton of it!] It fastens with a jeans button and buttonhole cut into the leather.

I love the interlaced binding, but I think the edges look a bit unfinished, so I may go back and work a whip stitch round it with some more of the cream threaIMG_2546d.

And then, I embroidered a book page, for a book which is yet to be constructed. The page is Bondawebbed together Colourcatchers [which I’d done earlier], with velvet applied with machine and hand stitching. I'm quite pleased that the back, which will show in the finished book, is almost as neat as the [not very neat]front – but I forgot to take a photo and my camera battery is flat, so that will have to wait!

In between all that I’ve been reading my new book. Although I’ve never been lucky enough to see her work for real, I've admired  Cas Holmes’ work in magazines and on the net. And look, she makes books! So when I heard about her book I ordered it sight unseen, which I don’t often do.

I wasn’t disappointed. She writes about how she constructs the fabric for her pieces – a more interesting take on ‘fabric paper’, not that she calls it that. I’ve just got on to her thoughts on mark making with stitch, which also has some great ideas. Strongly recommended for fans of layers, loose ends and carpet tape stamps- although it’s not, I think, a book for new embroiderers - or for neatniks.

I have also ordered Gwen Hedley’s new book, so I hope that is equally good!


Jackie said...

This is the second good review of Cas Holmes book that I've read today. It must be good I went on one of her courses a long log time ago.

Jackie said...

This is the second good review of Cas Holmes book that I've read today. It must be good I went on one of her courses a long log time ago.