Pigmy Possums and Chocolates with no calories!

These Needlelace Chocolates are calorie and fat free and a great contemporary interpretation of needlelace by Jacky McDouall for a Valentine’s Day competition.

Olwyn Scott’s Needlelace is an example of contemporary needlelace from Australia. This time the motif is a Pigmy Possum. This is an exceptional piece of contemporary needlelace do take look.

Perhaps he is after the chocolates…

Foiling, printing, stamping and combining flowers with fabric techniques

I have been poking about the net digging up a little information on surface design techniques for textiles. Here are few links I have dug up.

Ruth Issett has provided instructions on using oil and wax crayons on fabric in Make your Mark use Markal Paintstiks to create rich surfaces for embroidery. The article illustrates masking, rubbing and mark making techniques on fabric, all of which make an interesting jumping off point for projects.

Stamping Fabric covers applying stamps to textiles using easily obtained supplies and fabric paints and inks.

Pamela Watts describes a technique for combining fresh flowers with stitching by sandwiching them between bondaweb.

Adding a metallic foil to fabric can turn a surface that is quite mundane into something special. This technique uses paper-backed fusible webbing to adhere the foil to fabric.

Finally this article by Janice Hay on creating interesting patterns on fabric by embellishing a mono-printed foundation fabric should provoke some ideas too.

All of them are on my list of things to try on fabric postcards.

Rediscovering rug making

Oh Dear I have been digging around looking at hooked and hand made rugs and I can feel an interest coming on.

Why am I digging around in the rug hooking sites? Ever since Jerry has built me a new bead storage system, one thing leads to another and sewing room is having a bit of reshuffle. I still have these baskets of yarn and with my new addiction to free form crochet I have managed to accumulate more wool!. I have completed this scrumbled thing but free form crochet items alone is not going to use up the more plain wool. (I discovered that texture is the key with scrumbles but that is another ramble)

I found my rug hooks in my clean out. One is a standard rug hook the other is latch hook. I think it must be 25 – 30 years since I have used them! Once again one thing has lead to another and I decided to poke about and see what was happening to contemporary rug hooking. I know that often rugs are made from strips of fabric but you can use yarns too.

Since I had the basic tools of rug making I toddled over to see Deanne Fitzpatrick’s work. Any textile technique that treats yarn like a graphic medium intrigues me and sure enough her gallery pages had me thinking. After looking at her pattern page I realised that this is really an excuse to at least get out the pencils and paints and do some drawing in my visual journal . If nothing else that’s fun.

If the primitive style is not your taste take a look at the contemporary rugs of English textile artist Lucy Mason on her site Prodigal Rugs. The site also hosts a small article on the history of making rag rugs.

If you are interested in the history of hand made rugs the Canadian Museum of Civilization has an exhibit of hand made rugs which covers the history, cultural influences and designs found on hand made rugs.

Rug Hooking online is an ezine well worth browsing if you are interested in rug hooking. What it is, how to do it, tips from the experts, dyeing for rug hooking, adapting designs, articles, a gallery, and patterns to tempt you to try the craft. Hooked is another ezine which covers hand hooking.

Rag rugs too have been on my screen lately. In my hippy days I used to make braided rugs from recycled clothing. I once made a floor rug with a 12 ft diameter which the goat eventually got to. Apart from the goats efforts it was an extremely hard wearing rug.

Rug making has a long history and traditional rugs have been made using a huge variety of techniques and materials. This Rag Rugs Tour gives you an indication of the variety.

Now you can see why I feel another interest coming on but I am going to resist as really I just want to use up some plain everyday yarn!