Wednesday, May 30, 2007


Don't know whether holidays are entirely worth it, since I returned I have been paid bills, been to the hairdressers, done an embroidery workshop at the EG, signed up for the leisure centre,been to see my best friend, done the washing and re-stocked the fridge. Now I wonder which of of these activities you will be of interest????

OK then the embroidery workshop was with Fay Maxwell and was based on the article she has just had published in Stitch Working with blanket felt on silk. Both new experiences for me. And no tracing paper!!!!!

It was a really good day though I have a feeling that Fay despaired of me!! I always have problems in workshops, part of the reason is that I am left handed and relatively inexperienced as a stitcher therefore any new stitch(especially those with a twist) present me with a big problem. Once I get home and can use the computer to turn things round I am OK but in a workshop I panic a bit. I had real problems with the authentic Shisha stitch Fay was showing us. Her work is beautiful, an updating of the ancient crewel work and she was funny and informative so if you ever get the chance to take a class with her, grab it.

One of my other mistakes was to put a bird on my cushion.
This immediately locked me into feathers etc.. instead of being free to do exotic flowers and leaves.

I have actually pulled out the stitching I did in the workshop(forgot to photoraph)
and started again. I will show progress at a later date.

Now my main aim is to get back to TAST, (as very tempted to try and find an Internet cafe in Cyprus so that I could continue when the weather was bad) I am now three weeks behind but I hope that Sharon doesn't take a break because knowing me that will mean I am still three weeks behind when she starts again

Inpite of the weather I was pleased with some of the photographs I took in Cyprus so I will share them when I think of it.

This one was on the same beach as the chair.......aaah lucky M!!

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

I'm back

and hit the ground running. We jetted off to blue skies and turquoise seas(see last posting) to land in a thunderstorm which lasted a 36 hours and then a week of grey days even so I found a chair waiting for me on the beach.

Arriving back in England up a holiday weekend where it never seemed to stop raining for two days had me thinking how much the weather affects our moods and in some cases livelyhoods. I feel so sorry for people who were involved in events like the Kent Garden Show, people who run the Fun Fairs that I saw advertised, for many of these people they must rely on these holidays for a large part of their income. The real cruelty is that this morning, as people return to work, the sky is a bright washed clear blue.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Basque stitch.....

This is just a quickie this week because I am off to the beautiful island of Cyprus tomorrow, for two weeks Yipee, so I will be playing catch up when I come back.

The moment I saw "Basque" I thought of Jean Borotra the "Bounding Basque" and of the game Pelote the incdedibly fast game which is played against a wall with a sort of scoop shaped basket and a very small ball. So my basque stitch is based on the "basket" complete with flying ball!!!

I like this stitch, at first, I was making it like a detched chain without the twist and then the penny dropped. It does have a sort of folklore look to it a good stitch for building up layers as you can work it both ways.

This is from last year. Can't wait!!!

Monday, May 07, 2007

A bit about me.......

I have been tagged by Gunnel, I feel quite honoured. If you look at her blog and her Flickr you will see some beautiful needlefelting and antique fabric collage.

Well I am supposed to tell you 7 things about myself so here goes.

1. I have been married for nearly 46 years, as you can imagine he is pretty special as are our two children. I blessed with some wonderful friends, they know who they are.

2. I love colour, I have been known to burst into tears if something stikes me as particularly beautiful, eg entering the big marquee at the Chelsea Flower Show for the first time and a wall of Pale purple Wisteria and yellow Roses at the Alhambra Palace in Grenada.

3. I love live theatre, especially musical theatre. I love the works of Stephen Sondheim and Kander and Ebb, Jerry Herman and Maltby and Shire. I like going to the cinema too, next on the "to see" list are Hairspray and Pirates of the Carribean 3.

4. I like music from Billy Joel to Prokofiev but I HATE "background" music in shops and lifts, television, and toilets. What is it about? There are many people who are a little hard of hearing or like myself have mild tinnitus and this constant bombardment is a real irritation. This is one of my two pet hates.

5. I don't like to see push chairs which face forward and create a barrier between the parent and child. It seems to me that a great number of the times you hear children crying in shopping areas is because they are trapped and bored, very often the parents and siblings are walking behind talking and laughing and the child in the push chair is completely excluded. As for the kind that have a sort of parcel shelf for the second child....don't get me started. Did you guess this is my other per hate???

6. I am known to have a soft spot for Johhny Depp, who can blame me?


7. I love all things creative, from photography to embroidery, I like to mess with paint and papers, play with Paint Shop Pro and trying new techniques and searching for that perfect combination which will allow me to create something lasting.

Well that's me, now I am supposed to name seven others. I think most of the seven people will have been tagged many times before and so please do not feel obliged to respond, just take this to be a mark of gratitude of the pleasure I have had from reading your blogs. First of all Sharon B, it was working with her on Encrusted Crazy Quilting course that widened my horizons and of course her inspirational Take a Stitch Tuesday has brought so many of us together.
Purple Missus is generous with her wonderful experiments in combining fabric and paint. Someone who makes me want to reach out and touch her work is Kay Susan her blog is Smockery I have to thank Dot as the little dolls I have made from her design have charmed my friends.Next is Marianne, the bags she had made from her TAST samples would grace any boutique. Margaret is someone else who is generous with her experiments and also shares beautiful photograph. So many more I could and should mention but my last is not "a lady who sews" (but his wife, my best friend does) Tony likes to chip in with the odd comment now and then and I do enjoy reading his blog about his village and his passions(birds and moths) and it makes them feel not so far away.
Thank you Gunnel for giving me this opportunity to say thank you, of course you are on the list too.

All this has made me realise that I must update my links, I have so many people on Bloglines that do not appear here.

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Wheel Stitch - week 18

I am going on holiday on Thursday and everything seems to be happening at once, golf games, theatre trips, dentist visits, not to mention lipstick searches. Why is there always so much to do before you go on holiday, my younger brother asked me what was the difference between holidays and being retired. I told him that Holidays are harder work!!!! I have just finished my sample of wheel stitch My first thought was of the inside of a watch or clock and I started looking for images on exactly how they are set. Wandering around I came across the Antikythera Device ,an Ancient Greek "computer" which was found at the beginning of the century. Fascinating stuff. So this is my offering based on the picture from the Nordex site.

I love these textural stitches, especially when you start to pile them on top of each other. I particularly like the pink wheel on the left where I reversed the stitch for a couple of rounds and it made this highly satisfactory machine wheel look.

Saturday, May 05, 2007

Elizabeth Arden what have you done.........

Courtesy The Scream
....that's it. I went to day to replace my Elizabeth Arden 8 hour lip salve, colour MELON. To be told, because it is not popular in the EU(European Union) it has been withdrawn. I pointed out that we English Roses have a different skin tone to our undeniably beautiful European cousins but this was received with a sympathetic continental shrug. All other lipsticks go ten shades darker on me, what am I to do, I must become a recluse, I NEED MY LIPSTICK. Why can't these companies warn you when they are about to remove your favourite product, I've never really recovered from the demise of Yardley's English Rose!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!