Friday, May 30, 2008

Phew! A day to spare!

My TIF challenge for May just made it. What do I call myself? Well, as I said last post I am a weaver. However, over my life I have played with many textile forms. I began with French knitting on a cotton reel with nails and made yards and yards of knitted braid. Did I use it for anything? Probably only food for clothes moth!
I progressed to 'real' knitting - white cotton face washers.
Primary school samplers were disastrous however in my teens I tried 'fancywork' as it was then called. Traced designs on linen in bright colours.Later came learning how to crochet and tat. Dressmaking became all important and occupied most of my spare time.
About 25 years ago I learnt to spin and discovered a Visual Arts course offering a semester of spinning instruction- sheer heaven! However next semester the subject on offer was weaving. A new challenge! And one that was meant for me. The spinning wheels sat idle. There have been forays into bobbin lace and kumihimo - all to be used for embellishments for fabric from the loom.
About 18 months ago with an enforced break from the loom I was bored and while web surfing I discovered Sharon Boggon's "Sumptuous Surfaces" course on line. I just had to learn how to make that gorgeous sea horse. After nearly 50 years break from embroidery my hands won't behave as they should but that has not diminished the enjoyment very much. Improvement comes slowly at my age but it comes.
All that history is a roundabout way of saying I consider myself a dabbler in textiles - just as the little butterfly grub samples as many leaves as possible I have sampled many textile experiences over my lifetime. For quite a long time I was totally wrapped in my weaving - rather like the grub in his woven chrysalid - when suddenly I was unable to weave there turned out to be other textile experiences to enjoy. I am just a happy venturer in this wonderful world of textiles.
Am I happy with the piece? Sort of! I had originally intended to stitch this piece in May colours but after starting out I decided that it wasn't working for me. The colours are lovely but for some reason I couldn't make them work. Colour can be difficult. I did want to stitch something in the challenge colours so will keep them in mind for another biscornu when I ahve some spare time. I enjoyed working with two Anchor variegated cottons. I was not sure whether they would be satisfactory for the purpose but was delighted with the result. I also used a variegated Stitches and Spice stranded cotton that I bought at the Craft Show - practically my only purchase on that trip. I tried bullion stitch yet again and this time it has improved sufficiently for me not to unpick - something that has been necessary for the last couple of months. If I can try a new stitch each month I am happy.
The butterfly in French knots - well, I am not exactly delighted with how it turned out. In future if I need to do an area in french knots I will back that section of linen.
Next month and the new challenge are only just around the corner and there is the stitch-along on stitchin fingers to keep me occupied. And I keep promising my loom I will be back weaving soon! Not enough hours in the day!


neki desu said...

Oh!i want to be that butterfly, please!

thank you so much for your lovely comment in my blog.

neki desu

Sandra said...

This is lovely, I love the flowers and the colours that you have used. I am just going to look up TIF challenge, it looks like fun.

Paula Hewitt said...

I like your idea of the grub sampling many leaves/you samploing many tecnhiques. this piece has great form - i like the curving branch. and the colours work well.looking forward to seeing it soon.