Thursday, April 19, 2018

#100daysofstitch : Week 2

I decided to join #The100DayProject and my focus is #100daysofstitch because this year, before this push, I wasn't stitching at all and I missed it. At the end of my first week, I'd done some machine stitching on cards, and my first hand stitching project looked like this.
Unfortunately the second week of this project has been derailed by me getting a terrible head cold - luckily it is school hols so I have been able to rest up. Not so luckily I had all these creative plans and I've not been able to do anything much with them so far. Initially I looked at books for inspiration instead of actually stitching courtesy of a lovely friend. According to my intentions for this project, this still counts 
and when I felt a bit better I managed some beading on both butterflies
Then I added a pop of lime felt and thought about threads for background additions
So I was still stitching but slowly...I might even say reluctantly
and then I had an epiphany! I was "Making" myself do this project for the challenge because I DO WANT TO STITCH but I was feeling a lot of resistance. This challenge has really confirmed for me that a totally hand-stitched embroidery project is not my jam! I already knew this {shakes head at self} - in 2010 I posted about how I had made 3 attempts to do some hand-applique and then gave it up for machining. I'm not sure why I thought that might have changed - I love the threads, I love the feel of the felt, I love Sue Spargo's gorgeous work, I love how mine is looking, but I was not loving the process. So on Day 14 I changed my approach to the block and added more machine stitching in the background, and suddenly I was happy again ♥  I then enjoyed adding the closed fly stitch to the butterfly body - cos it was a fun embellishment rather than a rule! I have to follow my heart.
Following the John Campbell quote - making my own path feels really good. 
I LOVE the juxtaposition of the machine stitched lines alongside the hand stitching
And yesterday, with the pressure gone to be restricted to hand stitching, I did some lovely hand stitching around the blue butterfly wings.
This is called Crested Chain Stitch. It's so pretty I might just use that one again to finish the green butterfly. You'll have to come back and see. So here's the story in stages so far.
Day 1 
End of week 1 (Day 8)
End of Week 2 (Day 15)
Only a day or 2 left (depending on wellness) to stitch on this project so I'm looking ahead to what's next? I have always had in the back of my mind that I need a place to put small stitchy things - experiments like this - when they're done, so I'm thinking there'll be a fabric book in my future....More immediately, let me reassure you that my gorgeous thread stash won't go to waste. This process has clarified/reminded me that I need to do more mixed media projects where I am using my hand stitching as an embellishment in combination with my machine like this
and this
I love using my machine with both fabric and paper, so as soon as I feel better I'm going to start a quilt and I am definitely keen to do another Stitch*Bookery project (which is currently on special : $20 off until 1st of May) I've only finished Day 15/100 so watch this space ♥ I'm sharing daily on my instagram account with a weekly summary here on the blog. Hope you check back to see where I take this challenge next and I don't go back to work until 30th April so hopefully some different projects to share as well soon.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Happy Making

The anticipation of 2 weeks of school holidays gets me excited - I work in a school library so it's holiday time for me as well and my boys are teenagers so need little entertaining. It's the time for lots of creativity, tidying up my garden and the house....unfortunately I've started with a terrible head cold. Luckily it is school hols so I've been able to rest up. Not so luckily I had all these creative plans and I've not been able to do anything with them so far....I am feeling frustrated! While I continue with my #100daysofstitch challenge (will report more on Thursday) I haven't been able to do much else, 
but I missed talking to you so I've got some nice things together to share. 
I have made good use of Netflix! I have enjoyed watching/re-watching "Chocolat", "The Duchess", "Billy Elliot". I might re-watch "Anne with an E" yet. I adored that. If you have recommendations for similar to these please let me know. I am not better yet... 
Discovered this book at the library completely by accident :
Really lovely to look at - beautiful quotes - inspiring lettering - gorgeous illustrations.  Check out Katie Daisy's art website HERE to look at her work.
Did you buy the Art Bundle for Good #2? I did (no regrets - just wish I had more time to art - no surprises there!) and wondered if you knew that there have been 6 new classes added to replace 4 that stopped working - 2 of them are Tam classes so that's lovely to see.
There has been some discussion about gelli printing in one of my classes.The Gelli Arts videos on YouTube are really worth checking out. I discovered a new technique there that I will definitely be trying when I feel better : using book and magazine pages as resists. See that one HERE 
and then check out Wonderstrumpet HERE 
- great to watch if you are new to gelli printing and she has a style all her own.
Please share your best film and creative youtube recommendations with me in the comments so I can lose myself in watching something delicious. Talk to you soon I hope.

Thursday, April 12, 2018

#100daysofstitch : Week 1

I decided to join #The100DayProject and my focus is #100daysofstitch because this year, before this push, I wasn't stitching at all and I missed it. Sharing weekly on a Thursday because I shared Day 1 last Thursday. After long deliberations about which project I would actually start with, I decided on this hand-embroidery class with Sue Spargo from Craftsy.
Day 1 : Blogged about my gatherings and my base block, 
Day 2 : My background from yesterday is approx 20cm square of felt. I cut out the butterfly pattern and chose my base felt colours and stitched one down. I've used Madeira Lana thread round the outside - doubled through the needle. It's lovely wool - goes so nicely with the felt.
Decided to do 2 butterflies to try a couple of different ways of doing this but I don't want to spend time doing a whole panel. All set for Day 3
Day 3 : second butterfly stitched down with a different colour-way of the Lana thread. Stayed the night with Mum so this was a lovely easy thing to take ♥
Day 4 : need to gather other cotton fabrics for the next layers
Day 6 : Antennae - wool for the circles - stitched and cut out next layer for wings
Day 7 : first layer on wings
Day 8 (yesterday) : bodies on
Day 5, I had a break from hand stitching because I needed to make a new batch of cards. Added machine stitching and you can see more details in my previous post.
Main learning this week : don't try and look ahead and guess where you'll get to. Just enjoy the process of what you have time for on that day. I don't want to bounce around without settling on one project, but I also want to be flexible. I needed the cards, and machine stitching for a day was fun. Looking forward to seeing where week 2 takes me. I've got a few more thoughts about this project which I'll share soon.
I'm sharing daily on my instagram account with a weekly summary here on the blog.
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