Sunday, 15 April 2012

Always creative

Sometimes, I look back at the things we make and my mind boggles at how varied they are! Between the six of us, we seem to cover most kinds of creative activity. Here's some stuff we've been doing lately:

These cupcakes were made by Carol, and they tasted very good indeed. She's been making Easter cupcakes for Scout fundraising, and we got the benefit!
These roses were made by Bev and her daughter from the pages of an old dictionary, for her daughter's engagement party recently.
Carol is still on a roll with those zippers and Gang Show scraps, making this brooch at one of our recent meetings.
These are more Orizomegami papers, made by Helen with food colouring. The red one has spray gold web, a rare thing these days as everyone hoards the last of their cans!
Here's Tricia's quilt top finished - looking very good!
Recently, Helen gave each of us a kit of fabrics to make a Harlequin Bag. I suspect she might be taking the opportunity to clear out her stash! Tricia made this one...
... and Nola made this one. They are very quick to make and rather sweet.
Nola finished off one pair of her earrings, which we saw in pieces last time.
She was also working on some postcards for future swaps. They came from the one piece of fabric, which had been painted and drawn on, but each one is being individually painted now. In the beginning, they were all the colour of the light one in the centre of the lower row.
Bev has been doing some rust dyeing, with oddments from her Dad's shed. I love how the washers and other bits have yielded such clear outlines.
Bev also brought her breakdown printing.
And here's another piece.
Maz brought along hers too. This one is on organza, so it's very delicate.
Here's a quirky doll that Helen made. Her name is Inga. Isn't she wonderful?
Last year, we did a lot of printing and painting, so we bought some cotton fabric as  drop cloths on our worktables. At the end of the year, we cut them apart and shared them out. Helen brought along one of her pieces, to try to workout what to do with it.
Here's Maz's piece of the cloth. She was printing on it with a round stamp made from furniture protectors - those little rubber shapes you can buy to stop furniture scratching the floor.
Here's Nola's piece of one of the drop cloths. She printed hers using breakdown printing and here's how it looks now:
It's looking very interesting, isn't it?
Bev was using up the last of the transfer dyes, by stamping with the thickened ones onto paper, using her own hand-carved stamps and some Indian woodblocks.
Carol was working on her inkle loom. She was making a sageo, a kind of strap, for her iaito, a blunt Japanese sword used for kata practice, in the style of Japanese martial arts that she follows.
Helen was beginning a new canvas work piece.
Tricia was working on her embroidered landscape, which she brings out and works on every so often. It's really coming together now, isn't it?
She was also pondering border options for her quilt. This was her favoured choice on the day, but it may change again before she finishes.
So as usual, we've been busy in so many different ways. I wonder what we'll see next fortnight?

Monday, 2 April 2012

And some other stuff..

Here's some other things we've been doing in our spare time!

As usual we swapped some postcards among ourselves. Here's one Bev made, which you last saw back here. Here it is, all finished.
She wove strips of fabric together and machine stitched over them, then added some hand embroidery. Simple, but it really works!
Nola began this one when we were playing with serviettes back in May 2011. She laid down an image onto mat board, and added torn tissue layers to create a mood.
The original serviette used images of 1950's women in playful ways but this has a very different mood.

To make this one, Helen trapped threads and fabric snippets under a sheer layer and machine stitched a grid to hold them in place.
Maz's postcard was also one you've seen before, when she was working on it last August. She created a felted background, added some hand stitching and some ribbon and bead flowers. It has a lovely delicate feel, unusual in felted works.
Tricia's postcard was based on the tile she made for ATASDA's travelling suitcase exhibition, Marrakesh recently. It has the same intense colours, inspired by the desert and the rich colours of the zellig tiles.
Here's another one from Bev, made from strips of fabric, yarn and braid, with fancy machine stitches.
Carol's postcard was partly in honour of the many zippers donated to the wardrobe department of the local Gang Show. She spent part of the day sorting them into colour groups.
Eventually, she included parts of one in her postcard, along with some scraps from costumes she'd been making for the next Show.
This gorgeous one from Helen featured a motif from a piece of fabric she had in her stash. It's very powerful, isn't it?
Tricia began this postcard when we were playing around with serviettes last year.
She added some special buttons to work with the antiques theme.

All these postcards are very different and use different techniques. I think what they have in common is a willingness to work with what we've done, rather than add yet more things to our many samples. I think it's also clear that small works like this don't necessarily have to be elaborate or complex to succeed as works of art.

Tricia has also been learning to draw in pastels. She's done some beautiful things. Here are some still lifes...
 ... and here's a drawing of one of her sons. She's really captured him so well.
She's also really been bitten by the quilting bug. Here she's beginning to sew her quilt blocks together.
Stay tuned for more on this, her second ever quilt.

Nola was inspired to make some earrings with lace motifs, by a picture in a book called Making Vintage Accessories. The picture used some lace that reminded her of lace remnants in her stash, from when her adult daughter was tiny.
Almost genuine vintage lace! She painted some of these lace motifs with metallic Setacolor paints, and matched them with beads in her stash.
Helen was working on a hand embroidery for another group. The theme was black and white, so she took a tiny section of a photograph and enlarged it. Here's how it looks:
Carol was trying out a craft for her Joey scouts, making dragon's eggs. Here's her sample egg:
Isn't it wonderful?

You could never say our work is boring or predictable, could you?