Serendipity

I don’t know about you, but for me the internet and social media such as blogs, Pinterest and Instagram sometimes lead me down pathways to serendipitous discoveries.  I saw some embroidery that I liked in a gram by Annemieke Bears from the Netherlands on Instagram, which led me to her website where I saw a picture of a Dilly Bag  she made from from a Brigitte Giblin pattern.

Dilly bag I made a comment on the post about the embroidery and also asked about the bag pattern. Needless to say I then bought the pattern and the paper pieces.

Annemieke kindly responded and also recommended that I might like to look at another embroiderer and maker which led me to Cecile Franconie and her beautiful work. Cecile blogs in French and even if you don’t translate the text the photos of her work are are truly captivating.

imageShe uses a wide variety of fabric and then everything imaginable to embellish it – beads, thread, ribbons wool and so on.

Several weeks later I went to the annual quilt and craft fair here in Sydney and as I entered who should I see doing needlework in a beautiful display of her work was Cecile.

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Cecile’s visit had been advertised as part of the show, but I didn’t know anything about her work when I read the guide. I only put the pieces together when I saw her work at the show. Serendipity strikes again!

cecile Franconie

 

 

 

 

If you would like to see more of Cecile’s work she has a book which is published by Quiltmania.

Hope you are enjoying creating.

 

 

 

 

 

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Some WIP progress

DP blockI’ve finally got back into my Drunkard’s Path quilt after a long hiatus and after I managed to find some more Field Study fabric by Alison Glass.  You may recall that I decided to make the circle part of the quilt entirely from this fabric range, supplemented by bright and bold solid fabric.  The colours are dull in this photo due to bad lightning at night.

I’m now on the home stretch and will be finalizing the design over the week-end. I had no set plan in mind and just wanted the colour to lead the way.

 

EmbroideryI’ve also been doing some slow stitching on my embroidery piece.  I reserve this for those nights when I’ve had a bad day at work and just need some relaxation on the couch with Pepe and Cosmo close by.  I’m really enjoying re-teaching myself long-forgotten skills from my childhood and feel a new obsession coming on.  One thing I have discovered is that I really like using perle cotton rather than embroidery floss.  It holds a stitch better in my view, plus I just love all the available colours! 🙂

Bright Flower

 

 

Sydney is experiencing a very warm autumn – it is halfway through May and it is 25′ today. We had the hottest April on record and it seems that we may also have a new record for May. Many plants and shrubs seem to think it is Spring!

 

Cosmo and Pepe on tableCosmo and Pepe were enjoying the sun this morning after their usual brush. They were as sleek as seals.

Hope all is right in your world and that colour and creativity is filling your days. Til next time…

Slow stitching

I haven’t been doing a lot of sewing lately after reaching a bit of a hiatus in my Drunkard’s Path quilt.  I have however, been doing some simple sewing by stitching improv solid scrap stripes which will one day become a quilt.

imageI sorted all my solid scraps into colours and then just started making stripes the lengths of the scraps.  It’s a nice, almost mindless activity which I can do when I’m tired and not feeling very creative.  I hope it will be transformed into a bright and cheerful quilt one day.

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I’m also doing a small embroidery project. I  found this linen piece when I did a recent tidy up, I think it came as a gift with a magazine, and have been doing a little when I’m in the mood for handwork.

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I’ve discovered I’m fairly hopeless at consistent stitches and have no real idea of which stitch to use for what, but I’m enjoying it nevertheless. image

 

“The boys” like me doing it because I sit still and they can have a lap if they want, but Cosmo prefers close supervision from nearby! 🙂

 

A Site to See 5: Linda Miller

Self Portrait, Linda Miller

Self Portrait, Linda Miller

I often feel that the world needs more fun and whimsy.  I know that I do, which is why I find the work of embroiderer Linda Miller so appealing.  Her naive and humourous embroideries are always filled with smiling people or happy animals or events.

Linda Miller Dog

 

Just looking at them lifts my spirits and makes me smile.

Linda Miller SeasideLinda lives and works in Hampshire in the UK. She creates her work on an industrial Bernina 950 sewing machine and sells framed and unframed works through her site.

Linda Miller - BookShe is also the author of the book Creative Machine Embroidery

If you like machine embroidery, or just need a smile, go take a look at her work.Linda Miller Cat and Seagull

 

 

 

 

Mexican textiles

As I posted recently I have a small collection of Mexican and Guatemalan textiles from my travels there some years ago. This bag is hanging on my wall at home because I think it’s too beautiful to use.

Mexican BagClose up of embroideryThe base cloth is hand-woven cotton which has then been heavily embroidered with thick cotton thread in colours which are typical of weaving of the Chiapas area of Mexico.Colour palette embroideryI also bought this jacket and wore it for a while, but then decided to display it because of the stunning colourful embroidery. Once again it’s on hand woven cotton cloth.Embroidered jacket

image lose up of jacketIt makes me very sad to think that so many of these skills are being lost.  I always search out local artisans when I travel and support their work in  whatever way I can.

I can’t wait to go back to this part of the world. For a colour and textile lover it is simply heaven! Go now if you can, while this beautiful work is still being created.