Sunday, January 22, 2012

Paper Flowers

While strolling the neighbourhood, my daughter and I came across a luscious front garden full of tall corn, enormous sunflowers and various other vegetable and plants. But what really caught my eye was this plant that had broken through onto the footpath, and was beautifully decorated with these wonderful paper blossoms.We have also been having great fun trawling through op shops, and my find of the week is a collection of 17 view-master slide sets. Most of the photos look like they date from the 50s or 60s, although the sets were originally bought at least after 1969, as enclosed in one is a list of other titles available including the moon landing! How I would love to get my hands on that! The 17 that I have seem to be the souvenirs of someone's trip through Canada and the US. Puts a different spin on being invited around to someone's home to view their slides after their grand tour!
Fortunately I happen to have a view-master at home (doesn't everyone?), and while I am not yet quite sure how best to use / display these, for now we are just enjoying looking through them.

From a textile point of view, I have cut all the fabric for a quilt my daughter is making, and she has started sewing the blocks. I over-dyed my silk shirt, as the colours faded a bit in the washing, and I have been sorting through magazines, fabric and DVDs. The tomatoes are ripening and we are enjoying plucking the leaves off the lettuce plants for salads.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Welcome and Introduction

Thank you for visiting! It's still nearly the beginning of 2012, and a good time to finally put myself out there with an individual blog. I have been a member of the group blog and challenge group "Art quilts around the world" :

since its inception, but as I am spreading my creative wings this year and entering the world of teaching Patchwork and Quilting, I thought I should celebrate and consolidate by setting up my own blog. Much of it will be my excursions into art quilts, but also into other textile art areas, such as eco-dyeing. Speaking of which, this weekend my daughter and I have been re-claiming silk shirts hunted out at op shops: We used eucalyptus leaves gathered from the ground on a recent bushwalk, as well as fresh strawberries, rose leaves (saved from a recent birthday bunch) and red prunus. Oh, and leaves and gumnuts from a couple of branches that had fallen in the carpark of our local shops during Melbourne's recent wild weather. I have been loving eco-dyeing since a workshop with India Flint last year.

If you have traced me from "art quilts around the world", you may have seen some of my quilts on that site. For example:
Endangered June 2011

Ammonoid September 2009

The tree of life August 2008

My other big challenge for 2012 is to re-organise my tiny, over-stocked, packed to the rafters studio and keep it that way! About 3 times a year I tidy it all up, but before too long it is out of control again. I know I have way too much stuff, and keep stumbling across more treasures, but I also find that I often have stashed away just the right tool or piece of fabric or ribbon for a project, if I can just get to it. So I figure if I post a public photo with a promise to update it with a gob-smackingly awesome one of everything in its place and a place for everything, it will help me keep on track.

my quilting corner

the benchtop

Finally, a word about the title "Contextile Quilting". Contextile is a contraction of the three main foci for the blog - writing (text) about textile art and providing a context for my work. A reminder of the saying: Without context, there is no meaning.

So there you are - the longest journey starts with a single step and all that. This is the first step in charting my creative progress, diversions, side steps, mis-steps and all, in blog form.