Tuesday, 12 April 2016

Taming my Magpie Mind

That's the title of a talk that I'm supposed to be writing - I have until tomorrow teatime to finish, as I'm teaching on Thursday and invigilating exams on Friday. So what better time to write a blog post!!

Apologies, etc etc, as usual for being rubbish at keeping the blog up to date.

Here are some photos of a few things that I'm talking about. This little collection is where the rot set in...where I learnt to use materials and techniques I would never have dreamed of...where the flood of ideas started...why my mind now needs taming!!

My first ever piece of machine embroidery, before I started C&G. I did this with Wendy Dolan.

One of my early C&G pieces. Detest the colour combination, but oh look! Are those holes burnt through with a soldering iron....??

A box (lying on it's side here). Can you see my name? And can you also see those beads, stitched onto the edge?? I think this is where the "difficult bead thing" started....

Little textured piece - with embroidered wire spirals, obviously (RHS, look carefully).

Grated crayon and cling film. Uh-oh....

OK. Should start to get worried now.

Grating silk on a cheesegrater and poking stuff through the rips?

Or just burn some more holes in things...

Ah! These look faintly normal - beaded tassels, stitched completely on the sewing machine...those difficult beads again...

So why not incorporate "difficult beads" into a cobweb felt scarf covered in the little blighters. Yes, every bead was stitched by machine, including the fringe.

This is where the laminating started....(Yes, we need a laminator. No, not for the office).

With added handstitched "netty" bits, copper shim, wire connections, and galvanised wire hoops (they've definitely featured in my work since I made this!)

What happens if you are playing with stitched laminated bits and pieces and also volunteering in a charity shop? You take the tag gun home and use it to connect your laminated embroidery, that's what you do...

If he wasn't worried before, Mr G was definitely worried now...

Ah! Paper! How wonderful, something else to collect...

including those brown paper grocery bags, oh, and sticks. Obviously. Must have sticks.

And wire! Yes! Do more with wire...

So I did...looks a bit like my recent beaded wire fish and leaf, made earlier this month:

That's all for now! 

If you'd like to come to the talk, it's with the East Kent Embroiderers' Guild branch, near Canterbury this Saturday. Details here.


  1. This reads like a journey through a C& G diploma in machine embroidery... Wire, paper, lamination, except you seem to have had far more success than I ever did with all these things. Where's the balsa wood? Good luck on Saturday... Not that you need it.

  2. My goodness! Is there anything you haven't used? Fusewire? Tyvek?

  3. See the laminated shop tag sample? Balsa wood strip, LHS!

  4. Oh my goodness, sounds like my world!


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