Sunday, 18 May 2014

Textile Trail 2014

Today my middle son and I went on the Stroud International Textile Trail. It is a fabulous trail around some of the amazing textile artist and ceramists of the area.

We sat down yesterday with our book and circled the studios we wanted to visit. For an 8 year old he is quite opinionated about the trail! We chose a mix of textile artists and ceramists - he loves all things pottery!

We also plotted the best places to stop of cake and lunch - a major highlight of the day for him!

We started at Ruskin Mill in Nailsworth with Helen Taylor and Clare Herrington. Their fabulous studio is full of amazing felted scarves, owls and bags! It was a great place to start.

Then we went to Stroud to visit Matthew Harris. His work is really inspiring and I was so excited to see his work in black and white. His studio was an amazing space with an grass roof!

Echo no IIII by Matthew Harris

Also on the same path were a couple of Ceramists, including Noah's favourite of the day Tara Davidson.

By Tara Davidson

We then went to visit Alice Fox's exhibition, Tide Marks.

Tide Marks by Alice Fox
It was amazing. Alice's work is full of texture, marks and rust printing love it!

This morning Noah made the decision that we needed to have lunch at the Lavender Bakehouse in Chalford. They have the most amazing panini's with huge salads!

Opportunity for more cake.

Our final stop of the day was the amazing Polly Lyster and her husband. Polly is an amazing dyer, using indigo and other natural dyes to create amazing fabric.


They had an indigo dye vat set up in the garden and Noah had the opportunity to dye a cotton scarf. I think he dyed most of himself too!

He was so proud of his first attempt at dyeing and I was drooling over the amazing colours that natural dyes can produce!

We drove home inspired and very excited about all the textiles we had seen! Noah now has a list of things he would like to felt and dye!

If you live near it is worth watching out for the trail details next year. It is already in our diary for next year!

Saturday, 17 May 2014

Half Square Triangle - HST

At the moment I am teaching 3 beginners patchwork classes in one day - I do like a challenge!

I teach all my beginners how to make half square triangles (HST). They are the most versatile building block in patchwork and lead easily to lots of different designs.

I thought I would collate some fabulous quilts made using HST as their base unit as inspiration for all those new to HST!

From Red Pepper Quilts
Love the mix of solid colour and bright patterns!

From Sew Katie Did
This quilt is a wonderful mix of HST in solid colour, no plan just go for it!

From The Cottage Mama

Love the mix of colour and the geometric shape.

From Quilt Addict
These stars are so lovely!

From Freshly Pieced
This scrappy HST quilt is divine!

Hope you find this gorgeous collection of quilts just as inspiring as I do!

Friday, 16 May 2014

An Afternoon of Colour!

I am lucky enough to live in area rich in textiles heritage.

Stroud is 10 miles away and has a wonderful International Textiles Festival every May.

They have exhibitions, talks and 2 Open Studio weekends!

Last Saturday I was able to get a ticket to a talk by my favourite fabric dyer, Ruth Issett.

Her work is inspirational and so bright!

I have managed to buy all her books over the last few months and I use her book Colour on Cloth whenever I am dyeing fabric. It is full of dye recipes, methods and inspiration!

During her talk she explained some of her processes and her inspiration. She is very passionate about colour and exploring it's uses. I really enjoyed the talk and learning how an experienced textile artist works.

I love being able to explore how other artists work. Midi and I are off the on textile trail together on Sunday. We have a list of artist we want to visit and places to stop off for yummy cake... it is going to be so much fun!!!