Friday, December 31, 2010

Embrace the New Year ....

I hope you have all celebrated the beginning of another new year, in fact a new decade. We saw the New Year in with friends and family, having a quiet chat and a few drinks...very relaxing and most enjoyable. We were at home in bed by 12.30. Ahhhh.... we must be getting old. But at least we stayed up to see the New Year in. Amongst all the festivities of late, work still goes on on the farm. We had more hay baled yesterday, so the boys have been busy. Everything is still quite wet on the farm, so to date we have only been able to bale the silage. It is a very late hay season, with only intermittent hot spells.
Peace Angel cloth
I have been finding time to sit and stitch a bit more to the Peace Angel cloth. I just seem to keep adding a bit more to it each time I sit down to is growing steadily.

A close up of some of the stitching on the trees and a few more trees pinned that I think I will add. It's been a peaceful, lovely time of year to stitch this rushing, just picking it up when I have a minute or two. That's what I love about slow cloths.
Enjoy and embrace all that the New Year brings.
Jacky xox

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Christmas Cheer ......

Christmas is nearly here....I am enjoying the preparations (although as always I could do with a bit more time), and I am so looking forward to sharing the day with my family.

Last weekend I caught up with my friend Dot for lunch on Sunday at the La bel Amici Cafe in Frankston for lunch...beautiful cafe, very arty and wonderful food. The picture below is of one of their Christmas decorations...isnt it gorgeous! I am thinking I might try and make one next year! I think that would look very special hanging above the dining table. Below is a little Christmas wreath I decorated with some fabric scraps and a little festive owl. This little fellow was made a gift to my friend Nat. He looked very smart adorning her Christmas tree...filled with beautiful handmade hearts and other decorations.
I visited Nat on Saturday and she taught me how to make the little Christmas wreaths below from a plant in her garden (of which she very generously gave me a watch out friends, you may receive one of these next year).

My friend Dot is making a little quilt a la Jude Hill/Rebecca Sower style. I made these three blocks for her to include in her quilt.

And I have been working on some Christmas trees....thank you Jude for the wonderful little tutorials recently. I have since done quite a bit more stitching and plan to finish this piece over the Christmas break. It is part of my cloth "Peace Angel".

It has been a wonderful many new adventures for me with cloth and also with my painting. I have met so many lovely people online and made some lovely friends.
I wish you all a Christmas filled with the wonder and joy of the season and look forward to catching up again next year.
sending you all a jolly red hug!
Jacky xox

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Festivities, but still stitching....

Lots of festivities at this time of year! Busy, but such fun. These little festive owls were part of my gift to the girls in my art group.... Dot, Patsy, Ro and Julia.

Saturday I caught up with the Art Group girls for our Christmas lunch at the Bunyip always the food was SCRUMPTIOUS and the company wonderful.

We exchanged gifts.... The beautiful heart danglie was a gift from the lovely Ro , made from her gorgeous fabric/paper. Glorious colours and already taking pride of place on my mantle piece. The gorgeous hand towel underneath was a gift made by the lovely favourite Kaffe Fassett fabrics and such beautiful sentiment. You will notice I have taken most of my photos on Patsy's beautiful creation.

This gorgeous needlecase was made by the lovely Julia of Verdigris Rose...just stunning. Such beautiful colours with lovely teeny-tiny beads...very special and already being put to good use. Pins and needles have been transfered.

inside the needlecase

And from Dotee a quirky little handstitched christmas ornament....Leunig style? I do love quirky and whimsical and this little fellow is hanging from the Christmas tree...very proud of himself. Also received a lovely mug and special serviettes (soon to be used in a journal no doubt!). All once again upon Patsy's lovely appliqued handtowel.

The lovely Dot sent us this mosaic of our day out and about....see what I mean about the food and the for a closer look (hope it's clickable). There is such a buzz when we all get together. We love catching up!!!! We share art, we share our lives, we laugh a lot.

As I said...... I did do a little stitching.......

jacky xox

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Primitive, Naive ...

I have been having a wonderful time lately painting a couple of spreads in an altered book I am doing with the girls from my little art group....Julia, Dot, Ro and Patsy (still blogless).

I have recently been inspired by Katherine Dunn. I bought her book, "Creative Illustration Workshop" and have been blissfully reading through and taking in her wonderful primitive style art. The pages below were painted for my friend Patsy... she is a gorgeous, vivacious, fun loving friend and these pages seemed to flow so easily with her in mind. "Peace Carriers" (inspired by Katherine Dunne and Haitian art).

The full page spread.

A little blue bird of happiness, trailing along behind the Peace Carrier.

"Peace Keeper"
For these pages I first painted an undercoat of black gesso and then painted with a mix of acrylics and gouache ( I do love the pigmentation of the, strong colour). I have also used pastels and ink and some collage here and there.

I really love this naive style, both in my painting and my stitching...I am having fun with it! Jude and Judy have showed me the way with cloth and Katherine and Lynne have showed me the way with paint.

And....there has also been a little stitching. Not much... but a bit. I am working on Christmas gifties (as usual I am running a little late), cant show them yet.

Over the weekend I went to my friend Nats art exhibition opening....wonderful day... pop over to Nats blog to see photos from the day. Lots of indigo and cloth, wonderful basketmaking and bookmaking....



Sending love and colour.

Jacky xox

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Happily stitching....

A weekend at home ....bliss. I've been doing more blog visiting than creating lately! It's a bit too easy to spend hours visiting wonderful blogs and then not leave yourself enough time to play around !

After a visit to Storycloths blog, I was reminded of a book I had purchased by Janet Bolton whose fabric art I have always loved. If you pop over to visit Storycloth you will see she has made two of Janets lovely angel cloths . This inspired me to get out my book again and have a play....below is my very rustic version of these angels. Click for a closer will note the pins and needles....more stitching to be done tonight. This little cloth is approx. 4" x 8". I am wondering whether I will make a pair too. Whatever, I am having fun stitching my version! And this gorgeous little fellow below is the owl I recently received in a swap with Robin Olsen...I do so love him. Very funky isnt he
and I love the colours she has chosen for me." William the Wise" by Robin Olsen.

Above and below did I manage to do this and I havent found a way of deleting one of the duplicates!!!

The images are from one of the Collage Boxes that Lawendula is sending around the world. Each person takes between 12-20 pieces from the box to use at a later date in their art. They then replace with images etc. from their own stash and forward the box to the next person. I have chosen my pieces and will be sending the box on its way again tomorrow. Such a fun swap, thanks for organising FM.

And finally a bit of dyeing from my recent efforts...and I must tell you that recently I havent been having a huge amount of success. Many insipid looking pieces coming out of the pot. I thought I should show some as my friend Nat is an avid dyer and always keen to see what I have been up to.

The two below I was quite happy with. The first piece with the natural colours was done by steaming leaves in some dupion silk (they werent native leaves, sorry I dont know the name). At the same time I had also steamed some soft cotton the same way. The silk took the colour quite well, but the cotton just looked dirty...a project to overdye down the track.

The one with the pinkish tinge was from steaming some found fuschia flowers. I was very happy with that colour, but dont know if I will wash again as it seems to lose colour each time I wash/rinse. I used a small piece of kimono lining silk for this one. These pieces will be nice to include in some cloths at a later date.

I hope you have all enjoyed a creative weekend too and I look forward to visiting my favourite blogs to see what everyone has been up to.




Jacky XOX

Friday, November 12, 2010

Wise little owl .....

A wee little owl I stitched a couple of weeks's a long time since I made one of these owls. This little one is winging its way to the USA for a swap I've done with Robin (an inspiring textile artist). I will post a photo of the owl she sent me next post.... I was in Dubbo last week with my mother in law Norma. While she was in town visiting her optometrist we visited a couple of 'op shops' and I found these! Very happy with the little indigo cotton jacket, soon to become part of my boro quilt. I love the fasteners and I will find a place for those in my quilt I think.
Found lots of little lace doilies and lovely embroidered pieces for 25 cents each. I have a couple of projects in mind for these.
My friend Maureen has just returned from a visit to India...this is one of the many beautiful quilts she bought home with her. Such lovely fabrics and details.

There was such a beautiful sky the other night, so I thought I would share it with you. The clouds seemed much brighter and pinker in real life, so lucky to live in such a beautiful area.

Enjoy your week.
Jacky xox

Tuesday, November 2, 2010


Indigo gifts..... my sister and her family recently visited Malaysia and knowing my love of indigo fabrics brought me home these lovely indigo dyed fabrics from Chang Mai. The colours are not represented too well in this photo...they are not quite so bright...very inky indigo colour and lovely denim coloured blue. There's also a snippet of a beautiful japanese shibori cotton gifted to me on our basket making day by Nat. These are the fabrics I have been using for my fabric basket. Indigo gifts.
Remember these can click to enlarge this time. That is my base at the very front.

I've been making progress....the sides are will soon be finished.

I've been busy sorting some fabrics today. I *needed* to do some sorting, things were becoming a MESS. I have sorted my fabrics for dyeing in one tub, my indigo/japanese fabrics in another, my sari silks/velvets etc. in another. I think I need more tubs!!!! It was fun. I love handling fabrics.
Some fabric dyeing has been taking place at my home this weekend....not terribly successful, but there is always the chance to overdye. I will post about this another time.... Visit Jude's blog and see the wonderful pieces she has dyed.
Have a great, creative week!
Jacky xox

Monday, October 25, 2010

fabric fun .....

I have been having fun with fabric these past few days. My friend Nat had my sister Lee , her friend Linda and I over for Sunday lunch and a day of fabric play....Nat taught us how to make fabric baskets. I have long admired Nat's fabric baskets (see the two finished baskets below...just two of many...if you click on this picture you might be able to see the miniature baskets Nat has made also!!!!
Nat's finished baskets and the beginnings of our first baskets...front my base, left Lee's base and right one that Nat started to demonstrate the technique to us.

On the day, I didnt quite complete my base, but since I've been home I have done a bit more stitching....quite addictive, but I must admit that my fingers are a bit sore from 'pushing' the needle through. I am using a selection on indigo dyed fabric that my sister recently bought me back from a trip to Chaing Mai in Thailand and some japanese indigo strips from Nat.

And here is our *teacher* Nat busy stitching away on her base. We had a lovely lunch, and chatted non stop all afternoon. It was so nice to sit and stitch with a group of women, I havent done that before..... we felt a bit like the Amish women, gathering to stitch ....lovely way to socialise.

I love the Japanese and indigo fabrics, but also have a real soft spot for the lusciousness of sari silk. These gorgeous fabrics were purchased from my friend Julia Dean (Verdigris Rose). Julia has some wonderful packs she is selling in her etsy shop...great value and beautiful fabrics.

A few of you have asked about my son and how he went at the World Equestrian Games.....fantastic!!! Australia came 7th out of the 28 countries that competed (we had never before made the top 10 teams and thus it was our first time in the Team Finals. Matt and Espirit had a fantastic final round jumping clear for Australia....our only team member to jump clean in the final....very proud of Matt and Espirit. The above photo is of Matt and Espirit in the Warm Up arena. I think they both look very dapper with their Australian Flags.
I hope you are all having a wonderful week.
Love the animals
Love the plants
Love everything

Jacky xox

Sunday, October 10, 2010


Recently I've caught up with a few of my art friends...lots of fun, laughter, beautiful food, art and of course sharing. The first pics. are from the Art Journal I worked in for Julia for our Round Robin Altered Book in our little group of 5.
Mixed media pages for Julia's journal above.
And these are some of the girls (Julia, being the photographer is missing) L-R Patsy (no blog yet), Ro, myself and Dot.

Lots of fun was had.....the above is Patsy at work printing/stamping after we had a little stamp making session with Ro. Some wonderful designs and backgrounds came out of this little play session.

Julia got us all outside with fabrics and paints, collecting leaves for some sun dyeing too. That was fun!!! No photos or the results, but there should be soon. I decided to steam my bundle ...bit of a flop...turned out a slimy mess. My fabric is now wrapped around the branch of a tree in the garden to see if I can get some colour happening! Will let you know how I go.
I dont know what's happening with blogger today, but twice now photos I uploaded are not appearing. I had some lovely photos of the delicious meal we had at Julia's....but they are somewhere in cyberspace. For some great photos of our day out visit Julia's blog, she captured it all. She was the hostess with the mostest...lovely, inviting home, scrumptious food and lots of fun things to look at *play* with.

Last weekend I caught up with my other art friend Nat and Dot again. Dot had arranged for us to visit the Convent Farmers Market...oh yumbo!!! As you can see from the mosaic above we had a great day. Fantastic fresh produce...beautiful cheeses, olive oils, olives, yarns, fruit and veg, bread, cordials...we bought it all (and we're enjoying consuming it this week). Click on the photo above to get a better look at us enjoying the day in the sunshine.

There has been a little stitching and fabric play happening...will save that for another post.
Enjoy your week!
Jacky xox

Monday, October 4, 2010

Hello .......

I'm back from my trip to Switzerland....and very slow getting back into blogging.....

My husband Paul and I had the loveliest time visiting with Matt and looking around Switzerland. And..... yes..... Matt did get selected for the Australian Team to ride at the World Equestrian Games in Kentucky (I'm very proud of him). Both he and his dad are in Kentucky at this all happens very quickly once you are selected for the team. Competition starts to day and finishes next weekend.

I had to share this photo of Matt and I taken on our visit to Lucerne. Please indulge me.
Matt and I at Lake Lucerne.

I did actually get some stitching done while I was away (not much as you will see). You may remember this piece below from my earlier post....just a bit more stitching now. Each time I walked in the woods near Matts home I imagined little spirits that lived in the woodlands and thought I would put them into stitch...this is the beginning of my little Swiss Spirit cloth. A sunflower sun as there were fields of beautiful sunflowers and everyone seemed to have sunflowers in their gardens...huge sunflowers....such fertile soil
, and the little woodland spirit. A woodland spirit.

I've also added to my beast cloth....little embroidered butterflies and more fabric......

The Hare of Tonimbuk
And I've even managed to get to a lino-cut/printmaking class with Helen Timbury since I've been back. Lots of fun and a few more 'hare' inspired lino-cuts to be made soon. I do love printmaking.

Now this one is for Jude....what a woodstack. On her blog Jude has been talking about stacking wood, so I thought she would enjoy this (click for a closer look). There were beautiful woodstacks everywhere in Birr where Matt lives and I took quite a few photos of them...they really appealed. I will be doing a post later featuring all these amazing woodstacks. This one was on my walk up to the woods....

And here I am in the woods....I loved the filtered sunlight, the beautiful trees and different to our Australian bushland. There was miles and miles of amazing tracks... so peaceful....

The woods and tracks were so beautifully kept.

I miss those walks....maybe I will have to visit again soon?
I hope I havent bored you with my *trip* photos...but I just wanted you to see a bit of the Switzerland I saw...and of course a little bit of art.
Jacky xox