About annewaller

I love everything to do with textiles, fabrics, threads, or beads. More recently I have also ventured further into paper crafting and mixed media too. I hope to share with you some of my work, including jewellery making, embroidery, fabric painting and dyeing, spinning and felting, weaving, knitting and crochet. I am privileged to be on several Design Teams; working with Chocolate Baroque (stamps), Beads Direct, Gina Barrett (Gina-B Silkworks) and also as guest blogger for Powertex; and previously worked with Tattered Lace (dies) and Brother ScanNCut too. I so love to create and never have enough hours in the day - tee hee.

More stamping delights from Chocolate Baroque

Good morning. This is the last of my guest posts for Chocolate Baroque this month. I had planned a completely different set of projects but just had designer block! Horrible when that happens, especially when working to a deadline. This happens to us all at times, particularly this year with all the added stresses.

After several days of wasted effort I just stopped working on my original plan, went away from my desk and tried to clear my head. I then went back and decided to just ‘go for it’ – no plan, no nothing. I just picked up stamps and got started. Finally ideas started to flow – phew. I find that this usually works for me, although it is not always easy to do – ha ha.

I hope that you enjoy my offerings. Everyone take care and enjoy Christmas as best you can. Spring will soon be here and I am hopeful for far better times to come soon. Big hugs Anne xxx.

Blue and White Mandala

AW Blue White Madala

This one is a quick and easy make using the lovely mandala style stamp.

Materials Used:

  • 15cm square white card blank, decorative die cut circle in blue card and scrap white stamping card
  • Palm Fan Silhouette stamp (Chocolate Baroque)
  • Versamark Inkpad
  • Dark blue embossing powder (WOW Earthtone Blueberry)
  • White pen

How it was done

  1. Faux stitching was added around the die cut circle to frame it. It was glued to the card front with 3D foam for added depth.
  2. The Mandala was stamped and embossed with blue powder, cut out and glued to the card front with 3D foam.

Dazzling Butterfly

 

AW Dazzling Butterfly

Chocolate Baroque have so many wonderful butterfly stamps – love this one.

Materials used

How it was done

  1. A mix of the Distress Inks were used to blend the outer edges of the card blank (this mix closely matched my blue die cut circle).
  2. The blue card topper was stamped with Versamark and embossed with white powder.
  3. The butterfly was stamped with Memento, coloured with alcohol pens. It was then heat embossed with a layer of clear sparkly powder and cut out.
  4. Everything was stuck down and the card was finally finished with glitter glue and PVA pearls.

Hydrangea Card

 

AW Hydrangea 2

When pushed for time I will often use some ready printed papers in the background. They can also help with inspiration at times too.

Materials used

How it was done

  1. The background paper was trimmed and edged with black marker. The base texture was stamped with black Versafine.
  2. The main image was stamped with blue Versafine, the card trimmed to approx. 9 X 13cm and edged with black marker. The floral section was stamped again with black Versafine. The stem was extended by drawing with black pen and the image cut out.
  3. The topper was then spritzed with water and Brusho powder dropped onto the wet card. When dry the monochrome Hydrangea was glued on top, curling the edges up slightly for dimension.

Floral Thank You Card

AW Coneflower thank you

This one was a super quick make. Ideal if you have a last minute card to do.

Materials used

How it was done

  1. The watercolour card was spritzed with water and stamped using a mix of the Distress Inks. These bled out giving a lovely watercolour effect.
  2. When dry the image was overstamped with Versafine. Versafine was also used to stamp the border and sentiment.

Dreamy Elephant Card

AW Elephant Dreams

I love the Indian themed stamps from Chocolate Baroque – definitely amongst my faves. To save a bit of time I again used a pre-printed background paper.

Materials used

How it was done

  1. The sentiment and base texture was stamped and embossed with copper powder.
  2. The flowers were stamped with Versafine. The background was then edged and embossed using the embossing pen and copper powder.
  3. The elephant was stamped onto white card with Versamark and embossed with gold powder. The image was then coloured with pencils and pens and cut out. The elephant was lightly shaped and glued down with 3D glue gel for dimension.

 

 

Gina B Silkworks Button Making on Hochanda TV today

Looking forward to Gina’s button show on Hochanda TV today at 10am (Freeview channel 85 or can catch up and watch via the Hochanda.com website). So many gorgeous button making kits.

 

I have had a play with some of the latest kits.

AW Needle Pattern

AW Victorian Buttons

Brand new Plushwork kit out today – I love these little fluffy textural treasures.

AW Plushwork Buttons

AW Plushwork Buttons 2

 

 

Also beautiful stamp sets for embroidery.

AW Georgian Buttons

I have made some Georgian style buttons.

I made a few embroidered items with the Elizabethan inspired stamps too.

AW Embroidery Wreath 2

 

AW Floral Brooch 1

and some cute ladybird buttons.

AW Ladybird Buttons 1

 

Off to catch the show xxx.

Gerbera Delights

Hi everyone. I am delighted to be a guest designer for you this month. For my second set of projects I have had a play with the lovely new Gerbera and Friends stamps from Annabel. Love this set. Hope that these give you a few more ideas and fun playing with some of your stash.

I have also finally finished the last of my Christmas card batch making – phew. Why do I always leave them until the last minute! Ha ha.

Lots of hugs, Anne.

GERBERA AND FRIENDS

Materials List

  • Stamp sets (Chocolate Baroque): Gerbera and Friends (main images), Words to Dazzle & Sparkle (sentiments), Glorious (leaf stamp)
  • Card blanks and smooth card (sky blue, white or black)
  • Inkpads: Stazon (Jet Black), Versafine (Onyx Black), Distress Ink (Gathered Twigs), Versamark
  • Versamark embossing pen
  • Embossing powders: detail white and metallic gold
  • Mica powders: yellow gold, pink and purple
  • Water based inks: Turquoise, yellow, green, red and magenta (I used Spectrum Noir Aquatints)
  • Acrylic paint metallic pink (Starlight)
  • Acrylic mat medium (clear drying)
  • Colouring pencils (pink, green, yellow)
  • Alcohol in pens (pink, purple, yellow)
  • PVA pearls and Glossy Accents
  • Acetate and translucent shrink plastic
  • Decorative circle dies (Tonic)

Make a Wish Cards

I created a couple of cards using the lovely dandelion clocks. I remember as a child how we would blow the seeds from the flower heads whilst making a wish. Happy memories.

AW Make a wish

My card blank measured approx. 13 X 17.5cm. I trimmed my stamping card to 12 X 16.5cm and rounded off the corners.

I painted on the water based inks, blending them wet in wet (working from the top down). When dry I flicked with water and lifted out colour with tissue to add texture. I also applied a circle of water and lifted it out to create the moon.

The dandelions, sentiment and foreground texture were stamped with Versafine. I lifted out some of the colour from the seed head bases).

I also used Distress Ink to stamp more texture at the base and to blend around the card edges. Black alcohol ink pen was used to edge and frame the card before mounting.

AW Make a wish blue

My next card was more clean and simple. The card blank was 15cm square and the blue background mat was trimmed to 14.5cm.

I used dies to cut the decorative circle (approx. 14cm diameter) and circular centre (approx. 9cm). A white paper doily would also look good if you don’t have decorative dies.

The images were stamped with Versamark and embossed with white powder. I mounted with 3D foam for added dimension. Finally finished with PVA pearls.

Bright Gerbera Cards

I adore this huge Gerbera stamp and wanted to make something really bright and cheery.

AW Gerbera Bright

My card blank was 15cm square. I trimmed black card to 14.5cm to create the background mount, and white stamping card to 13.5cm.

The card was painted with the yellow, red and magenta inks, blending them outward from the centre. Versafine was used to stamp the images.

AW Gerbera Star

Oh that Gerbera!

Again I used a 15cm square card blank and trimmed a black mat to 14.5cm. The background texture was stamped with Versamark and yellow/gold mica brushed over with a soft brush. Excess mica was removed with a microfiber cloth. Versamark was then applied around the edges which were embossed with metallic gold powder.

The sentiment and leaves were stamped and embossed onto black card. An embossing pen was used to edge the sentiment plate.

The Gerbera was stamped onto acetate and shrink plastic using Stazon which were then cut out.

The back of the shrink plastic was coloured with alcohol pens before shrinking with a heat gun. Coloured pencil was used to enhance the colour on the front before covering with Glossy Accents.

The back of the acetate image was coloured with mica powders mixed with mat medium. When dry the back was then painted with the metallic acrylic.

The photo really doesn’t do justice to the shine and mica sparkle on the Gerbera. Love this one.

 

LAST OF MY CHRISTMAS MAKES

Materials List

How it was done (including my boo boo)

I love these collage panel style stamps for creating quick and easy batch makes – one stamp does all the work for you. I have stamped and coloured these but they would look equally good without colouring or perhaps stamped and embossed with a pretty metallic powder. I like to use a stamping platform for batch making as it makes it easy to line up and repeat stamp in a production line.

AW Christmas Rose 2 stage 4

Stamped with Majestic Blue Versafine and coloured with Distress Ink (Chipped Sapphire).

I just had to make a blue and white set. Those of you that know me will know that I love making these. However, I have been a little out of practice with my stamping and colouring this year and my first attempt was a flop – ha ha. I have shown my blooper as I thought it may be helpful if you have struggled with colouring.

AW Christmas Rose 1 trial

This was my first attempt – eeek! Initially I tried to colour with watercolour pen and attempted blending out with a damp brush. It wouldn’t work very well and my watercolour just sucked straight into the card. This really shows the importance of choosing the correct type of card for the techniques that you wish to use. For watercolouring you need a card that will hold the pigment without it bleeding out too much, but then release it again when water is applied to allow blending and shading. This brand of card used to work well but recent batches really have not worked as well so I suspect they have changed the ‘formulation’.

As my watercolour pens were not behaving well with my card I tried switching to Distress Ink. Applying to my mat, diluting out and picking up with a damp brush. Distress Inks are specifically formulated to stay wet longer and to blend more easily. It worked out much better on this card. The two flowers on the left were my quick trial with Chipped Sapphire Distress Ink.

Another mistake I made was to go in far too heavily with the colour. I was aiming for a softer colouring more suitable for the delicate flower petals. This is achieved by using a more diluted colour and gradually building up the layers and shading.

AW Christmas Rose 2 stage 1

This shows the first stage of Distress Ink colouring using very dilute ink.

AW Christmas Rose 2 stage 2

Deeper colour was then added to give shading. Working more heavily on the leaves and stems helped the delicate flowers to stand out more.

AW Christmas Rose 2 stage 3

The edges of the card were distressed (using the edge of my scissors) to give a soft textured border before mounting onto the card blank. Lastly sparkly glitter glue was added to the flower stamens and around the edges. Cannot have Christmas without at least a little bling.

AW Christmas Rose Pink 1

My next set were also coloured with Distress Inks. I went quite dark on the leaves to enhance the delicate flowers.

AW Christmas Rose Pink 2

I was pleased with the delicate vintage look.

AW Christmas Rose Alc Ink 1

Next I coloured with soft pastel coloured alcohol ink pens.

AW Christmas Rose Alc Ink 3

Again my first attempt at colouring this batch was not really what I wanted. I felt that the flowers were a bit too much, too Summery and had lost their delicacy. Despite this I mounted this one as good enough.

AW Christmas Rose Alc Ink 2

I was happier with this colouring for the wintery theme. Coloured pencil details (outlines, leaf & petal veins) were added in to enhance the soft colouring.

Glad to have finally finished my Christmas cards – now to get them all written up and posted.

I will be back again next week with some more stamping play x.

Christmas is coming

Hi everyone. I am delighted to be a guest designer for Chocolate Baroque this month. My first offerings are some Christmas makes. It’s been a tough year for us all and this Christmas is not really going to be usual. However, lets hope that time goes by quickly and that we can look forward to better times ahead with our friends and family in 2021. Lots of hugs, Anne.

CHRISTMAS LANTERN

My first project is a pretty Christmas lantern. I mixed & matched lots of stamps on this one but just had to include my absolute fave reindeer stamp.

AW Lantern 4

Woohoo – all lit up.

This one is to be gifted to my 96 year old friend who I help care for. We are having Christmas together as I am in her support bubble. I think that she will love it.

Materials List

AW Lantern 1

Pretty 3D scene with house and trees.

AW Lantern 2

A close up – oh that reindeer!

AW Lantern 3

Adding the acetate baubles helps to blur and disguise the side edges of the card cut outs creating the scene.

How it was made:

1. The bare MDF lantern was coated with white Gesso (primer).

2. When dry it was painted with acrylics. Gilding wax was added around the ledges.

3. Versamark was applied through the stencil onto heat resistant acetate to create the Winter sentiment. It was heat embossed with sparkly white powder, cut out and attached to the lantern with strong tape.

4. The snowflakes border was stamped and embossed with white glitter powder 4 times, cut out and taped to the top portion of the lantern arches. Two large baubles were also stamped, embossed and cut out.

5. Extra snowflakes were stamped and embossed with white or blue glitter powders, along with a few twiggy branches, and cut out ready to use as embellishments.

6. The main images; 2 large background trees, the building scene, smaller foreground tree and reindeer were stamped with Versafine and cut out. In addition pine cones were cut out from the stamped pine branch stamp.

7. Images were coloured with watercolour, glitter and gel pens.

8. Now for the messy bit – ha ha. The glitter gel was used to coat the base and spread on top of the ledges. Some was also applied behind the acetate to help glue it in place securely. I had this heavy bodied thick glitter gel in my stash for years. It really needed using up as it had started to set in the pot. Some of the half set chunks were stuck down into the wet gel for added dimension. For added sparkle I also dropped in some of the chunky mica flakes. You could substitute heavy bodied acrylic medium and add glitter for similar results.

9. The stamped images were anchored into the wet gel to create the scene. I just had to add a little bit more sparkle over the images with clear glitter glue too.

10. Once the glitter gel medium had dried I did a bit of dry brushing with white Gesso in some areas to add more snowy effects.

11. The light string was then arranged to light up the background house and trees, and to light up the foreground tree. The wires were anchored with strong tape at the back of the images to help hold them in place. The switch was hidden behind the large background scene images.

12. The acetate bauble images were added to the sides with red tape. This helped blur the view through the sides of the lantern where just side on edges of the card elements were visible. It may have been better to stamp the sides as one complete panel but I found that I needed easy access to the inside in order to arrange the stamps and lights.

13. The ribbon bow was added to the top. The acetate snowy sprigs and pine cones were added to embellish the bow. The glitter glue gel was used to anchor everything in place. Extra snowflakes used to embellish too.

 

ROBIN SCENE CARD

Every year I end up leaving my Christmas cards until the last minute so I decided to do a couple of projects that would be fairly quick and easy for batch making. I always use my stamping press for batch making – it makes it so much easier to line everything up and repeat stamp multiple times.

AW Robin 2

I hope that you like this robin scene card.

AW Robin 1

I added extra inking around the outer edges of this one but decided that it really didn’t need it so didn’t do it on the rest. I just had to get on with that batch making! Ha ha.

Materials list

AW Robin 3

How it was done

1. Images were stamped with Versafine and cut out.

2. The main image was coloured with watercolour pens and mounted onto Kraft card. Glossy Accents was used to add shine to the Rosehips, and glitter glues added for sparkle.

3. The snowflake borders were stamped directly onto the card blank with Distress Ink.

4. The ribbon was glued down and the main topper added. The sentiment was also mounted onto Kraft card and glued in place. The branch was lightly shaped before gluing.

5. Finished with more dots of glitter glue. Hey – you can never have too much bling – tee hee.

Note: I kept these fairly flat for ease of posting. 3D foam could be used for more depth if desired.

 

CHRISTMAS TREE SHAKER CARDS

AW Tree shaker 4

Who doesn’t like a shaker card? Scenic panel stamps make them really quick and easy for batch making. These were quite tricky to photo due to shiny acetate and all that bling. Hopefully you can see enough detail of the lovely glittery snow behind the acetate windows.

Materials list:

  • Frosty Trees stamp set (Chocolate Baroque)
  • 15 X 9cm white linen textured card blanks
  • Heavy weight textured white card (for frames)
  • Heat resistant acetate
  • Versamark Inkpad
  • Embossing powders: Detail white, white with silver glitter, metallic silver
  • Glitter for inside shaker (I used Pinflair Ice Diamond – non static glass glitter)
  • Stickles glitter glue (Icicle)
  • Foam tape and red liner tape (strong double sided tape)
  • Optional: Die to cut decorative aperture approx. 12 X 6cm (or cut a plain frame by hand). I used a die from Tonic (Kaleidoscope Box Panel set)

How it was done:

1. Cut a frame to fit the card front and surround the stamped scene.

2. Stamped the image onto acetate and heat embossed with choice of powder. Trimmed and attach behind the frame with strong tape.

3. Next attached foam tape ensuring that no gaps were left (to contain the glitter).

4. Laid card flat and placed glitter in the middle before placing the framed acetate scene.

5. Finished with dots of glitter glue.

 

MORE CHRISTMAS TREE CARDS

Finally I made another batch of quick and easy cards using the reverse scene image and blue ink. I do love monochrome blue & white cards.

AW Blue trees 3

Materials list:

How it was done:

1. Images were stamped with Versafine. Note: images on the textured card blanks will not be sharp. This is fine for the backgrounds.

2. Scene panels were cut out and stuck down with foam tape for added dimension.

3. Finished with glitter glue sparkles. Sorry but had to do it.

Janie Crow Fields of Gold Blanket

I finally finished my Fields of Gold Blanket (Janie Crow Design – kit available from Deramores).

AW Fields Gold 2

I had started another of Janie’s lovely kits but found it a little daunting with every block motif being worked in different colours. Being a little out of practice I am not the most confident with crochet and I was finding it just a bit too much. We are supposed to enjoy our creative process right?

On finding this pattern I could see that it would be much simpler as there are lots of repeat motifs. I figured that working on this one would help build my confidence and ability to cope with the more complex design. I now feel more able to tackle it and am off to get restarted. Yay – love her designs.

 

AW Fields Gold 3

I simply love it. It is great for taking out & about while meeting friends outdoors – as a blanket to sit on or as a wrap up in the evening when it gets a little chilly. It’s like a ‘ray of sunshine’ and makes me feel so happy.

AW Fields Gold 4

AW Fields Gold 5

Hoping that you are all keeping well and coping during these tricky and difficult times.

Best wishes, Anne x.

Four Seasons Embroidered Button Clock created for Gina B Silkworks

Today I am sharing my project created with the new MDF Button Display Clock Set from Gina B Silkworks. My design was inspired by Gina’s lovely 4 Seasons Mirror Button Brooches Kit. I used the same freestyle ‘lace’ embroidery technique to create the embroidered trees into the central section of the clock, adding depth to a painted scenic background.

AW Clock 8

I created 8 more thread wrapped and embroidered buttons to fit the Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter theme for display around the perimeter. Instructions were from various button kits available from Gina along with my own thread stash and colours. Kits included the Victorian Button Journal Kit, Snowflake Button Pattern Pack and the Woven Button Motifs Design Booklet.

Materials

Other optional accessories:

Circle Button Gauges (helps with even placement of thread wraps and embroidery on buttons)

Button Makers Third hand Tool & Tin (contains beeswax and a third hand for holding part wrapped buttons when changing colours and finishing etc.)

How it was done:

Preparation of the buttons for display:

I first created the 4 Seasons Mirror Buttons as given in Gina’s kit instructions. The kit contains enough materials to create 8 buttons; 2 of each of the 4 seasons. It also contains all the components, threads and needles required.

AW Mirror Mix NL

With one set of buttons I created 4 pendants (they are intended for making a necklace or brooch).

AW Clock Buttons 1

My second set of buttons were used for my clock display to place on each of the 4 main quadrants.

I next worked 8 more buttons for the display, 2 more for each seasonal clock quadrant. Instructions were followed from Gina’s Original Snowflake Pattern Designs, Victorian Button Journal Kit or from her Woven Button Motif Design Booklet. You could include any buttons that you like by creating in colours and designs to suit the seasons.

AW Clock Buttons 2

Four buttons were made on fabric covered slightly domed wooden moulds from my stash. You can use the 25mm flat button moulds included in the clock kit instead. Just cut some felt circles to place on the button front before covering to give a bit of padding and shape.

To cover my buttons I cut fabric circles approx. 45mm in diameter (i.e. enough to cover front and wrap around back of button). I then worked a row of running stitch to gather up and pull in the fabric over the button back.

I then worked designs from Gina’s Original Snowflake Buttons Designs or from her Victorian Button Journal Kit.

Top Left – Spring Button: Victorian Bordered Star pattern in pink perle cotton. I embellished with extra stitching and French knots in yellow perle cotton.

Top Right – Winter Button: Snowflake pattern C in white perle cotton, working on a fabric base rather than a thread wrapped button base. I also added a little extra stitching around the perimeter.

Bottom Left – Summer Button: Victorian Flower pattern in purple and yellow perle cotton. I added some extra French knots to the centre.

Bottom Right – Autumn Button: Victorian Lace Circle pattern in red and yellow perle cotton.

AW Clock Buttons 3

The next 4 buttons were worked on 25mm flat button moulds as included with the clock kit. I worked designs from Gina’s Original Snowflake Buttons Designs or from her Woven Button Motif Design Booklet.

Top Left – Spring Button: Woven Button Flower Sprig design in off white, green and orange perle cotton.

Top Right – Autumn Button: Woven Button Leaf Style 3 design in brown & orange perle cotton for the base wrap and green for leaves.

Bottom Left – Summer Button: Woven Button Lavender Flower design in pale yellow perle cotton for base and green & orange for woven flower.

Bottom Right – Winter Button: I worked a 6 point wrap with perle No.8 pale green thread and worked the Snowflake Pattern B with white perle No.8 thread.

Decorating the clock:

I first covered my clock base with white Gesso. This step is not essential but it provides a good base for painting. A clean bright base will show acrylic colours to their best. Particularly if using semi transparent acrylic colours (different paints vary in opacity) where the MDF base colour would affect the overall colour of subsequent painted layers). It also saves acrylic paint as it stops paint absorbing into the porous MDF.

AW Clock 1

The clock was then painted with acrylics to create a background scene on which to work the embroidery.

In keeping with the 4 seasons theme I painted a background sky with clouds on the top half of the clock (which will be my Spring and Summer clock quadrants). In the lower right foreground I introduced greens, browns and red to represent the Autumn colours. In the lower left I used pale and white colours for my Winter quadrant.

AW Clock 1a

I introduced texture by ‘stamping’ paint onto the surface using the sea sponge. This was worked really quickly and randomly, just to give the impression of foliage. It is important to rinse paint out of the sponge quickly when done (acrylics dry very quickly and will ruin the sponge if left to dry).

Once the paints were dry I used alcohol markers around the clock edges to neaten and to frame.

AW Clock 2

I laid out the buttons into their positions to check how they looked (not stuck down yet).

AW Clock 3

Dark green perle 8 cotton was used to wrap around the thread spokes. This was to create an outer frame on which to anchor the tree embroidery.

AW Clock 3a

I wrapped around the edge of the clock 3 times to create a neat frame. I used a little Transparent Powertex on the back of the clock (behind the spokes) to anchor and glue the threads down securely and prevent them working loose (leaving the front threads free).

AW Clock 4

Next the main tree trunks, branches and roots were created using similar techniques as used in Gina’s 4 Seasons Mirror Buttons – only on a much larger scale. I didn’t take a lot of step by step pictures here (sorry) but will try and talk through how I went about it with tips to help you create similar.

While working this embroidery it is really important not to add too much thickness or depth which would impede movement or catch on the clock hands. I tried on the hands to work out the clearance needed, paying particular attention to the short hand which fits closest to the clock base (subsequent hands fit slightly further outward). The clock hands are fairly soft metal so can be very gently eased upward slightly if needed (if you do this you would need to adjust the angle of all the hands so that they don’t catch on each other). The tightest depth area is in the very centre of the clock so I kept this area free of embroidery.

Should you have a bit of a disaster don’t fret. After all that hard work, all is not lost. Clock fittings are easily available from various online sources with different spindle depths, so a fitting with a longer spindle could be substituted if needed.

To work the trunks, branches and roots I used a mix of perle 5 and 8 threads in browns, greys, and creams. Stranded cotton threads could also be used, splitting them down and working with 3 or 4 individual strands together.

To start I tied thread onto the outer frame and worked back and forth laying threads loosely across the clock, tying top and bottom to make the main trunk foundation. Next I started weaving and wrapping threads, working up and down the trunk and taking branches and roots off to the edge. As the extra branches were worked the embroidery was pulled more tightly to hold it flatter. This tightened up the main trunks. Weaving and wrapping also tightened things up.

I first worked the right hand tree using warmer, deeper and richer browns and creams. This half represents the Summer and Autumn quadrants. I then worked the left hand tree in cooler colours to represent Spring and Winter sections. Where the branches intersected I was careful not to increase the embroidery depth, working branches that intersect in sections (rather than creating a double thickness where branches crossed).

AW Clock 4a

Here is a closer view showing the colour contrasts and stitching detail. I tried to create the effect of light coming through the centre by using lighter colours on the inner tree trunks. I also added extra texture using occasional French knots.

AW Clock 5

I again laid out the buttons to see how they looked (not stuck down yet). Woohooo – I so enjoyed making this. Next for the foliage.

AW Clock 6

Before gluing down the buttons I worked the foliage and blossoms. I used stranded cottons (working with 3 individual strands) in a variety of greens and lemon for the foliage, worked in random French knots. Again I used deeper, warmer colours on the right hand tree. Variegated threads are nice to use as you automatically get a mix of colours while working.

AW Clock 6a

I then added pink blossoms to the left hand tree.

AW Clock 6b

Finally I worked more French knots along the root sections; warm Autumnal colours on the right and Winter colours on the left. Little grassy tufts were worked by tying on wisps of thread.

AW Clock 7

Next I stamped the sentiment using Stazon Ink. I thought that the ‘time flies’ sentiment suited the time going through 4 seasons theme.

Before gluing down the buttons I treated them, and the embroidery, with Transparent Powertex in order to seal everything. Powertex is primarily a fabric stiffening medium. It also acts as a glue so helps to hold down all the embroidery onto the clock face so it keeps it all flat and less likely to lift and catch on the clock hands. A damp cloth can also be used for cleaning as Powertex provides a waterproof seal. It also does not discolour with time (whereas some glues certainly would).

To get a nice finish with Transparent Powertex you need to take care not to over flood it. Too much could leave a ‘gloopy’ looking finish. I use a paint brush to work the medium well into the fibres, working small sections at a time. I then quickly remove any excess from the surface quickly (before it starts drying and going tacky) by dabbing with a clean cotton rag (e.g. old tea towel). I find that this method works really well and makes the finish hardly noticeable.

AW Clock 8

Finally I glued down all my buttons using clear drying thick acrylic gel medium (other 3D glue gels would work too). If you would rather be able to change your buttons around then use Gina’s recommended method and make a button shank to hold your buttons on with pins.

Delighted with my finished clock and I had so much fun creating it. It was definitely a labour of love, not a quick make, but well worth it.

Hoping that you are all keeping well during this difficult time. Let’s hope that time does fly for us all and that we are back to some sort of ‘normal’ living very soon. Take care.

Happy Crafting, Anne x.

Spooky Halloween Tassel

Good afternoon. I just had to share a Halloween make today. I hope that you like this creepy tassel that I made as a sample for Gina’s recent tassel making shows on Hochanda TV.

AW Halloween Tassel 3

Materials:

  • Polystyrene egg
  • Orange mesh ribbon (approx. 1 inch wide)
  • Commercial embellished cord – orange felt flowers, pearls, beads, sequins, pumpkin shaped metal bells attached to orange raffia cord (from my stash)
  • Double knit wool (gold/ochre)
  • Black ribbon and commercial black cord scraps
  • Black die cut sentiment ‘Boo’ (Tattered Lace Die)
  • Bats and spiders cut on my Silhouette Cameo machine from black card (Silhouette Store: ‘Spider Web Lantern’ from Jennifer Rush and ‘Bats Flying’)
  • Gold and black flower shaped sequins
  • Strong cotton thread for tying (I used warping cotton but a button thread would work too)
  • Clear drying fabric glue or PVA
  • Sewing needle & thread, extra-long sewing needle (e.g. Shashiko or doll needle)

AW Halloween Tassel 2

Recommended Tools and Tassel Tutorials:

Gina B Silkworks has a fab selection of tools and publications which will help you to make a range of tassel embellishments: from soft tassels suitable for clothing, to more complex tassels for soft furnishings. Here are a few items that I can recommend for tassel making.

AW Halloween Tassel 1

How it was done:

  1. I first covered the egg by wrapping with the mesh ribbon. It was easiest to wrap in a top to bottom direction (i.e. turning the egg on a vertical axis as wrapping around). Secured with a couple of stitches and fabric glue.
  2. I next made the long wool tassel skirt and tied with strong thread. I used the extra long needle to secure it onto the egg. I passed the needle up through the egg to anchor, and out of the top to make a hanging loop. The join was covered with black cord to neaten.
  3. The neck of the tassel was then bound with strong cotton. I secured lengths of the embellished raffia cord into the binding. This was then covered with a black ribbon wrap and tied bow.
  4. Next I glued on the spooky embellishments and sequins. I attached the bats and spiders onto the cords by gluing 2 cut shapes together sandwiching the cord between the card shapes.

Happy Halloween x.

Teneriffe Lace Shawl created with Vandyke Border Loom from Gina B Silkworks

Tonight I am sharing a shawl embellished with Teneriffe Lace and block printing that I made ready for Gina’s Lace show on Hochanda TV tomorrow at mid day (29th Oct 2019 on Freeview Channel 85 or watch catch up online via their website).

AW Lace Shawl 32

Gina has a button show at 4pm too where she will be bringing lots of her fabby historical button making kits, books and DVDs. Both shows are a must to see if you love textile embellishments, trims and passementerie.

Materials:

  • Lime green crochet cotton no.3 (Delfino – Filo Di Scozia)
  • Lilac DMC Mouline Cotton (like a standard 6 strand embroidery floss but on a large spool)
  • Sewing thread and needle (lime green)
  • Lime green cotton triangular shawl (made from quilting cotton) with sides measuring approx. 1m (I overlocked the edges using matching thread to prevent fraying)
  • Teneriffe Lace Starter Kit Loom 3 (Gina B Silkworks)
  • Teneriffe Lace Vandyke Border Loom set (Gina B Silkworks)
  • Fabric glue (optional)
  • Laundry starch spray (optional)
  • Thick dense foam mat (such as provided with Gina’s Total Trimmings Table) or upholstery foam (optional if wanting to use pins for stretching the web)
  • Decorative Indian wooden printing block and foam printing mat (Colouricious). The one I chose from my stash was approx. 9.5cm square with space in the centre to add the lace floral motifs
  • Setacolor Opaque (Spring Green, Raspberry and Parma Violet) and Deka Perm (Opaque White) fabric paints
  • Kitchen sponge and paint tray
  • Iron

How to do it:

Gina’s loom kits provide general instructions for stretching the web, darning, reverse backstitch and knotting etc.

Note: The hardest part to get right is the Teneriffe Lace Knot which holds it all together. Get this wrong and your lace won’t hold together properly when you remove it from the loom. Should this happen, don’t despair, do what I did with my first lace attempts and glue it to a card or a mixed media canvas. Ha ha.

There is a great beginners video from Gina to help with this.

I spent quite some time developing the lace pattern by quite a lot of experimenting, undoing and redoing until I was happy with the result. Don’t be afraid to play. Gina has also provided some easy starter lace borders in the instructions so you could try these first and make up a couple of smaller projects first.

The Border Lace:

Whenever thread ends were tied and finished, or working threads joined with knots, I added a small dab of clear drying fabric glue for extra security. This is optional but I thought it would ensure no loosening of thread ends, particularly during lots of wear and washing etc.

AW Lace Shawl 1

Starting: I stretched the web on the Vandyke Border Loom leaving a long end at the start and keeping the ball in place on the left hand side (to avoid making joins as the border is continued). Here I have wrapped the thread end a couple of times around the loom end to hold the tension in place.

I made an angle on the first end so that it would continue on the shape of the shawl corner. The pins were placed on a diagonal and threads held together by K 2e (knotting 2 threads to hold).

Note: When working some of the bigger projects I prefer to use pins to hold the web rather than lacing with waste thread. It is a little less portable in this method but much quicker to stretch the web.

AW Lace Shawl 2

Row 1: I worked a row of sc (scalloped edge by k 2e to create small anchored loops) along the bottom edge, joining in a new thread as required.

AW Lace Shawl 3

Row 2: Next I worked a row of K 2e (keeping the pairs of threads in alignment with the first bottom row of knots) along the centre of the lace band.

Note: For each row I joined a new length of yarn. Once worked this was loosely wrapped and tied (to prevent tangling) and kept on the left hand side, ready to work the next section of the lace as the lace is moved on along the loom.

Row 3: I then worked a row of sc along the top edge. See how the threads now separate to give a lacy effect. Again I joined a new thread for this row.

AW Lace Shawl 4

Row 4: A row of k 4e (4 threads knotted together such that the groups of knotted threads aligned with the peaks and troughs of the top edge) was worked in the centre of the bottom straight border section. This opened out the threads into a pretty lace design.

Row 5: A row of *k 2e (x3), k 4e (x1), K 2e (x3)* was repeated along the top border. The 2e knots were worked just below the knots on the sc edge and the 4e knots were worked about half way down the space. This created a nice section with 7 little spaces, ideal for darning (weaving) in the next row.

AW Lace Shawl 5

Row 6: Next I joined in the lilac thread. To start I knotted just under the threads of the previous row until reaching the centre of the 7 space section.

AW Lace Shawl 6

Row 6 continued: The 7 space section was progressively darned (pdt) for 8 rounds. The thread was taken under 1, over 2, under 2, over 1, under 1, then over 2 and under 1 to complete the first round (starting at the top left hand side single thread). As the rounds are worked the weave goes in the opposing over/under direction naturally (as there is an odd number of thread groups/spaces).

When 8 rounds were complete the thread was taken under the first thread bar again before moving along to the left with knotting.

Full row 6 repeat: *k 2e (x3), k 4e (x1), pdt (x8) in the round, u 1e, K 2e (x3)* repeated along the top border.

These 6 rows form the pattern repeat for the straight border sections. The straight knotting rows are quite quick to work but the darning does take a little longer. Well worth it though I think.

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The lace was then removed from the loom ready to work the next section.

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The first few loops were replaced onto the end of the loom and the next section of web was stretched ready to work. Here you can see the ball kept in place (keeping the web continuous without thread joins). The working threads were loosely tied for each row (keeping them separate, tying in a new length as required).

AW Lace Shawl 9

The next section of lace was then worked as given above.

AW Lace Shawl 10

Again the lace was moved along as each section was completed. I was so excited to see it grow.

AW Lace Shawl 11

I had calculated that I would need 25 little peaks to fit along the sides of my scarf before needing to turn the corner (the space between each peak being approx. 4cm and the sides of my scarf being approx. 1m).

Note: The lace does pull in slightly when removed from the loom (the amount will vary depending on stitches used). Bear this in mind and check that the length of your lace is OK before turning the corner (particularly on a large project).

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As with the straight border I pinned the first few loops of lace onto the corner loom and laid out the pins ready to stretch the web.

AW Lace Shawl 13

I stretched the web on the first half of the corner then spent some time thinking – how was I to make a corner pattern that would continue the straight sections nicely? This took me some time – ha ha.

AW Lace Shawl 14

The threads on the corner diagonal of the web need to be interlocked. I therefore broke the thread and stretched the next section of the web, threading up the needle and passing through the loops of web on the diagonal (Gina explains this in her instructions). I then tied the thread end back to the ball end of thread.

I had a lot more thinking here about where to go next – tee hee.

AW Lace Shawl 15

I worked rows 1-4 as previously adding extra knots where the diagonal threads crossed to make sure that the intersection was well anchored.

I then started row 5 and had a lot more thinking on the corner section. The full peak sections on either side were to be completed in the same pattern but I wasn’t sure what to put in the corner. I liked how I had continued the bottom border section keeping the design cohesive.

AW Lace Shawl 16

Continuing row 5: After the first 3 knots (worked as per the normal pattern) I then moved to the centre and knotted up one side of the diagonal and back down the other (k 2e). This anchored all the threads well on the upper part of the diagonal. Note that I split the thread groups (see above where the outer threads are grouped together on the web) to make a lacy effect. I hope that this makes sense. It is difficult to explain – sorry.

Continuing row 6: I worked the first peak in the same way as usual then worked 3 knots up the outer edge (as in a normal row start). See picture below.

AW Lace Shawl 17

The corner was completed by weaving 2 little ‘leaf’ sections across the diagonal threads. Starting at the tip I wove down to the middle (filling the space), then up the other side and then 3 knots were worked down to the trough section as normal. The next section being worked as per the normal pattern.

The lace was then removed from the corner loom and replaced back onto the border loom ready to work up the other side (as shown above).

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Here you can see the full length of one border and the corner turned ready to work the other side. I got very excited here – ha ha.

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Here is a close up where you can see the corner more clearly.

Although fairly pleased I still wasn’t completely happy with it (more thinking! Ha ha).

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I took the lace back off the border loom and quickly anchored it back onto the corner. With a new length of thread I added a little circle of weaving (over 5 groups of thread). I was happier with the result now.

AW Lace Shawl 22

I continued with the usual pattern until the last section. Here I again wanted a diagonal finish on the end.

AW Lace Shawl 21

Here I have shown the corner of the scarf so you can see what I mean. The loom is not designed to make diagonal ends as I am wanting so you can see one of the pins is slightly out of alignment here. This loop is adjusted when knotting (see below).

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You can see here that the misaligned pin is removed as the last knot is worked on row 2 (the ball thread end then being tightened up). The other pins sit on the diagonal path OK.

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Happy with my finished corner – finally – ha ha.

Block Printing:

AW Lace Shawl 25

Next I wanted to create a pretty block printed border.

I used the lime green paint on the outer part of the block (applying with kitchen sponge).

I mixed a little of the Raspberry and Violet with quite a lot of White to create a colour that matched well with my lilac thread. This mix was sponged onto the inner section of the block for printing.

The scarf was laid onto the foam base for printing. This provides a little cushioning against the solid wood block ensuring that the detail prints well.

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Oooh yummy print.

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Oooh – I was a happy bunny. I left the paint to fully dry overnight then heat fixed by ironing on the reverse on a cotton setting.

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I then hand stitched on the lace border easing it to fit. In order to provide a little stretch and ease I used a slight zig zag when stitching (this allows a little stretch without popping of the thread). Next I sprayed with starch and ironed. This smoothed any slight lumps & waves that formed after attaching the lace and also stabilised the lace nicely.

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I was so chuffed with how the lace border and printing looked.

The Floral Daisy Motifs:

 

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Next I worked 16 small daisy motifs on loom 3.

I stretched the web on the smallest circle and lime thread to create 16 edge loops (i.e. total of 32 threads crossing the central section).

I then worked DD (double darning 2e) for 2 rows in the centre to neaten up the crossing threads etc. On the second row I offset the threads darned in the first row (as in weaving).

I then worked Revs (2) for 3 rows: Reverse backstitch over 2 threads. Ensuring that the threads from adjacent ‘loops’ were grouped together to form the outer ‘petal’ loops. Note: The side facing you is the back of the work.

Then I worked K 2e for 1 row: Knotting 2 threads together to secure groups of threads creating the long scalloped edge loops that make the petals.

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These little flowers would make great earrings or could be joined to make a lovely necklace. In fact it was these that gave me the idea for my black lace earrings blogged in my previous post earlier today.

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Finally I finished the shawl by sewing the little daisies into the centre of the block printed motifs.

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I hope that you like my lace shawl. Teneriffe Lace is definitely a ‘slow craft’ akin to knitting or cross stitch, don’t expect quick results. This project took me around 25 hours to make! Take your time and enjoy the process xxxx.

Teneriffe Lace Earrings created for Gina B Silkworks

Today I am sharing some quick to make Teneriffe Lace earrings that I made ready for Gina’s Lace show on Hochanda TV tomorrow at mid day (29th Oct on Freeview Channel 85 or watch catch up online via their website.

 

AW Loom 3 ER

Materials:

· Black crochet cotton no.12

· Teneriffe Lace Starter Kit Loom 3 (Gina B Silkworks)

· Fabric glue (optional)

· Silver plated earring findings

· Rolls Fabrifix Spray (roller blind fabric stiffener and protector spray)

· Baking parchment

How to do it:

Note: Gina’s starter kit provides general instructions for stretching the web, darning the centre, reverse backstitch and knotting etc.

1. Web (16): stretch the web on the smallest circle to create 16 edge loops (i.e. total of 32 threads crossing the central section).

2. Centre DD for 2 rows: Double darn the centre to neaten up the crossing threads etc. On the second row offset the threads darned in the first row (as in weaving).

3. Revs (2) for 4 rows: Reverse backstitch over 2 threads. Ensure that the threads from adjacent ‘loops’ are grouped together to form the outer ‘petal’ loops. Note: The side facing you is the back of the work.

4. K 2e for 1 row: Knot 2 threads together to secure groups of threads creating the long scalloped edge loops that make the petals. Fasten off and add a small dab of fabric glue if desired to seal the fastening knot.

5. Remove from the loom and spray both sides with stiffening spray. I laid my lace onto a bit of baking parchment to do this (so not stick). Note: Use this spray in a well ventilated area as the solvent is quite smelly. I like to use this spray as it both stiffens and protects the piece from moisture. It also dries very quickly (within a couple of minutes). Alternatively you could use diluted clear drying PVA glue or Transparent Powertex fabric hardener, but these are more messy and take a while to dry. Gina also produces a lovely Kanzashi Starch that could be used neat or diluted on the lace (great choice for pieces used as linens etc.).

Note: The hardest part to get right is the Teneriffe Lace Knot which holds it all together. Get this wrong and your lace won’t hold together properly when you remove it from the loom. Should this happen, don’t despair, do what I did with my first lace attempts and glue it to a card or a mixed media canvas.

There is a great beginners video from Gina to help with this.

I hope that you like the lace earrings. They are fairly quick to make and are ideal if you are a beginner and feel a little daunted with making the larger medallions. Teneriffe Lace is definitely a ‘slow craft’ akin to knitting or cross stitch, don’t expect quick results. Take your time and enjoy the process xxxx.

Study Bursary Finalists with The School of Stitched Textiles

I am so excited to have been chosen as a finalist to receive a Bursary to study with the School of Stitched Textiles.

 

Finalists are now needing votes – winners will receive a Bursary which will cover the study fees. To be awarded a Bursary would mean so much to me as unfortunately I am not in the position to afford the course fees.

 

Please could you spend just a minute to place a vote for your favourite finalist (I am under my full name – Heather Anne Waller). There are some fabulous entries, all deserving of a Bursary Award. Voting is simple, no name or personal details etc. required. Click this link to vote for your favourite finalist.

 

Thank you so much xxx.

 

AW Hat

The projects that I entered were my felted, quilted and embroidered coral reef hat

 

AW Earth Laughs Quilt small

and my patchwork hanging embellished with hand made ribbon flowers.