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.

Messenger Bag created using fabric panel from Chocolate Baroque

AW Bag Front 1

Good morning. I was so excited about the launch of the new fabric panels from Chocolate Baroque – enlarged images from my favourite stamp company printed onto fabric ready to paint and stitch – yay!

I have been working on a bag design big enough to carry A4 folders plus craft stash for when I am out & about. The large bag flap was a perfect place to feature the Katya panel. You could create similar using a commercial bag pattern (messenger style or tote), or by applying the panel to a ready made bag front.

I have used fabric painting, stamping, applique of stamped images, stencilling, machine and hand embroidery – but don’t despair if you are a non stitcher. I have included an idea for decorating a ready made tote bag with no stitching involved. The panels are also fabulous to use in mixed media projects such as book covers or canvases too – just stick it down with some gel mat medium or book binding glue. Then add stamping and embellish as for other mixed media work.

Materials used:

  • Printed fabric panels (3 Ladies)
  • Stamp sets: Take It or Leaf It, Large Crackle Background, Artistic Affirmations, Harlequin Rose, Bold Blooms
  • Stencils: Silhouette Palace 1 and Silhouette Palace 2
  • Range of fabric paints from my stash – all fixed by ironing: silk paints (fluid), transparent and opaque fabric paints plus multi surface paints (off white, cream, red, orange, yellow, blue, turquoise, pink, purple, metallic pink/purple, transparent pearl and green glitter)
  • 3D fabric paint (pearl green) – such as Appliglue or similar
  • Alcohol ink pens (yellow, turquoise, pink, green)
  • Archival Inkpad (Jet Black)
  • Tonertex foiling fabric glue and foil (gold)
  • Cotton quilting fabric scraps for applique (white, purple, lilac, cerise, plus waste strips of printed batik)
  • Cotton fabric (black) for backing and framing panel
  • Machine embroidery threads (black, variegated pink/blue plus green/orange)
  • Hand embroidery threads: Stranded cotton (variegated pink/purple and orange/yellow), Pearl 5 cotton (variegated blue/green/turquoise)
  • Iron on paper backed glue mesh (such as Bondaweb or similar) and Fray Check Glue
  • Paint brush and Cut-N-Dry Foam
  • For making the bag I also used: sewing thread, heavy weight cotton fabric (blue), light weight linen patterned fabrics for lining (blue & cream), plastic sink drainer (for base), Bosal foam stabiliser (one side iron on), bag feet and magnetic clasps (silver colour), zipper (blue), shoulder strap (recycled from old bag)

How it was done:

I first made a lining using my heavy weight cotton and linen printed fabrics. I wanted a heavy weight long lasting lining so layered my fabrics and treated as one layer. I also included plenty of pockets. I haven’t included details of my pattern here – sorry – but it’s something I am working on for my own business. You could choose a commercial pattern for a messenger bag with a large front flap to decorate, or a tote style bag to feature the panel.

AW Katya Fabric Panel 1

I painted the Katya panel using transparent coloured paints so as not to obliterate the black outlines.

Fabric paints designed for light coloured fabrics are best suitable. Opaque colours (designed for dark fabrics) would obliterate the printing so you need to bear this in mind. I also used some paints designed for multi surfaces (including fabrics). These can sometimes leave a stiffer finish than those specifically designed for fabric. However, for a bag this can actually be a bonus and it is not essential to keep a soft fabric feel. If you are not intending to wash your fabrics then you can use just about anything that you would use on paper. However, I would recommend heat fixable paints for a bag as you don’t want colours to transfer from the bag or run if caught in the rain! Painting was fixed by ironing.

Tip: I like to leave my fabric painting overnight before heat fixing with an iron (follow the manufacturer’s directions). The panel is silk/cotton so can be ironed using a cotton setting safely. I usually iron from the back.

I did test the panel for compatibility with alcohol markers and found that if over wet and rubbed with alcohol the printing did bleed slightly so I would avoid these, or use with care (i.e. without flooding close to the printing).

AW Katya Fabric Panel 1a

I then applied some of the Tonertex glue, left to ‘dry’ (goes tacky as dries clear) and applied gold foil to elements of her headdress.

If you are not a sewer you could stop at this stage. As with card making the panel benefits from ‘mat & layering’. Black fabric provides a nice frame. You could back the fabrics with fusible web and iron onto a ready made bag. Heat fusible webbing does not always provide a strong hard wearing bond so gel mat medium, book binding glue or a fabric decoupage glue could be used to prevent the panel lifting off or fraying with extensive use. There are also several types of 3D paint that could be applied around the fabric edges too (e.g. Appliglue).

AW Katya Fabric Panel 2

I found some lovely strips of batik fabric in my ‘waste’ scraps bag (I knew that they were too nice to bin – ha ha) so I had to include them in my bag panel design. Nothing was stuck down yet.

AW Katya Fabric Panel 3

Next I stamped various colour fabric scraps to use as applique elements, using an Archival Inkpad. The images were dried and then heat set with an iron. Colour was then added using alcohol ink pens. Again colours were heat set.

AW Katya Fabric Panel 4

Fusible web was applied to the back to prevent fraying and the stamped and coloured images were cut out.

AW Fabric Paints 1

When stamping with paints I prefer to apply them to my stamps using Cut-N-Dry Foam. I find that it gives a more even application with less clogging of the stamp than brushing or using kitchen sponges etc. In addition if placed paint side down in a plastic tray (recycled) they stay wet for longer. This is particularly so for multi purpose paints that can dry out very quickly. I also spritz the tray lightly with water to help keep them wet while working.

AW Katya Fabric Panel 5

The fabric background was first coloured using the fluid silk paints (they are like an ‘ink’ formulation rather than thicker paint) – encouraging them to bleed and blend with a light water spritz. As with card making I tried to create a darker blended edge to frame the scene.

Next the bag panel was stamped and stencilled. The applique elements and panel were ironed down (using the fusible web backing). I used the border stamp across the top edge and lovely crackle stamp in the background. I had to add a little bling with the metallic colour too (you know me! – ha ha).

Tip: Stamping onto a darker fabric you will need to use darker or more opaque paints (or they won’t show up). Metallics work well too.

I added some 3D glue ‘pearls’ to Katya’s headdress and overlayed some areas with transparent pearl paint for extra shimmer. I also added glitter paint to some areas. Simply wasn’t enough bling already.

AW Katya Fabric Panel 6

The panel was backed with foam stabiliser before embroidery (I wanted a quilted effect). I stitched down the panel and fabric strips and then used free machine embroidery to stitch down and decorate the applique. Hand stitching was added for additional texture.

Note: The fusible web backing does help prevent fraying but some areas may benefit from a little Fray Check along the fabric edges (e.g. my batik strips were not backed with webbing before stitching down so are likely to fray with wear).

AW Katya Fabric Panel 6a

Detail showing stencilling, stamping and embroidery.

AW Katya Fabric Panel 6b

I used free machine embroidery and black thread around the applique motifs, then further embellished with hand embroidery. The stamped smaller flowers were free machined with variegated thread.

AW Katya Fabric Panel 6c

Here you can see the stencilled palace with additional hand embroidery to highlight.

AW Bag Back 1

The back panel was also decorated.

AW Bag Back 1a

Love this sentiment stamp – describes me perfectly.

AW Bag Back 2

So happy with my decorated bag (back).

AW Bag inner front 1

The pockets on the front panel were also decorated (sits under the front flap).

AW Bag inner front 1a

Detail – love this sentiment too.

AW Bag inner front 2

The finished pockets with magnetic snap closures (to hold down the front flap).

AW Bag Sides 1

I also decorated the little side pockets.

AW Bag Sides 2

AW Bag Sides 3

Texture added with hand embroidery.

AW Katya Fabric Panel 6d

Here you can see a little more detail of the free machining and hand embroidery on the main Katya panel.

AW Bag Front 1

I hope that you have enjoyed my latest creation.

Hope to be back with more soon, Anne xxx.

Gina Barrett is on Create & Craft TV with new Flower Combs

Gina is bringing brand new flower making combs to Create & Craft TV Monday 5pm (Freeview Channel 23 – or watch online from their website). Here is a peek of what I have been making with mine x.

AW Flower Bag 4

AW Flower Bangle 2

AW Wedding Pillow 13

Creating flowers from ribbons or fabric strips is really easy using the new combs – I will blog more details of my samples soon.

Sneak peek of a quilt in progress

I am working on a quilt at the moment. Done the patchwork and applique plus quilting – binding to do. Next I am adding 3D fabric flowers. It’s going to take me a while but I’ll share when it’s finished.

AW Quilt progress 3

I have used recycled cotton sheets for the patchwork. I added a new fat quarter for cutting the applique. I have had my first play with my Accuquilt cutter and dies. I used 4.5 inch squares, 2.5 and 1.5 inch strip dies for the border. The applique was cut using the Heather Feather dies. So much quicker to cut than with scissors – had the applique all cut in minutes. The lettering was cut on my Brother ScanNCut (built in font) electronic cutting machine.

I quilted using free machining. Some of it freeform and some using quilting rulers (from Alys Stitchy Fingers). It’s my first play with the rulers and they are fab for more controlled/accurate patterns. I also added some decorative machine stitching too.

I used another recycled polycotton sheet for the backing and will be making the flowers from recycled sheets and pillow cases too. Even the wadding is recycled from curtain interlining (I prewashed it to check suitability – some interlinings are too ‘fibrous’ and would shrink unpredictably plus shed fibres etc.).

I love to create something new from recycled stash.

Kanzashi Flower Pincushion

Good afternoon. I entered this pincushion with Kanzashi flower top (tools and instructions from Gina B Silkworks) into the Create and Craft Gallery and to my delight I won Crafter of the Month. How wonderful is that. I got a voucher for £20 which didn’t take me long to spend. I bought some yummy Tilda fabric that I had been eyeing up for a while.

AW Kanzashi Pincushion 2

AW Kanzashi Pincushion

Materials:

  • 100% cotton fabrics (mixed red and white – was from Create & Craft but now out of stock)
  • Recycled old button, tapestry wool and metallic thread (to make wrapped button)
  • Small plain button (for the base)
  • Narrow ribbon (gold satin) and faux gem (gold)
  • Toy stuffing
  • Bradawl (sharp ‘pointy tool’) and tapestry needle (to attach button)
  • Kanzashi Project Card Pack
  • Kanzashi Hanabira Ruler , Rotary Cutter and Cutting Mat (optional for cutting small fabric strips and squares)
  • Kanzashi Flower Making Tool Kit (optional: Gluing Table, Glue Spreader, Turntable and Drying Station)
  • Kanzashi Petal Holders (optional: includes Petal Holder and Medium Drying Table)
  • Kanzashi Starch Adhesive
  • PVA glue (clear drying) and GemTac glue (for gluing gems to fabric)
  • Tweezers (for holding and manipulating petals)
  • Needle and thread plus sewing machine (optional – could stitch by hand)

How it was made:

  1. Four 3 ½ inch squares were cut from the cotton. Two pieces were sewn right sides together to make each cushion pad using a ¼ inch seam, leaving a small gap for turning. The cushions were turned out through the gap, stuffed and the gap hand stitched to finish.
  2. The wrapped button was created by wrapping an old plastic button with wool and then weaving with metallic thread. I made this one a while ago using instructions from Gina’s Button Making Workshop Manual. A brilliant book covering thread wrapped buttons, ring buttons, knot buttons and embroidered buttons. Narrow ribbon was thread through and tied to the back of the button. A bradawl was used to push a hole through the pincushion stack and the ribbon passed through with a tapestry needle. A small plain button was used on the base and the ribbon passed through the holes and tied tightly to indent the cushion shape.
  3. I used the instructions from Gina’s pattern card pack to make the Kanzashi Flower. I adapted the Maple Leaf Pattern and made 8 sets of petals using the pointed petal folding method. I used 30mm fabric squares for the outer patterned petals and 25mm squares for the inner plain red petals. I used the Hanabira ruler, rotary cutter and self healing cutting mat to cut the squares. These are not essential (you could use scissors) but if you like this craft these are definitely worth getting as they make cutting out the tiny squares so much easier and quicker. Tweezers really helped with the folding and manipulating. Kanzashi Starch is an essential to hold everything in place while constructing these.
  4. Although not essential, I found the Gluing Table, Petal Holder, Turntable and Drying Table really helpful too. You sit the petals in a layer of Kanzashi Glue while building more (stops them pinging back open). Petals are then glued in place with PVA onto a scrap of cotton on the Turntable. The built flower is then placed on the drying table.
  5. After drying the base cotton scrap was snipped close to the petals. Ribbon and the finished flower were glued to the button and a gem glued to the centre.

Art on the Common Exhibition in Harpenden

I will be taking part in 2 Art Exhibitions on the weekend of 10 and 11th June 2017.

 

I have entered several Artwork pieces into the Ayot St. Lawrence Art Exhibition in the Palladium Church – 10, 11 and 12th June 2017. This coincides with the Garden Festival where they open up the gardens of several cottages and The Old Rectory. Well worth a day out in this beautiful historic village.

 

I will also be having my own stall at Art on the Common in Harpenden – 10 and 11th June – where over 40 artists will be exhibiting. The Saturday coincides with the Harpenden Carnival where there will be loads to do and see during the day (lots for the kids too).

AOTC CR poster 2017 issue 2

I am working like crazy to finish enough to fill my stall! I will be bringing some smaller mixed media artworks, hand painted silks and bags, and beaded jewellery. There are never enough hours in the day!

Monochrome Patchwork Picnic or Table Mat Created with Tattered Lace Deep Dish Dies

This makes an ideal small picnic mat or table topper (finished size 18.5 inches). It would also make a lovely front to a tote bag or cushion cover. Alternatively you could fold 3 corners into the centre and seam the edges together to make a lovely envelope style bag.

I was instructed to make a sample using Tattered Lace dies in a monochrome colourway. I was really pleased with the results using this mix of dark indigo prints (from the Craft Cotton Company). A little splash of colour would also look lovely. Red thread for quilting, or red embroidery or applique would give it a classy looking lift. It would look completely different if made up in coloured prints – think that I will try that.

The deep dish dies make cutting out the shapes a dream and you can cut up to 6 layers of quilting cotton in one go – so quick and easy.

AW quilt draped

AW Step 9 - Quilt top finished

What You’ll Need

· 1 100% cotton fat quarter in white or white-on-white print (approx. 18 X 20 inches)

· Set of 5 monochrome print 100% cotton fat quarters (1 in lighter colourway for inner border)

· Approx. 20 inches square fabric for backing (can be less expensive Polycotton)

· Offcut of thin wadding (approx. 20 inches square)

· 2m of 1.5 inch wide dark fabric for binding (can be straight cut strips – bias not needed)

· White polyester sewing thread

· QF116 Nested Squares – Deep Dish Die no. 4 (2.5 inch square)

· QF113 Nested Half Square Triangles – Deep Dish Die no. 2 (2.5 inch square when joined)

Step 1

AW Step 1 -Fabrics

Collect fabrics together and press. If they have been prewashed, starching will help prevent them from stretching while sewing. Choose a lighter print for the inner border (to make it stand out), and a dark one for the outer border (to frame it). I chose fabrics No. 4 and 5 from my stash.

Step 2

AW Step 2 - fabric cuts labelled

Cut half square triangles: X32 white, X16 each of two printed fabrics (fabric no.2 &3). Cut squares X4 from another fabric (fabric no.1). Cut X4 1.5in wide strips (fabric no.4 – inner border) and trim X2 strips each to 12.5in and 14.5ins. Cut X4 2.5in strips (fabric no.5 – outer border) and trim X2 strips each to 14.5in and 18.5in (note: you will need to cut these from the long edge of the fabric).

Step 3

AW Step 3 - Chain piecing

With right sides together stitch each white quarter square triangle to a patterned triangle using a quarter inch seam allowance. For speed stitch them continuously to make a long chain (chain piecing). Use the cut off triangle corners as a guide and a quarter inch seam foot if you have one.

Step 4

AW Step 4 - squares stitched

Snip the thread between the triangles to separate them and press open and flat with the seams towards the darker fabric. Take care not to stretch the seams.

Step 5

AW Step 5a - Block 1

Layout 2 sets of 3X3 squares to make a nine patch (block 1). Stitch the squares together, first in rows of X3 (top, middle and bottom) then join the rows. Again use a quarter inch seam and try to match seams as you stitch.

AW Step 5b - Block 1 stitched

You should now have 2 blocks like this measuring 6.5 inches square (Block 1). Press seams open and flat.

Step 6

AW Step 6a - Block 2

Next layout 2 sets of 3X3 squares to make block 2 and stitch together as before.

AW Step 6b - Block 2 stitched

You should now have 2 blocks like this measuring 6.5 inches square (Block 2). Press seams open and flat.

Step 7

AW Step 7 - Panel stitched

Now join the 4 nine patch blocks to create the centre panel. Join blocks 1 and 2 to create the top row, then 2 and 1 for the bottom row, then join the rows. Press seams open and flat. Your square should measure 12.5 inches.

Step 8

AW Step 8a-Centre panel quilt guide

Diagram showing borders and quilting.

Now stitch on the borders. First add the shorter inner border strips to the top and bottom, then add on the sides. Repeat for the outer border. Press seams outwards from the centre (i.e. towards the darker fabric).

Step 9

AW Step 8b -Quilt back

Quilt back showing the quilting pattern.

Cut backing and wadding slightly larger than your quilt front and pin layers together. Quilt as desired or follow the quilting diagram (red lines in step 8 pic). Extend the quilting lines out across the borders at the seam junctions (as above).

Trim off excess wadding and backing to make square (should be 18.5 inches).

Finally attach binding, lining up raw edges on the front and stitching with a quarter inch seam allowance. Fold binding over the edges and to the back and hand stitch in place. You will have approx. ¼ in binding showing on the front and ¾ in to the back.