The WIP report – March 2016

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This month I’ve mainly been working on my diamond hex quilt. I’ve managed to complete two big diamonds and three little diamonds. I’m having a lot of fun with this one, there is pretty much no organisation going with this one, I have sorted two shoes boxes of fabric, one with the greys and whites for the little diamonds and another with groups of coloured fabrics but other than that, I’m enjoying seeing the quilt grow organically, as I attach the diamonds together. I currently have no idea if the bit I’ve completed will end up being in the middle or close to one edge or somewhere in between. As I make a diamond, I do have a rough idea where my instinct is telling me to place it (like with the pink diamond I’m currently making, at the moment I think it will probably go in the position I’ve placed it on the photo) but I don’t think beyond that diamond.

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Embroidery wise, I discovered a much more nearly completed than I thought it had been, work in progress from before Christmas, this month and I thought I’d finish it off. The pattern is a sea dragon from Urban Threads and I think I had originally planned to make this into a pennant but as you can see, it hasn’t worked out very well. Once again, I hit one of the many hazards of relying on Sulky Solvy, with the Sulky Solvy on the top of the fabric, it looked like the colours I was choosing would be bold enough to work with the busy background of the fabric. It was only when I washed the Sulky Solvy off did I realise that nope, it hadn’t worked. I may, if I get round to it, turn this into a pouch but I have a feeling this will get stuffed on a shelf somewhere and join some of my other forgotten embroidery pieces.

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Talking of Sulky Solvy, I had sworn that 2016 was going to be the year that I stopped using the stuff but then I saw this lovely pattern from Shiny Happy World and I knew I wouldn’t have the patience to transfer this by hand, so I ordered some more Sulky Solvy (mentally slapping myself on the wrist). In fact I was so keen for my Sulky Solvy fix, I actually (finally) joined Amazon Prime, just so I could get it the next day with ‘free’ delivery. Anyway, I had originally envisioned this pattern looking fantastic just stitched up in black, I still think it would look great in black (I’m not sure about this multicoloured stuff I’m using) but I was out of black floss. I did try it with black pearl thread but that’s just too thick and the few bits I stitched up looked horrible, so (rare for me, I usually go with my mistakes) I unpicked. I went shopping for black floss but as I suspected would be the case, the only store in my large shopping destination town that actually sells embroidery thread, was out of black, as it always is and as I am trying really hard to stay away from online thread shops at the moment (tooo tempting), I bought some of the aforementioned multicoloured stuff instead. I never usually use the multicoloured threads, I’m never that convinced by them personally but it is quite fun watching the colours change as I stitch but I’m still not that convinced the end result is going to look that great. At least my Sulky Solvy is on plain white fabric this time (saying that, the floss colour is so going to leach when I wash the Sulky Solvy out now).

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Also on the embroidery front this month, I treated myself to two RSN embroidery classes at a textiles show that was local to me. The first class was blackwork, which wasn’t too new to me, as it’s similar to cross stitch but I did manage to demonstrate, in public, how absolutely rubbish I am at stem stitch *blush*.

I know that I have tendency not to complete these projects I start in classes, I’m never actually that enamoured with the designs they teach with and I’m not a massive fan of the washing line design. I don’t like leaving things unfinished though, so I may try and complete it if I have a chance, I think it might make a nice pincushion.

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The second class I attended was goldwork, now that’s a lot more new to me, although if you’ve couched something or added beads to a piece of embroidery before, it’s sort of similar. I enjoyed this one, goldwork materials have a bit of a bewitching, foreign, unknown quality to them and although I’m not normally into glitzy stuff, it was nice to be working with materials I don’t normally work with.

I am more likely to complete this design, although it’s still a question of finding time to sit down, be quiet and concentrate, as it’s fiddly, intricate stuff. So the likelihood of this getting finished is still unfortunately low but I definitely want to do more goldwork in the future!

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Drawing wise, I started enthusiastically with this month’s #cbdrawaday over on Creativebug but I came to a grinding halt in the middle of the month. I do want to continue though and have started, slowly, to work through the classes again. The photo above is of my latest effort. I am very grateful to #cbdrawaday, I couldn’t have drawn the above three months ago.

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I am also, very slowly, still working my way through Lisa Congdon’s Sketchbook Exploration class, also on Creativebug. The exercise above was fun.

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I’m also drawing when out and about, I’m finding it a great way to occupy myself when I’m waiting for something. The above was drawn relatively quickly, when I arrived in London one morning, a bit too early for an appointment, so I had 15 minutes sitting on a bench in the statue hall at the V&A (the nearest bit to the subway entrance), drawing this.

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I’ve also been doing quite a bit of colouring and actually finishing some pieces. The finished piece above is from Mid Century Modern Patterns by Jenn Ski.

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And finally, I’m still very slowly going through the Skillshare pirate class.

In April I hope to do more of the diamond hex quilt, lots more drawing, carry of learning some new embroidery skills and to get back to my cross stitch WIPs, let’s see if that happens!

 

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