Sunday, 18 October 2015

The Seagull has landed

This week I have been reading

A rant coming.

I have very mixed views about the stitching I do, being labeled, Slow Stitching. Why does it need a name at all. The fashion for stitching old used fabric with straight stitching doesn`t speak to me at all.
I am of the age when make do and mend - darning - reusing fabric was a necessity. Poverty - lack of easily obtainable materials - wartime.
I now use the technical skills, learned from my mother, darning, patching etc in my work where appropriate.
I enjoy looking at old worn materials, researching the history and construction of them but I don`t wish to produce work based on nostalgia.
It just looks to me like samples I have in my workbook.
I enjoy hand stitching, it allows one to be reflective when working but -  Slow Stitching.
This of course may all be sour grapes as Claire has written a book and it is a lovely book.
This is a personal view and I may return to this theme of everything needing to be named.
Anyone else out there got a view on this?

Here is the Seagull at last. 
About time too I hear folks say.

I just could not get the proportions right. It did not sit correctly inside the space. It came together when I made the bird face backwards.
It has a wire frame, covered with builders scrim dipped into gesso. I thought plaster would be too hard to stitch into.
I meant to photo the stages but battery on camera was dead so bashed onto next stage while muse was on my shoulder and before scrim disintegrated.

I may place it on a small piece of doweling but I quite like it on the piece of driftwood.
What do you think?
I will try to get him covered for next week. He needs and eye and the beak is a bit like an eagles, at the moment but HEY HO he has landed,

I am taking part in a workshop, next weekend, lead by Kim Gunn. It is being held for S.E.T tutors.
Scottish Embroidery Tutors.
The theme is collections.

Looks interesting. I am taking debris from the beach as my collection. No surprise there.

My grandchildren, 10 and 9 year old girls have been staying for a few days.Bedrooms have been rearranged since their last visit. This is their way of laying claim to their new room.

and all the other bedrooms. I am keeping them on the doors as they make me smile every  time I pass by.

Plan for next week

1 Enjoy the weekend workshop

2 More work on the seagull

Look in next week and see if I get him finished.



  1. Your granddaughters' paintings are enchanting. I like them all, especially the one of you sleeping, haha! I can see why you would keep them on the doors, happiness every time you pass them.

    Seagull (bare) has landed! Hurrah! Have never seen a seagull perched on a dowel, so think the driftwood is perfectly fine.

    A rant! I always love a good rant. I agree with you that some "artist stitching" often looks like nothing very much, not much (any) design, just some local materials and a few or lots of straight stitches. And then they give talks about it and write books and articles.

    Hope you will show us what you did at the class. Have a good time!

  2. The girls drawings are quite fun. I love the one of Grandma sleeping...with one eye open.

    Aha! The seagull. He's wonderful! Looking forward to his big finish. He is the king of the beach.

    Hmmm...slow stitching....didn't that used to be called hand stitching or embroidery or crewel? I guess it just doesn't have enough names to choose the one we like best. Maybe too old fashioned. Everything seems to need to be modernized and revamped in order for some to discover it in todays modern, fast paced world. Even when it is not war time, some folks still have the same necessities. And what is necessity for one is art for another. I don't mind names and I do love straight line stitching. I'll have to have a peek into that book next time I am in the book store. I like the cover piece with the stitching and the dye mix. But I don't like hand sewing unless it's to finish the binding on a quilt.

  3. I would keep the art on the doors also. Fun.
    I like your seagull, nice form.
    wishing you a great time at the workshop.

  4. Finally worked out how to follow you! I have the slow stitching book. It's nice, but not sure it adds anything new. I love the colours from natural dyes and the all over stitch is quite pleasing. I like the maps she produces. I haven't got the time at present to follow a process through from plant, working full time. I have a dabble with natural dyes from time to time but I don't feel guilty using some chemical dyes I have so that I can actually make something. I think there is always something to take away from such things, but we certainly need to think about what is presented and not just get caught up in the latest thing.

  5. Found your comment on Rachael's Folio and Fibre blog so came to have a look. I bought Slow Stitch as I have been rust, leaf and Eco dying and have started to put them together and liked the thought behind the book. To be honest, it's been sat in front of me on my foot stool in the evenings ever since it was published and I'm yet to open it to look inside. Why? I've no idea. I stitch because I have a need to 'get it out of my system' and do whatever in necessary to achieve that. Will this book be yet another trying to compartmentalise something I find a natural instinct? I guess the only winner is the author as it wasn't a cheap book but I still don't have the urge to open it.