Monday, July 27

Making the Monsoon fiber book.

I'd promised to make a tutorial to explain how I went about making the Monsoon inspired fiber book.
As promised here it is after delays of not being able to transfer pictures from my camera etc.   
So I began by choosing a size for my pages. I chose 4 inches x 6inches for each page. I also chose the fabric for the pages some were silks others were dyed with rust and tea. 

 I cut fabric fusing into pieces measuring 8 inches x 12 inches and ironed them onto the back. Ironing fusing onto the back of the fabric one is going to do embroidery or applique on, stops the base fabric from puckering.Especially if you are embroidering text. 

Then I embellished the pages with embroidery and applique. There was fabric and paper which I appliqued onto some pages.  

Once the embroidery and applique was done I put the pages together, just to see I had the sequence right. 
Next each double spread was turned over and the excess fabric was folded over and tacked down.
 Next two double spreads were placed with backs together and the edges were stitched together with an overcast stitch. Once all four sides had been sewn up the tacking was removed.
  Then I put the pages together and since there are just three or four pages, I took some sturdy thread and stitched through the center of the pages to secure them and hold them together.
 So this is the little fiber book.
Somewhere along the way I felt a small shibori frill attached to the edge of the cover would complete the whole thing, and that's just what I did.
 The Monsoon fiber book.
I hope the method I used is sufficiently clear for you to try and make a little fiber book of your own. It isn't rocket science so I'm sure you'll improvise any steps you couldn't understand and create something quite special.
Do let me know I'd love to see what you create.

Wednesday, July 1


   The handiwork of a little spider. building a little cocoon for this handmade ceramic vase.
Our home is build with exposed brick and the brickwork has little niches just the right size to hold and display  ten small handmade vases collected years ago.
Each one of the vases are different in shape, pattern and glaze, unique and precious. Perhaps, understood by the little spider who decided to weave a protective web around them.

I'm going to be busy next week with family weaving happy memories. Have a good weekend making happy memories, a long one for those in the United States.

Friday, June 26

A Flower Strewn Path

 Yesterday afternoon was spent working with the masons creating a flower strewn path. It began with trying to create impressions with beautiful ferns.
When that didn't work we used found objects to create flowers.  
 The flower centres were made with bits of plastic pipe and an empty paint container, seen in the background.
A path strewn with sunflowers. I hope our guests enjoy walking down this path.

Wishing you a weekend which takes you down flower strewn pathways.

I have news about the Solace project here.

Thursday, June 18

Redwork Sampler

I'm taken with cross-stitch red work and I thought I'd share one I made and got framed.    
 The framed sampler adorns our new home. It's a wedding, alphabet and Quaker motifs all rolled into one sampler.
 Detail of some of the motifs in the sampler.
I'm sorry if the pictures are hazy and bit distorted because it's behind glass and I had to try and avoid reflections besides I had only the use of my cellphone camera. The cord to transfer photographs from my camera to my laptop seems to have developed a problem so I'm unable to share any of the pictures on my camera. What a bummer. I have all the pictures for a tutorial on how I made the Monsoon fiber book but it's going to have to wait. Oh well, it's not the end of the world.
Hope you're having a wonderful creative week.

Tuesday, June 2

Where the Wild Things are

At my new home in the hills I've been snapping pictures of the little wild things I discover most mornings on the french doors and on the verandah.   

From being an apartment dweller in a metropolis  for the past ten years, I'm enjoying discovering forms, patterns and textures from the natural world which present themselves. Unexpected surprises.

Saturday, May 30

The Key

Found poetry, an ongoing project.

 Here is the key,
forward thinking. Adopt and adapt it for your own means,
Prepare in advance, ready to go.
it will keep you at the forefront of an upcoming revolution.

If you missed the found poetry created prior to this piece here are the links.....
Dabbling in Distractions
It will make you happy
Spontaneous Combustion
Layers of Flavours

Hope your weekend is gorgeous. I start planning future projects.

Thursday, May 21

Monsoon - A Fiber Book

The fiber book - Monsoon 
It's taken longer than expected what with moving house and settling down but I finally got to photograph the little book on my deck this morning. The book is about things I associate with the monsoon season.
The plaintive call of the Koel or the cuckoo. It's a call one welcomes in India because one knows there will relief from the relentless summer heat. I read somewhere that the Koel a migratory bird flies to the Indian peninsula from Africa on the monsoon winds.  
Monsoon landscape dominated by dark  moisture laden nimbus clouds.
The rain brings an exuberance to the land. The parched land turns green and one of the most beautiful sights is a peacock dancing with its magnificent tail spread out. I have memories of this wondrous sight on the lawns of my alma mater The National Institute of Design in Ahmedabad.    
I choose to eat other meats during the monsoons, it's me doing my bit to give fish stocks a chance to be replenished.    
Hot tea or cutting chai as it's known in India is what every Indian loves to sip when it's pouring and I'm no different. That's the recipe for the masala tea I make and if there are no bhajjiyas I settle for marie biscuits which I dunk in the tea and eat. One of my favourite rituals. 
The back cover of the book.

The prediction for the monsoon this year is that it will be early, probably the last week of May. Usually the Monsoon hits the West coast of India in the first week of June.
I must stock up on Marie biscuits and get tea leaves and spices in place to welcome the Monsoon.

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Have a great weekend.