New Designers

Yesterday I was fortunate enough to spend the day visiting the New Designers exhibition in Islington, London. New Designers  show-cases the work of recent university graduates from a variety of creative disciplines. Week 1 focusses on textiles, fashion, jewellery, glass and ceramics and textiles were extremely well represented, especially printed textiles. I was a little disappointed to only find one fellow felt-maker, a lovely artist from Rotterdam who has recently moved to Dublin, Marleen Haaften. She makes beautifully sheer hangings by needle-punching different fibres into an almost translucent backing fabric.

Marleen Haaften

There were far too many individual artists for me to share them all here so these are a small selection of my favourites.

Andrew Sutherland’s textile monsters were derived from drawings he made as a child.



I was fascinated by Laura Ukstina’s modular approach to fashion, these pieces were inspired by Lego and she sees them as sections of a garment that can mixed and matched to create a variety of outfits depending on your mood.


Linda Anderson’s knitted pieces reminded my of sea anemone tentacles, I desperately wanted to run my fingers through them but thought better of it 😉


Lucy Turner’s knitted pieces also reminded me of the underwater world, coral formations this time, although it turned out they were inspired by Tuberculosis!


While this piece by Heather Ratliffe reminded me of days spent looking at fluorescing cells down a microscope in my student days. There was a UV lamp on the left that made sequins sewn along the edge of the fur fluoresce. A fascinating interpretation of some fairly standard dress-making materials.

If you can make the time, this show is worth a visit, granted there are a few pieces that I thought looked like they had been crafted by teenagers, but given that most of the work was produced by young people I was enormously impressed by the very high standard of the work.


Preparations for the Oxmarket in Chichester

The last couple of weeks have been a whirl of screen-printing, trying to get a couple of new designs ready for exhibition at the Oxmarket gallery in March. The exhibition will feature a selection of new and established printmakers and will be open from 13-25th March, if you are in the area  please do pop in, there will be over 100 framed prints on show and hundreds more in browsers. It promises to be a wonderfully ecletic exhibition of different printmaking techniques and styles.

This is a small sample of my prints (no two are the same, even though only 3 sets of stencils were used).

This series I titled “dinner time” and I’m sure anyone who owns a cat will be very familiar with this pose 🙂

I have struggled to come up with a title for this one (any ideas?), but I was trying to capture that fleeting glimpse of a fish beyond the ripples in the pond surface…



The address for the exhibition is:

Oxmarket Gallery
St. Andrew’s Court
off East Street
West Sussex
PO19 1YH

Open Tue – Sun 10am to 4:30pm
Free admission

Felting Exhibiton

Last Sunday saw the second International Feltmakers Association (Region 5) exhibition in Sonning Common. It was a good day with lots of chat, very nice cakes and some felting demonstrations from yours truly. The visitor numbers were rather low due to incorrect dates being advertised in various papers and magazines. I’m not at all happy about the poor organisation but I won’t keep harping on about that, I still managed to have fun and met some really lovely people.

The exhibition as you walk in
My display area
The view from the far end of the hall

I also had an interesting experience with some wool I was demonstrating with. I was making pods and used a coarse red wool (afraid I don’t know the breed) on the inside and variegated purple merino on the outside. The coarse wool almost refused to the felt. Even when the merino was firmly felted there were still unfelted tufts of the coarse wool but it did give a very interesting texture that several people likened to a brain.

I also made a couple of more conventional pods and think I might have even inspired one of our feltmaking group to have a go at making pods too 🙂

Lichen #2 and some machine embroidery

As promised here are some photos of the second lichen on bark piece, this one took much longer than the first to complete and I  think that was largely due to the number of resists that needed cutting and placing (more than 40 in total) but, at last, it is finished.

I have spent most of today working through my UFO (UnFinished Objects) box in preparation for the Sonning exhibition on Sunday. This has almost exclusively involved machine embroidery.

And this piece was inspired by some sunset photos I took in North Devon a few weeks ago:

I plan to use it to cover a ring binder, hence the embroidery design is only on the right hand side.
And I made some leaves to turn the silk flowers into brooches:
I have also been working on a new bag that I think is rather exciting but more on that next time… 🙂

You are cordially invited….

I spent yesterday felting with the lovely ladies from Sonning (IFA region 5) and will be taking part in their exhibition on Sunday 2nd November. If you are in the area I would love to see you there. We are also looking for fellow felters to join us for a fun day of felting once per month; if this is of interest please let me know.

I am feeling rather pleased with what I managed to complete yesterday (there was a LOT of chat about the forthcoming exhibition which ate into my felting time 🙂 ). I have been wanting to make a felted top for a long time and finally managed it… and best of all, it actually fits!

I plan to wear this at the exhibition next month so if you want to see me modelling it you will have to come along! ;o)

I also managed to make a lattice scarf using the technique taught on Fiona Duthie’s surface design course. I plan to dye this later in the week but can’t decide between green / orange or blue / brown…

And finally a couple of samples from Fiona’s class…

The piece on the left is destined to become a brooch while the other 2 have felt cuff written all over them.

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