Art House Summer Exhibition

I was so excited when I got two of my textile art pieces into the Southampton Art House Summer Exhibition. These were pieces that I originally made during my City & Guilds Level 2 Machine Embroidery. Here they are hanging in the exhibition.

"Castles" - inspired by moss, plants and weathering of ancient castle walls after visits to Chepstowe and Corfe Castle. I created printing blocks using giant pencil erasers and lino cutters, then used a heat transfer press to create the pattern on the fabric. I added batting and thick calico backing, then I quilted using dense machine stitching to suggest moss, adding some hand embroidery in places using different types of threads (including buffalo wool!). I couched various wool to create vines, and used soluble fabric to embroider leaves to hang at various points from the vines.

"Falling" - a large piece combining tea-dyed calico, organza, satin and scrim. I machine embroidered leaves in various neutral tones onto the calico, and created individual leaves using satin and organza, singeing the edges with an incense stick! I shredded holes in the organza and scrim to create a tattered effect and strung it from a large twig.

The exhibition is on until the 28th September and includes lots of lovely pieces in many styles and mediums. The Art House hosts a huge variation of live acts, workshops and other events and serves gorgeous chocolate cake!

FFFoF "Black" Swap Part Two

This is the "black" piece I received from mausheart (check out his Flickr stream here - the owl hoop is so cute!):

I love the use of black embroidery thread on black Aida, it's very effective and the cobweb is amazing! It's also a really unusual hoop (at least I've never seen a metal hoop like this before). It's very "me" - I like most spiders (except for the ones that are mostly spindly legs and the ones that are too big to fit in a pint glass...). I suspect this will end up on my bedroom wall, it will look especially good once I've finally painted the walls purple instead of the current corpse colour, bleugh.

Speaking of local wildlife, we found this guy under a (very diseased) rose bush:

He was HUGE - that's a really big magnolia leaf he's sitting on. I love his fake eyes! I suspect he is an elephant hawk moth caterpillar. I'd never heard of these before this summer, until Miskit dragged one of the moths in (luckily she didn't injure it and we let it go). I was a bit shocked by the size and the way it was skittering around, for some reason I thought it was a crab in the low light...

July Instagram

Some of the things I was up to last month...

I'm MadMonstersUK on Instagram - are you on there too? Would love to check out some new feeds.