•January 30, 2018 • 1 Comment

Feb 24th, Nottingham lakeside arts, Viking era embroidery.

There’s also a three day course at the Ashmolean based on my Bodleian ABC scroll. Its an Abc of Oxford in which you can either do a single initial or an Abc, and it will be taught using both wool and silks to suit all skill levels.

There are also three places available to join the Opus Anglicanum course – because this is an ongoing course, if you join now you will be doing one of two faces, male or female, so you can work at the same pace as the rest of the class.

The ashmolean courses are both on the weekends of the 28/29th April, 23/24th June, and 29/30th September. book by contacting Jude Barrett

 (0)1865 288078




•January 22, 2018 • 6 Comments

Not quite as much progress as I intended this weekend, especially since I been pretty much sofa bound with a sprained ankle. It’s not even as though I sprained the ankle in a legitimate way, like slipping on the ice or being drunk, I merely fell over nothing in my own living room. Branston is loving it though, he likes it when I sit still so he can sit at the other end of the sofa and be company, he says he’s had such a nice weekend he’s considering leaving roller skates on the stairs next Friday.

A lot of the slow progress was due to trying to decide on feather placement, and a lot due to uumming and aahing over colours, but I’m happy with it now.

Netx big decision is whether to outline the feathers in blue, which would be lovely and subtle, or the same red I used for the riens. I’m currently thinking I’ll try the red on one wing, so if I don’t like it I can overwork it wiht the blue, because the red will either look fabulous or terrible.


angel progress

•January 15, 2018 • 5 Comments

I’ve had to relegate this to weekends since I went back to work, as I prefer to work on it in daylight.

I went down to two stradns of silk for his hands, and one for his face, hence the very slow pace.

It’s probably as well that I need to set him aside for a few days, since I’m not sure if his expression needs slight adjustment – I think he definitely needs a kisscurl adding to the right cheek. But sometimes it’s best to stew on these things for a bit.

I’m also thinking about his wings now, which are the last bit of split stich before I put him on the frame to do the goldwork. I want to play with peacock wings so he’s getting an upgrade, I just need to plot out where to arrange the peacockeyes before I begin.

just a little bit of sunday fabric porn…

•January 14, 2018 • 10 Comments

my dad gave me some money for Christmas, and I couldn’t think of anything I wanted that cost that much, so obviously I went to look at sartor.

UNfortunately most of what they have at the moment is rayon or lurex (why bother?)

But they do have a cut velvet with silk pile…

It wasn’t cheap, and although dad had given me enough for a whole dress I decided I niether need nor want another grand fifteenth century gown (Mainly because I can’t think of a gown that allows me to make another batshitcrazy headress, but that’s a different problem)

So I decided I’d spend part of my christmas money and have 3/4 of a metre for accessories. This should be enough for a pair of sleeves, a hat, maybe some other bits.

Except this will look horrible with my scarlet red kirtle, and it won’t got with the yellow or green bits I’ve put by for new kirtles either. I need a new kirtle to go with my new sleeves, perhaps black or chocolate brown, and obviously in stonkingly good wool, so I’m currnetly eyeing some that will cost more than the sleeves…

I’m also ignoring Gareth’s repeated query about when I’m planning to open a 1970s tandoori restaurant.



•January 12, 2018 • 10 Comments

Gareth and I drove down to Oxford last Friday to see my piece on exhibit at the Bodliean.

So there it is,

I’m impressed that so much of it is on display – they could have rolled it up much more.

This is the winner, by Sue Dogget, an almanac of modern saints.

But for me I would have chose Paul JOhnson’s Serenade to Chaucer, which I thought was far more interesting

I forgot to Take a picture of Linnete’s tiny book (she was the only other entrant I actually knew, also shortlisted and displayed) but I also liked this board game, the creator of which I forgot to note,

THere was also a digital display of all the entries, including those not shortlisted. To be honest I found the digital display disappointing because it was just images and artists names, and it would have been far more interesting and illuminating if they’d bothered to include the artist statements. So much of modern art is about concept and ideas rather than execution, and many of the pieces, including some of the ones of display, lost most of thier meaning without the context provided by the statement, even for someone comparatively literate in the language of medeival imagery. Not including the statements in the boundless storage provided by the digital display just seemed bizarre.

Some things I made as Christmas presents

•January 8, 2018 • 2 Comments

I forgot to photograph a lot of stuff I made because I made so many shirts in February and didn’t want to post them back then in case I blew the surprises

Glow in the dark skeleton shirt for Gareth. He wanted it to be more anatomical/medical than Halloweeny, so it has some modern looking black and white square buttons instead of skulls

Relatively plain Doctor who shirt for Gareth (He already has a mix and match one made from a selection of spoonflower prints). This one is an example of how there’s no pleasing some folks. On his birthday last February I gave Gareth three nice new shirts, to which his response was roughly along the lines of “They’re lovely, but I have too many shirts, don’t make me any more effin shirts” Then we headed to York for lunch, via Leeds city centre because we took the train so we could both drink. Obviously we stopped for a quick look in the really cheap fabric shop(so not Sam Taylors, the other one, because it might have been his birthday but a woman has needs…) and a certain someone walked straight in, right up to the only bolt of fabric in the whole place that was £15 per metre rather than six, and loudly announces, “I need a shirt made from this. This has Sontarans and they’re my favourite. Buy me this, now. Make me a shirt.”

There were two fruity beauty shirts, this short sleeved on for Martin, and a long sleeved on for my Stepdad, Peter, each with assorted fruit buttons. They’re a relatively understated colour scheme, I think.

I have enough of this to make another shirt, but Gareth already has a fruit shirt.

Nuts, nails, and screws, one each for Gareth and Martin. They look really smart on (Gareth has barely taken his off, he even wore it to Star Wars rather than His Star Wars shirt) and I wish I’d bought more of this fabric for John and Peter, but it sold out really fast.

I also made a candle holder for Dad and Janet

The flat one is before I bent and soldered it to the base. Photos are prepolish, and taken on the bench, so they’re not great, sorry. It’s collies and Labs for Trevor and Barnie, plus a puppy to represent thier next dog (and also because there wasn’t enough space for another big dog.)

This one went perfectly, with no snags or hiccups to the making. I credit this obedience to the fact it’s dogs. I also treid to make one for Mum and Peter, with the fellowship of the ring, but that one kept throwing up problem after problem, and made me swear a lot, and then I melted a hobbit.

So maybe you get to see that one next year…(I found four of the obscenely expensive glass candle holders for about a tenner each instead of the rrp of 20, so there are plans)

project again

•January 7, 2018 • 5 Comments

NOt as much progress as I would have liked this week, what with two days taking christmas decorations and then days off for days out. Oh, and we finally went to see a matinee of the last jedi

His tunic is an intersting example of the compromises of using veg dyed threads – theres not as much contrast as I would have liked, but on the other hand I quite like how…shimmery the colour combination looks. His hair was a new technique for me as well, since it’s not the straightforward stripe seen in so much opus, but a rather more florid approach.

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