All the things I love to see and do. Fabric, Threads and other lovely things.

Monday, December 19, 2011


Well, what do you know!!!  It's only 6 sleeps until Christmas!!!  Where has the year gone is what is on everyone's lips I think!  Thought I'd tell you today about some of the textile art postcards I've been making through the year.  No, I won't bore you with them all but will show you just a few.  The textile art group as part of Gatton Quilters had a postcard challenge with us using a theme for each month to create our postcards.  It's been such a fun and challenging thing to do all year.  We (GQ) are having an exhibit at the Lockyer Valley Regional Gallery next June and we will display the collections there as part of the exhibit. 

Front and back of the "Fashion" theme.  I chose to create a "robe" to be the High Priestess Robe.  I then made-up a totally fictional story about a tribe etc.  Click on any of the pics to bring them up larger.

Another of the robe series...this one is the "Snow Queen Robe" in reply to the "Winter" theme.  There are two other robes and a mask that belong to the set and perhaps I'll show these at a later date.  I was inspired to create the robes by Inga Hunter who has created the most amazing robe pieces...just stunning. 

This last one's theme was "Weaving"....I used unusual "threads" that I purchased from The Thread Studio ( www.thethreadstudio.com ) Overdyed Sari Ribbon and spun silk bits from Nepal along with some charms and a shisha mirror.  It all had and Indian feel to me so I named it "Sari Sunset".

I hope everyone has a wonderful Christmas Season and is looking forward to a great 2012!!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011


Actually it's still spring but you wouldn't guess it!  We've had a week or so of 30C+ temperatures!  The aircon has taken a beating! Ü  I thought it was time to update my blog a little as it's quite some time since I posted.

I've been busy designing and completing quite a few new projects for Handmade as well as myself AND for the new blog I have with my friend Cath.  I have a button here on the blog for it so make sure you go visit. 

"Cherry Fudge" is one of my new bags.  Fairly quick and easy to complete but quite stylish I feel.  Would look good in any fabric you may choose and just match the trim and buckle to your choice.

"Dreamtime" is another one.  My bag features one of the many aboriginal prints available now but would look great in any choice of fabric.  Binding the side seams on the outside is a feature, as well as the larger than large button.

"Elegance" is the third of five new bags.  It has a shaped top and features a large felt flower which is included in the instructions.  Once again would look good in any fabric choice.

"Orient Express" isn't all handmade hexagons! LOL  It's a wonderful authentic Japanese fabric printed with hexagons.  I have stitched around all the hexagons on the front and back of the bag as well as the clutch with a Sashiko thread to match. Would work well as a knitting bag with the clutch as a needle holder.

"Tokyo Tote" also is made from authentic Japanese fabrics - the hexagons as well as the "ribbon" design. A classical bag with an interestingly shaped flap.  Like all of my designs it would work in any fabric choice.  The knotted shoulder strap can be adjusted to suit the individual.

All of my bag patterns retail for $15AUD plus postage.  Direct deposit works well for payment if ordering OR through Paypal which is secure for overseas orders.

I had the urge to create a "right out there" apron, collected the fabrics and the result is "Retro Kitchen"

I used four different fabrics - three large print designs from the Kaffe Fassett range and a colour match of a tone-on-tone fabric.  Great fun to choose the fabrics and make!

Same price as the bags - $15AUD plus postage with the usual payment arrangements. 

For once I haven't designed any new Christmas designs....working on the cover spread for Handmade's Christmas in July issue in January after the floods drained me I think! 

There are two small projects in the current issue of Handmade which I had made last year.  I do have plans for my traditional Christmas pillow as well as tree ornaments for Kirsten and Matthew.  Will post pics when I complete them! LOL

I will be back before Christmas!  Until then, happy stitching,

Jan x

Monday, July 25, 2011


I've just added a button for the new blog with Cath.  She is such a clever person!  She has designed the button so help us along and add it to your blog too please?  We're busily preparing our first posting...lots of things to give you plus some of our patterns for sale as well.  I've also been working on some new projects for the magazines and "busting" to get to some new bags I've designed as well.  This is just a quick post to let you know about the button but will be back with some more soon!!  Until next time, happy stitching and stay safe,


Friday, July 15, 2011


Lots of beading and embroidery are in this piece.  I finished it about 18 months ago for a special exhibition at the gallery in Atherton.  Each year the combined churches held a week of art.  As well as the exhibition to a theme (always from the bible) the committee also arranged for tutors in the arts to teach workshops of all kinds and also special presentation at the church with both art and faith involved.  Sadly, the last exhibition was the final one as the driving force (the anglican minister) was moving away to fresh encounters.  The theme was "showing your light" but not sure now what book of the bible it came from.  I had been "toying" with the idea of intense tonal embroidery and beadwork for a while so the theme just fell in my lap!  Not sure if I have shown the pic before of a book cover I completed for a friend with the same idea, only smaller, in white.  If you go back a bit you will be able to find it I think. 

Along with a new friend, Cath, we have created a new blog with lots of interesting things to write about and also free patterns etc so, go to  http://jancathsbitsbobs.blogspot.com/ and have a look!  Only baby steps at the moment but we're working on making it exciting for everyone.  I'm busy designing a stitchery BOM for the new blog as well as more projects for Handmade AND myself!  :)  Until we meet again, happy stitching, love,


Monday, July 4, 2011


Velvet & Lace is one of two projects featured in the current issue of Handmade.  I made it a while back and thoroughly enjoyed creating it.  I hand painted the lace and was lucky to find the random dyed velvet in a dress fabric shop.  Would love to say I had hand dyed it too but won't!  :)  The tassle is handmade too, using three full skeins of silk thread.  Very sumptuous and fitting, I felt to match the bag.  I finished off the bag with a small amount of lace and embroidery on the back as well.  Interesting beading is along the top edge.  Hard to explain without a diagram - using approx. 3mm diameter beads with smaller seed beads in a "sort of" fly stitch manner.  A really nice finish for any edge actually.  More to show you in a new post tomorrow!  Happy stitching!

Jan xxx

Thursday, June 23, 2011


For not keeping up to date with my blog.  So many things have happened since I last wrote.  Moving house; Melbourne for Christmas to visit our daughter Kirsten and then home just in time to experience the dreadful floods in our valley.  We were some of of the lucky ones in that our home was not flooded....just about 20cm or so of floodwater in our yard.  I was evacuated by Black Hawk choppers which was an experience I'll never forget I think!  Enough of that!

Amidst all of the horrors I also had to create a full Christmas table setting for Handmade.  I had been asked to do this just before Christmas and the deadline was the end of January!  Luckily Virginia (the editor) gave me a week's grace and I DID complete it under pressure.  I sent it off without even setting it out and photographing and just prayed that they would like it.  Luckily they did and it's been and gone now as the next issue is now out.  I will post a photograph ASAP.

For this post I thought I would finish off our Artistic Licence exhibition at the Tablelands Regional Gallery in November.  It was very well received and caused a lot of comment which was pleasing.  I'm fairly certain I have posted all the pics of the small pieces so will give you a bit of a look at how they all looked on the walls of the gallery as well as the final piece which melded in with the other larger piece the rest of AL created. 

As always I'm never sure if I will get the pics in the right place so here goes!  As you can see the individual pieces aren't easy to see but the overall pic gives an idea of how they worked together.  The plinths hold the artist books we all created.

The above pic is one set of combined pieces that were hung in the entry of the gallery.  Mine is the piece on the right and I'll also add a pic of it on it's own.  Sandra created the top left piece and Liddy the bottom left piece.  Hopefully the individual pic will give you a bit of the detail.  Probably doesn't show in the pic but each of the individual pieces started and finished with the same fabric as the one beside it ie.  the first green fabric on mine was the last on Liddy's and the last red fabric of mine was the in the first section of Sandra's.  As we were all flung far and wide when we each worked on these it's a bit amazing that they blended!

I added elements used in the small pieces to echo and create a sense of continuity.  Below are some pics of some of the artist books I created for the exhibition. 

The green book was to echo my small piece titled Earth's Oxygen and the red concertina book echoed Prelude to Winter. 

The Tea Time set of books were named because I used used tea bags for the pages.  Great fun to do!  Just dry the tea bag once used then empty out the tea leaves and open out the bags if you want.  I do both.  Different brands of tea give different results.  Purple Passion was created as a journal....blank pages inside.  Both books used handmade papers etc for the covers.  I don't get a lot of spare time to indulge my love of bookmaking but try when I can. 

Now that I've got back to post my first message in a long time I will try very hard to come back at least once a week.  Lots to tell everyone about!!  Until then, take care and happy sewing to everyone! Love,