For centuries women have used cloth as a tool of comfort and as an expression of beauty within their homes. Creating cloth for warmth, cloth for shelter, our female predecessors embellished these linens with hand stitch using laborious and time consuming techniques thereby enhancing the functional beauty of objects which enveloped and protected their families. Inspired by these women I hope my creations pay tribute to and recognise the devotion expressed in cloth by our female ancestors .

''the use of traditional often time consuming process alludes to the devotion of a mother''. c K. A. Ruane 2007

Sunday, June 1, 2008

And Now For Something Completely Different!

I managed to get a little bit of work done on friday before my house filled up with returning offspring!! This second panel is going to be pleated and I like my pleats to sit neatly, flat, all in a uniform straightness that I am sure demonstrates some kind of OCD which probably requires some kind of treatment if only they could get me on the couch! To make sure this happens I stitch the folds with running stitch (any excuse to do running stitch) before pleating the fabric and then fastening the pleats down.

What do you think of the hooks and eyes? There was a time when I used these obsessively, during the latter part of my degree work, then I kind of went off it and now I am back on it. I only managed to get a few done and it will look completely different when you can see the whole piece but you know I think maybe my work has been missing something like this, a sharp modern touch contrasting with the traditional techniques. I really, really want to get this part finished soon then you can see the overall effect and I genuinely want your opinions, we all need input and constructive criticism if there is any to be had.

I have had a gorgeous weekend with all my family around me and I already know that I miss my daughter so much, she is much further away than my son, but when she goes it's dreadful, kind of like losing a limb but I am sure it's a good sign that she is a free spirit and capable of living a fantastic independant life, I should be happy about that and I am but......

Last night we all went out to watch these amazing young people perform, my son is the EXTREMELY handsome one behind the young lady.


Hens teeth said...

Karen ~ I have empathy for you with your son at Uni and your daughter away. I've cried a river!
Hooks and eyes - love them, can't wait to see the finished piece.
Your son's group/music are brilliant ~ you must be very proud.
Glad you have had a good weekend.

Threadspider said...

I so know what you mean about far away IS like losing limbs when they go.
I love the running stitch pleats and every other aspect of your stitching, but I'm not sure about the hooks and eyes. I think I would prefer 'em the other way up...just peeking out from underneath the fastening edge, rather than on top, if you see what I mean. Or metal eyelets. Just my pennyworth.

MIss 376 said...

I was reading your blog with my 9 yr old son. When we came to that picture his reaction was "oh cool"!

I have yet to experience my children flying the nest, but when I first left home, my mum stopped baking. Then when I had the children, she left it a few days to clear their fingerprints, she felt once they were gone, she was alone!

Look forward to seeing the finished piece

Ulla said...

I think the hooks and eyes will look wonderful when the rows are ready. I have seen your old pieces with lots of eyes and hooks and I thought they were impressive.
Thank you for the music experience! He is handsome!

jennyflower said...

I miss my mum like that too! It definetly cuts both ways. Mum is so supportive and I feel like a better peron when she's around. I like the idea of the hooks being less obvious too. If it is a modern element you are looking to I'm not sure hooks and eyes say it to me. I think the contemporary element for me is that these pieces are not utility in any way. This kind of luxury textile, with no practical application is surely a modern phenomenon?

karen said...

Oh my!! hooks and eyes, what a problem now...and a dilemma. I quite like the idea of putting them under the fold, thanks for that suggestion, I will probably try that with a couple and if it works for me continue with it.That will mean unpicking those already done though so I may be some time!
I totally get Jenny's point too, but sometimes I think that to evoke 'modern' you have to be in your face with it so that some people get it, and I do like the look of them aswel.

sparkle jars said...

I love how you added the hooks and eyes...very playful! :-)

Victoria said...

I have always been a fan of contrasts, so I am digging the hooks and eyes! Love the way you work, (But I have a bit of OCD, too!)

Also, you sound like such a wonderful mom!

ruby may said...

I like your embroidery, I think you work in a really lovely way. Lots of people are very affected nowadays wouldn't you say? (Embroidarily speaking) There is a lot of messy trendy stuff going on and I like that you don't do any of it. You are very refreshing.