We move forward from two successful exhibitions in 2016 in Prague and in the USA to the challenge of an exhibition in the Netherlands in the Autumn. We continue to work on A2 sized pieces in portrait format and will be producing four pieces over the year with the theme of 'Freedom'. An essential part of our art is working in series to a common format which does give us all a framework for our creative endeavours.

Tuesday, 29 October 2013


Here are my latest trees. I used a multi layered background fabric and paintstiks for the trees. And yes, I admit I should have ironed my piece before I took the picture :-)

Monday, 28 October 2013

Chez Nous

Chez Nous
More quirky houses and the text means ' At our house' or 'At our home' in French. I drew lots of houses first in my sketch book and then translated them into fabric. Each house was fused and sewn separately and then stitched onto the background with some hand embroidery added. The flowers are a mixture of silk, cottons and sheers and the words are stitched and then painted. I like to use a little black and white fabric, I hope it gives it a fun look. What do you think?

Saturday, 26 October 2013

Under the Surface - Reef

For my fifth piece in the Under the surface series I used an image of sea anemones on the Great Barrier  reef as my source.

 I have been trying out and playing with discharge pastes for a long time and used both the standard discharge paste and a new powder mix paste from Holland to try to get the effect of the depth of the rock formations under water. The base fabric I started with was medium weight cotton that I had dyed an indigo shade. The first discharge took the 'rock' down to a brown shade the second down to an aqua color. I applied the discharge through a simple silk screen with a roughly cut plastic template of rock shapes underneath. I find it interesting to see how different discharge brands reveal differing base pigment colours in the same fabric. 

For the sea anemones I had wanted to achieve a rough print of a vague Anemone shape to them develop differently for the various images on the piece. By chance I had been trying out with some friends silk screening with Inktense blocks through a stencil so tried this method as I had wanted some variation of colour for the shapes; whilst I tried this method with fabric medium as the carrier,  it did change the handle of the fabric and I had better results using aloe gel and cheap hand sanitizing gel. The results were permanent after heat fixing with an iron.

I overlaid the Anemones with dyed silk organza and machine stitched though the sandwich then cut back the organza; the intention was that the organza over the print might give the 'jelly like' texture to the anemones -on reflection I could have left more of the anemone stitched without the organza overlay as I was quite pleased with the prints.

Original print using Inktense block and aloe gel through simple silk screen and stencil

Whilst the finished piece is below I am still pondering on whether to embellish the anemones with beads and seeding.... not sure..........



Thursday, 24 October 2013

Night and day

I am one of the (many?) who is behind on making the quilts, but here is number 4:
For the background I used two snowdyed pieces of fabric. The stylized tree is made from commercial fabric. I was lucky to have this spickled fabric both in white as well as in black. And to catch up, I plan to start working on number 5 today :-)

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Number 4

At last I have finished nr. 4 for 2013:

I think I must have been 3 or 4 years old when this picture was taken. I grew up in Johannesburg and we did not have many seaside holidays because of the distance. I made a flour paste screen of the photograph which I coloured with fabric paint after printing. I stitched the silhouette on the left and the ball  with free motion machine stitching. I have finished all my quilts in this series with rig-rag. I think it adds to the playfulness of the images.

Sunday, 20 October 2013

Our first show

In a couple of hours our first show will be finished. Shoshi took a lot of pictures and will post these later. Lots of positive comments were made about our quilts and how they hang at the show. To give you a short impression of the show, this link will take you to a video made by the regional tv:
At 1.28 you can see some of our quilts hanging at the right side. I admit, it is not a good look or a long one, but it is something :-)

After I posted the above, I discovered that there is another video posted on the website of OECQ which gives a much better view of our show. Check out this link:

Saturday, 12 October 2013

October Piece

I actually finished this piece before my August piece , but did not post it because I felt I should stick to the order- and yes I could have swapped them around , but somehow that did not feel right. This piece or face from the past has been inspired by the figures of the Royal Portal at Chartres, though whether it  depicts royalty  is unlikely and it is more likely that they represent figures from the old testament. I love the serenity of the figures ,their elongated shape ( though this one is chopped of around the waist) their outward gaze and in all reality their quite modern  faces. The type of dress the women  wore was known as a bliaut and are quite detailed in the sculptures. Anyway instead of getting tired of redrawing them and playing with them they seem to me to be becoming more fascinating and mysterious.

I have hand painted papers and transfer printed it onto  polyester non-woven ( lutradur) and then machine stitched. I want her to be luminous but was surprised by how luminous she actually became and in the flesh she is even more luminous because of the sheen on the polyester non-woven.

So for the fist time I joined Voyageart I am actually  slightly ahead of time. The  next piece is not due until December!

And don't forget last years pieces will be shown at OEQC at Veldhoven in the Netherlands, and some of our members will be there to tell you all about the 2012 pieces!

August Piece

I am running behind but also finished my October piece before I had finished my August piece , which I did start in time but because it is hand stitched it  kind of lagged behind. Earlier this year I had made a whole lot of Mirrabelle kits for Quilts en Beaujolais ,and well they did not sell  quite as hoped. In fact I completely lost enthusiasm for the project.  July and August are our winter months and I am not a very good winter person at the best of times, so I thought it would be lovely to have something to hand stitch, but this winter was  so long I lost enthusiasm for that too. I was also  devoid of ideas so I thought I might stitch up  the lady and knight panel as an applique as they do fit my theme of faces from the past. The knight has been designed by my daughter Celeste Galtry.

So I stitched the panels onto some  hand woven khadi cloth, but as I started to embroider the panels the background fabric was singing rather loudly.so then how to subdue it? I decided that I would  cross stitch the entire background  in an ecru colour, which made the whole  piece take even longer. But finally I  finished it yesterday!I think the cross  stitching did the job of  making the background more subtle but still leaving the feel of the hand made.

The applique panels were inspired by the  medieval figures I have encountered at Chartres and Bayeaux cathedral and I tried to imagine the colour of the clothing.Anyway they are just a bit of fun!

Thursday, 3 October 2013

Time to Think

I am posting two more pieces in my 'People, Places and Patterns' series. I got a little behind as a commissioned piece needed to get priority. Hence, two for the price of one this time!
People are endlessly fascinating and even although your paths may only cross momentarily there are some people that make such an impression in such a short time that you take some of that person away with you. Here are two people that I met in India whose characteristics I either admire enormously or am perhaps just a little envious of.
Firstly here is my homage to a man that I met in Barefoot College in Rajasthan. His aura of peace, calm and tranquility seemed to reach out to those around him. He seemed so content to just sit and think, something that I don't seem to have time to do very often.
The second piece depicts a goatherd bringing his flock down from the desert hills at sundown. He was leaning very heavily on his staff for support. As an Occupational Therpist whose specialism was hip and knee replacements I knew by his gait what his health issues were. What I took from him was his fortitude to continue his daily chores despite grinding hip pain. Of course he probably had no choice but I just wanted to scoop him up and take him back with me for a new hip.