IMGP5835Photograph of the special cushion commission I made just before Christmas this year. Made completely by hand with free machine embroidery…IMGP5837Close up of all the many stitches!

If you are interested in a textile cushion or picture design being made for any special occasion, get in touch with me – www.vickywilliams.net where I have my website showing more of my work.

Or email at vicky.williams@tesco.net.

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I arrived for the final day of the ‘Artisans in the Palm House Christmas Fair’ in Sefton Park, Liverpool with great trepidation after spending quite a few weeks working very hard, to finish off making a lot of cushions and pictures. We had managed to get there from North Wales in a gale force storm, but were just pleased to be a part of the event, inside this beautiful building full of tropical plants and trees.

I’d finished a number of items including my Christmas tree cushion, with thousands of free machine embroidered stitches and added beads and crocheted gold ‘tinsel’…IMGP5794 and a number of small pictures, including this little oystercatcher one made from navy and white free machine embroidered stitching….DSC07065

Glad to say that I had a very successful but unfortunately rather brief time, as in the afternoon, the gale force wind was causing havoc outside in the park surrounding the Palm House and could have caused great danger to the general public, including the many shoppers who had to be turned away at the door.

I’d like to say thanks to all the crowds, Organisers and artisans who made it a very happy …but rather short day!

Hope to be back selling there next year.

Close up of work so far

Close up of work

As you can see I have added a lot of new colour to my picture, making it very colourful compared to my other Blog!

I hope to add even more layers of colour using dye, to finally get the colours I want. This is relatively easy to do as I will add more dye thickener to the powdered dye, making the colour very pale. This affect would be the same as in water colour painting, using a wash, which covers up the layer of colour below, but changes the colour slightly to the shade added.

Easier said than done!!

Work in progress

Work in progress

Studio view

Studio view

One of my Textile Art pictures with cards and commission work.

One of my Textile Art pictures with cards and commission work.

My Helenium Textile Art and cushion designs.

My Helenium Textile Art and cushion designs.

Helenium Textile Art

Helenium Textile Art

Dahlia, Echinaecea and Wild Garlic Cushion

Dahlia, Echinaecea and Wild Garlic Cushion

Blue Geranium, Sunflower and Cornish Wild flower Cushions.

Blue Geranium, Sunflower and Cornish Wild flower Cushions.

Badger and White rose cushions

Badger and White rose cushions

Other cushions including Amarylis, Artichoke and Pink Geranium.

Other cushions including Amarylis, Artichoke and Pink Geranium.

Spent a very enjoyable weekend meeting the general public who visited my own ‘Helfa Gelf’ Open Studio Event. This was part of the annual event held all over North Wales, which has now been running for ten years. It gives the public a wonderful insight into where the artists do their work and to meet them personally. (for more information – Helfa Gelf Open Studios)

I have been involved in the Open Studio Event now for four years and thoroughly enjoy showing people my textile art and cushion designs, as well as explaining the processes involved with painting with thickened dyes onto fabric and adding free machine embroidery. Much of my inspiration is from nature and especially my own photography where I love taking pictures of flowers and landscape.

You can see more of my work at www.vickywilliams.net

My cushions and textile art can be purchased at present by contacting me personally and I also welcome commission work.                       Email : vicky.williams@tesco.net

Lizard Poppies

Lizard Poppies

As you can remember, I’ve recently been on a very lovely holiday down to Cornwall at the beginning of July. I’m always on the outlook for inspiration for new textile art and took this photograph whilst on a walk in the Lizard. I love the colours and composition, although will probably get rid of the buildings in the background when I start drawing out the base drawing.

base drawing on silk with HB pencil

base drawing on silk with HB pencil

I’ve decided to use a thick silk for my base fabric instead of the usual vintage 100% cotton sheets to see if I can get brighter colours when painting with the dyes. (silk is still suitable for dyeing.) The drawing was very difficult to do as I realise now the complexity of all the stems and different shades of colours!!

base colour

base colour

This image shows the base colours added. I hand painted the thickened Procion MX dyes onto the areas where I need the colour, thinking ahead to what extra dye will need to be added to give extra depth and shades. I really love the colours made, but in this case, have decided to add more colour to show the beautiful bright colours that I found in Cornwall.

This is only the first part of the process to make my textile art….more to follow.

Finished doggy textile art

Finished doggy textile art

Glad to say that the two Yorkshire terrier textile art images on a calico bag have been completed and very pleased to say that the new owner loves it!

Close up of one of the dogs

Close up of one of the dogs

As you can see, I painted the base colour with my usual thickened dyes, then added further texture with free machine embroidery using MANY different colour threads.

On to my next project which is the Poppy Textile Art picture, hopefully ready for my Open Studio Day over two days with Helfa Gelf, here in North Wales.

I will be opening on September 5th and 6th.

Lizard Poppies

Lizard Poppies

Sorry for being quiet for so long! I could make plenty of excuses but really, I’ve been enjoying the summer here in Great Britain and celebrating events with my family! Very proud to say that both my twins Katy and Jack passed their Honours Degrees this summer and we have already enjoyed Katy’s Graduation.

Now it’s back to business as I must start a new Textile Art picture in readiness for showing at my Open Studio Event, over the weekend of 5th/6th September. (www.helfagelf.co.uk).

I am very interested with using one of the images I took whilst holidaying in lovely Cornwall. At the beginning of a beautiful walk from Lizard to Kynance Cove, on the look out for interesting flowers, I found these lovely poppies growing in a hedge.(see image above) I think they will give me plenty of colour, detail and layers as a starting point to produce another picture.

I am going to experiment with using a beautiful cream thick silk as my base fabric, which I will draw my image then paint it with thickened dyes.

I’ll show you the processes as I go on.

finished picture

finished picture

The above picture shows my Helenium textile art finally finished, before being taken to the framers. Most of the stitching is free machine embroidery but there is also hand embroidery including french knots and running stitch where needed.

Helenium Textile Art work in progress.

Helenium Textile Art work in progress.

As promised a couple of months ago, here is further progress showing my Helenium Textile Art work which I hand painted with the thickened dyes, now adding hand and free machine embroidery.

close up of helenium at the side of my textile art

close up of helenium at the side of my textile art

To complete this work, I will have to add less stitching to the flowers further back, especially the heavier hand stitching. I want to add more emphasis though on the flower stems.

Hope to get this work done, a long with other pieces for the Artisans in the Palm House Fair that I will be attending this year…dates to come nearer the time.

Paddington Cushion in Auction

My Paddington Cushion at the Auction.

Very pleased to inform you that my handmade Paddington Cushion was finally auctioned on March 7th at the NSPCC Child Line Ball in Manchester. Along with the other items in the Lot (see above) it managed to raise a wonderful £350 !!!!

As you know from my previous Blog written on March 3rd. I designed and made this unique cushion by painting with dyes onto a cotton sheet, then adding free machine embroidery all over the body. I then appliquéd him to a very nice Laura Ashley linen fabric, adding padding as I went along.

The overall Auction raised over £221,000 which is an incredible amount of money for such a good cause. This will go towards the NSPCC’s ChildLine Schools Service in Greater Manchester, ‘where volunteers visit schools in the area to teach the children how to recognise abuse, how to protect themselves and where to go for help’. (quoted from the Manchester Evening News).

Sam Bailey, Bars and Melody and Jermain Jackman lead the entertainment and other Lots included Noddy Holder (from Slade) auctioning himself off to host a Christmas lunch with 10 people at the Hilton. This raised £5,200.