>Quilt fest


I’ve just finished setting up my work at the Festival of Quilts at the NEC in Birmingham. There are 6 of us on the Graduate Showcase stand who turned up early this morning to put our work up ready for the show opening tomorrow. Here are a few images of my stand today. The lights weren’t up when I took these photos but you get an idea of the space.

Much of the work is as I had it at New Designers but I have brought a few different things. I now have two of my embossed paper pieces framed and I’ve brought a couple of pieces that were development samples and so didn’t make it into the final show at Bradford.

I’ve made some new miniature pieces to sell. These are little assemblages of naturally dyed paper and felt with copper wire stitches. They’re mounted ready to go into frames.

The show opens on Thursday morning and goes on through to Sunday. Do come and say hello if you are coming along.

>stitched folds

Before I was selected for the graduate showcase at the Festival of Quilts I had already committed to entering the mini quilt section of the open exhibition. My entry is slowly taking shape.

I’m using a piece of silk that was printed with my sketched building site screen at college. Using these dots to help me…

I’m bringing four points together to make these little corners with walls in between.

I have a vague idea of how I want it to look but I’m pretty much making it up as I go along. I’ve tried stitching along the bottom of the little ‘walls’ to give them more definition but am not convinced that it is right.

I’ve also been toying with the idea of having ‘windows’ inserted in some of the compartments…

but I don’t think they work. The combination of the print and the structure of the manipulated fabric is enough, windows are a step too far, but sometimes you have to try things out to find what works and what doesn’t.

>small fish?

I’m back from a hectic week in London. New Designers was quite an experience and a bit of a roller coaster ride of emotions. The hustle and bustle of London was a novelty, the experience intensified somewhat by the heat! Being a commuter for a week and traveling on the tube at rush hour certainly makes me appreciate my usual morning walk to school with the kids.

When I’ve visited this show in previous years I have been overwhelmed by the amount of amazing work that comes together from the various design courses around the country. How could I ever stand out amongst this lot? This ‘small fish’ feeling was even more the case as an exhibitor. My work is quiet and subtle and there were times when I felt it got lost in amongst the garish riot of pattern that was in that building. However, as the week went on I did find that my work was appreciated and I had some lovely conversations with people that were supportive and very positive about what I do.

I was interviewed by a couple of different trends organisations. They seemed particularly interested in the sustainability aspect of my work. I sold some cards and lots of people took my business cards and postcards. I made a few interesting contacts. The most exciting thing that happened was finding that I’d been selected for the graduate showcase at the Festival of Quilts in August. This is a really exciting opportunity and I’m so pleased.

The whole affair was exhausting and uplifting in equal measures; there was a stage during each day where I reached saturation point in terms of visual ‘stuff’ and needed to escape. Emerging from the building one evening to beautiful light on distant buildings was most welcome.

It would have been great to do a few other things in London: sit about in parks, visit some exhibitions, but that wasn’t what this week was for. I did find some pretty great food though, including some lovely things from the local shops near where I was staying…