Thursday, March 28, 2013

Thread Painting, book review

The sun has been scarce this month in our part of the world, today included, but at least its not snowing so I won't complain.  But I sure am looking forward to the spring sun!

I spend two days this week driving to Charlottetown to take a needle painting course from Kathy Tidswell.  She is a lovely woman and a great teacher!  She has obviously perfected her skills over  many years and it shows.  She passed along her knowledge of sewing machines, thread, needles, fabric, fabric dyeing and everything in between.   When Kathy thread paints, she makes it look so easy and simple and creates amazing pieces of art.  Learning to control the hand movements and the fabric takes alot of practice.  You can see from Kathy's web page what is achievable; just click on her name above.  

On a different note, I received a fair number of books recently.  One set of purchases was made through Texere Yarns in the U.K..  I will admit that the only thing with Texere is that there are shipping fees and they aren't cheap if mailing from the U.K. to Canada but I found at the time of ordering, they were the only place that I could order some very hard to get books by Jan Beaney and Jean Littlejohn.  I could not find them anywhere in North America.

And I guess the second note is, the books do not appear to be originals but reprints. This is the link to Jan and Jean's website, Double Trouble, which I found recently and you can check out their descriptions of each book and the cost of the books.  In their book descriptions, they note that the books have 28 pages so perhaps they are originals?  I might order one to see what I get.

I was very much pleased with the reprint though.  I bought a book from Amazon about a year ago that was a reprint and it was a bit too saturated and the photographs were not very clear or well copied.  These books from Texere were excellent!   

Jan Beaney and/or Jean Littlejohn, printed a series of books a number of years ago on fibre art. I purchased 7 of their books.  Book #1, "Vanishing Act", by Jan Beaney, is about Machine Embroidery on soluble Fabrics and various ways it can be used in your fabric art.

Book #3, "Bonding and Beyond", by Jan and Jean discusses what can be achieved using various bonding techniques.

#4, "Transfer to Transform", by Jan and Jean using transfer paints and other methods of 'painting' fabrics.

#7, "Trees as a Theme", by Jan and Jean, which is basically all about trees.  How to make the bark, the trunk, the leaves, the lichens, etc. using fabrics, threads and similar items.  And I sure love trees!

#16, "Over the Line", is 'couching rediscovered', by Jan and Jean.  The cover of this book is wonderful with its photograph of texture, but the cover is so quiet compared to the inside which is full of colour and drama and movement.

#20, "Embellish & Enrich" by Jan and Jean.  The photographs in this book took my breath away in their beauty and how clearly they captured the textures and colours of nature.  My favorite photograph of all the books is in this book, of bright yellow gold lichens created out of threads and machine embroidered tiny little circles. 

And finally, #23, "Fragile Fabrics" by Jan and Jean, covers the use of fabrics that are "dainty, delicate, fine or flimsy but can also suggest weakness and frailty". 

The books aren't very big, usually about 24 pages but contain alot of information.  They are NOT  a step by step procedural book, but show how through the manipulation of fabric, threads, and a multitude of various aids and methods, the most magnificent art can be created.  There is just enough information to get you motivated, inspired and want to try them out on your own.  They may not be everyone's cup of tea, but I will count these books as my most treasured and will certainly be ordering more in this series of books.

Well, to end I will add two photos I took last September of a spiders web after a rain. 

 Happy creating!

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