Artist & Facilitator

I am a freelance artist based in Barrow-in-Furness, Cumbria in the North West of England. I have worked within the performing and fine arts for 20 years. Initally I worked within the theatre as a performer and on production. Then moving on to a street circus group that performed around the UK. I did my degree BA(hons) Fine Art at Uclan. For fifteen years I have collaborated with local arts organisations, worked on youth community projects and in schools running a variety of creative projects. I am currently a member of North Lonsdale Embroiderers Guild, Blue Tarn, a rural womens artists collective and Trident Textiles, based in Furness. I am always working on a variety of small scale projects including photography, textile and mixed media. Although my favourite thing is meeting and talking to interesting people!

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Ski-ing and New Projects

Just back from our annual ski holiday.  This year it was just us three in La Plagne, in the French Alps.  The hotel was the Terra Nova in Plagne Centre. It was different not being a group of friends but still a great holiday.  Alex our son loved it!  It was really hot too, so apres ski in deck chairs was particulary relaxing!  Took lots of photos for possible future projects.  The Bellecote Glacier scenery was just amazing!

Now it is on to new projects for me.  I have finished off all little jobs I have had pending like my friends posh cushions to match her curtains.  So I started doing a bit of a clear out the other day and found the Koolade sachets that I had bought at last year's EG regional conference.  They are an American flavouring you add to water to make pop but they can be used to dye fabric like wool.  They were really cheap and I thought worth a try but had forgotten about them.  Anyway having just bought an old fashioned wool blanket to do some dry felting with, I thought to do an experiment.

It was easy enough to mix it up and put in a bottle.  Once the wool had been soaked for a while in a bucket of water I just squirted the solution on.  Then the fabric was put in a bowl and microwaved for 3 mins.  Once cooled it was thoroughly rinsed and left to dry.  No fuss and no other ingredients. 

The dye is quite bright and you would need several sachets if you wanted to make a solid deep colour.  I was going for a more painterly look.  However, the coloured wool can become a really good basis for some project in the future.   If I was to use it again I would get more sachets and perhaps experiment using resists aswell.