Tuesday, 19 May 2015


  My desk has been full of equipment just so that I can see to embroider these clover leaves! I had some lovely embroidery silks which are no longer in production so I wanted them used on something special. I worked on a type of silk fabric called 'paper silk' which is very fine but robust because I wanted to make an embroidered page to slip into one of the books on this piece. After the embroidery I wanted dew on the leaves but it can be a bit tricky with something like this as the scale and shape of the beads can ruin it if they are wrong...I hope I got it right! I used tiny miyuki seed beads and a few of the smallest magatama beads that I could get.

 Here they are off the hoop and ironed (carefully),then trimmed down, a little edge stitching and then pinned into place with black entomology pins. As I put them in place I found that the page I had chosen gave a lovely description by Herman Melville of an elaborate tattoo of leaves.

Monday, 4 May 2015

Art Workers Guild

 This is a picture of the hall at the Art Workers Guild of which I am a member, or brother as we are known to each other !!! Under the busts at the top of the picture runs a name board with everyone's name from the start over one hundred years ago, my name is up there too! (William Morris is the man in the middle). This Friday we are opening our doors to the public as part of London Craft Week and I will be demonstrating...probably part of a big piece that I'm working on at the moment...

Thursday, 23 April 2015


I was working on a few things over winter but it's always the things you aren't supposed to be doing that end up the most fun....like making fortune teller dolls. I made Lilith a while ago and planned three sisters for her ; Mab is the one that appeared this year. She receives her messages via a bonnet-like wig of pins (I've always admired people that wear tin foil hats to keep the aliens out).

Her clothes are styled on the court dress of the 18thC. with a pin theme throughout. The overdress is of fine taffeta brocade scraps all pinned together with old brass lace pins and embroidered with a crossed-pin motif. The panniered skirt has a line from Yeats' 'stolen child' (Mab is queen of the faeries) pricked out across the front inspired by the old waxed paper prickings for bobbin lace.( I'm thinking of putting a light inside) .The hem is tabbed like those adds you find on notice boards but the 'takeaway' is more profound !!!

In her purse( she wants money for her work) is an odd assortment of objects, I found a wasps nest, pearl necklace and some beeswax when I looked. There is a note book on the front which continues the Yeats poem.

A sneeky look whilst dressing revealed her underpinnings, she's made from an old kid leather evening glove and her fortune ruff fans out from the button opening of the glove.

A little detail of her bodice, held together with pins....all period correct .

She will be available for telling your fortune soon.

Friday, 13 March 2015

Seven years ????

          Can it be true ? Is it my seventh birthday already ? and you all still come 'round, you're great !!!
Thankyou to all of you for listening and commenting and shopping, I am truly grateful.xxxxxxxxxx

Wednesday, 4 March 2015

is winter over yet ?

     I saw some snowdrops, I think it's safe to come out.... in my pockets I've got a new doll, moths, a sheila-na-gig and an embroidered page . I've been busy.
     Firstly, I will be teaching at West Dean college 13th-15th March, basic embroidery and needlelace, just click on the link to see the details. Then I'll show what I have in my pocket......

Details are from the 'In my garden I am Queene' embroidered corset and 'Goblin Market' corset, see 'labels' for more posts.

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Thread Management Deja Vu

 A bit of a problem with the last post about this film so here it is again, all shipshape! It is a lovely little film about the work I have been doing with Professor Roger Kneebone and his team and documents what happens when surgeons talk to lacemakers, embroiderers, knitters, puppeteers, fly fishermen and computer modellers. The film is by Smart Docs .

( if you can't see it here, see it here !)

Monday, 3 November 2014


   This needlelace piece will be up for auction at the Art Workers' Guild soon. It is a wired edge feather, coiled around to form a choker style neck piece. I have worked it in various shades of silk and rayon, the edge being beaded. The fastening at the back is a simple drop chain with a green glass bead as the weight.
    All the auction details can be found on the flyer below or here at the Guild website. Our most illustrious member was of course William Morris but also Arthur Rackham, J.W. Waterhouse and Edward Burne Jones amongst many other remarkable artists and crafts people. We believe in art for all and that art is good for you !!!! Today we have master practitioners from every field of the arts and crafts movement plus surgery and engineering.
   Here is our new Tumblr site.


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