Barbara Ayers: Quilting in quarantine
"This is a quilt I’ve just finished that I started before lockdown. It was made with the leftover squares of a nine patch (below left) which I made using a jelly roll.*
"I still had some squares left so I made a little cloth for the bedside table as well. All my quilts are hand pieced and quilted.
"I miss my weekly patchwork and quilting group where as much chatting as sewing goes on!
"I made the Schoolhouse quilt (below right) for my daughter and was due to give it to her when she visited on Mothering Sunday weekend, which of course she wasn’t able to do. The design has turned out to be quite appropriate. I wonder when I’ll be able to give it to her."
*A jelly roll is a roll of 40 co-ordinating fabrics cut in 2 and a half inch strips across the width of the fabric.
C&TA vice president Jean Smith
"I send photos of an embroidery, one of two , that I have been able to work on . They have been sitting in my 'to do' drawer for years!
"They are six inches in diameter, worked on very fine net and stuck, yes actually glued, to old tissue paper. This has degraded as you see (above).
"I have teased this off and am now in the process of remounting the pieces on to fine cream silk (left). When I am 'free' I shall have them both framed, which I think will be the best way of protecting them.
"I would greatly appreciate any information as I don’t know their date or where they came from."
The pieces have been identified as part of a Chinese costume.
"I have been trying out a new skill, needs a bit more practice. It was going to be a tote bag but not really big enough so now a cover for my tablet."
See Christina's finished tote bag below, with its image of the Taj Mahal in one section.
C&TA secretary Pauline White's daughter has moved to France and bought a gite to rent out at some point.
Pauline explained: "She asked me to make quilts for the beds, so I thought I'd start with a single bed one.
"Here is the result. She asked for blues and greys with a hint of animal print."
It is hand-sewn, with 889 pieces, and Pauline started in January.
Over the past few weeks, and more so now that I’m at home, I have been working on making a version of Luna Lapin (although I call mine Harriet Hare!) and creating outfits for it using scraps of left over fabric and recycling pieces from unwanted clothing.
In the first picture I am designing an party dress using left over satin lining fabric and a petticoat made from an old petticoat of mine. This piece is still obviously a work in progress but Harriet is wearing her pearl necklace ready for her night out.
The second outfit was made from an old skirt and a cotton fat quarter for the shirt. I am treating the items almost as “apprentice pieces” of old; for instance the shirt allowed me to practice making a collar and back yoke on a small scale. Therefore if I mess something up, it isn’t the “disaster” it would be if I was making a full sized piece.
I am a textile artist & have been attending a course at a newly opened venue in Marsham, called Tulip, next to Aylsham.
The course is a varied textile course of 6 projects. Before the virus, we had done two. The first used fabric paint to making a picture on to a piece of cream cotton. I did the rainbow colours of The Chakras.
The second (below) was to find a journal & cover it with fabric. I decided to do some machine stitching as decoration, with a photo of myself enclosed, on the back & a stream on the front. I still need to learn how to finish it!
If we can't meet we can at least share what we have been making.
Life member Krissie was one of the first to tell us about her project. She made this tote bag from a couple of vintage dresses, the pink one from arks and Spemncer. The belt on the other one was used to make the strap handle.
What have you been up to during the Coronavirus lockdown?
If you are sewing anything we would love to see it or hear about it. If you are researching for a talk, book or essay, or writing a poem or short story that you’d like to share with others or if you’re learning a language or an instrument we’d love to know about that too.
You can post your images on our Facebook site, or if you have your own Instagram account, just 'follow us' and post your work.
Alternatively send your pictures of your work, in progress or completed, with an explanation of what and why, to email@example.com. By sending your work, you are agreeing for us to publish it online and in social media. Any queries? Give her a call on 01603 716115.
One of the big disappointments of the virus was the cancellation (hopefully only a postponement) of Jenny Daniels and Isobel Auker's Costume Detectives day on 'Unmentionables'.
Jenny sent in photos of her work in progress for that event. She's been making - for the first time in her sewing and dressmaking career - bras! She explained:
"The cream one (above) is a replica of a 1920s bra, ready for Costume Detectives whenever we can offer it. It was a joy to make, apart from making sure the elastic was inserted in exactly the right place in the shoe-string bias straps."
"The unfinished pink one is (below) a replica of 1937 bra, also to be ready for Costume Detectives. The satin is rather stiff and unyielding so my version is a bit more pointy than the original!"
The embroidery is of my favourite Norfolk footpath showing Weyborne Mill in the distance - it's nice to have time to do things like this.