Saturday, 28 December 2013

ExTex 2 - weekend 7 November 16th & 17th

Don't you love copper?

 Well here we are, Christmas is gone and the New Year is looming - have you finished doing the washing up yet? I finished all the glasses this morning so now my kitchen is clear - Hurrah!

I am slowly catching up with what I got up to in November. 
The 7th weekend of my Experimental Textiles course is a students choice. The group can negotiate which techniques they want to play with or they can use it as chance to catch up with their folders.

Jamie Malden from Colouricious kindly made this video for me at the Harrogate show to give you all some idea of what we cover on the course.

 (you can skip the advert at the beginning)

Experimental Textiles teaches you all the basic techniques and skills that you need when working in textiles. None of my 'Hot Textiles' techniques are included in the course - They are fun but can be learned from books and videos. The students choice weekend is where the group can decide if they want to have a go with any 'hot'. We decided that the girls would play with Tyvek on the Saturday and work on using metal on the Sunday.

The girls painting up their Tyvek before melting it.

There has been a lot Tyvek on the blog recently so I am going to show what the girls did with their metal.

We played with several types of metal shim and wires along with alcohol inks and transfer dyes to colour the metal.


Using pliers and wire snippers along with several hole punches and a ribbler (makes card and metal corrugated) the group have fun colouring and texturing the metal.


The girls had a great day playing, discovering new techniques than can be so easily incorporated into textile projects.

Barbara getting stuck in with heavy gauge aluminium wire and wire knitted into a tube. You can see a box full of metallic sweetie foils. Such dedication to the course must surely be commended!!!

 Barbara got her vessel to stand up in the end . . . . . 

It is important for students to work with materials apart from fabrics. Working with papers and the more resistant metals will give them ideas they wouldn't form if they only worked in one media - always remember that everything you do informs everything else that you do!

Our next weekend is mid January and it will be working on their finished projects/samples to exhibit at the Fashion, Embroidery & Stitch Show at the NEC Birmingham a the end of March - so no pressure!!!

 There have been a lot of enquiries about the course which is taught in the IDC studios at The Old Needle Works in Redditch. I have chosen to teach the course at this centre as it has great space to work in and is next to rail and bus station. It is virtually in the middle of the country so most students have easy access. Previous students that live in Devon or Yorkshire stay overnight at the local Holiday Inn Express which is very reasonable.

If you would like to know about the course go to
 and the IDC website


It was my birthday a few days before my weekend with my girls and I hadn't had much chance to celebrate so I took my birthday cards up with me and lo and behold - Mary had made me a cake - not just any cake, lemon drizzle with lemon curd and butter cream filling. God my girls are GOOD!!!!


   A feast for the eyes and the palate and on silver plates too . . . . 


I will post again in the New Year - the wonderful work that was created by my group at Denman College earlier this month needs bigging up - they did some fabulous work.

Enjoy the rest of the break - don't eat toooo much!!!


Hello Jill

Hello Diana - 33 sleeps till I am back in the West Country - Yeehaa!!!


  1. Hope you're feeling better and didn't get blown away! Happy new year too xxxx

  2. Lovely work from your students, really enjoyed reading thru Experimental Textiles while doing a printmaking course - they had your book in the college all the way up here on the Isle of Skye! Enjoyed the clip too, the journey & what you can take from it is my favorite part.

    Happy New Year to you!