Monday, 3 August 2015

Making printing blocks with ExTex 4 plus the closing of

A fabulous design, beautifully printed.

On the 25th and 26th of July we had the second weekend of the new ExTex (Experimental Textiles) 4 group. The previous weekend we had created the original designs and taken sections. These were the sections the group then used to make their own printing blocks.

The designs are traced onto tracing paper and then transferred onto foam core board and self adhesive foam.

 For one design - you need one piece of self adhesive foam and 2 pieces of foam core board all cut to the same size.

 2 blocks from one design - showing the 'positive' design on the left and the 'negative' on the right.

 The design is then transferred onto all three. The design is then cut from the self adhesive foam. The 'positive' design is lifted out and stuck to one of the pieces of foam core board. The design that is left is the 'negative' and this is stuck to the second piece of foam core board. As long as these blocks are cleaned with baby wipes and not run under the tap. They can last for several years.

 The above blocks printed onto denim.

 Experimenting with printing onto different papers and fabrics.
Getting used to the blocks.

Each student made at least 2 sets of blocks.

Getting down and dirty, working through the printing process.
playing colour and surfaces.

The next session with ExTex 4 will be the 22nd and 23rd of August when we will be looking at colour theory and colour washing the groups printed papers.


 The very beautiful Farncombe Estate late evening, near Broadway in the Cotswolds.

I have just had a few days away to attend the Textile Study Group summer School at Farncombe Estate. It is wonderful to be a student at least once a year, a chance to play and develop. It is even better to catch up with good friends that I have made when I have attended this summer school over the last 15 years or so. 
It takes me a while to 'get into' the correct mind frame, sometimes it doesn't happen till the last day - but I usually manage to develop something new to me. 
I am starting to think about the exhibition of work that I will be sharing with Susan Chapman next March at Fashion, Embroidery and Stitch at the NEC. It has been a long time since I have exhibited - it is scary and exciting at the same time. I shall be going back to my 3D roots.

Playing with tea dyed scrim and melted beeswax.

I THINK I know which direction I am going . .  watch this space . . .

Having had some time away and out of my usual frantic routine gave me some time to think . . . With my traveling more often and further afield to teach, it is becoming more difficult for me to keep up with getting the orders our for on time. 
I have come to the conclusion that even I can't do everything by myself and be in 2 places at one time. So I have decided to stop the online shopping website from the end of this month (August 2015). I would like to thank all of you who have been customers over the years. I will still carry all the products for my workshops and will still sell odd products on my stand at Fashion, Embroidery and Stitch in March. 
Making the decision has been a great relief. 
Everything in life has a time span.


This week brings us to The Festival of Quilts - a VERY exciting show. I will be running the Freudenberg Vilene Retail stand no M8. We are opposite the Fine Art Quilt Masters as Vilene sponsor the main prize.

The Freudenberg Vilene Retail stand will be M8
(this is a pic of last years stand)

Laura and I will be on hand to answer any questions you have about any of the Vilene products. We don't sell anything on the Vilene stand - we are for information only.

Laura Strutt is a great designer crafter and the author of just the SIX books!!!
she is 2 ahead of me already . . . 

Art Van Go will also be at the show - on Stand P5 - they will have all the paints and gilding flake that I use as well as my favourite Vilene products.

Art Van Go will be on stand P5 with all you could you desire.

Do come and see us and have a chat.

Hopefully see you very soon.

x x x


  1. So sorry about Nid Noi - it has been good to know where to go for some of my favourite products and your service has always been excellent. Thank you so much. I shall miss you but can quite see why and hope you enjoy the new directions that you are taking. Good luck. xx

    1. Thank you Lin, I have been worrying about which way to go for a year now. I can either go for it with mail order and stay close to home and maybe employ help, or have a simpler life and concentrate on my teaching. As you may have noticed - I love New Zealand and would like to travel there for longer periods.
      I will still be testing products and letting you all in on what I am up to.
      I should have more time to write another book next year.
      Thank you again for your support. x x x x