Contemporary Textiles & Mixed Media

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All images of textile work on this website are my own designs from my personal collection, unless otherwise attributed.

Please respect the copyright of creative artists and do not copy or use without attribution.

Contemporary Stitch:

My contemporary style of stitching draws influence from a variety of sources, sometimes a landscape, or artefacts, or a piece of poetry, it may be the colour or texture of a fabric or a favourite stitch or simply trying out a new technique. My works often include mixed media with hand stitch or machine stitching. Below are are recent works prepared for exhibitions, competitions or for the sheer joy of stitching. (click on the first image to scroll through larger versions with more detail):


Layers of metallics with stitch - inspired by mediaeval window patterns

Created for Take a Stitch 2 Durham - Durham Castle Exhibition, Summer 2023. The base of these pieces are padded cotton, machine stitched with diamond patterns, then painted with transuclent acrylics to mimic aged leather. The upper motifs are layered with felt, distressed metal shims and mesh, then embellished with metalic threads and beads. All four pieces were sold at exhibition.


Handmade Buttons, Wheels, Bound or Beaded Rings

Take a Stitch 2 Durham - Winter Competition 2021. The first competition for the stitch group, TAS2, required members to submit new pieces of work that included at least one handmade Button, or Embroidered Wheel, or Bound or Beaded Ring. Members of the group could submit two pieces of work, one in each category 'Decorative Item, and Useful Item'. I chose to make a wall hanging for the decorative item and a birthday card for the useful item.

My wall hanging uses rust-dyed cotton and organdie with a spaced dyed turquoise backing. While rusting, the organdie had a particular pattern laid out using washers to form a meandering path. This pattern was to form the focus of the piece being entitled 'Meandering Thoughts'. During 2020 & 2021, I had Long Covid for almost two years which affected how much creative stitching I could do. My thoughts would be all over the place and sometimes I would be in a very dark place, and occasionally I would have clarity... This piece is my response, each rusted circle represents part of a chain of thought bubbles that are interrupted by the bound rings try to connect my thoughts in a coherent manner. The viewer can make up their own mind as to how muddled my brain was...

My second entry to the TAS-2 competition was a birthday card inspired by the stone for a December birthday, this being turquoise. The base is a piece of vintage natural linen, the darker beads cover a rubber O ring, then bullions knots, surrounded by paler turquoise beads, with orange seed beads and small bugle beads for the central section. Finally more bullions finished the edge.


Harnessing the Elements:

InterFaceArts Exhibition, Summer 2021: Part One. Four mixed media and textile hoops using a variety of hand embroidery and machine enbroidery techniques to represent, Earth, Water, Wind and Fire. Natural elements that drove science and innovation in the industrial prosperity of north-east England in the 18th and 19th Centuries. All four pieces sold at exhibition.

Part Two: Remnants of decline: Elements of Itinerant flora, nature reclaiming derelict industrial sites.

This triptych was inspired by the words of Dr Phil Gates (Durham Country Diarist), from one his 21st century walks through a post-industrial wasteland in Weardale:

"Peering through the fence we count more than 20 wildflower species, including the usual suspects from wasteland sites like this: teasels, mugwort, ragwort, poppies and mullein with its tall flower spikes and woolly leaf rosettes. Like the thistles, whose plumed seeds are already being torn apart by goldfinches and are drifting away on the wind, they are elements of an itinerant flora, forever in search of waste ground where they can put down roots.

Reproduced with kind permission of Dr Phil Gates, @Durham_Country_Diarist.

These three pieces represent nature reclaiming the wastelands of post-industrial Weardale. Three colourful species: Buddliea, Ragwort and Rosebay Willowherb survive on thin soils, on broken rubble and buildings, providing habitats for butterflies, birds and insects. Bringing hope for the restoration of the natural landscape.

Turquoise & Rust: 2019

A set of nine small works using rust dyed fabric with repurposed turquoise cotton, embellished with hand stitch

On Boro'd Time: Two small works from the InterFaceArts exhibition 2019 - East Meets West

Repurposed parts of denim clothing to create textile art. Pockets from worn out jeans embellished with Japanese style Boro stitching.

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Small Art:

A series of small textile art works no bigger than 15 x 10 cm. In these experimental pieces I explore themes from the natural environment of interest to me:

inspired by ripple patterns on the beach
inspired by rockpools on the beach
angry at the huge amounts of plastic pollution washed up onto UK beaches
inspired by woodland scenes

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Occasionally I put down my needle and thread to take up scrap papers and glue to create small art works of mixed media collage. For the 2022 iHanna postcard swap I developed a series of postcards based on the theme Travellers in Time. The background layers of paper are torn from freebee travel and gardening brochures, a print from an old OS map, some other geliplate printing and a book of printables that has been in my stash for far too long...

I like stories that link my series of work together. This time I have chosen images of Victorian ladies and gentlemen in outdoor clothing. Mary & Mathild, their dress suggests a period from around 1890, and our gentlemen Geofrey and Gregory, seem to date from about 1830. Our couples make their appearance on a series of travel related collage art cards. You can follow the sequence of cards below:

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Mono-printing & stitch:

Messing around in the summer studio (aka the garage) with inks, paints and other media with a Gelli Plate, stencils, blocks, found objects... Hubby won't let me have paint and watery spilling things in the house. I am fondly known as Mrs Messy with a preponderance to drop and spill things, which is not good on pale coloured carpets! Summer studio, because it is too cold to work there in winter.

Exploring creativity with paint and printing, taking ideas from paper to fabric and stitch. Top row: Gelli Plate printing, Bottom row: Inspired by a Bobbi Britnell workshop at Distant Stitch Summer School (2019).

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Postcard Swap:

During lockdown restrictions of the Covid pandemic, many creative artists began to swap postcard sized pieces of work as a way of keeping in touch, focus creativity and foster well-being. Some were sent to textiles groups, others to someone who was isolating or living on their own. I took part in a global art postcard swap in 2021, creating, sending and receiving art cards to & from other creative folk in USA, Australia and Europe. A lovely way to make new friends.

Group 1: Sets of postcards for community swaps; Group 2: Individual postcards for international swapping, personal challenges and prototypes for longer series of cards.

Group 2 (2021)
Group 1 (2021)

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More images of my contemporary textiles and Art work will be added in due course.

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