Thursday, 8 May 2008


I must thank all of you for your very kind support over my doubts about the Irish wallhanging. I suppose I should have more faith in myself. You were all quite right, my friend did love the wallhanging and the fact that I had included memories of our time in Ireland. I didn't know it, but my American friend used to quilt herself! I suppose I might have expected that as it is such a great tradition in America. As she now lives in Texas, where she has no need of quilts, Pam no longer quilts but she still has all her books! I think my small effort has encouraged her to start thinking about art quilts.
Since we are having such glorious hot, sunny weather at the moment I thought I would have a go at sunprinting and rust dyeing. I don't have any specific paints for sunprinting so I have used my silk paints and I am really pleased with the results.

I did the green piece yesterday and used various leaves from the garden. I was really surprised that the fine grasses worked and can see that these would be really effective spread more widely on the cotton. (The pebbles were there to hold the leaves down but I probably didn't need them).
The blue/purple piece was done today and I used an assortment of items to make the marks. What I cannot understand is why the colour disappears where the fabric is masked. Surely you would expect the colour to be kept where it is covered and bleach where the sun strikes? No? Maybe someone can explain the science?
I love the little flower patterns and the dandelions have left a softened image. You can also see the stain left by the pollen. I don't know whether that will stay or not.
Now I have to think about what I will use the fabric for......or maybe it will just get ironed and go in my stash. I'm sure I'll do some more of this sunprinting but not for a day or two as I've got a busy weekend coming up. Not least of all an Art Festival involving my Art Club and a textile workshop on Saturday.
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We had a very enjoyable time with our friends on Tuesday. We had a lovely stroll round the Duchess's Spring Garden at Belvoir Castle which is a few miles from us. The gardens are in a continuous state of renovation but they are delightful to walk round on a sunny day.

All the while we were in the garden we could hear the chap above screeching across the valley. We later discovered him showing off in the formal garden below the castle.

These couple of swells were enjoying the sunshine.

Pam really enjoyed herself taking photographs of the beautiful flowers in the gardens.

The garden is in a damp hollow and there are lots of ferns growing.

We were a week or two too early for the rhododendrons but this beautiful specimen was gorgeous.

I was hoping to see bluebells and there were some but there were also these blue flowers which I am not familiar with. Are they related to the hyacinth?
I've been told about a local wood that is heaving with bluebells so I'm hoping we might sqeeze a visit in to our busy weekend. Piccies to come, I hope!

And finally! A wagon for Dilly! I think it looks upside down!


B.T.Bear (esq.) said...

Hehehe upside down it may be a dragon, but this way up I rekkon it looks like a larfin dolfin! Hehe!


Dilly said...

Dilly like!
THANK, Julie!!!


rupr said...

This sunprinting is someting new for me and it looks very interesting. thanks for sharing.

Gina said...

Like the sunprinting - never tried that before but very effective results. Sounds like you had a fun day with your friends.

fiona d said...

the sunprints are amazing - and I think that image is a work of art in itself. I wonder if all silk paints work - you've inspired me to have a go at this

Genie said...

Love the sunprinting, Hopefuly we will get some more sunny days, and i will get round to doing some. Have a good weekend

Liz said...

Absolutely gorgeous sunprints! I did some of these a couple of years ago. Apparently it's not the sun bleaching them but I think where the objects touch, the paint is drawn away from it or something like that. You can do it in a non-sunny place apparently too.

One of life's little mysteries!

Gina said...

Hi, Julie. I love the results of your sun prints! Very distinct masking of the white. Looks similar to some versions of gelatin prints I did a few months ago. When I left the object on the gelatin to make my print, its outline was silhouetted.

Went back to your first blog entry and love your canvas painting with all the colors, textures, and leaves. I love leaves, too!

I'm just beginning my journey into the Blog-o-Sphere and hope you'll visit; I know I'll be back to yours frequently!

Mai-Britt said...

Love the pictures and I shall have a go at the sun printing very soon, those fabrics looks yummy. I saw the same technique at another blog (I can't remember......) and I have a kit from years ago that involve chemicals - never got around to use it! Will post on my blog soon.

sharon young said...

What great results you got, Julie, the little white flowers are delightful, and the dandelions look wonderful with the pollen staining.

Frances said...

I love your sun prints, Liz is right about how it works, the sun dries the exposed fabric and the dry fabric draws (soaks up) the wet area that is not exposed, does this make sense as I am not good at explaining (much better at demonstrating),

Lesley said...

Your sunprints are gorgeous Julie - I love the ones left by the dandelion flowers!

Great photos too :)

Dot said...

Oh - your sun printing is gorgeous! I am suffering from fabric envy.. Lovely photo's too!