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Ain't the Archies - Margaret

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  The Archibald Prize, a prestigious Australian portraiture art award is celebrating its 100th year. Every year, artists portray celebrities, local "heroes" , famous and infamous personalities in what has become a living social history. The Archibald Prize   is administered by the trustees of the Art Gallery of New South Wales and awarded  for "the best portrait, preferentially of some man or woman distinguished in Art, Letters, Science or Politics, painted by an artist resident in Australia during the twelve months preceding the date fixed by the trustees.  In Newcastle, at Timeless Textiles Gallery,  a current exhibition "Ain't the Archies" is a portraiture show with a difference. All the portraits are textile art works, all the artists are textile artists, and all the subjects are textile artists. Twenty chosen  artists from Australia, Germany, New Zealand, United Kingdom, Italy and United States are represented in this show. I am feeling very honoured t

Mantle of Mystery - Art Doll

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  "She wears the night like a mantle  of  mystery ... In sweet solitude of mind, she listens to wind secrets  and echoes of distant star songs " John Michael Green  Materials : hand dyed fabric, silk chiffon, muslin, tulle,  stretch fabric, coloured pencils, air dry clay sticks /twigs, novelty yarn and wool, embroidery thread and fibre filling,  Techniques :  pattern design, cloth doll making, dyeing, wrapping and embroidery 

Marigolds and Magpies

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 Quite surprisingly, I rate marigolds as one of my favourite flowers. Although the marigold has some rather negative connotations, developed in Victorian England, I like to concentrate on the happier, more positive meanings it has...  What do marigolds symbolize? Commonly referred to as the 'herb of the sun', we associate the flowers' fiery yellow, orange, and red hues with the warmth, happiness, joy, optimism, and good luck. Yet, marigolds also symbolizes darker emotions such as jealousy, grief, despair, and mourning  (https://www.petalrepublic.com/marigold-flower-meaning/  In my recent exhibition "Enveloping ,   marigolds were featured a lot in my textile artworks, including a few of the "garden Threads" art dolls. I drew my inspiration from my own garden where marigolds have even found their way into my vegetable garden. The marigolds in the  textile artworks above are appliqued and stitched.  I coupled these bright orange flowers with the highly contrasti

Happy Easter with Egg Cups

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 I hope everyone who observes Easter has a happy celebration - a time of renewal. No doubt, you all indulged in some eggs, perhaps chocolate, sugar candy or plain boiled.... in an egg cup.  Five interesting things to know  about egg cups.  1. Collecting egg cups is called  pocillovy 2. The  earliest egg cup found was a silver one, discovered  in the ruins of Pompeii   after Mt Vesuvius erupted in 79AD - the egg cup may have had BC origins.  3. The first images of egg cups were spotted in a Turkish mosaic dating from 3AD 4. During the French revolution, King Louis XV was said to have popularised egg cups as French citizens tried to imitate    their king’s ability to “decapitate an egg at a single stroke.”  King Louis often entertained his couriers with his ability to do this  with his  breakfast eggs.  5.The  famous 'Bunnykins" egg cups are called single "bucket" cups. Other categories of egg cups are single (pedestal) and double . 

What's in the background ? #the100dayproject

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Have you wondered how these garden vignettes (#100gardenthreads) begin?  What's in the background to these creations?  It literally takes hours some days to audition fabrics for the piece. The technique I use involves small scraps of fabric, cut or torn and then stitched over.  Each day, I look through my stash and try to find the right colour, perhaps a little texture, even a pattern for a particular leaf or flower. Sometimes, I cannot find the right colour so I often hand colour with inks, dyes, and/or  paint and quite often, with coloured pencils (Prismacolour).  That isn't really the beginning - I spend a lot of time in the garden looking carefully, cutting samples of leaves, branches, flower stems, and of course photographing the specimens. Indoors , I work from cuttings and photos and drawings because by the time I am ready to interpret a flower, it may not be  still blooming in my garden.  And of course, the birds and other creatures  don't stay around while I stitch

#the100dayproject Days 37 -41

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  #100garden threads  Days 37-41 This scroll features a miniature rose, a native hibiscus, jade plant and osteospermum.  Materials: cotton fabric,  various fabric scraps, coloured pencils,  sewing thread Techniques: free motion machine stitching, hand stitching, raw edge applique, hand colouring/dyeing. 

#the100dayproject - days 33 - 35

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  #100gardenthreads  Days 33,34 & 35 ... inspired by my herb garden  Materials _ assorted cotton fabric scraps; coloured pencils, machine thread  Techniques: stitching by machine and hand;  hand colouring/drawing; applique