“Unique Textile Art” Classes at Rosehill Craft and Sewing Show.

26 01 2012

Following on from my previous post, I have now locked down the timing for my classes in a studio as part of my stand in Rosehill.  The Rosehill Craft and Sewing Show runs from 10.00 to 4.30 each day from 8th to 11th of March 2012.  It is at the Rosehill Race Course.  It is NOT the Stitches and Craft Show, which no longer exists.  The website for the show is here: http://www.craftandsew.com.au/.  All the workshops and events will be published there in the next few weeks.

So, three classes: one using Procion Dyes and two exploring some of the newer mediums such as TAP, Lutradur, Angelina, Foils, Bonding Powder, Inktense Pencils and other surface colouring products.  All three classes cross over a range of experience, from absolute beginners to people who have started playing with these media but are not sure where to go next.  There will be plenty of ideas and information shared but most importantly you will get hands on and try things for yourself and I guarantee you will have fun.  Each class will run for about an hour, with a bit of slippage.  Numbers will be strictly limited.

You can book at the stand on the day or prebook on www.uniquestitching.com.au.  I will hold places in each class every day for bookings on the stand but if you know you and/or your friends definitely want to do the class it would pay to prebook.

The first class starts at 11.00 each day and will be focused on the Angelina and Lutradur.  You can make Artist Trading Cards (ATCs), fabric postcards, or bookmarks.  Here are a couple of examples

The second class will be a dying class using Procion Dyes on cotton Fat eighths. It will run from13.15 each day.  You can choose three colours to blend to make 6 different colours.  Traditional colourways will be blue, red, yellow like this:

or a less traditional combination such as red, orange, purple like this:

other alternatives will be three blues or three greens, or three purple/pinks.

The third class is brand new, so much so that I only finished the sample in time to send the photo for inclusion.  It will run from 14.30 each afternoon.  This one explores Transfer Artist Paper (TAP), foils and a couple of colour products, predominantly the inktense blocks.  You will create a piece of embellished fabric that you can use as a small wall hanging, a cushion centre, a feature fabric or pretty much anything.  Here is my sample.  You can add more colours or more depth of colour with a couple of different products.

this sample is a bit crocked.  You will be given rulers so you don’t rush it like I did.  I am calling this Adelaide River because some of the images came from there and it is a place that has impacted on me.  I have tried to capture the poignancy of the location in the piece, but we will talk about using colour to add emotion to a project.

In the middle of all of this, somewhere between 12.00 and 13.00 I will do a traditional workshop in the workshop rooms on using different fabrics in your patchwork and quilting projects.

I hope that there is something here to tempt all of you living in the Sydney/NSW area and that you will join me.  Of course we will also have our full range of colour, fibre, fabric products; magazines and books; and so much more.

I will run similar classes (though not necessarily the same) in Perth, Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane also this year.  See you there.

Exploring Lutradur and Evolon – what are they?

7 11 2011

I love melting and heating stuff. Heat distressing fabrics create fabulous, textural surfaces that you can then include in your projects.  All man made fabrics can be distressed and texturised with heat.  A heat gun and soldering iron are the best tools to use to do this.

Before I go any further, I need to remind you of some basic safety when heating meltables.  First always do this in a well ventilated space.  Man made fabrics create fumes when they are heated so be careful and stop if the smell is causing distress.  Secondly when you are heating man made fabrics, they may scald, smolder and eventually burn.  Ideally don’t get to this point, but if the charred look is part of what you are after (and it often is) then be prepared with some water nearby.  I bowl or bucket is fine.  When heating or distressing the fabrics, I place them on an old baking tray and use a bamboo skewer to hold them in place so I don’t burn my fingers.

Scared you off??  I hope not.

Lutradur and Evolon….  These are some of my favourite fabrics and I am currently incorporating them into lots of different projects. So what are they and how do you use them?

Lutradur is spunbound polyester fibres.  The fabric is not woven or knitted – it is spun like fairy floss.  It comes in a number of different weights, colours and even textures.  I have taken a photo of each of the different weights in white on a cutting mat so that you can see the difference.  Here they are:




the light weight lutradur also comes in “Crash”.  Personally I think this is some sort of translation error and it should be called “Crush” as it is the light weight lutradur with a scrunched up textured surface.  I really like using this because it keeps the texture, even after it has been ironed a few times.  These next two images are Crash.

one layer of crash

four layers of crash

Evolon is similar in some ways, but very different in others.  Evolon is a mix of polyester and polyamide polymers.  It is also spun.  I carry the Evolon Soft, which has been washed making it soft, drapable and suede like finish.
Evolon can be dyed with Acid dyes.  This photo shows some dyed:

dyed evolon - you can see the texture better when coloured.

 So what can you do with it????  Well anything you would use a fabric for.
Both Lutradur and Evolon melt at high heat (200+ celsius for Lutradur and 230 + celsius for Evolon).  This means that the heat of an iron is not hot enough to melt it allowing you to use double sided webs, iron on hot fix angelina and of course, foils with double sided web.
Both fabrics can be coloured with paints, inks, spritzers, shiva stiks, transfer dyes and printing through your printer.  So you can add colour or many layers of colour.
Then, with a heat gun or a soldering iron, you can heat distress, solder, sculpt and create cut outs or lace work.
I have blogged a number of different processes with Lutradur, so if you go to the category cloud on my blog home page and click on Lutradur, it will pull up 12 entries.  If you want to have a big play with these fabrics, there are two books I recommend (both on my website of course)

Lutradur and the New Fibers by Wendy Cotterill

Fabulous Fabric Art with Lutradur by Lesley Riley

I will load pictures of some of the projects I have used the Lutradur in later.  I have only just brought in the Evolon, so you can expect to see more done with this from here on.

Painting Lutradur

11 10 2011

In the US, they do not have access to the amazing coloured Lutradur we have, so many of the techniques you read about in books and magazines requires you to paint your white lutradur first.  This is something that gives you the flexibility to create whatever colours you want for your projects.  You can paint the coloured Lutradur too.  In both cases, it is very very easy.

The next few photos show me painting about a metre of the heavy weight.

I like to use Dye Na Flow to add colour.  Dye Na Flow is a semi transparent paint, so you can still see the texture of the fibre behind it, you get blends of your different colours in a watercolour, washed sort of finish and the paint does not act as a significant resist to heat sculpting or distorting.

I dilute the paint with water to make it thinner and lighter.  Experiment to get the intensity of hue you are after.  Remember paints go on every surface.   You don’t need to target specific paints to a particular fibre.  Dye Na Flow is a fabric paint, which means that it has a bonding agent of sorts that will lock onto the fibre (not in like dyes) and be colourfast once dry and cured.  Heat setting with an iron or heat gun will escalate the curing process.

Then it really is a matter of slapping the paint on to saturate through the Lutradur.   I always add three colours to pretty much everything I do.  In this case I have used Turquoise, Teal and Purple.  When they blend in you get all sorts of blues with hints of green and violet.  Every piece is different.

Slap on one colour

fill the gaps with the other paints, painting over air bubbles – unless you want a more organic look – then leave the air bubbles alone.  Lutradur is not woven, so it has layers and there are lots of places the air can get trapped in the heavier weight fabrics.  I usually flip it over to check the coverage.

Then hang it on the line or leave it flat to dry.  If you have read this far, I probably should have mentioned at the beginning that it is best to line your table with news paper or plastic and to paint out on the grass.  Paint will dry on your floors or concrete and be permanent – yes even fabric paint.  And that sun thing – it escalates the drying process so take care of how far you a ‘slapping’ the paint and rinse down any spills before they dry.

This painted Lutradur is for my “I Dream of the Sea” classes at the Brisbane Show.  It is the backdrop of the four elements in the sample, one of which is below.  I have shown you this photo before, so forgive the repetition if you have seen it.

 Also in this sample is plain light weight Lutrdur with Transfer Artist Paper transfers and Light weight light Blue Lutradur with Angelina ironed to it and terribly distressed with the heat gun.  This last one is my favourite finish.  The heavy painted Lutradur does not distress with out a lot of heat. Putting paint over it also builds up the layers and acts as a resist.  The thicker the paint the greater the resist.  It takes a bit of persistence to distort this, and maybe you don’t want to.  Fire works but can be a bit dramatic.  A very hot heat gun will also work.  An iron will just sort out creases.

As always, experiment and play.


Dyeing and Mixed media classes in Brisbane 19-23 October 11

20 09 2011

I am using a new format at the shows which allows me to run classes at the stand.  I did this for the first time in Melbourne and we had a ball.  Now it is Brisbane’s turn.  The Craft Fair Friend can be down loaded from www.craftfair.com.au if you like.  My classes are outlined on pages 32-33 or you can go to my website at www.uniquestitching to see the details and book.  The class fee includes all your materials plus the use of class tools and materials.  You just have to show up and have fun.

However, here are some photos of what I am doing each day:

10am daily   By the Sea Lutradur, TAP and Angelina Sampler

11.30 daily  Quick and Easy Dyeing




12.30 each day  Indigo Shibori on a large Silk Wrap


1.45 daily  Mixed Media Artist Trading Cards with Lutradur and Angelina

2.45 daily – Floral Fantasy TAP and Encaustic Wax sampler

If you can’t make it to the Brisbane Show but would like to play with these techniques with a group or your guild let me know because I have extended versions that I teach.








Painted lutradur

23 07 2011

From this

to this:

The photo does not really do it justice.  The piece has a lot of complexity and depth.  I have painted the heavy weight lutradur with Dye Na Flow.  As the Dye Na Flow is semi transparent, you get lots of blending and layers being created.

This is the last component of the kits for the Lutradur Mixed Media class I am running each day at the Melbourne Craft and Quilt Fair next week.


“Unique” Classes being run in Melbourne

4 07 2011

Hi there

we will be running a number of classes at the upcoming Melbourne Craft and Quilt Fair.  Come by and join in if you can.

the first will be run twice a day and is a great beginner dyeing class:

Quick and Easy Procion dye workshop – Run at 10.00 and 3.00 each day.

Cost is $10 for scarf and $15 for Romper.

Discover how easy dyeing with Procion dyes can be;  Learn all you need to know to dye a range of fabric or clothing items; Dye a silk scarf or a cotton baby romper to take home and share.   Silk Scarf is approximately 38 by 152 cms (15 by 60 inches).  Rompers available in New Born, 00 and 0 sizes until sold out.




for the more experienced dyer or if you have always wondered how Indigo dye works, we will have an Indigo Silk Wrap Class.  Here are the details:

Indigo dyed Shibori Silk Wrap – Run at 12.30 each day

Cost is $35.00

Explore the ancient arts of both Shibori and Indigo dyeing;  Uncover the modern twist that makes Shibori accessible to the home dyer;  Create a stunning one off silk wrap which will be both warm and decorative.

The silk wrap is approximately 55 by 182 cms (22 by 72 inches).

For those who want to play with TAP, Lutradur and Angelina, there will be a mixed media class.

By the Sea – Lutradur and TAP  – Run at 10.45 each day.  Repeated at 4.30 Saturday only.

Cost is $35.00

Play with amazing new mixed media materials such as Lutradur, TAP and Angelina; Construct four panels to make a book, a decorative concertina or elements you can mount on canvas (shown); Be Astounded at how versatile, quick and effective these materials can be for a range of applications.

Finally, by popular demand, you can use velvet to make our very gorgeous positive/negative applique and put it on a hand dyed bag.

Geometric Appliqué Velvet Tote Bag – Run at 2.15 each day

Cost is $28.00

Use raw edge appliqué techniques with velvet and see how luscious yet easy this approach can be; Experiment with positive negative geometric designs to construct a funky contemporary design; Make a fantastic bag hand dyed and appliquéd bag to gift or keep for yourself.

Tote Bag is approximately 35 by 23 cms with a 7.5cm gusset (14 by 9 by 3 inches) and two outer pockets.
Hand dyed by Cecile.  Design only shown.  Bags are on their way!

Anyone participating in the workshops will get a discount on purchases at the stand.

Don’t have time to do a class, pop by and watch Neroli Henderson demonstrating Shiva and Lumiere paints and maybe more or collect your supplies of fabric dyes, paints, pencils; mixed media materials, Angelina, Lutradur, TAP; dyed fabrics such as cotton scrim, velvet cottons and silks; silk fibres; and of course great deals on magazines and books.

A similar program is planned for Brisbane but is still in the planning stage so could change.

Book now for Lesley Riley’s classes at Textile Art Festival Brisbane in June

12 05 2011

You may know that I am bringing Lesley Riley to Australia for the Textile Art Festival this year.  The dates are Saturday 11 June to Monday 13 June – the June long weekend.

Lesley is running three different three hour classes, one each day from 9.30 to 12.30.  Some of these are starting to fill fast, so if you want to attend you may need to book early.  Numbers will be strictly limited.  I will be promoting these classes more broadly over the next few days, but want to give those who follow me on Facebook and the Blog the first opportunity to get the class or classes of your choice.

On Saturday, Lesley will do her famous Fragment Fabric Collage class.  You will learn Lesley’s inimitable techniques for collages.  Add interesting fabric, some TAP and have fun.

On Sunday the class is TAP Tips and Tricks.  Discover a dozen altered and alternative ways to use TAP on a variety of surfaces beyond the typical iron on to fabric transfer.  You will leave with a stack of samples, oodles of ideas and fingers just itching to delve into new  creations.

The final class is a Lutradur Sampler.  Learn a range of techniques to use on Lutradur and create a small book sampler.  This class will also use TAP.

The easiest way to book is to go to www.uniquestitching.com.au and book online.  The three classes are on the home page so you can’t miss them.

There will be a heap of other great specials, new products and of course, classes with me, so to find out more detail visit www.textileart.com.au.  You can download the Preview Magazine from there.  I will give you more information closer to the event about all the other things we are doing.

I hope you will join us.

Well, I can share some exciting news

6 02 2011

The cat is out of the bag and I am pleased.  I am now ready to tell you about one of the exciting things I have been organising for this year.  I am bringing Lesley Riley out to Australia for the Textile Art Festival.  Textile Art Festival will be held in Brisbane on 11-13th June this year.  It is the Queen’s Birthday long weekend for most States, so pop it in your diary and come for a visit and help pump some regeneration into the QLD economy.

Lesley is one of the nicest people I have met and she is very, very clever and creative.  Lesley is a quilter and mixed media artist who has specialised in collage.  She has written a book on using Lutradur (which I have on the website – the Lutradur and the book) and has most recently completed a book on using her Transfer Artist Paper or TAP.  This book is due for release in a few months.

Lesley created the TAP and has been teaching how to use it for some time in the US and internationally.  On January 31st this year, TAP won the Craft and Hobby Association award as the most innovative new product.  This is according to CHA  “These coveted awards represent the industry’s most prestigious recognition for product innovation, trade show exhibition, retail innovation and press kit design. Judged by CHA staff and a celebrity panel of judges …”

Very exciting.  Lesley will run some workshops, have a ‘Artist at Work’ space near one of my stands and be available to share her depth of skill and knowledge.  She might even sign one of her books for you if ask nicely.

You can see examples of Lesley’s work on her website www.lesleyriley.com and you can find out more about the Textile Art Festival at www.textileart.com.au

Rosellas in the figs

22 01 2011

Some time ago, I showed you some fabric I made with Lutradur bonded to sheer fabrics and heated.  I have now finised the piece that this was intended for.  Here are some photos.

here is some detail. The bird was made with silks – velvets and jacquards as well as some Textiva and felt.

The figs are Lutradur with a bit of Shiva stik for colour and beads.  The leaves are lightly heated tyvek.

I have never considered myself as capable  of  ‘realism’ but am determined to do different things this year.  There are a couple of things I would do differently next time, but it is all fun.  What do you think?

Painted fabric, more lutradur

3 01 2011

I had another fun day playing with more Angelina and Lutradur elements.  I put together the pieces from yesterday.  Here is some detail:

Today I have made some more ‘bits’ as samples but have also been experimenting with painting fabric.

Discharged and hand painted fabric.

I have left this large, so sorry if it takes a while to download, but I wanted you to be able to see the detail.  Love it.  I will be repeating this one in meterage I think.  If you and your friends would like to learn how to do this and other amazing things with paint, you only have to ask.

I am so happy the post office is open tomorrow.  I have a heap of mail to get out – two big boxes!