Some Mid Century Modern at our Annual Exhibition

Hi everyone

A quick post to share some of the awesomeness that was the opening of our Annual Exhibition last night plus a couple of pieces of stitchy goodness.

Opening of the Exhibition

The Exhibition was opened by Dr Brendan Nelson AO, Director of the Australian War Memorial and he gave a fantastic speech that gave the evening a real buzz.

Here’s a photo of the special Creative Challenge Stitching Love and Hope where members were asked to re-interpret WW1 Silk Postcards

Cards display 1 (6366)

and one of our President Fran Novitski and Dr Nelson at this display

DSC_9119 - Version 2

Here’s one of the postcards – an exquisite Flanders Poppy stitched by Glenda Hudson in honour of a family member. Very poignant and beautiful.

265 -1 Glenda Hudson - Flanders poppy with photo of relative (6047)

One of the other special displays was Sharon Boggon’s Band Sampler. I love this photo of Sharon and Jerry with the Sampler

DSC_9111 - Version 2

Mid Century Modern Quilt

One of the pieces in the general exhibition is this wonderful quilt stitched by Susan Coates

The Sewing Circle Quilt stitched by Susan Coates

The blocks are from a Block of the Month series called The Sewing Circle by Robyn Allen-Waters.

Susan made the quilt with 1950s reproduction fabrics. These and the blocks give this quilt a real mid century modern feel.

Here’s some wonderful eye candy of a selection of the blocks….

Block1 from The Sewing Circle Quilt stitched by Susan Coates

Those wall ducks are so cool and so ‘in’ at the moment.

Block 2 from The Sewing Circle Quilt stiched by Susan Coates

Block 3 from The Sewing Circle Quilt stitched by Susan Coates

Block 4 from The Sewing Circle Quilt stitched by Susan Coates

Block 5 from The Sewing Circle Quilt stitched by Susan Coates

Block 6 from The Sewing Circle Quilt stitched by Susan Coates

The retro vibe of these stitcheries is really fun and the colours are so 50s.

Enjoy and have a great weekend!


2013 Exhibition 2 – Upcycling

We have a very active recycle table here at the Guild in Canberra. It’s haberdashery heaven!

Doreen G and her team become magicians when they re-stock it – suddenly there are members everywhere rummaging through the piles of threads, fibres, fabrics, vintage patterns and embroideries, beads and bling – it’s all action  and like watching a scene on fast forward.

Challenge to Make Threads Count by Upcycling

Earlier in the year Doreen G issued a challenge to everyone – to upcycle something(s) from the table and show them at the Exhibition. She called it a Clayton’s Challenge because it wasn’t one of the Guild’s formal Challenges.

So here’s what everyone made for the Exhibition.

There were two stands..

……Here’s one…

Upcycling Challenge One

….And a closer view

Close-up of Upcycling Challenge One

…..And here’s the other

Upcycling Challenge Stand Two

.….And now to show you some of the works in more detail. If you want to see any photo in greater detail just click on it to enlarge.

Stitched Seascapes

Lyn B took a piece of fabric on which someone had painted an atmospheric backdrop of mountains, cloud and sky and turned it into this evocative seascape.

Stitched Seascape with Sandpipers by Lyn Baldwin

Don’t you think her sandpipers have real personality?

Sandpipers Detail from Stitched Seascape by Lyn Baldwin

Christine B found some scraps of lace and they morphed into this bright scene..

Stitched Seascape by Christine Bailey

Her needlelace waders are just the business! …….and look at the way she’s manipulated the lace to create a breaking wave:

Detail from Stitched Seascape by Christine Bailey

Contemporary pieces

Fran pondered on the scraps of fibre she’d found on the recycle table and came up with a striking necklace:

Fran Novitski explanantion Upcycling Challenge

Upcycling challenge Necklace by Fran Novitski

Joyce W whipped up a book cover in teal and a shoulder bag from some silk tops and cocoon, dyed threads and beads:

Teal Book cover with flower Upcycling Challenge Joyca Weeks


Gold coloured shoulder bag by Joyce Weeks

There wasn’t a card with this cool necklace but it looks like the work of Julie K (I’ll have to check!)

Necklace by Julie Knight

And Val Woodward scrumbled this awesome vest:

Scrumbled Jacket by Val Woodward

Just in case you’ve never scrumbled – it’s free form knitting and crochet

Quirky animals

Doreen McG made fantastic Mr Fox:

Fox by Doreen McGregor

while Pat Bootland transformed bits and pieces of fibre into these super cute elephants:

Four elephants by Pat Bootland


Anne E was at it again giving new life to this old embroidery by making it part of a bag:

Stitched bag by Anne Eccleston

Dianne S did the same with this stitchery:

bag with Patchwork and stitchery Dianne Sell challenge

Meanwhile Diana C created this box lid in cross stitch:

Watering can x stitch by Diana Churchill challenge

and Helen L this one:

Helen Leaney X stitch on box lid Challenge

Vintage Squares

And Cecilia S stitched these lovely vintage squares…

Vintage Square with Mushrooms stitched by Cecilia Skene


Vintage Square with Butterflies stitched by Cecilia Skene


Vintage Square with Flowers stitched by Cecilia Skene


….I thought you might like a closer look at these lovelies…

Cecilia Skene Butterfly Detail Upcycling Challenge


Detail Blue Butterfly and flowers by Cecilia Skene

…And these delicate iris – I didn’t make a note of who stitched them – I’ll have to let you know in a later post

Vintage embroidery of Iris

Quirky and Cheeky

Louise G took a circle of tulle and this is the result:

Louise Gardener Tulle Wreath Challenge

what is it? you ask – ‘Your guess is as good as mine’ says Louise!

Margaret K has a very dry sense of humour and fun and a twinkle in her eye so her piece was very entertaining and cheeky. She took two tassels and created Les Folies Bergere:

Margaret Kelemen tassels challenge

Oooh La La!!

2013 Exhibition 1


The Guild’s 2013 Exhibition is on right now.

On Thursday it went from this:

Setting up 2013 Exhibition

to this…….

Exhibition 2013

in the space of a few hours. Amazing!

Young Stitchers

One of the first things that visitors see when they walk in is the table with the work of the Young Stitchers:

Young Stitchers table at Exhibition 2013

Haven’t they done some awesome stitching?

Caroll Pichelmann Retrospective

A special feature of this year’s Exhibition is a retrospective of the work of Caroll Pichelmann. Carol came to Australia from Austria in 1960 and has had a lifelong love of all things creative in embroidery.

She’s always encouraging other members to think outside the square when it comes to embroidery. She’s an artist with both the technical expertise and imaginative flair to pull off ambitious contemporary textile works like this one:

Cityscape by Carol Pichelman

This work My City Lives is large, three dimensional and with a strong architecture. It’s intensely worked and detailed and there’s a surface richness that’s hard to capture in a photo.

The city itself is a composite of favourite places in cities around Australia that Caroll has visited. Here are some details that I picked out from the foreground…..

Rocks and plants…

Detail Rocks and Plants from Cityscape by Carol Pichelman

The rock garden up close – you can see how the stitches create a landscape effect…

Detail rock garden cityscape by Carol Pichelman


Gate detail from Cityscape by Carol Pichelman

and a mossy tree…..Detail Cityscape stitched by Caroll Pichelman

It’s an inspiring and powerful work and it’s been a hit with visitors to the show. What do you think?

Some other Sumptuous Surfaces from Caroll

Caroll uses many techniques to create the complex, layered and interesting surfaces to her textiles. Here’s a sample of other work:

gum leaves…..

Detail gum leaves by Carol Pichelman

lid of a small chest…….

Chest lid in gold green and purple by Carol Pichelman

a piece created with Tunisian crochet…

Tunisian crochet flowers by Carol Pichelman

I’ll be sharing more of Caroll’s work in later posts on the Exhibition.

Other work

And here’s a quick impression of some other work on show….

In earlier  Looking Over Shoulders posts you saw Fran’s A Siennese Treasure in progress. Here’s the finished lid of her box: 

Siennese Treasure Lid by Fran Novitski

Hazel has stitched an intricate  goldwork butterfly:

Goldwork Butterfly by Hazel Frances


While Sarah K has made her Perugino embroidery into an elegant pencil case…

Detail Perugino Pencil case stitched by Sarah Kimmorley

Doreen G has done a colourful sampler of stitches on canvas:

Sampler of stitches by Pat Bootland

and Anne E has given her special touch to another vintage embroidery:

Detail Strawberries stitched by Anne Eccelston

Alison K has used machine embroidery and beading to give a contemporary twist to her leaves. Here’s a close-up:

Detail Just a pile of Leaves by Alison Kennedy

and Margaret J has made a decorative cushion with a cool blue cross stitch:

Blue Jars x-stitched by Margaret Joy

Tomorrow’s the last day of the Exhibition and if you’re in Canberra then make sure you don’t miss out on this chance to see some great stitching….

And when you need a break there’s the cafe’s excellent coffee and the retail therapy of The  Gift Shop and the Recycle Table.