Thursday, May 24, 2012

Ready To Go!

My new designs have now been printed as tea towels and placemats. In my MadeIt and Etsy shops now!

Oh - and a cute little kangaroo paw purse

Plus lots of other little purses - been on a bit of a sewing binge again!

Monday, May 7, 2012

More White on Gray

These only lasted in my MadeIt shop a couple of days. The fabric is unbleached linen  and the ink is Permaset standard white. I love the smell of unbleached linen - it's almost edible.

Most of my printing in done on linen sourced from Europe but the other day I came across a vintage linen tea towel woven in Ireland which gave a photographic history on the growing and harvesting of flax in that country - in particular Ulster.

The process of growing, harvesting and turning flax into linen was long and complex. Flax was sown in spring and ready for harvest about a hundred days. The mature flax was not cut but pulled, roots and all so that no part of the stem was wasted and the fibres were as long as possible. The stems were then put into ponds or dams and left to rot and soften for 8 to 14 days (called retting).

(photo courtesy of

This resulted in the breaking up of the flax fibre and generated a noxious smell. The flax was then drained on the banks and then laid out in the fields for 6 to 12 days to allow the wind and sun to dry it. After stacking it was sent to the flax mill for "scutching" which removed the skin and core leaving only the fibres for spinning and weaving. Not the most pleasant job by the look of it!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

What Comes Next

My new designs now made into two cute coin purses. Tea towels and placemats next!
But first I need to print some more of these

and these
And these

It seems impossible to predict what is going to sell well from year to year. Last year I hardly sold any teatowels in the first three months - or table mats, but lots of shoulder bags. This year it is the reverse. Last year my online sales were mostly on Madeit. This year - at least for the first three months - Etsy has been the winner.
And working out which colours people like best is a bit tricky, but I think that red and white prints are consistently the winners, with green the least popular (unless it is a shoulder bag??). So I'll just keep printing what pleases me.