Tuesday, May 31, 2011


Finally, here is the result of the wool-dyeing project! This was experimental in a number of ways - it was the first time I tried dying wool; I had no idea how it would look in the space I intended it for, and I still don't know how it will hold up to the rigours of family life.
Up till now I'm very happy with it. If it lasts for a few years, I will be extremely happy. A cost-effective floor covering until such time as we know better what sort of rug we would like to buy, and are prepared to spend money for it.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

What Can You See, My Child?

What Can You See, My Child?
(c) Ruth de Vos 2011
98cm by 96cm

This is my most recent quilt, aiming to capture some of the exuberance of a small child exploring and discovering. It is currently on display as part of the City of Melville Art Awards. Aaron, Hannah and I enjoyed the opening of the exhibition last night (and I enjoyed Aaron and Hannah's running commentary on the artworks). I was struck once again, though, by how poorly a bold and unframed artwork like this shows up in between the many framed and often more delicate artworks. Although the quilt fits within the size requirements of the exhibition, it seemed out of scale with the other pieces, and there wasn't really enough room to stand back far enough to take it in properly. I've had similar experiences other times when I've entered into art awards like this, which prompts the question of whether this is the kind of exhibition I should be entering my quilts into. I will certainly be mulling over about this for a while.Meanwhile, though, you can see for yourself what I mean if you go and check out the art exhibition next week!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Relaxed (read: slack)

I'm a rather slack blogger at the moment. I should be posting about the completed woollen blanket experiment, or fire-inspired quilt that has long since returned from Albany, or the other new quilt which is going on display tonight... but all I have to show you right now is my new cyclamens...
I put it down to the more relaxed (read: sane) lifestyle we are trying to adopt since moving. Either that or it's the flu to blame. Bit of both maybe... I'll aim to be back soon with something of substance to write.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011


There are so many eucalyptus trees here at our new house and on our new street, that I have not been able to resist the urge to work on some new quilt designs.
As I go for my morning walk, I keep seeing clusters of leaves hanging 'just perfect' for a quilt design, so I feel a few more of these coming on in the next little while!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Poor Ted

He slept all by himself last night for the first time in his six-year-old life. There have been nightmares in the last couple of months about the house burning down. Further questioning has revealed that the biggest fear is Ted burning with the house. After further discussion the gentle suggestion was made that perhaps it is time to start thinking about finding Ted a different place to sleep at night. "When you're ready", we said.

Apparently that, and the incentive of a special treat was enough. Without a word, Ted got placed in a special place downstairs when she went to bed the other night. I never noticed till she came to our bed at 2:30am claiming that she was trying really hard but she just couldn't sleep without Ted. Ted was duly collected and all was well, but the next morning he was very quietly and resolutely placed back in his special downstairs spot. She never said a word about him when she went to bed, just sighed as I said goodnight. It was oh-so-tempting to send her down to collect him!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Our library

This was the scene at our house on Saturday. The shelves are all up, and we unpacked books which have been boxed up for years!I am completely in love with our new bookshelf! Now we just need to sort out a means to get to the books. When our resources allow it, we hope to get a library ladder. For now I can reach most of the books using Phil's work ladder.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Monkeys and all

We have an indoor monkey bar at our house.Complete with monkeys.
The kids think it's wonderful, and I'll happily live with it too because it means that our library is under construction. Now if only there was an easy way to get a wall of bookshelves 2m above the ground...

Bubble bubble

I am loving my new kitchen. It's a pleasure to be in. Would you like to see one of the first things we cooked up?A pot of red wool! This was the first time I'd dyed wool, and I was so pleased with the results. All my cotton dyeing is done using a cold water process, so it was quite different, and rather nice, to have a brew bubbling away on the stove top. There have been 8 more pots full since. It's all part of an experiment. I'll share more pictures soon.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Scenes of home

We moved into our new house over the Easter weekend, and now that we have our internet connection, I can share a few snapshots of some of the things I am enjoying here. (Beware of the subjectivity of the camera - there's a whole lot of mess lurking outside the frame :))