Thursday 22 January 2009

oh, those russians.

teatowel swap

a few months ago, eight bloggers were rounded up by leah to take part in a teatowel swap. each was sent a blank canvas of white, russian linen to do with what they may. i'll admit i struggled with this a bit at first - as a graphic designer, i like limitations, themes, something to base the creativity around so having no guidelines was challenging. so i decided to make the theme about representing my own work, what i love doing and what i want to be known for creating. it was all rather serendipitous that i gave myself a little extra time to work on this, with the holidays and family time, there was no way it was going to be done before christmas. i knew i wanted to do something with patchwork but hadn't really worked out how or what until i started playing with my scrap project the other week. something about using up those little bits of fabric to create a new, unique design was really satisfying to me. the random piecing together was a bit like tetris and not having to think too much about what "went together" or how the end result would look was really freeing. i started looking at my scraps in a new light. i've always been a bit of a hoarder and now i'm so glad. i opened my drawer of blue and green solid scraps and started going through the pieces, some with bits of gocco printing, most hand dyed. freeform, i began sewing them together, started another small square from two rectangles, created a longer rectangle sewing it to another square, making shape upon shape.

teatowel swap detail

teatowel swap detail

the end result was overlocked to the russian linen border with a linen backing to hide the joins and i couldn't be happier about the finished piece. it represents a new obsession and a direction for my work, perfectly.

i scored very well out of this swap, as well, by receiving this gorgeous screenprinted piece from bianca.

i had to steal bianca's photo as this teatowel is in heavy rotation at our place (but ONLY for the good jobs like drying clean dishes) and was so wrinkly that ironing it seemed like too much work. thank you again, bianca and you too, leah for including me in this project, it has been a wonderful experience all around.


  1. This is stunning, Leslie.

  2. I'm glad you like it :) and I'm also glad it gets used ;)

  3. Oh Leslie - you've done such a beautiful job....

    I've been so impressed with the results so far - so much so that I wish I was getting all those teatowels back in the mail! Your Hollabee one is gorgeous - I love that print.....

    I'm sure your recipient will be extremely happy!

    Thanks for playing,

    Leah xxx

  4. beautiful! both your patchwork, and bianca's print.
    so nice to have fuctional artwork, i think. :)

  5. Your teatowel & Bianca's are both just gorgeouos!

  6. Anonymous8:21 am

    What a fun idea! Yours turned out so great! The fact that you sewed it free form and so precisely blows my mind-awesome!

  7. Anonymous4:48 pm

    beautiful leslie.

  8. Your teatowel is beautiful Leslie.


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