LINQS…our first meeting

A selection of David Hockney books displayed on a table.

A selection of David Hockney books were available to browse.

Yesterday saw the first meeting of LINQS, the Lincolnshire Quilters group which is responsible for the David Hockney Challenge.  The challenge is open to anyone living in Lincolnshire.

15 ladies turned up for our first get together at The Coach and Horses in Billinghay  and to quote Mary “there were no shrinking violets”!  It was a lively session with lots of ideas, enthusiasm and encouragement.

Work in's easy to see the Hockney influence in this colourful mini quilt.

Work in progress….it’s easy to see the Hockney influence in this colourful mini quilt.

Several of us took along quilts we have already started, while others were keen to talk through the ideas that they have in mind.  Some of the members also brought their copies of various David Hockney books for the rest of us to browse.

Unfortunately the photograph below doesn’t do justice to the wonderful piece of work this lady is creating.  The influence here is the colour and movement that Hockney displays in his work as the small, individual pieces of layered fabric gently ripple.

Work in progress....the influence here is the colour and movement that Hockney puts into his work.

Work in progress….the influence here is the colour and movement that Hockney puts into his work.

An open sketchbook showing photographs of the countryside on the right and hand written notes on the left.

Fiona’s sketchbook ideas

Fiona has been taking photographs of the local landscape while out walking her dog.  She has pasted these into her sketch book with notes of how Hockney might interpret these scenes if he were to make a quilt.  This is the sort of thing I always tell myself I should be doing…..I just need to start doing it!



David Hockney gets a scarf…..

A felted scarf and he's nearly done!

A felted scarf and my David Hockney mixed media quilt is nearly ready for quilting!

This evening David Hockney got himself a dark red Merino wet felted scarf so now he’s nearly ready to be put together and quilted.

To finish off I’v machined four rows of stitching at the back of the figure to represent the newsprint columns, quilted around the edge of the figure and added a black border.

My David Hockney self portrait

My finished quilted version of David Hockney’s self portrait


Hockney Challenge…..adding the hair.


I want my version of Hockney’s collage ‘Self Portrait‘ to be a fun piece constructed from a mixture of materials and methods.  The face is being built up with layers of synthetic fabrics, bonded together using an 18w Antex soldering iron.  My first attempt was with a 30w iron and a fine point bit….it was awful!  The fabric burnt and I couldn’t control the cutting edge as the iron was too hot and the point too thick.  I took advice from Margaret Beal on her website and bought a lower wattage iron with an extra fine bit…’s a lot easier when you use the right tools!

For the mop of blond hair I chose to use a technique which I originally saw demonstrated by Jan Tillett on Youtube.  This involved free machine sewing onto water soluble stabiliser which was held in an embroidery hoop.  I traced the outline of the hair onto the stabiliser before sewing back and forth with yellow and cream thread, overlapping the stitches so that they held together once the background fabric was washed away.  The hair took shape very quickly and I am really pleased with the texture.   The next job will be to select fabrics for the clothes.

Hope Hockney doesn't sue!

Creating the hair using soluble stabiliser.

Portrait of Hockney made from fabric and thread.

The mop of blond hair plonked in place!



LINQS David Hockney Challenge…..


Are you living in Lincolnshire? Do you enjoy quilting and fancy a challenge? If you can answer yes to both these questions you might like to join the ladies in LINQS (Lincolnshire Quilters) and create a quilt inspired by any work of David Hockney’s, past or present. Quilts can be made by an individual or a group and the work can feature any technique or style, including traditional.
The criteria we have to adhere to is…..

1. To be a quilt it must have 3 layers

2. The size must be either 30″x40″ or 30cm x 40cm portrait or landscape. If you want to make a larger size quilt you can hang several smaller ones together.

3. No matter what style we use we must be able to link the finished piece back to DH’s work.

For more information or to register your interest click here.

I didn’t really know Hockney’s work before signing up for the challenge but, after talking to one of the members of LINQS, I took a ride up to Salts Mill to see it for myself. Salts Mill is in Saltaire, West Yorkshire, a few miles from Bradford and it houses a permanent display of Hockney’s work. It also has a terrific book shop and a restaurant serving delicious food on the top floor.

The Arrival of Spring in Woldgate

The Arrival of Spring in Woldgate


Background of my monotone quilt.

Background of my monotone quilt.

Trees are added to stand away from the background.

Trees are added to stand away from the background.

Detail of foliage at base of trees.

Detail of foliage at base of trees.

I’ve started work on two ‘mini size, quilts, the first is based on The Arrival of Spring in Woldgate. I decided to strip it back to a monotone colour scheme and started off in a fairly traditional way using machine and hand stitching on the background. I wanted the trees to stand out so I used black acrylic paint on vilene, backed with black felt and attached them with my glue gun. The foliage at the base of the trees was cut from a piece of lace which has also been painted with acrylic. I’m not sure how I am going to finish this one… I add the large leaves and the vines? I’ll sleep on it a bit longer before deciding my next step.

The second piece I’m doing is based on Hockney’s early self portrait collage. This is going to be a mixed media quilt using paper, paint and fabric. The background is the ‘Newsprint’ wallpaper from my last post. I have stuck it onto cream netting using PVA. Once it was dry I turned it over, soaked it with water and gently rubbed the backing paper off until the image was showing through. This has created a nice thin layer which I can quilt at a later stage.

Hockney 1954 Self Portrait

Hockney 1954 Self Portrait

Starting work on DH's face.

Starting work on Hockney’s face.

More shading added to the face....the glasses are tried on for positioning.

More shading added to the face….the glasses are tried on for positioning.

Rather than copying Hockney’s 1954 self portrait I have chosen to show him as he styled himself in the 60’s with his trademark dyed blond hair and thick black round specs. After drawing the features onto cotton fabric I am trying a new (to me) technique for colouring the face, using a soldering iron to fuse layers of organza. I got the idea after buying the Margaret Beal book New Ideas in Fusing Fabric. The work in this book is so inspirational I had to buy the iron and have a go! I’m hoping to get some more of this quilt done this week so will post an update when I do.