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Mark Making For All Craft and Art

Mark making is an important part of all art and craft. It takes your art from ordinary to extraordinary. From the earliest marks made by man to contemporary art, mark making distinguishes a person’s art or craft.

At an early age, we draw without fear. But many of us lose that ability. Get in touch with your inner artist. I want you to free your expression, get rid of the fear and discover the pleasures of mark making.

mark making
mark making

eCourse Creative Mark Making

I have today launched my new ecourse for Creative Mark Making. Find your unique voice and discover your potential. This ecourse is 10 months long and is suitable for all abilities without any previous experience. It is also suitable for any discipline – art or craft.

It consists of research, exercises, techniques and projects to help you achieve your goals. You will discover new ways of looking at objects, using different media and surfaces to explore your hidden artistic abilities. You’ll make marks intuitively.

There is a also a private facebook for those taking the ecourse. I am a fully qualified (DfE) and experienced teacher.

The ecourse is aimed at everyone who wants to develop their work from beginner up.

mark making
mark making

For more details please see eCourse Mark Making on the ecourses page. You might also want to look at the other ecourses whilst you are on there. I specialise in textiles, art, craft, and design.

Watch out for more new ecourses this month – Stitched Textiles and Hand Knitting. All these ecourses are unique to me and cannot be found elsewhere. They are written from scratch from my 40 years’ experience. They represent value for money for anyone who wants to learn skills and techniques.

stitched textiles
stitched textiles

Tune in every Monday for the latest blog.

Words, work and images copyright Karen Platt 2020

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Lockdown Creativity – Drawing, Quilting and more

Lockdown creativity is about staying positive. Last week I started a new group on facebook called Stay At Home And Create, so if you want to join me, you’ll find it here. Over 50 members have already joined. Reduce stress, take your mind off the news and make something. Do it alone or with family and share on the fb page.

lockdown creativity
figs on the worktop

We are moving into drawing and painting fruit for Week 2. Here’s some ideas I have been working with. I am exploring ideas at this stage with a view to producing quilts, or a textile fabric book.

lockdown creativity
pears from my original painting
lockdown creativity
ideas developed in software
pear watercolour painting
another in the pear series

Work

Lockdown creativity for me has been limited as I developed shingles mid week. It could keep my creativity limited for some time. Financially it’s difficult for so many of us and I am one that relies on sales from my website and would appreciate any support people can offer at this time, particularly the online ecourses or ebooks so that I do not have to go out to post. Please take a look.

There is just one more block to go on my scrap quilt. Qaygo might be easier for me to quilt this. I might prefer to quilt in one go, but it definitely needs binding and sashing, which at the moment I do not have.

scrap quilting
scrap quilting

New ebook Travel Inspiration Corfu

I have finished ebook Five in the Inspiration travel series. It is a pictorial guide book to Corfu, where I enjoyed a fabulous holiday in 2017. The ebook has 250 photos including some art I created. It is available here

Inspiration travel ebook five Corfu

Join me next week for more textiles and quilting and more

Words, work and images copyright Karen Platt 2020

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Teaching Online Time To Create At Home

Teaching online is what I have been doing for over three years. Following on from last week’s post Stay At Home Quilter, here’s more tips and ideas.

Teaching online ecourses
Creative quilting ecourse

Teaching Online

It’s over three years since I started teaching online. On the website are a number of ecourses for textiles and quilting, inspirational ebooks for all artists and tutorials so that people can learn wherever they live. All my work is exclusive and is written from scratch from my personal hands-on experience and to my knowledge is unlike any other course. Everyone who has taken an ecourse so far has recommended it.

inspirational ebooks
one of my inspirational ebooks

Gardening ebooks are also available exclusively on the website under ebooks.

gardening ebooks
one of my gardening ebooks

I have been a languages teacher for over 40 years. Online French and Spanish lessons (beginners any age and adult conversation) are now available alongside online primary Maths and English. If you fear your children might fall behind and need some lessons, you can contact me, or find me on firsttutors.com (very reasonably priced as they take no commission) and from next week on tutorful. I am a fully qualified and experienced teacher.

Teaching online is so important to me as I am unable to go out to work and this is a lifeline to me.

Facebook Videos

I have created three facebook videos so far on my timeline. These are free to watch. They do not contain the same level of teaching as the paid ecourses but they are a way of tapping into ideas for free. They are all about creating from home. Time to Create at home is all about occupying the mind with positive thoughts and there is no better way to do that than to create. I talked about drawing and choosing something close to hand. There were tips for drawing and I showed some simple samples that anyone can do.

It’s not a structured course, just ideas to keep the mind occupied that anyone can do and develop on their own. If enough people are interested I will create a group where work can be shared. Join in as I don’t want to stop owing to lack of interest.

teaching online
sample drawing not looking at paper
teaching online
developing the drawing into an idea for textiles

You can find out more on my fb page

Words, work and images copyright Karen Platt 2020

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Day 31 quilting of 31 day blog challenge

Day 31 quilting – All good things come to an end and this is the final day of the 31 day blog challenge. However, it is not the end, but a beginning. The beginning of 2020, the beginning of new work, so tune in to the blog every Monday.

Looking Forwards

Day 31 quilting is a time to try and shape the future, how I want it to be. In 2016 I decided to make a living from teaching quilting, I know I made the right decision as a trained and qualified teacher with an eye for design, I am doing what makes me happy. Some of the quilts I made last year.

day 31 quilting
Karen Platt Original Quilts

The Unfinished

That first quilt is still there. It must be unpicked and finished. Good news is I found enough calico to finish the hand quilting one, so that will be launched shortly and the quilt along will happen. I also have a BOM planned, finally!

day 31 quilting
Quilt along

There is an Inspiration Travel ebook on Madeira that is also almost finished but was abandoned for three years. I also have one planned on Portugal. I have one other Inspiration ebook planned on Reflections.

Apart from those, in 2015 I planned a whole series of Inspiration books based on artwork inspired by historical themes. I hope to get round to publishing some of those in 2020.

Inspiration Travel Madeira
Inspiration Travel Book Two Madeira Gardens

Quilting Plans

I am concentrating on art quilts and colour this year. I hope to be teaching more, but I find venues in the UK reluctant to pay travel and there is nowhere locally to teach. I have made efforts to make this work.

day 31 quilting
quilt design Karen Platt

The quilt retreat should go ahead in June, which I am looking forward to. Join me for a great week of quilting and inspiration that will last a lot longer.

I have one unfinished ecourses for quilters almost ready to launch – Improve Your Quilting in 12 Easy Steps. I also have an Inspiration ebook on My Quilting Journey, so those will be coming next month.

day 31 quilting
ecourse by Karen Platt

Knitting

Also launching early in 2020 will be the Peak Collection of Knitting Patterns. I am also well on the way with other knitting pattern collections.

Discount

Day 31 quilting, the 20% off everything on the website is still running until midnight tonight. Happy New Year everyone.

Words, work and images copyright Karen Platt 2019

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Day 30 quilting of 31 day blog challenge

Day 30 quilting is a retrospective of the past six months’ work. It has been a very busy time for me. Perhaps my busiest for many years. I produced no less than 13 new quilts, 4 of those also as quilting patterns, 7 new inspiration ebooks and 3 new ecourses plus a quilting retreat. What a whopper! I have not included my knitting or art, I thought there was enough here already. Join me for a look in more detail.

Quilts

Day 30 quilting, here is a look at the 13 quilts, consisting of lap quilts, wall quilts, wall hangings and 4 quilt patterns. What an achievement. I had no idea I had made that many. Smaller projects do help the output. The ones with a dot are also patterns. They can all be seen online here

Dreamweaver quilt
Lonely Rivers Flow

  • Floral Tiles
  • Modern Scrap
  • Drunkard’s Path
    Eagle and Fish
    Indian Wedding Quilts (2)
    Art Landscape Quilts (3)
    Purple Landscape Quilt
    Quilted Sea Wall Hanging
  • Blue River as a pattern only
Day 30 quilting
Blue River Quilt Pattern
Day 30 quilting
Can’t Find My Way Home Quilt and Pattern
day 30 quilting
Modern Scrap Quilt and pattern
Day 30 quilting
Dreamweaver Quilt
Day 30 quilting
Tiled Quilt and pattern
Quilts to buy
Eagle and Fish Quilt
quilts for sale
Lonely Rivers Flow Quilt
Indian Wedding quilts
Indian Wedding Quilts
Art Quilt Triptych
Art Quilt Triptych
Quilted Sea wall hanging
Quilted Sea Wall Hanging
Day 30 quilting wall hanging
Quilted lavender wall hanging

Quilt Retreat

I launched my first quilt retreat, for June 2020 and there are still two places left, so please come and join me. There is a programme of activity or you can do your own thing. Just 3 miles from Whitby, we’ll be interpreting and enjoying the local are in high standard accommodation at an affordable price. What are you waiting for?

day 30 quilting Quilt Retreat Yorkshire
Quilt Retreat Yorkshire

eCourses

I also launched no less than three new ecourses. Two on quilting and one on contemporary stitch. This is what I love best, teaching. Sharing my skills. The ecourses can be seen here

day 30 quilting ecourse
Creative Quilting ecourse
Creative Stitch ecourse
Creative stitch ecourse
Day 30 quilting ecourse
Modern Quilting ecourse

Inspiration ebooks

I love making these and sharing all my inspirational photos and artwork or textiles with you. There were seven new ones in the past six months, you can see them all here

inspiration ebook seven clocks
Inspiration ebook seven Clocks
Inspiration ebook eight flaking paint
Inspiration ebook eight flaking paint
Inspiration ebook nine Trees
Inspiration ebook Nine Trees
inspiration ebook ten grids
Inspiration ebook ten grids
inspiration ebook eleven circles
Inspiration ebook eleven circles
Inspiration ebook twelve repetition
Inspiration travel Sahara
Inspiration Travel Sahara

Final Discount

Day 30 quilting, let’s send the old year off with a bang. Take 20% off everything on the website until end of 31st December 2019. Your help is very much appreciated because I am an independent and unfortunately, almost starving artist. Love to all who have supported me. Thank you for being there and thank you for joining me on this journey. Tune in tomorrow for what is coming up in the next six months.

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Day 25 quilting of 31 day blog challenge

Day 25 quilting is such a special day, Christmas Day. For me Christmas is a time to count your blessings and help those in need.

Merry Christmas
Merry Christmas to all, peace on earth

In The Quilting Room

Remember I said I had a tidy work table? Yes, here is the space on day 25 quilting.

day 25 quilting

I am gathering together all the stash and thinking about where to go next. My leaning for 2020 is towards art quilts and modern quilts but I still have the gorgeous Voysey fabrics, which yearn for a traditional quilt and bed sized no less.

day 25 quilting
Voysey fabrics

When Is a Stash Not A Stash?

When it is in my workroom! I often say I don’t believe in stash anymore. Yet, when I gather all my fabrics together – there is a stash. However, I no longer buy fabrics just because I like them, to build a stash because I find there is usually something missing and fabrics can sit there forever waiting for the right quilt. There is always another fabric. They need a lot of storage space and fabrics out in the open can get dusty or fade. So I now only buy with a particular quilt in mind. Still got quite a bit to use up.

I am also mindful of the environmental costs of new fabric, so I am trying to reduce that. Digital fabric printed at home is one way to go, no huge amounts of water used there at all. Buying or using pre-loved fabrics is another way.

Art Quilts

Part of my art quilt endeavours will be to use what I have and make something of it. I have done all the simple landscape quilts and it is time to move on and really explore the possibilities of art quilts. This gorgeous fabric I designed is an art quilt just by itself.

Digital Dahlia fabric
My digital dahlia fabric

Today’s Discount

Day 25 quilting, why not join me on a voyage of discovery? Art quilts are covered in my new ecourse Modern Quilting and you can take 20% off today. Drop me a line using the contact form to arrange the discount.

Words, work and images copyright Karen Platt 2019

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Day 24 quilting on 31 day blog challenge

Day 24 quilting, it is Christmas Eve and I finished my wonderful new quilt. My thoughts zoom ahead to the New Year, but there is one more week to go and that means another week of the 31 day blog challenge.

New quilt

My latest quilt design features just two fabrics. It is an easy design to create and you have some leeway with the actual quilting, to show off your skills or take it easy. It forms part of my new quilting ecourse Modern Quilting. Not all the designs are like this, I am looking at all aspects of modern quilting in this ecourse. If you cannot get out to lessons nearby an ecourse is ideal no matter where you live. You still get the opportunity to interact with others in a closed group on social media and share work. It is a great learning opportunity.

day 24 quilting
Day 24 quilting

Quilting Tip

Day 24 quilting tip: Mitred corners are one of those things that look difficult, but even beginners can easily achieve them. They make a quilt look more professional. I always do a how to in my quilting patterns that use them, but here is a quicky:

  1. Cut your binding the required width and longer than need be to allow for the mitred corners
  2. Sew your binding with a quarter inch seam to the front of the quilt, stopping one quarter inch before the end
  3. When all 4 pieces are attached, take a binding buddy ruler (I use a June Tailor one and would not be without it) make sure it is aligned correctly and cut
  4. Join the mitres

It really is that simple

day 24 quilting
mitred corners
quilting mitred corners
using a Binding Buddy ruler
mitred corners
mitred corners for a professional finish

Discount

Day 24 quilting discount the quilt has been put on sale with a huge 45 pounds discount, there is only one, so first come, first served. Check back tomorrow for another discount and blog.

Words, work and images copyright Karen Platt 2019

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Day 3 Quilting of 31 Day Blog Challenge

Day 3 Quilting already (actually feels like day 30 :)) this is quite intense blogging. Writers love writing. Quilters love to quilt, so today I am going to start with a question

What Do You Love Most About Quilting?

I have already answered that in Day 1 and Day 2, for me it is the design. I know for many quilters it is actually sewing, which I sometimes like and sometimes hate depending on how smoothly it is going. I like straight stitches, honestly, and I love hand stitch. I must do more free-motion quilting because that is where the fun really starts. It took me a while to try it and I need lots of practice.

Quilting Machines

Day 3 Quilting let’s talk about quilting machines. They are just sewing machines that make life a little easier when quilting. I started on a very basic Singer Confidence, which I loved. It lasted 7 years until the computer bit went haywire. I donated it to a charity that mends and sends machines to Africa. I upgraded to something a little better. My main objective was a wider throat to take a full-size quilt. But, you’ll never guess, so far after 18 months, I have yet to make another full-size quilt. I am very much a wall hanging and lap quilt lady. The other thing is the ability to free-motion, which is a feature of many machines now.

Day 3 Discount

Today’s discount is a super 10 per cent off all ecourses under 100 pounds. These quilting ecourses will hone your skills so do not miss out, the discounts are running for one day only and the reduced price is marked on the website. They are Design and Create a Quilted Wallhanging, Digital Quilt Block Monthly, Fabric Design in Photoshop, Inspiration Monthly, Kaleidoscopes in Photoshop, Transform Your Photos Into Art Quilts, Cathedral Window Hand Quilting, One Block Wonder Quilts and New Photo Techniques For Quilters

Day 3 quilting
Quilted wallhanging
Day 3 Quilting
Digital Block Design
Day 3 quilting
Fabric Pattern design
Art prompts
Art Prompts
Kaleidoscope quilting
Kaleidoscopes for quilting
Transform Your Photos
Transform Your Photos Into Art Quilts
Day 3 quilting
Cathedral Window Hand Quilting

Words, work and images copyright Karen Platt 2019

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Day 2 of 31 Day Blog Challenge

Hello Quilters, here I am with day 2 of 31 day blog challenge for all you quilters out there.

More About Me

I started quilting seriously just 3 years ago. I am a fully qualified teacher and I now teach quilting. I also teach hand knitting and textiles. I am a bit of a computer whizz and love digital design. I love all styles of quilting from traditional through to modern. This is my fantastic job – designing and making quilts. I love it.

Designing Quilts

When I finally started quilting, I decided I had to design. I had looked at almost every book on how to quilt and it just was not happening for me. I did not get quilting at all. So I basically started teaching myself. I just sat down one day with some of my stash of fabrics and decided this is the day I quilt. I was already a designer, so the design aspect never bothered me. It was all that cut 10 of this, stitch it together, cut it up again malarkey that had me confused. I still love the design aspect the best. It really is a thrill for me. I start all my quilts from scratch. I do not use quilting design software.

Discount Day 2

Since we have been talking about design, I would love you to take one of my exciting quilting or textile design ecourses. The Christmas Countdown is in full swing now. The advent calendar discount today is 20% off all ecourses over 100 pounds, this includes all the longer ecourses : Creative Quilting, First Steps Patchwork and Quilting, Colour Confidence, Design in Quilting and Patchwork, Photoshop For Textiles. Each unique ecourse is written by me from my own experience and study. You will not find this content elsewhere. See all the ecourses by clicking through to the website

day 2 of 31
Creative quilting ecourse
Day 2 of 31
Beginners Patchwork & Quilting ecourse
Day 2 of 31
Colour Confidence for Quilters
Day 2 of 31
Design in Quilting ecourse
Day 2 of 31
Photoshop for Textiles ecourse

Come back tomorrow for more on quilting and another Advent Calendar discount.

Words, work and images copyright Karen Platt 2019.

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Six month retrospective – quilting, writing, inspiration

Six month retrospective – a look back at my textiles, quilting and writing work. A retrospective of all my work from 21 December 2018 to 21 June 2019.

It’s always good to look back over work and remind yourself of your achievements. I did this for the six previous months to 21 Dec 2018 also, and it popped up in my facebook feed. My immediate reaction was, I have not really done much since then. That is how it felt. So I checked. I am amazed. Here is my six month retrospective of all the work finished and completed in the last six months. Sit back and enjoy.

Quilts

It is odd that you can persuade yourself that the past six months have been a wilderness. I completed not one, not two, but five quilts. Yes five. That is a huge increase in production for me. After two years, I have obviously got the hang of things. Quilt patterns are Hydrangea and Sunflower wall hangings, Charm Quilt (recently featured in British Patchwork & Quilting Magazine – first feature in a quilting magazine), Snowflakes and my favourite Bells of St. Clements Quilt. All quilts are also for sale. Patterns and quilts are on sale on the website.

retrospective hydrangea quilt
Hydrangea quilt pattern
retrospective sunflower quilt
Sunflower Quilt Pattern
Retrospective Charm Quilt
Charm Quilt Pattern
Snowflakes Quilts
Snowflakes Quilt Pattern
quilt pattern
Bells of St Clements Quilt Pattern

Unique Quilting Fabrics

My work has given rise to the creation of digital fabrics for you to enjoy. I created original fabrics based on snowflakes, tiles and stained glass. They are all for sale on the website.

stained glass fabric

Quilting eCourses

Well I perhaps have been a bit slow on the introduction of new quilting ecourses, but the one that was launched is a whopper on the subject of Colour for Quilters (and any other artists). It was entirely written by me from hands on experience and study of the subject over many years.

quilting ecourses
Colour for Quilters ecourse

Inspiration ebooks

We all need inspiration from time to time and I have been building up a library of Inspiration ebooks from my own photos. The Inspiration ebooks are dedicated to themes, seasons or travel. Three new ones were launched in the past six months, bringing the total number to ten. Church Architecture, Spring and Summer are the new additions to the website.

Inspiration ebook churches
Inspiration for artists and quilters – churches
Inspirations ebook spring
Spring Inspiration ebook
Inspiration summer ebook
Summer Inspirations ebook

Finally, this period also saw the launch of a free brochure available for you to download for the ecourses and more. So all that remains is for me to tell you what is in the pipeline for the next six months. Many more quilts, I shall be concentrating on some pieced work as well as art quilts. The first BOM will be launched, more about that next week. I have a quilt going off to FOQ shortly. The Desert Inspirations ebook is almost ready to launch, as is the first travel inspiration book on Madeira. I think the next six months look very interesting. If nothing else it launches the talks at FOQ, another first. All my work is original.

Words, work and images copyright Karen Platt 2019