Following on from the Christmas Song Challenge, I was keen to try a new challenge. This time it was landscapes. When someone was given the Humber bridge I was gutted. As a daughter of a Humberside/Yorkshireman, the Humber bridge is really iconic. However, instead I was given the Severn Bridge, which is a good alternative!!

When researching for this blog I found there are in fact two Severn bridges. The first was built in 1966 and the second, also known as The Prince of Wales bridge, was built in 1996. Both bridges link England to Wales and span the River Severn. It would have be useful to know this information BEFORE I made my piece, as the photo I used for inspiration was in fact the Prince of Wales bridge….. Oh well.. mistakes happen right. It’s not as bad as mixing up Carmarthen with Caernarfon!

Anyway, on with the challenge. I am a sucker for a sunset, especially a red sunset with a dark silhouette of a building or structure in the foreground. I found countless stunning photos of sunsets over the Prince of Wales bridge, that inspired me to get out my inktense pencils.

I bought these pencils during my “water colour” phase. As crafters/ artist I am sure you must be the same. You flit from one medium to another. From one craft to another. Thinking back it was the year London hosted the Olympics, 2012 if memory serves. I took my mum to an art show in Islington in London. This glorious day was my first foray into the world of shows. I am determined to get to the Festival of Quilts one year, but that’s a different story. Any way, at that event, I bought a whole stack of goodies, including a set of inktense pencils. After my initial excitement, they have sat on a shelf for…..well….. eight years. I recently bought fabric medium in preparation for using them on fabric.  So I was inspired to give fabric painting a try.

I started by dropping my feed dogs and machine embroidering the bridge itself. I own a Brother Innovis 955 which allows you to reduce the stitch speed. I would highly recommend doing that (regardless of the make / model you own) as I find the end result is better, and more controlled.

Once the initial bridge was sewn, I used an ink felt tip (bought at the same show) to make the bridge  silhouette good and dark.

Then using the inktense pencils and fabric medium, I drew in the sunset. Painting on fabric os harder than I anticipated. It’s certainly a skill I want to practice more of. I tried both “wet on wet” and “dry on wet”, and the results were passable, albeit quite “naive” or “rustic”.

Once it was dry, I added a black boarder and free motion quilted the sky, sea and bridge supports.

It is by no means perfect. Like every artist, I can see every single flaw in this. But following the squint and three paces approach, the finished result was very pleasing, at least to my four eyes!!

So there we have it. The Prince of Wales “Severn” bridge.

I said I would give the next challenge a skip, but you know, I could be persuaded….

Till next time

Dotty xxx


  1. Jane Galley

    I wouldn’t have minded swapping, lol. Both Severn Bridges have played a big part of my life. I remember the second one being built, quite a feat of technology. I love this, get it up on the wall and enjoy it