Wednesday 19 October 2011

Warning:May contain traces of dogs.

Many paws have passed through the pages of this blog in the three and a half years of its existence. 
When we began I had my lovely constant companion, Willow, and we shared many walks with you.
I was distraught when she died.

 Before Willow we had Daisy our first ever dog. Like Willow but with a black head. She was from the pre-digital era so I don't have any photographs on my Computer except  this one. Its not a success but it gives the idea and shows feline paws too.

And who could forgot Porky and Blodwen? We had them on various occasions.
 They baffled Willow with their size, she didn't baffle them, they were many things!
 Conveniently sink sized, and completely underwhelmed by great Art.

My son had a dog for a few years, the delightful Denny. Noisy and enthusiastic and very intelligent. She came to stay a few times causing the cats to run up impossibly high and unsuitable for climbing Leylandii trees next door.

Then we had a visit from Indie. She is a real treasure and so peaceful and gentle you could take her anywhere. So we did! Here she is cooling off in Bassenthwaite,after a visit to Woolfest.
Then we met Dylan, a little cutie being looked after by my friend, when we went away to the Lake district for my birthday last year.
Another one of Denise's charges came to us for a night,

When Willow died I thought I could never love another dog.
I didn't feel I could manage a pointer again and thought I'd just enjoy looking after other people's dogs.
Then a few weeks ago along came Missy.
When she went home after a week we missed her more than we had expected. 
We felt ready for a dog again.
So we made a few enquiries. 

and in two weeks and two days Hetty will be coming to live with us.

But Willow will always be there in the background to keep and eye on things.

Saturday 15 October 2011

Standing up for themselves

Displaying work is always a tricky topic and lately I've been making small labels or tags for my brooches so that they don't appear to be 'all card'. But the downside is that they must lie flat on a table or in a basket or something. 
Of course I have my lovely tree when I do craft fairs but not everything will fit on there, so I've been playing with cards and come up with these.
They can stand upright, or sideways.

 I've cut little tabs on the backs so they can even be bent into a curve for standing in galleries and then folded over front wards to make a sort of pouch for packaging.
And, there's room for my 'disclaimer' which I'm sorry to say was necessitated by one customers comments.(I didn't add 'don't stick the pin in your eye -its sharp,' but it was all I could do to restrain myself)
The other advantage is that the brooch seem to be enhanced on a plain background.
There is a drawback.
Its yet another time consuming, money consuming part of making and presenting my work. Also the card is too wide to use my hole puncher for the pin so I have to use a scalpel to make an 'X'
Ah well.
No one said it was easy. I suffer for my art!

I made a huge pile of frond brooches last week as readers know, and I've sold more than half of them.
Thats good isn't it? (Don't forget blog reader coupon code for 20% discount: 'squashes' , until the end of October or thereabouts.)

Now I'm just going to whisper this ....on Tuesday we are going to choose a puppy! It will be ready at the end of October.
I can't wait.

Thursday 13 October 2011

More more more

"Oh no not more of those B***** leaves!" I hear you cry.
Well a girls got to keep a record and present it to the world. 
You've aready seen plenty of the above but can you spot the difference in the ones below?
I had a plan where I'd stick to a few basic designs but I just can't help deviating. I suddenly made the veins and they reminded me of beech leaves, on the ground, in the Autumn and winter when you go for a walk at dusk and the stars come out...I just had to add a few stars. So a new 'standard' was born. What shall I call them?
Starry beech?
Since I showed the fronds I have sold a few and so just made an extra couple to keep the numbers up. Its my favourite.
I haven't listed these or the fronds on etsy but they are very definitely available as brooches or pendants...just ask.
UPDATE:I decided to list them after all! HERE
Don't forget 20% discount for blog readers with coupon code 'squashes'
Talking of shops, I must direct you all to the recently opened etsy shop of my old school friend Elli Woodsford, Embex studio.  Imagine my surprise when I found her a few years ago on Friends Reunited, with a passion for textiles!
I just had to get in touch immediately.

Monday 10 October 2011

Its a Plan

 Sometimes when I'm working for Christmas sales my head gets all fuzzy from trying to think up new designs for each piece.
 So I have a cunning plan.
 I make the same basic design in lots of different colours.
 I shall call this particular style 'Frond' and have made 20 in a selection of colours. 
 I still get the pleasure from the unexpected outcomes of one colour against another.
 I particularly enjoyed the surprise of these yellows on the greeny grey felt.
 Blues are always a delight to make too.

Now, these above are all brooches but would they make good pendants? And if so, which sort of necklace is best? Coloured memory wire,
 or a dangly fine black faux leather?

Saturday 8 October 2011

Its that time again

 Yes here I go again! Craft fairs approach. I may have three in the offing, and as well as that I have Gallery Commitments, so its all systems go here in my little sewing den. I would love to call it a studio but lets face it, its the spare room.
I've been limbering up with a few colourful paisley pieces. It takes me ages to get into the swing of things and these started in a bit of a forced way but eventually became more fluent.
I do so love choosing the colours and matching the threads and felt.
And then I went a bit 'off piste' with a scrap of leftover velvet, a prototype that needs refining.
Maybe there'll be more of these but I'll have to see. Thats why blogging is so useful , the feedback is invaluable. Thank you everyone for your comments. I have 761  762 followers now. I can't believe it. 
Thank you all for signing up.
I based this one on the shapes of some of the leaves at Charleston. 

A few weeks ago I had a mystery envelope through the letterbox.
 Nothing on the back and I didn't recognise the writing.
 On opening it up I found this delightful little envelope..still no wiser....then inside that
 was a beautiful piece of writing paper and even then I didn't quite realise what it was.
 All that was written on it was...............
 Then there was the tissue wrapped parcel and it began to dawn on me.......
 How exciting! I'd won the giveaway on Karens blog a few weeks earlier and had forgotten about it so it was extra surprising to find this delightful, exquisite little 'sketch book page' inside.
 There is so much work in this precious little sheet of paper. Perfect embroidery stitches a pricked pattern, around a beautiful circle of fine pink flowery fabric.
 How amazing. If you don't know Karen's blog do go and have a look at all the delicious works of stitched art there. Everyone has hours and hours of beautiful hand stitching in it and she uses gorgeous materials. There are even classes so you try your hand at stitching along with her. Thank you Karen. I won't be putting it in the bottom of the cat litter tray as you suggested!

Off I go to get into full production mode.   

Thanks for reading and commenting.

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