Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Pigment & Passion - Triton Gallery

I popped out to see artist friends yesterday who are holding their exhibition called Pigment and Passion at the Triton Gallery in Sledmere, on until June 1st.

Saw some lovely new work from Steve Dove, joyful, vibrant landscape paintings:

Then there was Penny with her pots, characterful sculpted animals and smoke fired vessels in delicate glazes:

Last but not least, Selina, known for her superb animal portrait paintings but in this exhibition she is showing mainly collages. The collages are made with finds she gathers from Hornsea beach, rusty old metal things, drift wood, glass, rope etc.

Monday, 28 May 2012

Mollie Makes - doll pattern

The current birthday issue of Mollie Makes has a really good Mollie Dollie pattern to try, created by Laura Hunter. 
I thought I would have a go yesterday as I had a lovely piece of vintage fabric which would make a very groovy dress.

The pattern was quite easy to follow and I got all my bits chopped out, decorated the hair and face, fabric penned some stripey socks on her legs and I was ready to stitch up.

Stitching up just requires a bit of patience as you have to tuck the arms and legs inside the body bit whilst you sew, before turning right sides out.
It wasn't too bad and by the end of the day I had my Mollie Dollie. She reminds me a bit of Jemima from Playschool, now that's showing my age!

Here she is enjoying the super duper Mollie magazine!

Saturday, 26 May 2012

Tabbouleh and embroidery

Phew, I got my exhaust sorted today. After an initial quote from rip off KwikFit for £380 I saved a good deal by going to ATS for £265 and the staff were much more pleasant, all rather costly as my catalytic converter needed replacing but it had to be done.

Had a nice wander around the Scarborough whilst the car was being worked on and bought some lovely herbs for my first attempt at Tabbouleh.
I found the recipe on Shaheens blog and it's very easy to make.

It's turned out lovely.

This is such a fresh and fragrant salad to have on a warm day like today.
It went very nicely with some other bits 'n pieces. Olive bread courtesy of M&S with some olive oil and balsamic to dip it in. 

Great that I didn't have to cook the bulgar wheat, just soak it in hot water because the oven is on its way out again and so I'm feeling a bit cooking & baking frustrated. It needs servicing again, maximum temperature at the moment is 130 C so a bit of a struggle, good for meringues though! The timing isn't great because if I have it serviced it will be at it's hottest over summer but there's nothing else other than the microwave or our one ring camping stove, oh well.

Spending the rest of the day making things, this is a little embroidery I am trying out from some new rubber stamps I got recently. Not sure what it will turn into yet.

Friday, 25 May 2012

More bunting - vintage linen

I seem to be having a bit of a run on bunting, probably because it is quick and easy to do inbetween other jobs.
I've been meaning to use some of my threadbare and ageing table cloths and tray covers for ages and bunting seemed a lovely way to add new life to something old.

Here is the vintage linen bunting with a few embellishments added, buttons, ribbons, beads etc and newly listed on Folksy.
Had a bit of Folksy success selling my alternative Jubilee bunting overnight.

Have a good weekend everyone, I've got a noisy and expensive exhaust to sort out tomorrow!

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Claire West brooch & some lavender envelopes

Things are still busy with work but recent things bought and made look like this.

I treated myself to this lovely ceramic bird brooch by artist friend, Claire West. I think the bird brooches were a limited line but take a look at Claire's wonderful and joyous paintings.

I have been making some lavender pouches in an envelope style with the help of some new postcard rubber stamps I bought the other week. Some are for Folksy and some for my forthcoming craft fair. (vintage peachy flowery fabric from friend Selina)

Thursday, 17 May 2012

Jubilee makes, bunting etc.

Some weeks ago I was asked if I'd like a stall at a craft fair in June which turns out to be the Jubilee weekend and the fair is having a Jubilee theme. I decided I would only do one craft fair this summer so this is the one. (Date: June 4th, Location: Kirkella, E. Yorks, Times: not known yet)

I'm not hugely into Jubilee or Royal things but I thought if I didn't have any red white & blue bunting then I might look a bit of a party pooper! Seeing as I had some stripey fabric in my stash I made some bunting, which then lead to making some party favour bags. However, I thought by the time I'm doing the craft fair people won't want the Jubilee stuff then so I've listed it on my Folksy shop. If I don't sell anything on the run up then I can always take it to the fair.
Here's my bunting:

These are the little fabric gift bags I made:

I then made some bunting which is probably more me and that is my Alternative Jubilee Steam Punk bunting.... Never Mind the Jubilee! Inspired a tad by Vivienne Westwood.
I notice that I made it onto the front of Folksy Best of British page today with the bunting, yippee.

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

New 1950s fabric design for Spoonflower

I've not had much time for Spoonflower contests recently but the competition which is running this week was to design a retro kitchen fabric, using just 4 colours which they had chosen.

As I had a design already created of some 1950's kitchen chairs, I used that and changed the colours to the 4 specified which were red, cream, mustard, dark brown, and white as an option.
Here are my 3 versions.

I submitted the red one, I thought it was slightly Mahler-esque in colour, a bit like my mug below.

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Robbie & Ruby robin update

I haven't done a robin update for a while, probably because everything was going along nicely but then of course something changes and within 24hrs it's all different.

After Robbie had paired up with Ruby I eventually realised where they had built their nest as I watched them flying in and out of an old farm building with nesting material.
Both robins were visiting me regularly, coming up to the window sill and Robbie who is the more confident one would tap sometimes at me on the glass, Robbie was also the only one who would eat from your hand.

A couple of weeks ago their visits for food became more regular and I guessed they were now feeding babies as they were taking tiny bits of food to the nest.

All seemed well until last week when Robbie & Ruby were feeding in the garden a third robin appeared and over about 2 days you could see both males fighting when food was put out. They are quite fierce little things, poor Robbie having another bird on his territory.
Well what can you do, I couldn't exactly chase this new imposter robin away so I just tried to separate 2 feeding dishes.

It's at this point I'm not sure what has happened because over the weekend only Ruby seems to be coming for food and Robbie seems to have disappeared. Ruby also seems to have a slightly poorly leg as she's stood on one most of the time and she looks a bit bedraggled.
The imposter robin is still visiting, I recognise him because he looks a bit shifty, his eyes are closer to his brow and he's not as cute as Robbie.

As far as I know I've not seen Robbie for at least 4 days so I'm puzzled as to whether the other one has driven him away, I'm sure he can't be sat on the nest or maybe he's no longer with us. 
Any further updates and I will report back.

This is one of my last pictures of him, happily eating!

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Latest textile work in Gallery 49 exhibition

Hello dear readers, I'm not doing very well at keeping up to date with blog posts or checking out your blogs at the moment, shame on me. My excuse is I've been swamped with 'proper' design work and that has to take priority to my arty crafty things.

I've found a few minutes to upload my latest textile work which is currently on display in the Menagerie exhibition at Gallery 49, Bridlington. There are some really super pieces of work and lots of prints by Mark Hearld but here is the link, it's on until end of June.

I recorded the progress of my artwork as I built up the layers so here is the timeline for anyone interested.

With invisible fabric pens I drew a face onto some thick canvas and began machine stitching the features, my intention with this piece was to keep the face as simple and uncoloured as possible, all the drama and colour was going to occur in her hair.
Did I say the piece is called Butterfly Girl.

Happy with the face I then used painted newsprint leaves stitched down for the hair.

I copied some victorian butterflies onto newsprint to add in the background. To give some texture I scrunched green bits of organza fabric and stitched it down.
To enhance the pale face I painted the background with some Derwent Inktense pencils. And then some more colour, time to stitch on 3D butterflies which are mostly from my own butterfly print fabric.
I had a lovely piece of vintage fabric to form a dress.

Almost there and nothing would be complete without a lovely doilly, so here it is for the collar!
The final icing on the cake which you might just make out are some small butterflies protruding on wires for that extra bit of 3D effect, flying round her hair.

Of course once the picture is complete I don't usually stop there. I took some photos and had a play around with the sun and the natural light in the background and it brings out some interesting effects because you can see all my stitches and strands in the background.

Back to work again, burning the midnight oil at the moment!

Friday, 4 May 2012

Coffee competition designs

Staying with a coffee theme like my previous post, a few weeks back I entered a coffee logo design competition which the Perky Peacock coffee shop was holding. Now I don't normally show much graphic design work on the blog but it was more pleasure than work as it was a competition on a subject dear to my heart!
The criteria was for a coffee themed logo which had an element of York to it and was to celebrate the independent coffee shops in York.

The winning design was not one of mine but it featured a bicycle style logo and that seems pretty appropriate as York is quite a cycle friendly city.
Anyway given that my designs will probably not see the light of day I decided to feature them on my blog to remind myself of what I created.

Here we go, there are a quite a few and they show how the design could adapt to feature on coffee cups, takeaway bags & mugs etc.