Tuesday, 23 December 2008

Merry Christmas

Just to say Merry Christmas to you all, hope you have a wonderful time and I will see you in the New Year. Thanks for all the comments, well wishes and kind words throughout 2008 and long may the blog continue!!!

Friday, 19 December 2008

Gone all textiley

Well, finally I have spent some time in the studio. I have been busy making a stew for my friends from work, who are all coming over to mine tonight, and while that was cooking away in the oven I went up to the studio to dig out some of my college work. I was feeling like I needed a bit of a change of direction and fancied getting the sewing machine out for a bit of stitching. ABove are the Christmas canvasses I have finally completed, they will all be getting wrapped up and given for Xmas. I'm pleased with them.

Below, are the results of a college project I did a couple of years ago. They were all based on my garden, as inspiration, and used a variety of new techniques I hadn't tried before.

Fabric paint and beading, and handstitching for this one above and below, couching, which is where you use a variety of fibres and fix them onto a fabric backing, embellishing them with a few sparklies if the fancy takes you.

This one above, was a bit of an experiment with Tyvek, a weird material that goes all warped when heated. It was overlaid onto voile and that was overlaid onto a painted background, using the same signature colours from the first piece. Also beaded and stitched to give it a bit more interest. Below is my fave, I think because it is softer and more tactile, this was based on a knitted background of different wools and fibres, stitched onto with buttons and ribbons etc.

So thats my project. I had to go and have a look at them as its nice tor efresh the memory and get some ideas for new work. While I was at it, I revamped one of my mood boards in the studio, and thought it looked so nice that I thought I would share it with you!! Backing paper, courtesy of IKEA.

ANd while all this activity was going on, Jack grabbed the best seat in the house (yes, I know, the new sofa-bed, which he was never going to be allowed on). Usually when he is with me in the studio, he is really restless and won't chill out, I now know why, it's because the floor is too hard and he is too spoiled! He seemes quite happy to while away the afternoon, listening to radio2, and didn't move at all.

And I was busy, beavering away at my sewing machine, trying out a new idea that I've had in my head for a while. This is how it started...... I know it looks crap, but bear with me, I HOPE it will end up looking a lot better....

And this is how it's progressing, its a landscape of sorts, which will eventually be cropped and mounted in a thin strip (quite abstract for me) onto a backing canvas. There is a long way to go with it, but I will post end results when done, if I'm happy with it.

Thursday, 18 December 2008

Beckys reindeer

A friends daughter drew this for me at the weekend. I just love how children draw. I have made all of my gift tags for Christmas pressies using this cute little reindeer. Do you think she will mind? I hope not.

Have had another busy day off work, goodness me I really don't know where the time goes. I think I need to start planning my day out in half hour slots or something in order to actually get some studio time in. The day started well with a 7.30am swim, which is great for waking you up (and also for making you feel a little smug and self-satisfied!), I have organised a trip to London with my sister in January (which will include a Christmas-present-to-each-other visit to the Sanctuary Spa for lots of pampering and girly stuff), taken the dog for a walk, wrapped all the presents up, posted the cards, made tea, bought my final Christmas pressies and a birthday present for my god-son, as well as spending a bit of time making a canvas in the studio. I suppose when its all written down in a list like that it makes me realise I haven't actually wasted the day at all, but have gots lots of useful things done, which does make me feel good. What have you been up to today?

Monday, 15 December 2008

Party Girl

Cor blimey Mrs, what a weekend. Party, Party, Party! In fact I partied until I could party no more, and was in my pjs, by 2pm on Sunday and on the sofa for the day, bar of choc in hand, seriously contemplating giving up alcohol for the rest of my life!!
I have spent the grand total of zero time in the studio, so I'm going to make up for that and do a little bit of sketching tonight, in my pjs! And that is why I have added a picture of some wrapping paper that my sister wrapped up my b'day pressie in (I have no new work to tell you about). I love the paper, I think it's from IKEA??

Thursday, 11 December 2008

morning walk

My husband has a few days off work this week and we are spending them together, Day 1 involving a lie-in and then a lovely brisk walk along the river in the cold crisp winter air.

Wednesday, 10 December 2008

feeling good

Even though I have no pics to post, I thought I would post just to say, thank goodness for ace hairdressers. When you find a good one, make sure you keep them!

Now as most of you know, I'm not really a girly-girl. I was a bit of a tom boy when I was growing up, more into trainsets, horses, remote control cars, racing my cousins on our bikes, catching tadpoles, riding on tractors, and generally getting my hands dirty, than Cindy-dolls, push chairs and pink things!! And unfortunately this has carried on into my adult life. I hardly ever wear a dress and high heels, and would rather slob around the house in jeans, a baggy jumper and fave pair of slippers than get dressed up in my glad-rags, do my hair and put a bit of slap on for a night out on the town.

BUT, every now and again, I go and splurge on a lovely new haircut and colour by my fab hairdresser Mary (who just KNOWS my hair and always does an ace job) and I come home feeling all girly and nice. I have my works Xmas do this weekend, which I 'kind of' organised (bad planning as this Sat is the X-factor grande finale.... doh!!) but now my hair is all bright and blonded and cut I feel the need to go out and buy a new dress, put on my best high heels and go out for a good old boogie with my gals. We will probably drink FAR too much wine and make complete fool of ourselves on the dance floor, but I have a feeling we are going to have lots of fun. Bring on the hangover Sunday morning..............

Sunday, 7 December 2008

End of a fab weekend...

I hope everyone has had as good a weekend as I have, spent lots of time with my family, and just had a lovely, lovely time. Saw Dad on his birthday and he liked his card (thought it was a professionally done one, which was quite a compliment!). I got my beautiful birthday pressies from my sister, a gorgeous antique wooden carrying box, which will hold all of my art stuff, magazine subscription and a very glittery sparkly sketchbook (which looks too nice to use!), lucky old me eh? I love going back up North, but I just feel so homesick when I come back to our little cottage in Notts. You would think that after 15 years of living away I wouldn't still feel homesick, but there you go, I'm just a big sentimental softie. Hopefully one day soon I will live nearer to my family..... sigh! My mam wasn't well this weekend, which was a huge shame as we didn't get to spend much time with my parents, that just made me want to stay even more!
On the drve back down we stopped off at an amazing gallery fifiefofum which is set on the north side of the Tyne Valley in amazingly beautiful surroundings. There was such a welcoming, friendly atmosphere, and some fab art, ceramics and jewellery to look at. We met local artist Sue Moffitt (who I think owns the gallery), and it was great to see her at work and have a chat and cup of coffee. I you are ever passing through, the gallery isn't far from the A69, and is well worth a stop-off.

Since we got back home this afternoon we have been busy, busy busy. We put our Christmas tree up, and lots of fairy lights, Steve made some Xmas cakes and I also finished (AT LAST!!!) some of my canvasses, courtesy of my sis, little-hb, who has loaned me her staple-gun. I am obviously not meant to own one, after all the things that have gone wrong with mine, so have borrowed hers instead. And it works just fine! And I managed not to injure anyone/thing in the process. See finished results above!! Yey!

Friday, 5 December 2008

Happy Birthday Dad

Today its my dads birthday. I had this idea of a 'jigsaw' woodcutter cutting out some letters out of wood (my dad is really good at all things practical, he once built a motorhome/RV for us all to go on holiday in, rebuilt two vintage cars my me and my sisters first cars, for me a VW beetle, which was just sooooo cool, I loved it, and also a British-Racing Green Mini for my next sister, and also had a huge part in building the house that we all grew up in and where my parents still live). Anyway, he's just the best Dad in the world so the least I could do was design him his very own birthday card. I wasn't quite happy with the lettering on the top card, couldn't get it to work quite as I had imagined so I decided to make the letters out of the flex, I think that works better.

Thursday, 4 December 2008

New home

Available in my Etsy shop now.........

Does anyone know anyone who is moving house?? Ha, I know that's a bit of a joke in the current economic climate, but I have been playing with ideas this morning and have come up with this from my house series from my jollies. Probably not the most commercially successful idea I have ever had... but I'm sure one day it might come in useful!!

Ok, off to design my dads birthday card!!