Wednesday, 30 April 2008

Marigold & Spring into Art Exhibition

Finally finished the marigold - it started off as a brooch, but looked so nice with the embroidered leaves I decided to change it to a necklace. It took 3 evenings as I have stitched round the leaves this time, as well as adding a bit more satin stitch to the flower and a little ladybird. This is £20 + P&P SOLD
Two days until the Fleet Art Society 'Spring into Art' exhibition and I have framed four out of five paintings - just a little one to go but I ran out of masking tape. If any of you are in the Fleet area, come to the Harlington Centre to see the exhibition 3rd & 4th May. I shall be 'demonstrating' (well, painting while people walk past!) Sunday morning - I've started another zebra picture, back in the comfort zone!

Monday, 28 April 2008

Buttercups & Daisies...

Here are the latest felt doo-dads. There is a Michaelmas Daisy necklace, with five flowers and some leaves this time. The flowers are slightly larger than the previous wild daisies, well, because they are in real life too! The stems and leaves are in a rather nice blue-green felt that I found, very understated. All painstakingly embroidered too. £20 + P&P

In the centre is a little buttercup brooch, with a flower, a bud and a leaf. Small and cute! £5 + P&P

I'm currently working on a bright orange marigold - would have finished it last night if not for passing out in front of the tv and waking at 11.30 with my needle still in my hand! I also have to frame 5 paintings this week ready for a local exhibition at the weekend - more on that later. I loathe framing, but it's a darn sight cheaper than sending them off to be done at a shop - five would be beyond my means at the moment! So I've taught myself how to cut a proper mount and how not to drop kick the lot across the room when I've taken an hour to frame and seal a painting only to discover a dog hair smack bang in the middle under the glass......

Friday, 25 April 2008

Finally Finished..

Spent a day or so re-working this as I just didn't like it before. This is as far as it goes for this painting - time for something else now.

Thursday, 24 April 2008

More Flowers!

As you can see, I'm just churning the flowers out at the moment!
Firstly, there is another daisy-chain necklace - different to the other one as I don't have any more of the thin, smooth white felt I used before and can't find any similar. Goodness knows where it came from! So as a result, the daisies in the second necklace are slightly larger as the felt is fatter, which means there are two less of them. Just as much work involved though! Price, same as before £20 + P&P

Secondly, I have made a brooch and the flower this time is called Cosmos. I grew a big patch of these last year in the garden and they are simply beautiful with their tall stems, delicate lacy green leaves and myriads of cup shaped flowers in various shades of pink. I spent many hours painting and sketching them last summer. The brooch just has the one bloom, embroidered in pink and three leaves. £5 + P&P

I'm not too sure if there will be any more flowers for a couple of days - my SO is coming home tonight for the weekend so I doubt I'll be spending my time sewing!

I'm in the process of re-working the flamingo painting - I simply hated the background and was not happy to leave it that way so there has been some serious over-painting going on. Watch this space...

Wednesday, 23 April 2008

African Violet

Carrying on with the felt flowers, a little African Violet brooch, with embroidered leaves.
£5 + p&P SOLD

Tuesday, 22 April 2008


Which one of you doesn't remember when you were small and summers seemed endless, sitting on the grass in the sunshine making daisy-chain necklaces, bracelets, and circlets then decking yourself out like Titania? Even now as a 40-something adult I still love making daisy-chains and think they are the simplest and prettiest of adornments. It always shocks me in my job at an infant school how few children have been shown how to do this and it gives me great pleasure to see their faces when they learn and can make themselves such finery - for an hour at least until the blooms wilt!

So a while back when I made a little daisy as a decoration for a teddy, I was so taken with the idea I decided to see if I could expand it into jewellery. First there was a brooch, which was lovely but not enough - it had to be a full-blown necklace. So after two solid 4 hour evenings of sewing, the above is the result. I love it!! Hope you do too - if you'd like it for your very own, it is £20 + p&p Be assured there will be more of this type of thing - after I've given my poor eyes a rest! SOLD!

Monday, 21 April 2008

Flamingoes again....

This is what I've been working on for the past couple of weeks or so. It's based on a load of photographs I took during a visit to Birdworld, Farnham a while back. It's painted in acrylics on canvas and a bit of a change in direction for me - not sure I like it to be honest. Let me know what you think, and in the meantime I'm going back to the safety of painting zebras for a while....

Sunday, 20 April 2008


Here's a little felt mermaid, I think her name must be Pearl as she has one on her seaweed necklace and a pair of pearl earrings. She has pastel green hair with a starfish and a two-tone blue tail. These are such fun to make!

Saturday, 19 April 2008

Brindle & Dot

It's not very long until the first of the craft fairs, so I thought it was time to make a few more of the little felt puppies. We have one brindled little chap with a white belly complete with his leather collar, comfy magenta and green bed, chew toy, bag of biscuits, tin of food and a bowl. Dot the dalmation is very jealous as she only has the collar so far....she'll get the rest of her belongings later today! These little sets are for sale here as well if you would like one - £10 + P&P

In the background of the photo you can see my TIDY desk! Make a note of it - it hasn't been like that since I don't know when and I'm sure it won't remain that way for very long. With Bob away plus time off from the day job, I have been cleaning (yeuch!) with a vengeance. I loathe and despise housework, but I do love having a clean and tidy home (bearing in mind my idea of tidy may be a whole lot different to yours.....) I'm sure once I go back to work the mess will creep up on me again, but for now I'm enjoying actually seeing the surfaces of tables and sideboards....what a novelty!

Wednesday, 16 April 2008

Not so Fugly now....

You may remember last week I 'won' some beads from Laura, basically because she made them and hated them, and called the poor little things Fuglies. The above is the necklace I made with them which I am really pleased with - I don't think they are fugly at all! I used copper wire, bashed it about to make the circular links and cooked all the bits in the oven for an hour to age them - thank you Sybille of Magpie Magic for your tips on how to do this! I then wired it all together using little matching blue glass beads in between the links. I was aiming for a very retro Sixties/Seventies look, inspired by the long strings of 'Love Beads' we used to wear back then. Hopefully I've pulled it off!

Let me know what you all think.....

Tuesday, 15 April 2008

Lil Dawg...

Just a little doggy I made last night..changed the pattern a bit by giving him different coloured legs and tail, adding a collar with silver tag and a couple of red flowers with beads in the centre.
Not too sure what to do with him/her, whether to leave it as a mascot or make it into a brooch/fridge magnet/keyring.

Monday, 14 April 2008

..And the Winner is.....

Just chopped up lots of little pieces of pink paper with your names on, asked my daughter to pick one out of a bowl (sorry, no photos!) and the winner of my 200th post giveaway is ....
Mystery gift winging it's way to you........

Pink Flamingo Umbrella & Last Chance for Giveaway

You only have until the end of the day to enter my 200th Post Giveaway - leave your name and I'll pick a winner of a mystery gift at the end of today.

I spent yesterday turning a pink umbrella into a flamingo! I saw the method in a magazine a while back but it needed a pure white umbrella and I had nowhere to get one from. Then by chance in our local cheap & cheerful store I found a perfect pink umbrella for a ridiculous £3.

So I spent Saturday painting the handle to look like this -

Then I made two feather stampers out of thin foam and cardboard and yesterday decorated the fabric to look like this -

The whole thing has turned out really well - I think it is such a cute idea. Trouble is, the rain has stopped and the sun is shining......but this is Britain, I'm sure we'll be back to wet weather soon enough.

If you'd like an umbrella like this, let me know - but quickly as there were only a couple of them left in the shop.

I'm nearing completeion of the latest painting - also flamingoes. I don't know, these obsessions tend to creep up on me - I'll be dressing in pink and standling on one leg in a puddle next....

Friday, 11 April 2008

Surprisingly difficult...

The above delicate little necklace looks deceptively simple - however, I was amazed last night when I finished it to look up at the clock and find I had taken about four hours to make it! I had taken apart all the old (no, not vintage nor antique, just OLD) jewellery from E-bay and one of the reasons I had bought it all was the high proportion of rosy glass beads. I used the ones with AB coating together with little greenish AB beads from Greece hung on antique-look brass wire. There is a tiny dark brass bird charm hanging with the little collection of beads and chain at the focal point. All very tiny and has an old-fashioned look to it - needs to be worn with a floaty chiffon summer dress while you eat cucumber sandwiches on a rug in the sunshine.....
£15 + P&P!

Please don't forget the 200th post draw - three more days to put your name down for a mystery gift. Don't know why I've coincided it with the departure of my SO for foreign climes....whatever you win may be tear-stained... Haha! As he'll be back within a couple of days to pick up his tools and collect a client's car, I really don't think I'll be that sad!

Thursday, 10 April 2008

Teardrop Necklace and Presents....

Really enjoying getting back to work with beads and wire at the moment, although I only had the time to make one necklace yesterday as it was a bit complicated. This is made using silver wire and clear and frosted glass teardrop beads. The hand-made chain incorporates clear seed beads on each link. £15 + P&P
I didn't make the above - isn't it beautiful? This was my swap for the felt dragon and daisy brooch from the lovely Sybille at Magpie Magic. She made this just for me and I absolutely adore it - the wire has been hammered to an almost paper fine finish,and there are so many different charms and beads all with a stormy sea theme. I can't stop looking at all it's components and admiring it all! If you haven't seen Sybille's work, have a look here - you will be blown away!

I spent today in Basingstoke taking my daughter on a long overdue visit to the cinema - Horton Hears a Who, which is fun - and some retail therapy. Who knew Primark was such a brilliant place - not me! Came out with a huge bag of goodies for under £30 in total - can't be bad! When we got home, I found a parcel on the doorstep which was some old jewellery from E-bay which will be washed and cannibalised. When I turned on the computer, I discovered I had won some fabulous beads from Laura - check out her work here. And I got my bank to re-imburse a £12 charge with no quibble - what a great day!

Wednesday, 9 April 2008

Glass & Gulls

I spent an evening back at the beads and wire last night and had lots of fun. I made the above two bracelets, the first using bronze wire and AB glass beads with a little vintage brass bird and heart charm. It is very delicate and pretty, extremely feminine. The second is chunkier with turquoise glass beads decorated with white flowers on silver wire with black seed beads as spacers. Both bracelets are £7 each + P&P
The above set is made using gold-coloured wire together with turquoise and clear glass cubes, very polished and shiny. There are three vintage brass gull charms as focals. Very clean looking and with a lovely sparkle in the light evocative of sun on the sea - that was the idea, anyway! Set £20 + P&P
The above is a pendant made with a very large chunky glass bead that I purchased from Pericles the little old man in Monastiriki market, Athens. I have bent silver wire around it and used a similar smaller square bead to keep it all in place, and hung the whole thing on a soft grey suede thong. I'm wearing this as I type, it's not going anywhere....not just because I like it but because I managed to break the smaller bead with my pliers and it's super-glued together - whoops!

And finally, here is the commission I worked on over the weekend - a deep blue chunky glass bead (again from Pericles - only one left now...) with silver wire twisted around it together with a turquoise glass cubic bead, hung on a brown thong with two cubic beads on the tassels. The earrings match with dark blue round beads faced with wire and the cubic turquoise beads. Needless to say, this is sold already.

Don't forget to enter the 200th post giveaway - you have until Monday.....

Monday, 7 April 2008

Despite the Confusion....

It's a busy time at home, but I have still found the opportunity to get on with some crafting. The above is a very small knitted bear, made with pale blue baby yarn (thank you free stash!) on size 14 needles - there goes my eyesight.... She is in a (removeable) pink felt dress, embroidered with tiny blue flowers and a ribbon corsage. Looking for a home, £10 + P&P
This little chap already has a home and will be on his way there very shortly. It's a little felt dragon I made by way of a swap with Sybille at Magpie Magic. In return she has made me the most fantastic necklace with a marine theme (you know that is my weakness...) and I am so excited. You can have a look at it here, as well as the rest of Sybille's simply amazing jewellery.

And as the dragon will be going to Sybille's son, I thought she should have a little something for herself. The above is a felt daisy brooch, embroidered, and I am so pleased with it. Ever since making separate daisies for decorating a bear, I have thought about turning the idea into jewellery and am thrilled that it worked so well. There will be more in this style - if you would like something similar, let me know.

I have been working on a commission (not quite ready to show as need a couple of findings) and then got carried away making the above. It is a plethora (!) of glass leaves, flowers, AB beads and vintage brass charms - leaves and a humming bird - all hung on an antique-look chain. Very pretty when worn and produces the requisite tinkling noise as you move! £15 + P+P

Don't forget the 200th post giveaway - still waiting for more than two people to enter!

Sunday, 6 April 2008

200th Post!!

I can't believe this is the 200th time I have posted on here! From someone who was terrified to use the computer, let alone set up a blog or website, what a long way I've come. It has been a load of fun, I've 'met' some lovely people through this blog who share my interests and help me to realise I am not some lone oddball sitting at home painting/knitting/crocheting/beading - there are hundreds, nay thousands of us out there! Having this virtual community has given me the impetus to keep on crafting and to try harder to make and sell my bits and pieces - next stop an Etsy shop by the way, watch this space.

So by way of a thank you, as promised, there will be a '200th Post' giveaway. I have decided that Toby's idea was the best, to have a mystery prize. So all you have to do is leave your name and a comment and I'll put you in the draw - you know the routine by now! If you feel like guiding my hand by suggesting what sort of prize you would prefer, that's fine. I'll pull the name out after the 14th April.

Woke up this morning to a light frost....toddled downstairs, made a cup of tea and let the dogs out for their early-morning widdle in the garden, and absent-mindedly covered up my (struggling) banana plant on the patio just in case the weather men had got it right. Within ten minutes it had started to snow. After half an hour, it looked like this!! This is the lane behind my house that I walk the dogs on every day, which has been a sea of mud for the past 8 months. Look at it now! Felt like I had been transported to Narnia........

This was when the blizzards had stopped and the sun was struggling to come through - it was all so beautiful, clean and untouched.

And this is the state of one of my dogs after half an hour cavorting in the snow - just look at his feet! The other one had to be de-dagged entirely, he was carrying a whole collection of snow-balls attached to his legs and undercarriage. But what fun they had, running and chasing each other and exploring the 'new' countryside!

Not much to show craft-wise at the moment. I have been making a couple of things, but one is for a swap and I don't want to spoil the surprise just yet, and the other not finished. I have been other-wise occupied and not in a very creative mood. My partner handed in his notice at work 3 weeks ago out of the blue after a row (well, we knew he was thinking about it, but not quite like this....) and we have been in a constant state of fear and worry ever since! He has actually found another (better) job to carry on straight after his notice finishes on the current one - trouble is, it is in Belgium. I don't think I need to go into how much turmoil this has thrown us into - I just hope it is worth it. That, compounded with some tough days at the school job, has meant I'm not feeling terribly inspired of late! There is a painting on the way, and hopefully now that the school holidays have started I will have the time (in between getting Sir ready for the off next weekend..) to get on with it. Here's hoping....