Sunday, 11 October 2009

Green Vine Scarf

Today, apart from finishing the catches on a couple of necklaces, I decided to do some silk painting. I am hoping to do quite a few scarves as presents this year. My Greta Aunt and Grandma normally get jewellery but I thought a change might be nice so this year they will get scarves. I also want to do a scarf for each of my close family.

I recently bought a book on silk painting and this has really helped. I have discovered that the best way to get smooth blending is to paint on wet silk. I also bought a few more tools and dyes and things. I still really need a frame though. Having the silk on the wall means the dye and water can gloop behind the silk and stick it to the wall. This effects the eveness of colour.

My Great Aunt likes all things green. I began by watering down some turquoise and painting the entire scarf. I then found a vine pattern I liked and copied the core pattern and blew it up. I then copied it onto the scarf using clear gesso. I then painted over it all with two shades of green in both diluted and neat form. The pattern has been preserved in turquoise and is lovely and subtle. I think this scarf looks a lot better than my previous efforts, despite being so simple... Wet silk is definitely easier to paint!

Busy Bee-ding

I know I havn't posted here for a while but that doesn't mean I havn't been busy, it just means I havn't picked up the camera or connected the laptop to the scanner...

So here we are with a little update and some very bad photos (my camera is awful at closeups).

Most of the ladies in my family seem to have birthdays around Christmas so this time of year always sparks a huge making session. By the end of it I am sick of the sight of jewellery... I don't like everything I make. Some people I make for have very different taste to me but I try to make things that they will like.

My Sister
This year she asked for lots of earrings, preferably long and dangly. So I made lots and she will get some for Christmas and some for her birthday.

My Aunt

She likes bold and funky designs and purple is her favourite colour. I still have one more thing to make for her, for her birthday. This bracelet is very intricate and made from two colours of delicas (little tube beads). It is sort of like an eggbox in shape.

My Niece

She is currently debating turning goth and requested chokers. The first is black and is a beautiful design. some of the beads have an AB finish for an extra bit of shine. The second is in carnival blue which is dark blue with a glaze on top so the beads are almost black but have an irridescent effect which includes purple and green but is mostly blue.

Future Mother-in-Law

She likes long things in purple and pink. The first is much darker thn I would normally make her but I like this sort of colour much more. The big beads are clear triangles with a metallic amethyst lined hole and they are beautiful. The second is a work in progress in peach, for a bit of variety. It is being evry slow and irritating. Spiral stair case is normaly quite quick but the drop beads I have included in this one are harder to pick up and are really slowing me down. I am also going to need to buy a lot more of them in order to finish it.
Family Friend No. 1

Last year I made her a necklace in this design. She liked it so much that she asked for some earrings to match so she has them and a bracelet to.

Family Friend No. 2

Is a beautiful lady who has the stature and personality to carry off big and bold things. Her preference is for earthy colours. This necklace includes chips of glistening goldstone.

You may have noticed that a very important person is missing - my Mum. I posted about her silver bracelet previously and I am going to make a lariat to match. I have an extra month for that though so i need to finish f m-i-l's necklace and do my Aunty's necklace before I start that. It will be a loom based piece like the bracelet in the same beads.

Sunday, 20 September 2009


I have just finished the bracelet form my Aunt. It is made of size eleven delicas sewn into squares which end up with two corners 'higher' than the others. The squares are then sewn together to form a sort of zig zaggy strip a bit like an egg box.

I love geometric shaped pieces like this but I have to say, I was very bored by the time I finished this one! The little beads combined with the way it folds up a bit means I have done a lot of stitching for a bracelet. I am so glad my Aunt has tiny wrists!

I will post photos once I get F to use his fancy camera that can zoom in on things and take nice pictures close up, the one he won't let me near....

Thursday, 3 September 2009

Beautiful Blog Candy!

Get a pretty package where even your name and address have been turned into art.

Find a lovely, inspiring card inside with beautiful words.

And a luxurious looking package as well.

Open it up and find a book (the original bow was far nicer but I had to look at it as soon as I opened it...)

Open the book and it expands!

Read the beautiful words and admire the lines and the colours and the textures.....

I can't do this fantastic book justice with my camera and scanner. Believe me, as good as it looks here, it is even more lovely in the flesh. The pages glint with metallic swirls. The covers have a lovely handmade paper sort of texture to them. And of course, there was no way I was going to bend it to make it easier to scan....

The words in full are....

for Rose

each day in itself brings with it an eternity

everything on earth is being continuously transformed because the earth is alive and it has a soul. We are part of that soul, so we rarely recognise that it is working for us.

remember that wherever your heart is, there you will find your treasure.

if what one finds is of pure matter it will never spoil and you can always come back. If what you found was only a moment of light like the explosion of a star you would find nothing on your return.

listen to your heart it knows all things because it came from the soul of the world and it will one day return there.

and the other side...

from the alchemist paulo coelho

the soul of the world is nourished by peoples happiness... to realise ones destiny is a persons only real obligation. when you want something all the universe conspires in helping you achieve it.

never stop dreaming follow the omens

intuition... a sudden immersion of the soul into yhe universal current of life where the histories of all people are connected and we are able to know everything because it is all written there

with love from Suzi XX

So Suzi, all I can say is wow! Thank you!

My Mum placed an order for Christmas. She wanted a silver bracelet. She like the lariat I was wearing that I made on the loom. She also would be happy with some subtle pattern. There also needed to be a secure but easy fastening.

This is what I made. A simple design using three colours of bead, two shades of silver grey and one metallic silver made on a loom. The catch is a very clever one I found in a book on spirals. Basically although each of the three big beads fits through the loop easily, they can't all go through at once.

Mandala Swap

Sometime ago I took part in a mandala swap for Artist's Trade cards and I really wanted to share the lovely cards I got back!

Thank you to everyone who took part!

Saturday, 22 August 2009

Finished Wish Jar

Well it is finished! It has been finished a little while and I have been poor at posting...

I painted it again with some sludgy purple paint I mixed up. I then had a flash of inspiration and painted over with the blue interference paint rather than the violet. This has given the jar a lovely lilac shimmery colour which I can't photograph....

I also edged the windows and the top with irridescent medium.

Then I wrote some wishes and put them in.

And I tied some wool around the top.

And now it sits on my altar....

Thursday, 13 August 2009

Dad's Day

One of the things I have been up to is this - a birthday pressie for my Dad. He loves greyhounds so even if he never uses his new silk hankie he will love it....

Thursday, 30 July 2009

Wrecked End

This is the official end of Wreck This Journal. It isn't the end of my journey with it though.

The last couple of weeks I havn't spent as much time on it, other things have been calling me. The journal is still on my desk though. There are things I have done and not scanned, not shared. There are more things to do that I have planned in my head.

I may do them, I may not.

Other things are stirring... I have started writing. Not since a child have I done this.

I think my beginning of WTJ was the thing I learnt the most from.

I learnt nothing is ever so broke it can't be made beautiful.

I learnt I am far braver and have far more gusto than I give myself credit for. Maybe I don't actually creep passively through life. Maybe I have forgotten all the tough decisions, the wild changes. Maybe just because I don't wish to turn my life on it's head right now, doesn't mean I have become passive, weak and cowardly.... I am just making different choices right now.

Art is play and play is art. It doesn't matter what you do as long as you let yourself out to play regularly....

Saturday, 25 July 2009

Pink Thing

The f m-i-l requested a long pink necklace for a friend which is to say I had absolutely no choice but to drop everything and get one made as soon as possible.

I went bead shopping on one of my days off and the sight of all those lovely beads distracted me from my anti-beading state and I accidentally decided on something a little more complicated than necessary. The result is a necklace that is sparkly and pink and pretty but really, really not my style...

I used...
Size 12 seed beads (little doughnuts) in pink transparent glass with a rainbow glaze, lilac translucent pearl.
Size 12 hex beads (heaxagonal tubes) in clear glass lined with lilac and clear glass lined with hot pink.
Size 12 Triangles in transparent pink lined with silver and clear frosted glass.
Size 12 tubes in pink silky (think the same affect as Tiger's Eye)
Size 10 seed beads (doughnuts again) in clear glass lined with pink and clear glass with a rainbow glaze.

The design is a simple spiral with three 'anchor points' and because each side has a slightly different length the tube is not completely straight is has a gentle spiral in it's shape as well as it's pattern...

Hen / Stag

Someone I know is getting married and a whole bunch of us are having a little stag do for him. Traditionally women don't go to stag parties but things are changing. I have never met his bride to be. In days gone by, with small communities you would automatically know bith the stag and the hen... So stag do it is! My first ever!

Someone got a cheap hen party set of a wand, headpiece and L plate and I being me, offeed to alter them.... Oh I enjoyed this soooo much! I let my inner child out and she had a ball! This is definitely my artists date for this week. The more icky and tacky and girly and over the top the better...

So we have wand with added ribbons as well as wire fixed with crimps with bells and beads. I also made a handle with gingham tissue paper and adhesive pink ribbon that says for you...

Fluffy L Plate was smeared liberally with interference violet paint. Adhesive ribbons were added top and bottom and all around the L. Stick on gems were added in clear and white on the white background and in pink on the L. I punched some hearts from pink pearlescent card and stuck these on too. I added some stickers to the L and then liberally dosed it all with glitter....
Finally we have fluffy horned headpiece with veil. I added ribbon in pink and white /pink pearl all down the back. I then sewed beads around the headband. Some cheap purple gems were added beneath the horns and then I painted the bottom of the veil with pink metallic paint...

Oh, did I mention the stag is a big, strong chap who is not in the slightest bit girly and can pick up cars? (yes really) Good job he is the sort who is up for a laugh...

Altar, Alter

Today I received a little packet of loveliness in the post, all the way from the other side of the world. One of the things was a beautiful clay disc with different symbols on each side. This disc is for use in earth healing and if you want to know more then Miss R is the lady and this is the place to go....

Now this disc was so lovely that it needed some place good to go. My altar was the obvious place for it to go. Except my altar only really existed in my head. I had the table in place but nothing beyond that. I suddenly realised I needed to gather the things together for it and get it done...

This was the first ever piece of silk painting I did and I always intended it to go on my altar and now it is, finally, there....

Some time ago I started, but never really finished a hearth craft course. I found a beautiful stone way back when which has been living in my kitchen. I always intended to paint it and tonight I finally did...

Here is my altar with the candle I dedicated on my hearthstone. The little figure is a very plain and crude polymer clay effort of mine. I struggled with this type of clay but a little prayer and it suddenly played ball and moved into shape. The ribbon I was given at Bride and of course, my new clay disc.

In large part, my abortive teacher training is responsible for the growth in craftiness in my life. This is a papier mache mask I made in one of our art sessions at college. We were supposed to work in pairs but I didn't, I wanted it to be mine and I had a vision. I had to work like crazy to get it done in the time but I did... and I love it. She sits above my altar...

So thank you Miss R, I achieved a lot today because of a lovely little gift...

Wish Jar Update

My wish jar is still very much a work in progress. I didn't post any pictures before of the early stages with clay so here are a few from just before I started painting.

It has had a few paint jobs.


White with grey and black.

Interference paint over the top.


Purple mixed with irridesent medium

Sample area of interference violet.

And still I am not happy. Something isn't right...

Saturday, 18 July 2009


This week hasn't been so very creative as others in many ways. Being sociable has reduced my free evenings and I am not sure if writing an astrology chart counts as creativity.

I have been having a few issues...

I intended to paint some patterns on to cotton for another project. I used silk paints and gutta to make the lines. The paint spread along the threads under the gutta. I painted the gutta on both sides but it just couldn't penetrate the heavy cotton threads enough and the silk paints just soaked along them, spreading colour. I guess this why batik using wax is more common on cotton.

Today I bought four little pots of fabric paint as well as some fabric painting brush pens. I am looking forward to seeing how they work out and whether or not I can get the effects I want.

I have also done a little braiding. This is a lovely skill I first learnt at a workshop I went to with my Mum. She chose to do one on something more patchworking but not being a sewer so much i went and braided. We used simple cardboard circles with notches in them to hold the threads. I now have a foam disc with many notches which came with instructions for producing more patterns of braid than the one I had always used before. It is very theraputic, moving the threads and something I can do with little thought in front of the TV, once I reach a nice rhythm.

WTJ stalled. I used last weekend for starting my wish jar and astrological chart rather than wrecking. I did a little today but this was on the page sent to be by the most marvellous Mel. I can't say what is in progress but I really decided to torture the poor thing! In the olden days, the most vile of criminals were sometimes hung, drawn, and quartered. I won't describe that barbaric practice here but suffice it to say the poor page has been hung, drawn (or coloured) and quartered but also stabbed and filled with little bullets. Well and truly destroyed... *grin*

I also started a book called The Artist's Way with a group at On The Wing and I think this is going to be a beautiful creative journey....

Monday, 13 July 2009

Wreck This Melon

The lovely Wright Stuff has given me a beautiful little award. I love this award, it always makes me smile whenever I see it. So here goes! (and you may find a theme...)

Ten things I love....
  • I love the coaster that Mel made from my get a friend to destroy this pag
  • I love the back cover of my journal, I love squidging the hearts and glitter around...
  • I love the way the silk paints soaked through and how they look on the black page with white letters.
  • I loved walking my book...
  • I liked playing fetch with the lost page and losing it in the sea...

And now for some of my most favouritest wreckers (trying to avoid people I always give awards to)

Thing is, all the wreckers are so fantastic... Everyone has been on such a journey with this book and it is incredible to see the differences in journey, the sheer variety this book has inspired. I love it!

I am so glad Jamie started this for us and I am also so glad that so many old friends are on the trip too... Mel, Sam, Leone, Beverley.... If you don't believe how fantastic this all is go here....

Saturday, 11 July 2009

Wishes in Waiting

Sometime ago I added the intention of making a wish jar to my list of 101 things. I had read about them on the blogs of others and tracked down some things online and seen some lovely pictures of ones others had made.

A wish jar is a jar where you put little pieces of paper with all your wishes written on them. It helps them to come true.... And is kind of neat and lovely....

Decorating a wish jar is very personal and every single one is different...

Miss R looked at my 101 list the other day and asked if I had made one yet. This got me to thinking about it and this morning I woke with an idea.

I had an idea to cover the jar with air drying clay and then make circular holes in the clay so you could see into the jar, like little portholes. From this idea flowed other ideas. to colour the glass in the portholes. To paint the clay with my irridescent paints. To paint the jar black under the clay so it would act like a mirror on those parts....

So I painted it black and rolled out clay and squodged it on over the top. I looked inside and discovered it hadn't had the desired effect. It looked black. Black with the occasional stippling of terracota. Not good. Off the clay came and the jar trundled off for a wash.

My next attempt was to smear green irridescent paint on and then on top of this, some blue irridescent paint. I then rolled out clay and squodged it all over the jar. I then used my knife to cut out the portholes. Where I made portholes I also removed the irridescent paint.

I nearly made a lid but I wasn't feeling a clay lid....

The jar is now drying, which might take some time...

Friday, 10 July 2009

Smiles by Post

I received a lovely package earlier this week from the fair Mel. I have already shared some things and will share others later but some I wanted to share right now. Little postal smiles...
Thank you Savannah!

Wrecking Crew

This week I have had some help with my wrecking. My 'Ask a Friend to do something DESTRUCTIVE' page has been completed and I didn't look while it was being wantonly destroyed. Mostly because it was taking place the other side of the Atlantic form me in Canada at the hands of my soul sister Mel.

I now have a delightful little coaster to sit on my art table amongst all my clutter! I also have a little innocent journal page with which to wreck some havoc. Mel also sent a lovely pressed flower for my pressed page and her daughter sent some goodies (see a different post).

I took my journal to the far west of this island I live on but I didn't do as I planned and lose my page there. I instead lost it in a small fishing cove near there. I wrote things I wanted to lose on the back and crumpled it up into a ball. I threw it for Little Dog a couple of times and she would run after it, pounce on it, throw it in the air and then drop it. When I threw it in the sea, she grabbed it back out again. She then dropped it but those sneaky waves came and stole it and within seconds it had vanished into a forest of seaweed....

I did a few other destructive things - nothing overly exotic really....
I coloured pages with oil pastels and then ripped and glued and taped...

I drew pictures with glitter glue and then closed the book so it spread...

I dropped silk paints onto a page and watched them spread. I intend to clean this page up by spattering it with bleach but I havn't gotten there yet.

I discovered that the silk paints had soaked through and I loved the way they made this page look.

I coloured the lines that were coloured outside of the line....

I do feel my wrecking pace has slowed. I am trying to not neglect other projects as much and my wrecking is now mostly confined to the weekend really.

Don't forget to click on the picture of the journal in my sidebar and go see what others have been doing!