Wednesday, 29 April 2015

Egg and Spoon

On my desk this week I have a nest in a spoon!
I collect pretty teaspoons from charity shops and decided I needed to use some up before buying any more!

A huge thank you to everyone for their kind wishes last week - I really appreciated them, and now I'm back in the world of NHS time I'm hoping I won't have to wait too long to be sorted out again!

I am linking up with What's On Your Workdesk Wednesday.

Monday, 27 April 2015

Lilac Blossom

It's that wonderful time of year again when the lilac is in bloom.
  The scent is intoxicating and the colour is heavenly. 
For a very  short time the straggly, ugly shrub is transformed - and it is well worth the wait!

I am linking up with Judith for Mosaic Monday over at Lavender Cottage.

Wednesday, 22 April 2015

Seed Head Embroidery and WOYWW #307

There is not much happening on my desk this week I'm afraid.
Some post-op complications mean I'm waiting for more surgery and I'm finding it a bit of a struggle to keep my enthusiasm going!
 However, I've been doing a little embroidery - it's very relaxing, and it's quite different for me to be working without a plan in mind - I'm just seeing where it takes me!  


I'm linking up with What's On Your Workdesk Wednesday.

Sunday, 19 April 2015

Paper Artsy - Niche Challenge

For Paper Artsy I crocheted my own niche!  
I used a nesty brown colour yarn and needle felted over it. 
 I decorated it with lace, beads, feathers, vintage millinery flowers,
moss, moths and a miniature cup and teapot.
Bunting was added - it looked too twee.
Bunting was taken away - the top half looked too bare.
Bunting was added again - still unsure.  
Bunting might be removed again depending on my mood!

I was initially inspired by the beautiful image of a small cart with the bird in it  (on the Paper Artsy blog here) and I planned to make a little nest for a bird, with lots of precious bits collected.  However, as often happens it turned out differently to how I imagined and I ended up with a tea party and not a bird in sight!

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

The Emergence of Spring

For WOYWW this week - four little teabags depicting the emergence of Spring.
I used some of the eco-printed papers I made and also a selection of printed fabric, sari silk, beads and lace.

Wednesday, 8 April 2015

Paper Artsy - Grunge Paste Challenge

 The latest Paper Artsy challenge is to use Grunge Paste,and over on their blog I was inspired by Liesbeth Fidder's mosaic with it's beautiful frame looking like stained glass.  This gave me the idea to make a garden path, with some old pieces of sea-worn pottery, using Grunge Paste as the grout.  I also used it with rusting powder and stencilled it on the background papers.  I added antique clay pipe stems, wire and beading, threads around the wires, hand embroidery and a tiny needle-felted birds nest.

I wanted to create the feeling of moving away from winter, and to show the subtle changes as Spring arrives, growth coming up from below, little hints of greenery, the green beads replacing the white frosty ones and of course the birds nest with little pieces of green moss and lichen.

Winter Wall Hanging

 On my desk this week for WOYWW - a small winter garden wall hanging.
I've been working on it  for a long time but put it to one side when it didn't seem to be going in the direction I wanted.   
After a break from each other we made friends again and I think I am calling it finished now!

 I recently came across a technique over at Patty's blog Magpie's Nest for making faux resin paper - she makes some beautiful art with it and it's well worth a look.  Here's a link to the Youtube video tutorial.  It seemed so easy that I just had to give it a try and I was really pleased with the results - here's some of it being used in the little wall hanging.

Friday, 3 April 2015

Velvet Seed Head

 Although winter is pretty much over I'm still bursting with ideas for the Winter Garden series of work I've been doing - this is a large seed head that I found and I simply had to fill each seed pod hole with a little velvet cushion!  

I chose warm, wintery coloured velvets, silver micro beads to represent frost and I added some silver gilding paste around the edges and on the back of it.

I think I shall be putting Winter to one side soon - the garden is coming alive
and signs of winter are receding rapidly! 

Wednesday, 1 April 2015

Eco Printing and WOYWW #304

This week, for WOYWW, I've been eco printing the last of my 'get well' flowers - it seemed such a shame to just chuck them in the bin while they still had a little life left!  
Here are a few of my results and some instructions if anyone is interested.

I have been printing and dyeing with foliage on a very simple level for years - I love it and I always feel so excited at the moment the prints are revealed!  The last time I did it I used a brick to add weight and hold down the layers of plants.  However I recently came across a slightly different method of printing, using tiles and elastic bands when I visited the beautiful Interlaced-Textile Arts blog.  Here is my version of printing using Marilyn's method (she can also be found on Facebook here and I can assure you that this extremely talented lady is well worth a visit!)

Firstly, soak some thick papers or card in warm water or white vinegar.
Lay a wall tile smooth side up and place the first sheet of card/paper on it. 
Build up layers of card/papers with a variety of foliage in between the sheets.

Place a second wall tile on the pile, with the smooth side down and then firmly bind together with several elastic bands.
Place in a steamer and steam for one or two hours.

I picked up a very cheap steamer with two steaming pans and my husband cut out the bottom of the top one so the tiles would fit in it, which you can see in the picture below - I have to be very careful of the sharp edge.  There are other ways without vandalising a perfectly good steamer!  As I mentioned before you can use a brick or heavy stones to weigh down the pile of papers in the bottom of the pan, or use a matching sized saucepan as a makeshift lid, as Marilyn did, to cover the extra height of the tiles if the steamer is too shallow.