Wednesday, 13 August 2008

Beijing Dreams

In all my excitement of starting up my blog I nearly forgot to mention that I have some work in a lovely exhibition called Beijing Dreams at the Scunthorpe Visual Arts Centre Oriental figures have always had a way of finding themselves in my work - I've always loved Eastern influences in pattern and design and was lucky enough to go to Japan in the '80's to demonstrate my work in a large department store . On the journey there we were forced to land in Beijing due to a typhoon in Tokyo and were treated to a whirlwind tour of the city and dinner courtesy of the air line ( Pakistan ) I'm not sure one would get the same treatment nowadays !

Following some images that are in the show are some other items of Eastern promise that are dotted around the studio.

These Oriental Poppy fairies are made with red Habitai silk and black netting.
A hanging Geisha encased in cellophane. I've mad a lot of these and found men's neckties to be the perfect source of
small pattern that quite often can pass as kimono material !

The Willow pattern china that belonged to my Grandmother always fascinated me - all the little people crossing the bridges, fishing and sailing ... what a lovely starting point for an embroidery and a chance to wallow in blue !

These braids are perfect for when I need some small scale pattern for the Geisha's obi.
I haven't had a chance to use the the figurative one yet but feel it's got that Eastern touch.

My Japanese paper drawers hide a stash of sea-shells.

This pink Chinamen box holds all my scrap watercolour paper( not sure what I'm saving it for though ! )

Sunday, 10 August 2008

Stripy Fairies

Well after an exhausting 48 hours I've finally got my shop up ( but I hesitate to say running !) and I'm pleased to announce that these are the first fairies to sit on its shelves. I am however wondering if I am the only blogging wimp who has found it so tiring to get this whole venture off the ground ? I have scoured other people's blogs - gone to their first postings and yet I see no whinging about the brain power involved in it all! Not that I want to put anybody else out there off from going for it themselves - it's all totally do-able if you plod through each and every step ... I'm probably just impatient and would rather be spending the time making things, however now I'm virtually there I'm looking forward to enjoying the benefits of this vast community. Many thanks for comments from Fred, Gabriela, Cavania and Posy - so nice to know that someone is listening and viewing !

More Stripy Fairies

Thursday, 7 August 2008

New look

I hope I haven't surprised too many of you with this new green look to my blog ! I have just been setting up my etsy shop and Brian convinced me that this was the way to go with my banner on both sites, so no more messing around now, the die is cast . Hope to have the link to etsy up early next week and some stripy fairies will be my first batch of merchandise !

Tuesday, 5 August 2008

Fern Fairy

This fairy escaped the post below but here she is making a late entrance ( or is she early ? I'm still getting used to organising the backward sequence of blogging ! )

sunny spots

Sorry this water colour isn't of seasonal flowers but it's the sunniest one I could find! These sunny spots were taken yesterday and I couldn't waste them ... it has been a much more productive day in the studio today due to the rainy morning. I've been making a set of stripy skirted fairies which I shall post up when the wings are sewn on. To paint or to sew has always been my dilemma ; I'm in a sewing mode at the moment which means I don't get to listen to Radio 4 as much as I would like due to my rattling sewing machine ... painting is much more peaceful but then I miss the fun factor of easy colour choices that come easily with using fabrics ... painting is testing , never theraputic, yet I love it too... oh decisions, decisions !

Monday, 4 August 2008

Heartfelt thanks

Thanks so much to Stephanie at 'My Sweet Little fairy' and Claire at 'Pixieland'for agreeing to link up to me; I hope soon that people will actually be reading this blog ! In this spirit I thought I would post up some hearts around the cottage, not very original I know but this eternal symbol always seems to warm the cockles ( as we say here, apologies to any American readers who feel confused ! )
A new find over the week end, just lovely and red and rustic. I find the old dark beams in our cottage need a strong colour to compete with them; Brian favours sludgy colours but I've been managing to sneak in this accent colour over the years and now he's got used to it ( it's sometimes tricky having a designer partner who has their very own ideas on the decor! )

Friday, 1 August 2008

teeny weeny summer fairies

Can't leave this post without some actual fairies on it. These little ladies are 4cm high.

summery soup

This was our favourite first course of the holiday and like most of the best things it was really simple (and very refreshing.) I've managed to recreate it since getting back home and though 'simple' a bit of a fiddle but not overly so. For two you need about 500g of really flavoursome tomatoes which you skin ( fiddly ) and then de-seed ( fiddly. ) Put the seeds in a sieve as you scoop them out to keep the juices and then give them a good push down with a wooden spoon to extract every last bit of flavour ( I'm a Cancerian and can't stand waste ! ) Liquidise the flesh and juice together till smooth and then season with salt and pepper and chill in the coldest part of the fridge. When ready to eat, float some good mozzerella 'petals'on top. Drizzle with olive oil and scatter with fresh marjoram or basil. I added an ice cube too as you want it REALLY cold ... yum.
When we came back to our room after dinner on the first evening we were greeted with these rose petals on the bathroom
mat, and petals strewn on top of a waiting hot bubble bath - ooh, how romantic !


Thought this blog could be looking a bit more summery - this photo was taken at the hotel we have just come back from on our honeymoon at Praiano on the Amalfi coast in Italy. It is called Casa Angelina and very lovely it was too ( very white and modern which is unusual in that area.) The Mediterranean sun just streamed through these glass sculptures that were dotted around the place.