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Archive for the ‘Creations’ Category

Desk altar 1

My main altar shrine space in my house is full of colour, crystals, candles and things that I find inspiring reminders of my spirituality. For my desk altar I wanted something cleaner, purer and simpler since my studio space and desk itself gets cluttered enough already.

Desk altar 2

It took a couple of sessions with the gouache paints but I’m pleased with how it turned out in the end. Simple knotwork with just a little blending of two tones of purple and green (my two favourite colours).

Desk altar 3

And here it is with a few bits on it. The candles were a sale find in Sainsbury’s from their winter collection, a hagstone, crystal, seed pod and a small glass bowl complete the set up. I like to have a candle on each side of my altars/shrines which is why I only painted the central area of the back.

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unusual still life

Unusual Still Life ~ Original Painting

Who says that still life paintings can’t be fun and colourful? The Unusual Still Life started as a still life experiment that became something of it’s own, a real insight into how I view things and the energy in everything.  A mix of colour, shape, form and marks, Unusual Still Life is painted on a 20 x 16 x 1/2 inch stretched canvas in acrylic and ink. It’s vibrant, busy and full of interest for the eye to latch onto and investigate. I’m constantly seeing new things within it from colour combinations to marks I enjoy.

I had a blast painting this. I actually hated how it looked right up until the end once I had added lots of layers over many sessions working on it. Now I think it has a strange sort of charm to it and areas that I particularly like for the combinations of colours in them.

For me, this was a brave painting, an experiment and one I have come to appreciate more than I thought I would.

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I knew I would have to slow down this week. My card for this week was Impasse; no progress to make where my main focus has been. Delay, slowing, patience, but all for the best in the long run.

It was on Monday that I felt the call to focus on the spiritual side of things. That evening I knew I needed to work on a couple of projects, the first being to make a medicine bag for myself. This was very important, I know that because the idea would not go away, it nagged at my heart even while I slept. In town the next day I was drawn to a charity shop where I found a bundle of linen fabric, just perfect for the bag…

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I attached a long burgundy cord to the pouch both to keep the top shut and so that I could wear it around my neck, using a special hagstone (the first one I ever found and that I have had for many years) to pass it through at the back of the pouch, which is why the top is shaped the way it is. In the above picture the hagstone has been tightened to the bag.

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Without the hagstone drawn in the medicine bag looks like this. I had originally planned to stitch it in a way that the stitching would be invisible however thanks to the fraying in the fabric and the fact I liked the look of the stitching I had to use to compensate for that I made it into more of a feature, adding a single quartz point to weigh down the front flap.

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And so my medicine bag is finished. It’s small enough that I can wear it without it getting in the way but big enough that I can fit plenty in it. Now I just have to work out what I’m going to do with the rest of the linen as this little project only used a small fraction of the bundle.

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Another WiP finished or rather three really this time; Spring Flowers ~ Original paintings in watercolour, gouache and ink on watercolour paper. Available to buy from the shop on my website!

Crocus:

spring flowers crocus resized

Daffodil:

spring flowers daffodils resized

Snowdrop:

spring flowers snowdrop resized

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001

It came to my attention this week that I needed a new recipe book. Unfortunately, as is often the case with me I couldn’t settle on something I liked and wanted to use for it and that wasn’t going to cost me much. I toyed with the idea of getting a themed smashbook to use, I even came across a mini journal food themed smash kit bit I didn’t want to pay nearly £20 for it or order it from the US and wait god knows how long for it to arrive.

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After much deliberation and several gestures that indicated I was giving up on my search for something pre-made that fit the bill I did the only thing any respectable craftswoman could do…

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… I raided my recycling, scraps, embellishments and craft boxes and decided to make my own one out of old cardboard and papers I had stuffed in my numerous craft drawers along with the binder rings and dark brown bow from my old (also handmade) recipe folder which was more of a cover holding a load of punched index cards.

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I really wanted something that was more of a book, with pretty papers that I could make into a unique scrapbook style recipe book that would be both practical and pretty, especially now that my eldest is getting into cooking and reading my recipes for me when we use them.

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I used a selection of food and floral/vintage themed papers I had in my paper stash along with scraps of other thin cards and papers, washi tapes, some old packaging for the covers and cereal boxes for the dividers.

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I also made a pocket in the back cover and a punched acetate envelope for some lined pads and memo spots.

All in all I’m really happy with how it turned out. I’ll probably have to use some stronger glue to stick the washi tape down as the particular one I decided to use isn’t all that sticky compared to some that I have. Now I just have to put my recipes in it!

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003

 

My son is obssessed with Thomas the Tank Engine, to the point where he has a real paddy if I try to throw away anything Thomas related. I can’t tell you how many scraps of paper  and bits of magazines spanning back a couple of years he has in his making drawer that he refuses to recycle as they are Thomas themed.

The latest issue has been with t-shirts that are far too small for him and well enough worn that they’re no good to send to charity shops. Queue some creative ideas and his happy agreement that, rather than throw them away, I would make something he could keep out of them. In the end I decided that cushions would be the simplest answer, one smaller one with the red shirt that just had a small Thomas picture and two larger ones.

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Pinned and cut the smallest cushion went through the steps with my son keeping a watchful eye and asking hundreds of questions about what I was doing and why. I daresay he could probably knock one up himself, if he were old enough to use a needle and thread, given the intensity of supervision he treated me to.

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Finally stuffed with filling and a little dried lavender for a nice calming bedtime smell the smallest one was done much to the little man’s joy. The other two are waiting for me to get some more stuffing for them, it turns out I had less than I realised, but never fear there is one member of this household that won’t let me forget to finish making them.

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001

I finally decided to make a journal for my trip to Devon rather than buy a new Moleskine. I like the Moleskine but spending out on another when I could just make one and recycle materials just felt like a waste of both money and resources. In the end I opted for a fairly small journal; 11 x 14cm and about an inch thick.

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There’s a button clasp (my favourite option) and a spring yellow thread that wraps around and holds the whole thing together.

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It also gave me an opportunity to use up some circles of different handmade papers I had lying around and getting somewhat in the way. I made them several years ago but still hadn’t used them so they got ripped up and glued to some of the sketchbook shapes to give a few spreads of textured paper.

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Some of the sheets had herbs in them giving interesting marks to the paper as well as texture which I’m really looking forward to working with. In the end there were enough to mark each of the eight signatures. The rest of the paper is 140gsm sketchbook paper so I can use it for whatever strikes my fancy while I’m away.

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