Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Flower inspirations

It is not often that I can say that flowers have inspired my work. 

This beautiful little flower, growing happily in a meadow garden in Avranches in France, may prove to be the exception. I think it is some form of Cranesbill, or wild Geranium. I just love the striking contrast between the crisp white and the deep purple...

And these delicate Hydrangea flowers with their butterfly-like blossom...

And last but not least a bright little flower, Meadow Saffron, nestling in the shade of Westonbirt Arboretum's native woodland...

These small sparks of colour and beauty have found a place amongst the other ideas that float around inside my head. One day they may just form themselves into a new creation - when they do I'll let you know!

Monday, 22 August 2011

Meet the bears... Bella

Today I would like to introduce you to Bella.

As soon as this little bear was completed, it was obvious that "it" was a "she". Her big eyes and rounded head, set slightly to one side, left no doubt. How to dress her took rather a lot more thought. So she sat for a while (as most of my bears do) trying out a bow for size as I waited for inspiration...

A while later I saw a delightful photo of a friend's little girl. Like most small children she loves to dress up and in this photo she was wearing a fairy costume complete with wings and a wand. She was sitting looking up at the camera with her head slightly to one side....

The tiny bear's expression was so much like that photo that I knew that she would have to have a fairy costume.

So now she has a skirt made from pink and white flowers cut from Guipure trim. She has tiny bows made from a single strand of embroidery cotton and a tiny pink bead. In her right hand she holds a wand made from coloured beads and topped with a star.

Bella stands just 5cm tall. She is made from a light brown upholstery velvet with cream ultrasuede paw pads. Her limbs are thread jointed so she can stand or sit. Her eyes are black glass beads; her nose is hand embroidered with black cotton.

Bella has now been adopted and is enjoying life in her new home. If you would like to see more of my bears visit my website, my Folksy or WowThankYou shop.

Thursday, 11 August 2011

This week...

This week, I have mostly been falling in love... with Liberty fabrics!

Once again I have been raiding my mum's immense fabric collection: this time for scraps to cover buttons. It's so hard to make decisions when it comes to fabric (and I'm not the most decisive person at the best of times!) but it became even more difficult after a rummage in the precious Liberty scraps box. That was it. Suddenly I understood the fascination: the pretty, intricate designs; the gorgeous feel of the fabric; the lovely colours. I'm surprised Mum could bear to part with any of it!

I came away with my haul and have been experimenting this week. I decided hair clips would be an easier starting point than buttons (slightly less fiddly but still small enough to use the little scraps of fabric).

The fabric is such a delight to work with. It is light enough to be used for delicate projects (adding little bulk at the seams) and yet strong enough to hold its shape without stretching or fraying.

The intricate patterns really come into their own on a small project.

And the new camera really does take great close-ups. So much better than my old one!

I love it! I'm looking around now for other projects to play with!

It's a shame that it's too light a fabric to make bears from... although I'm sure some of my bears wouldn't object too much to a little Liberty fabric outfit...

Saturday, 6 August 2011


They are generally considered to be pleasant things...

Then you come home. Half way through the mountain of washing it feels like you've never been away!

Camping in the Loire was lovely though and the weather was great too. Definitely a place I'd like to return to one day.
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