I took part in Linda Matthews' Creative Stitch Alchemy course recently. The idea was to make a mixed media mini journal using the theme of 'Journey' as a springboard for ideas. It uses fabric, lace, hand stitching, machine stitching, beads, sequins, rhinestones, whatever you fancy. I have always been inspired by India, the colours, the wildlife, the architecture. So I used it as my inspiration. I hand printed and hand dyed some of the fabrics and used leftover tatted pieces that I made some time ago. So it really is original to me. The finished journal is a bit bigger than the size suggested in the instructions but it allowed me to use pictures printed on fabric in mine. It was a really nice little course that allowed me to do something a bit different and I am really rather pleased with the finished journal.
Yes, I finally got them made. The Vintage Word paper beads that I used to make are now available in the new style. Being able to print them out instead of individually painting each one means the beads will all look similar and I won't have to worry about variation between sets. Hooray!
There is also another new set of Oriental themed paper beads - Oriental Flowers for the spring.
Yes, working with silk has its drawbacks. On occasion it gets snagged on something and you lose 15 meters of thread in one fell swoop. This morning it was a pair of scissors that got tangled as I was releasing the lengths of thread to make a silk cord. It is definitely time for a break.
I have been making samples for Gina-B Silkworks over the last few weeks. Spring is in the air and the bulbs in the garden are in bloom so I was definitely inspired by them. Ganutell (wire and thread work) seems to be very popular at the moment. Take a look at the images on search engines these days and it seem to have inspired lots of people. It is lovely to see that what was a dying art has become more mainstream.
At the start of the new year I wanted to promise myself that I would draw more this year. I did very little drawing or painting last year. None, in fact. This year (all two months of it) I have 'attempted' to do more. Not as much as I had hoped but something. It seems a shame to have a skill and not use it. So here are the first drawings of the year. I hope there will be more to come. I have a couple of small paintings on the drawing board at the moment too. The trick is finding time to get them finished.
Not much to report on the creative side this week. There has been lots of bead making, of course. Other than that, just a couple of new samples using buttons. A notepad made using grey board as the backing which I covered in K&Co papers and a glass nightlight holder made using ribbons and a bit of bling.
The title refers to some paper beads I used to sell that were very popular. Each paper bead was hand painted and I had been having problems with the ink going on the paper. Every time I had to change brands of paper the ink behaved differently. So, in the name of reliability, I stopped selling them. For years I played with digital images in an effort to get the same effect. Sadly I never found the look I was searching for. However, by sheer fluke, I was playing around with a vintage style digital image, grabbed the colour controls in my photo processing programme and wiggled a few of them about. Within 30 seconds the perfect image appeared. I printed it out - just to make sure. Perfect indeed. Cue the re-emergence of the old beads. The first lot are the Oriental calligraphy beads - now called Vintage Chinese Calligraphy. The next lot will be the Vintage Word paper beads (I will post about them when they are finally available). I am so pleased. For years people have requested both sets of beads. Now I can offer them for sale again.
Another pair of new socks - this time using Regia's Arne and Carlos 6 ply yarn in Star Night. It was not quite as nice to work with as the 100% merino yarn I have used before but I suspect the merino socks will need darned sooner than these socks will. This yarn does seem much tougher. They are certainly very toasty and warm to wear. Just what I need on the continuing dull and cold days.