Tuesday, 24 December 2013

Dottys dresses, fashion for fairies

 Happy Christmas eve everyone, as my regular friends on my blog know I have started a woodland collection and promised I would share snippets on here, this week and last I have been working with some gorgeous shot silk, netting and pearls from old wedding dresses and have enjoyed myself so much, I love that I can sit by the fire whilst its all blowing a gale outside and hand sew to my hearts content whilst watching films on Netflix, its especially good this time of year to be home sewing with the twinkly christmas lights, tasty puddings and blankets on my kneew, the dog likes lying on my feet too and even though he gets pretty heavy he is very warm too - free hot water bottle!
So the top picture is a floral corsage necklace I did, I stayed up till 2.30 am making it because I wanted to finish it, I loved making it and am in love with it now, its such a soft pretty and girly piece. I am going to be teaching a workshop in January at our shop in Blackpool on how to make them.
The next pic is a close up of a dress I have just started to make, there are rows of tiny beads and I am going to sew the panel around the front of the bodice
Here is the basic shape of the dress so far, the shoulders are going to have these custom made epulets that have layer upon layer of tulle, satin and silk petals, I have made one and it took me about 8 hours, I have to make the other yet!, will share a picture soon.

I am loving the freedom and creativity I can have, I do enjoy making gorgeous things I choose to make rather than churning out the same thing over and over, although because my rabbits and owls are good sellers I do make a lot of these, each one is different though so I dont get board  

I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas day whatever your doing, even though this can be a difficult time for some of us it can also be a wonderful time. If you have love, a home and food your very rich and blessed. It's only a day like all the other days, don't put any expectations on it, just go with the flow and enjoy having a day at home. I am very grateful I have love, a home and food, friends that care anything else is a bonus xxx

Wednesday, 18 December 2013

What have I been making for Christmas?

I have been a busy bee making lots of lovely handmade things for Christmas, I can't say who they are for as that would spoil the surprise,
Love this fabric, I love the colours so much I made myself a pair of curtains for my dining room with it, I lined them in calico to keep the cold out.
These little mushroom brooches I made one for myself and the green one for my friend http://alovelylittledeer.blogspot.co.uk/ I have already given it to her so I can reveal it!
Which ever one is left out of these unique creatures ( my work colleague/friend calls them freaks :( ) will be going to a special nephew, they are all sitting on a shelf at our shop waiting for new homes, the large one on the left is Peanut
These kits (only 2 left now) will be going in the craft prize basket when we do craft bingo at our Christmas party on Friday. We have invited all the ladies who have been to our craft workshops since we opened in August to come to a Christmas party where we will have food, drink, make some crafty items and have craft bingo! I can't wait. We then break up for our Christmas holidays, it will be nice to spend time at home but I think I will miss the shop, we meet so many lovely people and have a real good laugh at work.

What have you been making this year?

Monday, 16 December 2013

What I have been doing this week

This week I have been mostly working in my sketch book collecting inspiration pictures and drawing, I'm doing this for my woodland collection I'm going to make. I've enjoyed it so much but have felt slightly guilty because I feel like I'm just playing around. This is crazy I know but it's normally all go for me and taking the time to focus and concentrate on this project is great but I'm having to get used to it and that it's ok for me to do this. 
Here's my messy work area! Are all creatives this messy?

Friday, 13 December 2013

woodland collection inspiration

I have been spending time on Pinterest which if you don't know about it is a photo sharing site where you have mood boards you can pin photos too and share them with others, it is the best source of visual inspiration I have found on the net because one picture leads to another and another and because everything is in collections its easier to find similar things. If you haven't been on it I implore you to take a look but don't blame me for all the hours you spend on it! ;) 

So I have been gathering ideas and sources for my new collection of woodland fairy clothes and have found some amazing textile artists who I want to share with you. First up is Kirsten Chursinoff who makes the most beautiful embroidered pieces. She takes her inspiration from nature, flowers, seed heads, insects feature highly in her work.
Imagine how many hours it takes to stitch each piece! She is based in Vancouver, Canada.
It says on her website "Kirsten’s fibre art techniques span the “Art Quilt” realm and include hand stitching, raw-edge appliqué and free-motion machine embroidery.  Having a comprehensive grasp of techniques is important for her work, and has propelled the development of her unique style of illustrative expression" 
 you can find her website here

Next is Alice Wolfe, her knitted creations are amazing, I adore the huge birds she makes using beautiful Machine Knitted loops of yarn and Stitches, lots and lots of stitches,
                      All set up at the Knitting and Stitching show at Alexandra Palace
She has won all these awards:
The Christine Risley Award, Goldsmiths University – Runner up, 2011.
Global Color Research, Trend Awareness Award 2011.
Eric Mead Fashion/Textiles Materials and Books Award 2009.
Adam Jaffer, Curator of World Cultures, The Birmingham City Museum selected my work for an exhibition space at university 2009.
you can find her facebook page here

Finally is Annemieke Mein, dutch born but lives in Australia the subjects of her sculpted textiles are birds, frogs, gum and wattle blossoms, and invertebrates such as moths, dragonflies, wasps and grasshoppers. Her fondness for insects and her sympathetic images, often greatly enlarged and showing normally invisible colours and textures, have revealed new aspects of the everyday world.
"The artwork of Annemieke Mein is unique. She combines fabric, paint and sewing threads to produce works that are realistically accurate but that also breathe with life and action, and are emotionally breathtaking for the observer.
Annemieke’s art is difficult to categorise. Textile work has traditionally been ‘craft’, but Annemieke has moved it into the world of ‘art’." Phillip Mein
I think she is awesome, the size and detail in her pieces is outstanding, I love the colours and textures.
It almost looks real! 
You can find her webpage here

Thursday, 12 December 2013

What a great start

Today I started to design a woodland collection of clothes I really want to make, I got myself a brand spanking new sketch book and collected images from magazines, had a lovely time in the library looking for inspiring books too, I have started on one page and not finished it yet, so photos will come tomorrow, its given me so much positivity actually choosing my own destiny and doing something I have wanted to do for the past year but never made it important enough to do, on reflection of my mums anniversary of her death I thought long and hard what is important to me right now, and I found I need to submerse myself into this, I need to stop doing all the little jobs and orders ( which I am grateful for) but take up so much of my time and really go for it. I did some seed heads on the sewing machine and am so pleased with how they have turned out, can't wait to get them onto clothes.

So I get accused of living in a dream world and having too many ideas, I like living in a dream world and everything ever made started off with an idea so I'm not worried! But sensibly this project is going to make me focus and have ideas just about the collection, I think as a creative your mind is all over the place every day and its hard to reign it in sometimes. I hope you will look forward to sharing my journey as much as I am looking forward to posting pictures and updating my poor neglected blog.

       A fairy inspired dress I made recently.

Wednesday, 11 December 2013

Craft workshop/ Knitting corsets

Who's coming along to my workshop this Saturday at our wonderful shop in Blackpool, come along to our lovely homely workshop room, enjoy tea/coffee out of vintage china cups, eat delicious home baked cakes and learn to knit and sew and embellish a one off gorgeous creative garment. Please share with any lovely folk who could be interested xxx

Eclectic, Dotty's Delightful Emporium and Handmade Heaven present a vast array of furniture , vintage and retro curios, homeware, vintage clothing

I would like to welcome you to our new and different shopping centre, on the ground floor is Eclectic, selling all sorts of furniture from different era's and different styles, items for the home, collectables and antiques, there is an onsight makeover basement to where unloved furniture will be transformed into gorgeous new pieces. Commissions will be welcomed.

On the first floor is Dotty's Delightful Emporium selling all sorts of vintage, retro, unusual and hard to find items, art, vinyl, furniture, homewares and more. There is also the clothing den, rails upon rails of wonderful vintage clothes for men and women from different local vintage businesses, you will be spoilt for choice. There will be a 'wants' book too, in case you need a certain item sourcing. Tea and coffee in fine china will be provided for customers.

On the second floor you will find Handmade Heaven, a wonderful attic filled with handmade delights and glorious haberdashery, there will be various craft classes held including felting, hand embroidery, dress making, toy making and more, one to one sewing tutorials from how to use your machine and basics to more advanced sewing, stitch and bitch on Wednesdays, evening classes and fabulous fabric.
Our shop is at 277 Church street, Blackpool, FY1 3PB. 

sometimes its slow on here....

thats because I am always posting photos on Tumblr you can find my feed here

I love the simplicity of it, its ease of use and how my Instagram/Tumblr/Facebook/Flickr are all linked together on my iPhone, technology is so amazing!

I am running a self employment support group tonight at our shop in Blackpool and have been researching social networking and media, I didnt realise that there are over 197 different social networking outlets/websites! How crazy is that, I can barely keep up with 5 haha!

Living your own life in this moment

This is so true, how many times do you watch a romantic film and wish your life was more like that, how many times do you imagine what a day out will be like and have all sorts of notions of how perfect it will be?, how many times upon returning from work do you imagine what the evening will hold only to be disappointed? How many times do you read other people's blogs and imagine if your life was more like theirs it would be amazing?
We have to remind ourselves to live in the moment, that our lives are perfect for us right now, that we should be grateful to have days out/a home/family/Internet/friends but it is hard sometimes! Xx