Thursday 31 December 2009

Great Grandad's pendant

I was rummaging around in the attic in grandma's old trunk, and was suprtised to find this vintage pendant.

It was wrapped up in a sheet of old brown music score.
(Which is a lot darker than in the photo)

I do believe that he had the same hair colour as me too.
and I have definitely inherited his nose!
I have had to enlarge this photo so that you can see the little metal disc
It is mottled, and when I turned it over it was shiny yellow brass.
The clock has stopped of course - but it looks pleasing.
I must find something to hang on the tiny hole it is so small its hard to see.

Most of you know that I am rather short of 'blood' relatives - so it will come as no surprise to learn that the only rummaging I have done has all been in my daydreaming mind - and I created Great Grandfather's pendant from bits and pieces

So who is the man in the photo in the pendant?
King Edward VII
Well if you are going to dream - why not dream BIG huh?

Wednesday 30 December 2009

The blue pendant

I managed to complete a pendant today - lots of trial and error trying to improvise - like the metal 'roof' which was on the pendant I made on the course.  But for some reason the metal improvised roof would not stick with superglue.

Anyway here it is

I made this with an inch square memory frame with glass.  In 'real life' the frame shiney, almost black with touches of blue.  The insert is a piece of card which I coloured with blue ink, then 'splashed' with dark ink blue, and added tiny little pansies.  For some some reason I just can't get a decent photo - it might be something to do with the glass reflecting the light.  I don't want to make it darker, as when I did that to the TH style tags I made - in the other post - the tags looked fine on my laptop where I edited them, but when I looked at the post on my old computer the pictures looked really dark - so I am in a quandry! The pendant can be worn either way - but the pansy side is what I consider to be the back. 
And this is the front

The tiny photo behind the glass in this frame is a lot clearer and darker as a photo would be. 
The ribbon in her hair is blue, the dress a deep rose pink.  The silver charm I added has been coloured with slate alcohol ink,all the 'grooves' are black, and the raised pattern is tinted blue  with alcohol inks.  I love this - and it will be hard to part with it - but I will - after I have had a week or two to look at it.

Tuesday 29 December 2009

Copper Pendant

I have been trying very hard over the past couple of days to make some pendants.

I think it must have been a case of 'beginners luck' at the workshop I attended, or else it was because I had everything I needed to hand which made it easier.  But at home it has been a lot more difficult.

The above is a copper pendant.  It is hard to get a decent photo of it.  It's a stylised butterfly and leaves, debossed into copper.  The background has been blackened with paint, and the raised copper has been rubbed with sandpaper to make it shiny.

This is the other side, with a black painted 'photo picture frame' around it.
The loop I made with copper wire, and it is hung on a length of soft leather.

Getting ready for Christmas.

Well it's only 361 days to go - and I will need all of those to be ready time.  I want to make all my Christmas cards, and as many presents as I can - so I started today with a couple of tags.

There is a blog giveaway which I posted here on The Artistic Stamper - so I am doing two things at once as only us ladies can!

I have made these tags as entries for the blog candy draw, and also for parcels for next Christmas.

I started off with plain chipboard tags from The Artistic Stamper shop.  I like these because they are thick and easy to work on.

The tags are made 'in the style of' Tim Holtz as I didn't have all the stamps etc he used.
This one was made by inking the tag in pale blue, then stamping it with snowflakes, and embossing with a matt type embossing powder.  The swirls were stamped on next, and the green border sponged on.
The image which is part of a TH stamp which I used to stamp onto acetate as he did, then  it cut out and glued onto the tag with glossy accents, then coloured it with red alcohol ink.
I am actually pleased with this tag - took me ages to do, and looks so much nicer in real life.

I had to improvise again for this tag.
Background technique as above, then the TH swirls stamped on in layers, and he famous 'bird on a branch' stamp, which I have turned into a robin by inking his chest red. The fibres on the tags are Christmas red with lots of gold strands in it.

Monday 28 December 2009

The big thaw

Yesterday there were these

And these
And these

And these - but like the snow and Christmas - they have all gone!

It's all over

The presents have been opened

Lots of quizzical looks

Plenty of 'Ooohs and 'Ahhs'

Nanny had to help with the big ones

Especially when there is lots of  bubble wrap inside

All the mince pies, sausage rolls, Christmas goodies, chocolates, nuts, crisps have been eaten.
The visitors have gone back to their own homes, leaving wonderful memories, of laughter and fun to savour for the rest of the year.

Christmas is over

Tuesday 22 December 2009

Christmas is all about.........................

Your grandson's first nativity play and Christmas concert

Does he look cute in this?

The grand theatre

The procession begins - no sign of pre-performace nerves

Or is there?

My proud 'boys' after the performance

Who looks most proud - daddy or Luke?

Monday 21 December 2009

Whose footprints are these?

Large footprints in the snow

Big feet - tiny birds
My little bantam babes

I swept all the paths again yesterday and shovelled the snow in their pen, but they wouldn't venture far, so this morning I lifted them out and put them in the lean-to green house for a run about, and left the door open.

And despite another snowfall last night layering on the paths again, the little madams decided to follow me Pied Piper fashion back up the path.
They decided to have a peck at the snow - and seemed to quite like the taste!

The path is crispy and frozen now so they are not getting their little starfish feet wet.  The are only tiny - and smaller than a pigeon.

Gozzie the all black Rosecomb, shed all her feathers two weeks ago - a complete moult - thankfully most of the new ones have grown through.

Don't worry - they are not cold, they are wearing thick duvets after all and are warm as toast when you pick them up!  They have had a scratch around, and are just having a 'conversation' and trying to decide whether to try out the deep snow - which will cover them incidentally - so I think they will wander off into the sunshine to preen, and than maybe take a wander back down to the lean-to green house to scratch around in the tray of compost I have put in there for them - or to perch on the shelving.

I almost bought four more a couple of weeks ago, I had been wanting some for months now - and there is a breeder who works in shop in the town I go to for the course on a Wednesday.  Each week I am so tempted to buy some of his birds - he is the breeder I bought Gozzie and Scrabble the Wheaten Game bird from - the one that looks like a 'stork'.  I decided to be sensible and wait until after the winter - glad I did now.  It is not 'often' that I am sensible, my heart rules me head!

Sunday 20 December 2009

Hels fantastic blog giveaway at Sunday Stamper

When I checked out Sunday Stamper Hels has a great giveaway - oh how I would love to win it!  Hop over and take a look

I wish it could be Christmas every day yay

The Christmas songs are playing on the radio, there is deep snow on the ground - ooo its lovely.

I have been out to my studio to finish something off.  So thought I would show you in case you think that on the days I am not posting, I am lounging on my sofa with a glass of sherry in my hand, stuffing my face with chocolates, and pulling crackers.

On Friday afternoon, rather recklessly I went out in all the snow to a workshop in a village about 12 miles from here.  The day before I had been out in the snow, and sleet gathering foliage, got soaked to the skin, chilled to the bone, and pricked by ivy.  I packed my car the night before - so what the heck!

Sadly I could only stay an hour and a half as the conditions were so bad that I wanted to drive home whilst it was still light.

Its proving to be a bit difficult to photograph.
I only  have a little lounge and only one table

You can get the idea of it though can't you.  It's a wreath - with a bit of a modern twist to it.

I did a lot of the preparation work whilst there which took most of the time.
The hour and a half to be precise.
Cutting 8 twigs 2ft long, and cutting dozens coloured stick into tiny bits.
Then on two long lengths of wire, I had the tedious task of winding the wire three times one way, then in reverse, then twisting it around on itself before adding the next one. (I felt like 'life's too short to faffing about doing this'!.  It really made my fingers sore, and I am not sure that it adds anything to the arrangement - but I always do as I am told - and it's the 'in thing' this year.

So I have been making the wreath at home. With fresh foliage, wild holly which I sprayed here and there with gold.  Some box hedge, holly, conifer, and pittosporum from the garden. Silk poinsettias (in the place of red roses which is like finding chickens teeth in the wilds of Norfolk)
I have improvised madly with what I could find, gold ribbon to create 'roses', gold beads, a few sprayed nuts and cones, and a candle in the middle to finish if off.

Next came the hard part of creating a 'tepee' of twigs, then  swirling the wired little coloured twigs around - clockwise then anti-clockwise.  Then taking apart a decoration to wire  the 'bauble's' to finish it off.

(I took this last night by the light of the Christmas tree - minus the fruit etc.)
It actually looks lovely on the table with nuts and fruit around it, with the snowy backdrop of the garden behind it - but it proved impossible to take a photo of it like that as the bright snow made the arrangement look dark and in shadow.

I have been  making more presents which I can't post - and am now off cooking!

Saturday 19 December 2009

Walking in my winter wonderland

Just thought you might like to join me in my own winter wonderland garden - its too deep and dangerous to walk around the village as yesterday's snow froze underneath today's and its really slippery.

Views of the back garden

Virgin snow - love it!

Like a postcard

It is so deep it comes almost to the top of the walls

Even the squirrel is iced like a cake.

You can't see in this photo, but the Robinta looks wonderful with red tipped leaves poking through the snow

The netting over the chicken pen is draped with the weight of the snow and looks like a Sultans tent.

My own Swiss Chalet - aka my studio

Lunch al fresco anyone?

An outdoor Christmas tree


 are twiceicles

as niceicles

When you have them in your garden.  This one is really long and right above the front entrance to my studio where I go in and out.  I hope it doesn't pierce my heart when I go out there this afternoon

I live in a modest little bungalow with a modest garden

But do you know what?

I couldn't be happier

And wouldn't wish to live anywhere else in the whole wide world.

Patrick has to go to Great Yarmouth this afternoon to compete in a bowls tournament - with his team.   It's madness - but the roads are clear on the coast - no snow at all.   I'll not be content until he is back home safely this evening - at least he is going with other men.

Whilst he is out, I will not be cocooned snuggled up in the warm.  I have things to make in my studio - and something to finish off which I started yesterday afternoon

Keep safe and warm