Sunday, 28 December 2008

Happy New Year

I haven't had time to do very much art in the past week with Family and Christmas taking over. We had a lovely Christmas day spent with family and friends, and beautiful weather. We spent much of the day lazing outside in the garden, eating, chatting, drinking wine, more eating. Every year my stomach wishes it had stayed home, but it never learns. It's wonderful to see the grand children's reaction when they open their presents, that's the best part, little eyes light up after the wrapping paper is frantically torn from the present, much impatient jumping up and down as parents struggle to remove the bucket load of tie wire used to hold the toy into it's packaging, to prevent theft. There's usually enough wire at the end to tie up all of Australia's tomato crops for ten years(slight exaggeration, maybe only five years).

I did manage a few more background pages for my new scrap paper journal, I need to actually find time now to write in it.
I managed to complete a couple of jewellery orders and make some earrings to be added to my etsy store this week. I also made myself a bracelet using memory wire, that was fun.

Thank you all for visiting over the past year, I REALLY appreciate your visits and comments. I hope you all have a very happy new year and that next year holds everything you hope for with lots of time for art.

Monday, 22 December 2008

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

We were very late decorating the tree and the house this year. No sooner was it the beginning of December then it was three days before the big day. We only bought the tree over the weekend. The lovely smell of the pine is wafting through the house. There is a Christmas tree farm just around the corner so it's very handy.
I spoke to my six year old grandson tonight, he's so excited it's only three sleeps til Santa comes.
I've been visiting some blogs recently with all lovely images of the snow, while we sit here sweltering. They do predict a pleasant 26degC for Christmas day though.
It's late in the evening as I write this, all the windows are open and a gentle breeze is drifting in through the house, ah summer's here at last.

Monday, 15 December 2008

Christmas is coming

I start to realize Christmas is close when it's time to make the Christmas puddings. It's hard to find a continuous six hour stretch when I'm going to be home for cooking them, that doesn't include the preparation. I made them for years, then my father said he would like to give it a try, so he and my mother took on the task for about ten years. He asked last year if I'd mind taking over again as his arms aren't quite up to the mixing. I couldn't complain considering he was eighty seven last week. The small pudding is for them as a they are the 'official taste testers'.

We had some much needed rain over the weekend, it's hard to believe looking at this photo that it's summer. My poor roses were swamped with the deluge. The garden is now taking on a tropical feel, when the sun comes out, with all the lush new growth.

I'm trying to add some stock to my Etsy. I've added another small hand made journal, some more fabric and button kits, although I see one has sold which is great, Thanks Shirley.
I've had requests for my hand carved stamps in the past so I thought I'd give them a go too. The leaf one below will be in my store shortly.

Sunday, 7 December 2008

Journals plus

I've been impressed for quite some time now with the journals made by Mary Ann Moss. Take a look at Mary Ann's blog if you haven't been there before, it's well worth a visit. I'm not sure how Mary Ann makes her journals or what she uses but I decided to make my own version, using old envelopes, very old book pages, heavy duty brochures, left over bought papers, fabric scraps and anything else I could find that could be sewn into the manilla folder spine. I will make hard covers later. I'm really enjoying the process and I'm looking forward to working in it. It's the ideal place to add those special pieces of paper and cards that come with swaps or from fellow bloggers.

The red paper and the beautiful hand made card above came from Jo along with the fabulous red brooch below that she was giving away on her blog. I was a very lucky winner indeed, it's gorgeous.

I still can't show you the pages in my altered book that's been travelling for the past eighteen months, as some of the contributors may be having their work published, so I'll just tempt you with the ends of the pages. I'm still amazed at all the beautiful work it holds.

Finally I've decided to make up some extra kits of fabric strips, buttons and beads and add them to my etsy store, I'll be adding more as I make them, they are very time consuming. They can be added to hand made journals or store bought spiral journals to give them a lift. There's enough of everything for two eight inch high journals.

Monday, 1 December 2008

Fabulous group

What a fabulous experience I had on Saturday, teaching this wonderful group of students in my first workshop at home. The workshop was decorating papers then turning them into a hand made journal. There's quite a lot of work to do in the day and these ladies excelled, all taking home completed or almost completed journals.
I had a wonderful time and hope to hold many more classes at home.
I must thank my wonderful husband, I couldn't have done it without him. He made the fabulous tables, four and a half metres long in total, working until all hours Friday night to get them just right. He also did much of the cooking, setting up the meals and washing all of the dishes. Thanks Darling.

This is the group.

The lovely Samm, what a treasure she is. Always smiling and very talented.

Two very talented ladies who I've bumped into at previous workshops Carolyn and Janette, who's just started her own blog, it's well worth a visit.

The lovely Rita who attended one of my previous workshops.

You may know Jo already, she has a wonderful blog. Jo very kindly passed on the details of my workshop to her friends, so I'll be organizing another one in early January as this one filled up very quickly.

Nicky's also a regular, she's taken quite a few of my workshops and is such a lovely thoughtful lady.

Sisters, Jacky and Lee, what a lovely pair, Jacky has been to my workshops before but this was Lee's first ever workshop, she loved the way we just splashed paint around and could let yourself be really free.

This was also Christina's first time in one of my classes. Christina has her own online store with lots of wonderful glimmer mist paints, that create wonderful effects on the papers.

Anne is also one of my regulars, she's very talented and loves to experiment with lots of different techniques and materials.

Finally we Aussies had a lovely smiling moon tonight. Jupiter and Venus were lined up very close above the moon creating a wonderful smiling face in the night sky. The advantage of living in the Southern hemisphere is, we see it the right way up, even though we're 'down under'.