Since working on the commission for Compass Inn and therefore working around a nautical theme I've been wanting to produce some work of a similiar theme that is also relevant to Plymouth - my local area. I decided to explore local fish, such as common names like mackerel and pollack that are both caught and eaten in Plymouth but are rarely appraised for beauty.
Tuesday, 30 July 2013
Monday, 29 July 2013
I keep another drop spindle seperate to the spindle I use with tops so I can make art yarns with unusual materials such as newspaper. I made some newspaper yarn and plarn (plastic yarn) as part of the Bliss wedding gift, but since I love the look of yarn on a spindle so I thought I'd show these photos I took before I wound it onto the giant bobbin. I plan to make some other art yarns, perhaps experimenting with different paper stock and dying techniques.
Saturday, 27 July 2013
Let me start by describing the wedding, to put it simply it was beautiful. The Crooked Inn was a near perfect venue and the bunting looked amazing as did the guests outfits. It was a mavelous steampunk themed extravaganza focusing on two of the most extraordinary people I have the privelege to know. Congratulations go to Mrs and Mrs Bliss!
Oh and the vows made me cry...
Now about the wedding gift, I had so many ideas about what to make, seemingly each bigger and potentially less feasible than the last that I soon came to realise that if I tried even a fraction of my madcap plans Mrs and Mrs Bliss would end up with either half a house full or nothing at all (some ideas just wouldn't have made it). Then came inspiration - I decided that since I was giving a gift to a couple of creative personalities I would make a gift that would facilitate that creativity. So I made them a big box filled with as many artsy goodies I could think of. Now, it's important to note that the couple had already requested that should guests insist on gift giving it should be secondhand, handmade, recycled or from small independent local business therefore everything I put in my gift adhered to these guidelines.
The contents of my gift box were largely yarn based, I deemed this appropriate considering one Mrs Bliss has a couple of particularly fine knitting tattoos. Some yarns I handspun on my drop spindles such as the merino wool, newspaper and plarn (plastic yarn), whilst others were gathered/ found.
I produced some recycled/reclaimed cotton yarn from a few old jumpers, I arranged them into skeins for easy storage but also because I think skein bundles are pretty.
I found this paper yarn at a little independent craft stall in St. Austell a number of years ago and fell in love with it, I've always treated it as precious and perpetually saved it for that fabled perfect project which turned out to be a wedding gift.
In addition to all the yarns, I added various tools for creative purposes. These were mostly handmade except for the 6-pin French knitting spool which was sourced locally.
Then to go with the braiding tools I included some dolly peg spools and embroidery thread, dolly pegs make great spools for weaving or braiding because they keep the thread/yarn/cord tidy and add weight.
I also made some embellishments for the wedding gift including air dry clay buttons, polymer clay buttons, felted beads and recycled paper beads.
I packaged everything up using brown packing paper, pretty lace and handmade gift labels. I covered little boxes with paper and made origami boxes for slightly larger items. A lot of the yarn was wound onto giant bobbins I handmade, though the cotton skeins were bundled with calico, lace and satin cord. Then the entire collection went inside a big cardboard box decorated with cream and gold wallpaper ready to be opened by Mrs and Mrs Bliss on their big day.
I haven't included everything I put in the wedding gift in this post, just my favourite elements, I think it's safe to say quite a lot went into the gift and I believe (hope) it was well received.
All I can say now is another congratulations Mrs and Mrs Bliss, I hope you have a long, happy and creative life together.
Tuesday, 23 July 2013
These circles of laminate flooring are inspired by beautiful stones ive seen covered with crochet and knotless netting. I covered the laminate with yarn using a variation of knotless netting and half hitch knots.
Monday, 22 July 2013
Bead and button making using wrapping or weaving techniques have been around since at least the 17th century, it's a traditional craft that's lost it's popularity since mass production arrived but I've always been fascinated by the various techniques. I've only wrapped a few so far but I plan to make enough to create a series of woven jewellery.
Saturday, 20 July 2013
Friday, 19 July 2013
I went wild and created a bunch of bunting for my friends wedding, they requested that the bunting be creative and reflect the personality of the maker. Since there were no material restrictions I've made pieces using painted canvas, carpet, foam, duct tape, blind fabric, pinweaving and denim. I think I've got the crazy bunting niche covered. Below is a selection of the bunting I've produced.
Monday, 15 July 2013
You may have noticed the posts have been particularly sporadic of late ( though you could argue my posts are always like that) but I've been working on a wedding gift(s) for a very good friend who is getting married in about a week. The trouble is I haven't decided what to give/ make for the happy couple - I've had so many ideas and been doing some experimenting but to be safe and secret I've decided to avoid posting anything that could potentially be part of a gift. Don't worry though, as soon as the gift is readyI'll post up everything that you've been missing and after the wedding I'll post about the gift too.
In the meantime, expect a post on wedding bunting - my friends hatched an inspired plan for the decor and asked everyone attending to make crazy bunting, sounds like my kind of bunting.