Friday, August 22, 2014

Holiday Party Mode

It's with great joy that I can say I'm finally on holiday. After a nice weekend celebrating with family for a special event, it's time for me to unwind and to have a spot of r'n'r. 

I will be back blogging in September!

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Home Sweet Home

Last week I talked about getting back to using mood boards, and that I spent some very happy hours putting my two boards together, well when I wasn't cutting out paper I was also mucking about with fabric. Sometimes when I can't focus I just grab out my fabrics, usually the scraps I've got stowed away and just play about. No clear goal in mind just see what happens. Which was what I did in between watching the Tin Man on DVD, and in the evenings after work. 

Most of the fabrics chosen are scraps from the quilt I am working on for my bedroom, which post holiday break I'll be getting back too. That's the plan anyway! The fabrics you might recognise were from the Petite Street collection, by Dashwood Studios. I don't like to waste pretty fabric so the worthwhile sized scraps were kept for a rainy day. 

So I cut and placed...

and I pinned...

and I hand sewed the pieces together.

 Cracked out the threads and stitched lettering, flowers and a teeny, tiny house.. (you might recall the house from past workMight have to do some more soon!)

...and I kept going till I was happy with the final result.

Then I trimmed and added bias binding. On the back I stitched on a couple of brass rings and stamped my little bee. I loved every minute of it. There was no pressure for what the result might be like as I hadn't a clue what I wanted it to be when I started. I really do like improv patchwork. I really recommend it if, like me, your feeling a bit 'argh' get out your stash of scraps, come now I know you have some! And just piece them together. I didn't do any quilting on this one but I am already itching to make another, how else am I to get through my scrap bag!

Sunday, August 03, 2014

In the Mood for a Mood Board

During this somewhat 'blah' stage of embroidery I currently find myself in, I have been playing about with various things to just to keep my hand in stitching and crafting in general. Not to do anything would not for me feel entirely right. 

This relaxed attitude is helping, and I do feel relatively calm about the situation I find myself in, and this weekend in particular I've been feeling pretty darn relaxed. The somewhat forced resting of my feet having had some dealing with this as originally I had hoped to get over to the Farnham Malting's monthly craft market, which has been on my list of things to do since I moved here. But my feet have been awfully swollen lately, think balloon animals and you get the picture. So lots of elevating (except now, where I appear to be sitting cross legged...oops) my legs have been the order of the day.

Bringing this eventually round to my opening title about being in the mood for a mood board.

Earlier this week, in the evenings, I had the sudden urge to rip through all the countless craft magazines I’ve collected that in reality I have either never looked back at since purchasing (sorry Mollie Makes) or have had for a while (Selvedge, Embroidery, Pretty Nostalgic). Where I have been buying lots of quilting magazines, I’ve had to make room for them, and anyway it’s good to have a clear out. I didn’t want to just sling them out, I went through them with the goal in mind to take out projects that I or my friends might want to have a go at, things that I inspired me or loved, and what might be nice to get for the flat. If anything didn’t fall into those three piles, it was to be recycled.

But then what to do with them? It would be easy to file them away for another day, but if I did that I'll just end up forgetting and just slinging them out. 

Well a nice little pile will eventually be winging its way to someone I know will appreciate the patterns, and the rest were mood board and or sketchbook material. In my study /guest bedroom I have two noticeboards one tiny and the other A1 sized. Mostly used at that the time as a bit of a dumping ground of random stuff. Things that I liked to photographs and notes. But never really referenced and rarely changed. 

So yesterday I sat on my floor, cut out the images neatly (stickler for straight lines), I placed, pinned and stuck the images onto the boards. I was focused on colour grouping, and themes. 

The smaller of the two noticeboards is by my computer, and if I flick to my immediate right I can see it. It has on it things that really in my mind at the moment, maps, quilts, bugs, flowers. Things that I feel are going to come back into my work again...not sure how or where but can feel an inkling. 

Then my massive board, which is just behind me, has larger images, work that I love, styles, finishes and techniques. 

I'm looking forward to adding to it as I go, and hopefully add things that aren't postcards and magazine images to it. Bit of real texture is what it needs. 

Now I know there are numerous ways in which you can create your own mood board, from pocket sized (sketchbooks) to digital (pinterest). Whilst I am a lover of things digital because the things you can find in mere seconds are utterly amazing, I still like immediate visual. I love coming across things either in print, stuff I've doodled and found objects. It's easy, way to easy to get overwhelmed with Pinterest, sometimes I think there is such as a thing as too much inspiration. It's time I think to get back to the basics, stumbling across one thing or a collection, that makes you mind focus. Yes, there are lots of little images on my boards, and yes I have two, but they are in away they have a connection to one another. A central theme, and even colour. 

So now that I have these boards doing what I wanted them when I first got them, I have to wonder why it took me so long to get them like they are now. 

I love them now, love looking at them.

So my questions to you are this; do you have a mood board or whatever you like to call it, what medium do you use to create it, and do you think it helps or hinders you creatively?