Friday, 15 December 2017

Snow Days

I really only like snow when it looks pretty - a bit like a snow globe.  Plus I need to be inside - snug and warm.  So these photos were either taken through a closed window or an open window - but certainly not with me outside!

Through our bedroom window

The children in the road built a snowman

Our back garden

My car disappearing under the snow

Next doors tree with flashing lights in the branches


Eight inches of snow on my car

More snow


 Eventually all the grey clouds went away and there was blue sky.

 And sunshine!

Shapes in the snow

And the snowman in the middle of the road - being used as a roundabout!

Thanks for joining me today

Monday, 11 December 2017

My Advent Journal

I love to make books.  I have so many - many of which have never been used - I just love the process of making them.   It took me quite a while to decide how I wanted to journal the Advent Challenge that Mary has written.  You can find it on her blog at Advent Words 2017.

Eventually I decided to make a book with watercolour paper and some fabric I bought a few years ago to make Christmas related items.  The fabric has been sitting in the cupboard all that time.  I tore pieces of it up and glued it with matte medium to the water colour paper. I was then going to make little collages for each page and maybe do some stitches.

I took so long thinking about it that I was getting further and further into the study but had no pages done.  So I simplified things.  I stamped the word of the day onto each page.  I used Valerie Sjodin's stencils and Marjolaine Walker's stencils with gelatos.  I wrote with Inktense pencils and here are my pages to date.

I used Pumice Stone Distress Ink to stain the edges of the pages after I had distressed the edges.

Thanks for joining me today.

Friday, 8 December 2017

6 days of December Daily

I enjoyed making my December Daily album last year and actually finishing a project.  However I knew we were doing lots of things.  This year I thought I would do it again in order to find some joy in the season.  Otherwise it's just going to be 'just another month'.   And to be honest so far it's been just that.

I prepared the inserts ahead of time with the freedom to move anything that wasn't right for that day.  I have moved several things already.

The reason why and the Advent Words calendar.

Day 1  Naomi had sent me a photo of our grandson playing with the Nativity set we bought last year.  On day 2 we FaceTimed with the family in Sydney.

On day 3 there was a supermoon but I didn't get very good photos because of the clouds.

Day 4 I listed 4 strange Christmas songs that I like.  

Day 5: I wrote about spending Christmas with my cousin who died last month.  And on day 6 I bought some pants instead of Christmas Cards for my church's Pants Campaign.

I'm still trying to work out how to take decent photos of my album.  These were taken in the conservatory to have the benefit of natural daylight and they still needed tweaking.

Thanks for joining me today.

Monday, 4 December 2017

More in my Fabric Sketchbook

In my last post I showed you my Fabric Sketchbook as far as I had got on the two day course.

When I got home I worked on it again adding the exercises suggested by Dionne that I hadn't had time to do.

I made a stamp and found the stamps I had made from Dionne's online course Developing Sketchbooks.

I used black acrylic paint to stamping my fabric sketchbook.  I also developed the teardrop shape which I had found in amongst the pages.

And here is my book which could be called finished.  Although there's plenty of scope for more machining and handstitching.

The back (left) and front pages

I really enjoyed doing this workshop and I feel much more confident about using my machine.

Be aware though that if you book for next year's course you won't end up with what I did.  Firstly, each of us on the course ended up with something different, and secondly, Dionne teaches it slightly differently each time she does the workshop.

Thanks for joining me today

Friday, 1 December 2017

Fabric Sketchbooks with Dionne Swift

Last month I went to Janome HQ near Stockport to take part in a two day workshop by Dionne Swift called Fabric Sketchbooks.   I was hoping that I would learn how to use my sewing machine and get over my fear of it.  And I did.  Thank you Dionne.

As you know I love well organised workshops.  And was this well organised!  Dionne set up 5 sewing machines, 3 Embellishers and the iron and ironing board as different stations.  As she set up each machine she showed us what the task was at that station.  And then we had to move round every 10 minutes and do each exercise.   You don't really have time to be afraid of your machine when you've only got 10 minutes to do something in.

Dionne had given us a large piece of material to do these exercises on.  I'm not going to tell you what we were asked to do.  You will have to go on the course yourself!   Sign up quickly though because the places fill up fast.

By the end of day one my fabric looked like this

Day 2 brought more exercises both on the large fabric and some other pieces of fabric.

And then we cut it up!  Oh yes!  And you know how I love to cut things up and make books.

After cutting and folding it looked like this

I'll just show you a few of the pages.

Dionne talked about some other things to do which I didn't have time for and so took the sketchbook home to finish.

I'll show you what I did in my next post.

Thanks for joining me today