Wednesday, 29 October 2014

No Comment :( but Winner Allright!

So you are all a little shy out there, Nobody left any comments for my Giveaway but I noticed in my Stats that there was more traffic coming from some blogs, so with some detective work I found that I had been mentioned and linked from these Blogs so I thank you for that. Penny over at Back Valley Seasons is the winner of the polka dot purse, I'm putting it in the post today and it will be on its way to Australia. I love to get a present in the post so Penny I hope it cheers you up.

Monday, 20 October 2014

Some sewing & Free Give Away

I could not resist buying some lovely fabric last week in The Quilt Shop, Tuam. But I'm always at a loss how to use it. I have enough patchwork cushions and half made quilts, I like projects that I can complete in one sitting. So I make some I-Pad covers, they will be useful Christmas gifts. My sewing is not perfect but I think the design is pretty and original.



And while I had the sewing machine out I make some purses too,


It has been a while since I had a give away. So leave a comment and maybe link/mention my blog on yours and one of you will receive this very handmade polka dot zipper purse.


Sunday, 5 October 2014

Antique Apothecary Drawer Run

I got a hugh response and had much interest in the antique drawer run I featured here earlier in the summer. I promised to keep you posted re. my restoration progress. I'm happy to report that I am almost there, many many hours later and much hard work I am delighted with the results. I need to thank Tom of Dowd Furniture for his sensitive craftsmanship, he repaired the broken drawers and now they all function as they should. I also got materials, expert historical advice and a Master class on staining and finishing the piece from Audrey (the daughter) of Adams and daughter, the best in the business. so just a little sneak preview here.

 I'm missing a knob, any suggestions where I might get a replacement? I still a few drawers to finish and wax and when that's done Ill show you the piece in its entirety so "Watch this space".

Sunday, 21 September 2014

Art Books

I was at an Art Book work shop in the National Print Museum a few weeks ago. Caroline Byrne was the tutor and it was a very productive enjoyable day. We did lots of different types of folded books and a hard covered book with a stitched spine, it is so good to see a demonstration rather than trying to follow instructions in a book, it removes the fear so to speak.
I did not want to waste the samples I made so I added covers and illustrations when I got home. Here are some photos.





Monday, 8 September 2014

Collage

Here is another small collage. I really enjoy making these but I will have to try making them bigger!


Tuesday, 2 September 2014

September and Blackberries

I love September, the days are getting shorter but there is still enough evening light to get a walk in after tea and one wants to make the most of it before winter sets in in earnest. There is also something about the air that brings me right back to childhood, remembering back to school, newly covered books, clean fresh copies, lunch in a box, and a return of routine after the long free days of summer. I guess I must have liked going back to school!
This year the hedgerows are full of blackberries, does that mean we will have a severe winter? I don't usually make jam but with so many berries how could I not make use of them. I'm not a natural cook but I can follow a recipe and provided I don't get distracted and forget I'm cooking something (until I smell it burning) I  manage to produce the occasional decent meal.
So this afternoon I made some jam. Delia Smith is my guru, I have her Delias Complete Cookery Course for 20+ years and I followed her advice re. jam making, but I may have gone a little astray on the wrinkle test to see if it was at setting consistency! I made 2 separate pans so feel my 2nd batch was better.
  


All the scratches from the brambles and stirring of the jam was worth it to have my cupboard filled with these pretty pots. I cant wait to try it on some nice warm scones with cream, Ah, bliss.
Seamus Heaney wrote a lovely poem abut Blackberry Picking listen to him reading it Here

Sunday, 24 August 2014

A Sunday Makeover

It is the first wet dark day we have had for ages so autumn is approaching. What better way to spend the day than painting a little piece of furniture, I only had some small chalk paint sample pots but the piece was small and people that know me will know when an idea strikes I have to go at it straight away, I won't let a little thing like not having all the supplies stop me! I also wanted to do a practice run writing with gold paint on wood. I had a cheap set of drawers that were perfect for a trial piece. Firstly as in all good makeovers I removed the knobs, then I painted it roughly with red Annie Sloan chalk paint, I had so little left in the jar that I could not cover it fully but I only needed it on the edges really. unfortunately I had this red paint on when I took the first photo so its not an exact " Before" picture.
                                                                         BEFORE
                                                                  da dum (the drum roll)
                                                                          AFTER

Then I painted it with Annie Sloan graphite with some Liberon "Vegetable Black" pigment added, although after sanding it seemed more graphite than Black,  later I added the pigment again to the wax which gave me the finish I was looking for.
Here are the paints, pigment, wax and ink I used.
Now for the gold letters, I was pleased with how easy it was to use the gold ink on the wood, The first one I cut a stencil for but after that I found it easier to do it free hand, if I had chalk it would have been better I could have written it in chalk and then painted over it, but I had no chalk so I need to put it on my shopping list. I thought the gold was far too shiny and new looking for the distressed look I wanted but that could be fixed later.


In the picture above I have waxed the edges and between the drawers with clear wax that I added black pigment to..
"Bits" annoyed me as the "i" was not at the same slant angle as the other letters, this is the one I cut the stencil for, you can see as you go down the drawers my writing was improving.

 

 So after the wax and allot of elbow grease I have a new very distressed looking drawers. I have to get four new knobs and then its all done. I may revisit the letters again as I feel they would look better in a gloss paint, but this will do for today. Now its time to put the feet up and catch up with the Sunday papers.

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