Clock this

May 28th, 2015

Some time ago I created a bunch of brushes for Photoshop, all based on designs I’d designed in Illustrator. Those of us with cutting machines know just how easy it is to combine elements together to make a very intricate-looking cohesive design.

I combined my elements to create this Scandi-type clock face and cut it from vehicle grade vinyl. The design did need some strategic masking tape placement to keep some odd bits here and there together but all in all, the process of lifting it from the vinyl to the clock was relatively painless.

Once down and burnished in place, I attached the clock workings and it was good to go!

Plant Pot Stencil

I had my eye on this art nouveau stencil design on the Craftsmanspace site. I posted the link a few days ago. If you haven’t already been over, go! If you want cutting files, most of the designs are available as SVGs.

Anyhoo, I cut out a stencil and painted on the lovely playful rabbit. This is to be a door-number and will go round the front of house when planted up. I think a fuschia would go well for height, spread and colour.

Just for information, the daisies behind the pot are the ones I was desperate to see open just a couple of weeks ago. Flourishing and flowering beautifully now!

Knotty Issues

May 25th, 2015

Early Saturday morning I had a burst of creativity and cut some squares of creamy-white linen to play with. I wet them and placed them on a glass chopping board (the usual kitchen type). Then I got out my watercolours and dripped then gently brushed them along the fabric to create a moody blue ombre-ish effect. To lift it a little, I very sparingly applied some irridescent fabric paint (the photo hasn’t picked up the teeny sparkles but they’re there and catch the light nicely but not for the camera).

I have other squares in greens, pinks and blues and like the effect. I spotted this little bluey one with lots of French Knots and Specking or Seed stitches to make a colourful teeny tree. It’s sewn up and filled with stuffing and lavender to add to my ever-growing collection of lavender sachets!

Anyway, here we are again. Monday. The weather started grim and grey with every indication of turning into a soggy mess. The day did, apparently, start off well. It started with a COMMENT! Yes, a real Not-Bot comment! Yee Haaa. Whoop Whoop. I thought, ‘Mrs Trellis of South Wales has been very active today!’

Then I read it LINK

My heart sank. Nobody comments to say they received files they have bought from me to show that I am a trusted seller – yes, I am – but there is no feedback to reassure anyone out there.

Nobody comments to say my posts are interesting/inspiring/pretty/useful  or to say Thank You for the free stuff I give away, etc etc etc.

Just a negative comment. You can see why I might be disappointed.

Luckily, the blog has a major organisational function for me and helps me keep track of my files and pictures so I have no emotional neediness to be ‘super-liked’ or anything. I don’t aspire to be the next ‘Martha’ so increasing traffic isn’t my driver (ha ha, punned without even trying).

I sell some files but it certainly isn’t a business or realise any kind of livable income! In fact, when I started the blog I made everything free – everything. Even now, if I got no sales at all it wouldn’t make a bit of difference to me. You’ll notice my site is clean – no ads, no blinkies, no blog hops, no linky parties, no sponsorship. I like it this way. I have no interest in fake ‘likes’ and you-scratch-my-back-I’ll-scratch-yours type of thing. All mine. All graphics, all photography, all files, all copy (the writing). Mine. That’s the beauty of self-hosting.

The total silence on the comment front didn’t bother me until I stumbled upon a forum where a bunch of people happily enthused with one another about how pretty my site was and how lovely my cutting files were and they were free and ‘get over there’… Like locusts. It disgusted me that there were such ingrates and rude people out there. What hurt was that I was sharing and hoping that others liked and enjoyed the free files and tutorials and naively thought it was appreciated rather than feeling like a sucker. And that’s when I started to charge for some of my files. They’d be free to this day if it hadn’t been for that forum I found.

Anyhow, at least the comment serves to ‘prove’ I do send the file to the buyer. That I do respond with help and that there is actually a human being on this side of the blog. Just saying.

Samsara Tree

May 22nd, 2015

A quickie – these are baby birds – baby Samsaras and they’re off to the craft fair on Sunday as well as the new cushions. Filled with lavender and pretty with spotty wooden beads, rainbows of satin ribbon tails and lots of different embroidery stitches they make for a lovely splash of colour! The weather had been gloriously sunny until I went outside with them… and then the wind picked up a bit… then my camera battery died…  anyhoo, I managed to get a couple of reasonable pictures to show you.

Art Nouveau Appliqued Cushion

May 22nd, 2015

My latest make – an appliquéd cushion. The design is available (for free) from the fantastic Craftsmanspace site:  click for link – Vectorised Design Elements 7.

There are loads of types of designs for all sorts of things in lots of formats, including SVGs. There is a rabbit in the Stencil section that is next on my list of appliqué ambitions.

Here’s a close-up. The design was first Bondawebbed inplace then zig-zagged over to keep it secure. The fabric is a wool-rich subtle herringbone tweed. The design is cut from 100% good quality cotton. The cushion filler is duck feather for its plush plumpness and luxury. I’m taking it to a craft fair this Sunday but will be sorry to part with it if it sells.

The garden is springing to life with colour and blooms. My knowledge isn’t great as I’m no gardener but I do appreciate the vibrancy and richness of colour they give to the garden palette. I think these are African Marigolds but I could be wrong…

Here’s my Buddha. He sits under a lush bush of Rosemary. I might move him some time but will need help as he’s very heavy.

Wandering down the path is some Sweet William. Very fresh, delicate and pretty in the bright blue.

 

Yellow poppies. These grow in gorgeous splashes all over the place. This patch sit in front of some purple-flowered Honesty. It also goes by the name of ‘Silver Dollar’ plant on account of its lovely seed pods. When the flowers die off, the seed pods develop as flat, silvery translucent discs. They make for very pretty dried flower arrangements and last forever.

The house is a metal tealight house that I’m leaving outside to weather a little bit.

These are white flowers. I haven’t a clue what they’re called but I have a bank of them. They sprawl and flower in a carpet of small white flowers.

No picture today but my daisies are looking fabulous. One spread has over eighty blooms now. His Lovely Bones helped create them and they are my most beloved of all the flowers in the garden.

Later in the year the hydrangeas will grow their cheer-leader pom-poms. I have three down the bottom of the garden and three in my front garden. Big, mature huge pom-poms. They are ostentacious, outrageously loud, colourful. and, I have to say, gorgeous!

Well, more prep for the craft fair to get on with.

More Pillow Talk

May 10th, 2015

Love Bunnies

The ‘Love Bunnies’ cushion is still a work-in-progress inasmuch as I still have to make four pom-pom tails and stitch them on but that won’t take me long and so it’s pretty much done. It’s filled with a fat, plump-as-a-Christmas-Goose feather-filled cushion. The wool tweed is soft and this cushion is also stitched with Gütenberg Gütermann silk thread (just re-read this and realised my mind was obviously on other pressing matters). The inner seams are overcast so there’ll be no fraying and uses more thread than I’d have ever thought. Maybe I should have used a cheaper thread but I wanted to make it to the best quality I could. It’s so soft and squishy to hug… ahhh….

 

*** Update***

The poms are on.

Home is Where the Heart Is

This is my ‘Home is Where the Heart Is’. The edging triangles are called Prairie Points; each one is made from a 4″ x 4″ square of material, folded and pressed twice. That was exacting work but I made up a quick equation to determine how many triangles I’d need for a given length which is the length of the SEAM x 2, divided by size of the square (in my case 4″), minus 1:

(2L/S) – 1

where L = Length of seam  and S = Square

This is handy for future reference and will save having to re-invent the wheel every time I make them. A Charm pack would, of course, be the ticket for making Prairie Points as all the measuring and square cutting would be pre-made and wouldn’t require futzing about with cutting tools and steel rulers… No matter, I needed my points to accessorise the text in the centre so had to get on with it!

Home and the heart are obviously appliqued on – each cut and fused to the front with Bondaweb then overstitched to keep it on securely and prevent fraying.

Just for information, the font was a classic Times or New Century but was amended to thicken some of the textual elements. In Typographical terminology (just fancied alliterating there) it was the ‘Stems’ of some of the letterforms where there were contrasting thick and thins, the ‘thins’ were too fine to be easy to work with.

Thickening the stems of some of the letterforms

As I was using Illustrator, I converted the text into Outlines (Selection Tool – Black Arrow>Type>Create Outlines and Ungrouped). From thereon you can use the Direct Selection Arrow – the White Arrow tool – to select points then use the keyboard arrow keys to move the points up down or left right to widen the shapes of the letters. Or simply weld a rectangle or other appropriate shape to the letters and use the Bezier points to curve them into smooth transitions between vertical/horizontals. There are lots of ways to achieve this. Mrs Trellis of South Wales  likes to innundate me with comments, questions and queries so she’ll probably harass me with an e-mail to write up how I did it. When (if) she does I’ll go through the steps I went through in detail and write it up as a tutorial.

Love Bunnies is also filled with a feather cushion – so gorgeous to just squish. Pure joy.

Love Squared

This one you’ve seen already, now entitled ‘Love Squared’.

I decided against adding a button at the back for the moment as I have a tendency to over-egg the pudding and thought I’d give it a little time and reserve judgement until I am less caught up in things.

So a late night and other, house-chore type things to do. Oh will this pleasure never end?! Lol.

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