Winging it!

A very lovely and talented friend of mine is holding an exhibition of some of her work and I feel it is my duty to share it with you!

Heather Zeale and Charlotte Knight
Winging it,
an exciting exhibition of contemporary textiles based work.
The Theatre
Chipping Norton
28 June - 19 July 2009

Heather Zeale is delightful (although I am biased!) Her work is gorgeous, a blend of print and embroidery, 2D and 3D. I find her very inspiring, see for yourselves:

I adore this cutlery! A tea cup and teapot have also been created for the exhibition, I can't wait to see it at the weekend. Heather is currently working on a website and I'm persuading her to create an Etsy shop!

Charlotte Knight is the other artist involved in the show. She is a print based artist currently working on paper, printing and manipulating her creations. I look forward to seeing her work at the exhibition.

So if you're in the Chipping Norton area over the next few weeks come and have a look!


I'm in a shop!!!

I mentioned in a previous post how supportive the lovely ladies in the Textile Workshop have been. I popped back in this week and dropped some things off with Karen, and I'm pleased to say they went on display immediately, complete with the cute tags Mr Shortcake made!!!

These lovely ladies are finished now, complete with dresses, jewelry and some underwear! I've got another which will be going on Etsy when I have the time to list it!! I loved making these so there will be more to follow!

Here are some purses that I made. It's so satisfying to see them amongst the other lovely things.

I made quite a few and as with the doll they will go online eventually! My buddy Laura over at Delightfully Delirious is having a charity sale soon too so she's gonna have some things from me too!

The contrasting linings make me smile. I'm planning some more, maybe embellished....

My current obsession, Birds!!!! I'm addicted to these things, I've got six other bird paintings on the go at the moment and a sketchbook with a load more waiting to happen. I've got plans for some plushies and some brooches, but with all the other plans I make I'm not sure when they will happen! :)

Its done wonders for my confidence and its certainly helped my inspiration. It's amazing how inspiring a purpose can be!!!

Toodles for now!


Mr Shortcake is always supportive, last weekend I made him happy by talking about my work with others so to show how pleased he was he agreed to help me 'merchandise'! We popped to Hobbycraft and purchased some colored card and a tag shaped paper punch (I was super excited by managed to hold it in!!).

The idea was to print my logo as a repeat and punch out the tags so I can attached them to the various different products. Mr Shortcake set to work, plotting out the repeat on my little laptop, only for it to crash after 2 hours work as it ran out of ram!!! He hadn't managed to save the file as it was too big!!! I felt so bad! But after a dinner break he carried on and eventually produced these.....

I'm really pleased with them! I get a real satisfaction out of punching these little things out. I'm planning to create some patterned ones to use as gift tags! They are sooo Cute!


Ruts, interviews and other excuses....... :)

Well, I just had a shock! I've just seen the date of my last post, very bad!

It's been a strange few months actually, I finally got the courage up to apply for University to do my teacher training, the interviews came through really quickly and after a full stress out and unnecessary panicking I have accepted a place! Roll on September!

I've also been snowboarding in Austria, which was A-mazing!!! BUT I twisted my knee on the first day trying to conquer a drag lift (if you don't know what that is, it's better off that way, they are not friendly to snowboarders!), which I coped with fine until the last day when I decided to go for it and started to practice jumps....oh dear! I spent 3 weeks strapped up when I got home and wobbled around on crutches for a little while!!! Still, the NHS were good to me and it appears to be fine now!

Hopefully I have also started to conquer my creativity rut. I'm one of those frustrating people that can dole out advice to others but never listen to it myself! I have a terrible fear of rejection and no confidence in my work at all, even when I have people ordering paintings and other things I just don't see it!! That was part of the reason why I started this blog, to get my products out there for some feedback, but instead I have shied away from putting things on, giving reasons like 'it's not finished yet', 'I've not listed it on Etsy yet' (which, by the way, doesn't happen either!) and various other excuses!

Well, I bit the bullet yesterday and visited my local craft shop The Textile Workshop. I needed to have a chat with Karen about a placement before my course starts so I thought I'd take some things up and see what she thought. I'm really pleased to say she liked them all! I took a couple of dolls, paintings, my knitting needle case and some purses I've been working on, which she would be pleased to put in the shop for me. We had a lovely chat and I came away feeling positive and inspired. It's half-term for me this week so I'm planning to finish things off, label up and pop them up to the shop for display. The remaining things WILL go on Etsy and Folksy and I WILL create some more!!!!

I suppose the moral of the story is to just do it, as the old skool Nike ads used to say! Having a chat with Karen was the best idea I've had for a while, I only wish I'd done it sooner! Oh well! It's all good now!!

Right, off the Hobbycraft to stock up on supplies!!

I've been blogged on Ikea Hacker!!

I was so excited today to see my studio space featured on Ikea Hacker's blog. This is my first 'blogging' and what a lovely feeling!!

Lisa Currie & The Scribble Project

The Scribble Project, the creation of Lisa Currie. I originally discovered the project via Rachel Denbow's blog, the page was inspiring and I immediately wanted to fill one in. So like a good girl I emailed Lisa and waited for my sheet to arrive in my inbox. It did, (very quickly!) and I printed one off as well as some of the sheets done by others, for inspiration, packed it in my bag for work with the intention of filling it in if I had a spare moment.

It was a busy day at school and we were short staffed, I found myself with a group that wasn't engaging in their work and I was about to lose them when I remembered the Scribble project! I handed out a couple of sheets and suddenly calm rained down and they worked well, expressing themselves. I was so pleased I email Lisa to say thanks!

Eventually I got round to filling my sheet in.....

I'm quite pleased with it, Lisa has given me some lovely feedback already. Take a look at the site, the responses have been great. Lisa's sheets are inspiring and I'm certainly going to keep an emergency stash in my school bag from now on!

Go scribble......

Knitting Needle Case

Pleasingly its been a very productive week for me. I've sorted the studio, caught up with some unfinished projects and started some new ones. One of which was this knitting needle roll....

I've been meaning to make one for a while, all my needles were clumped together in a box with rubber-bands. There were some scraps left over from a special project Mr Shortcake was working on (I'll tell you about that tomorrow) and I managed to throw this together in about an hour including a tea break!! I'm sure there must be some tutorials out there on how to make these. It would make a good starter project for a class I think!

Cloth Dolls: mini naked people!

Their life less forms lay on the cutting mat and I could take it no longer!! The hair went on first, lovingly hand-stitched to their bare heads then one by one the bodies developed (!). I couldn't resist giving them Lady-gardens, it was too much of a giggle! I diligently matched hair colors too!

They have a range of faces as I couldn't decide on a style so I tried them all out. I love the overall effect of them together with their varying expressions!

I'm in the process of designing some dresses for them to hide their modesty! Hope I've not offended anyone!

Toodles, Kt x

Reconstructing knits.....

As you are aware, I've been sorting out the studio. During this process I unearthed a box full of handmade fabric, knitted swatches and woven fabric I have created. I was overcome with inspiration, well, slightly inspired to make use of these pieces. It seems such a shame to have them just sitting in a box, so I got thinking!

There was a piece of turquoise knitting I inherited with some gifted yarn that just screamed at me to make it in to a hat. There was a small hole left in the top once I stitched it together so I made a lovely big Pom-pom to cover it. I love pom-poms!!!

The other piece was a black knitted swatch I made to pass the time about 4 years ago. It was just the right length for an arm warmer, so with the rest of the yarn I had left (yes, after 4 years!!) I made another one!! I'm chuffed with myself, it's been a while since I've been so motivated! There are still some bits left so I'll blog them in their new forms soon!


I promised I would keep you updated so I will!!! And here it is, the studio, finished and finally organized! To see the before shot have a look here. I'm so pleased with it, I didn't leave it last night until I went to bed! I took some photos last night and a couple this morning so if the light is a bit off that's why and also because I'm no David Bailey!

The bookcase worked like a dream, the shelves are all movable so I was able to adjust them to the height of the books. I also managed to condense both bookcases in to this one which is great, the only things that don't have a home yet are my collection of Vogues and other magazines which will stay in the study (but that's the next project so enough of that!).

I had said that I wasn't going to touch the paint cupboard but I had second thoughts and I'm glad I did. It's lovely and organized now, and I don't have to remove eight tins of paint to find the one I want. I realized it was full of old, unusable emulsion, so I got tough and sorted out what I really didn't want.

The new sewing desk, it's so good I had to enclose two pictures! I love it! This was such a non-space before, I didn't know what to put on the wall and things used to just pile up at the side. The desk has plenty of storage and loads of workspace. The pin-boards where stuck behind a cupboard in Mr Shortcake's study so I gave them a coat of paint and hey presto! New inspiration-boards!
The call of Ikea was too great and I gave in a replaced my old desk sooner than expected, but I'm pleased I did as the room feels complete now and there are no finishing touches hanging over my head waiting to be done. This desk is smaller than the original but its shape makes it easier to use and as with the sewing desk I've added in extra storage.

I think I might send these to Ikeahacker as the units are for kitchens and the curtains are made from Ikea duvet covers! What do you think?

Pancakes or Crepes = Yummy!

I love breakfast but it's posed a bit of a problem for my the last couple of years as I was diagnosed with some food intolerances. A fair few to be exact! I've got a lot of them under control now but I still have to eliminate Gluten, Dairy, Soya and concentrated fruit juice from my diet! I've got a pile of fabulous cook books but I came across one last year that is now invaluable, all because of one recipe, yes, you guessed it, Crepes!

Oh, how I love thee! My heart was broken when I had to give up cakes and pastries but when the realization hit me that it meant crepes too, well, I was devastated! :( I experimented with shop bought, as I have with the cakes too, but they're never up to scratch, dry and crumbly. I sourced some flour I could use but couldn't get the old family recipe to work right, then along came the book! I'm pleased to say I now frequently have crepes for breakfast, and numerous other times of the day which gives me great joy! I'm a traditionalist, it's always lemon juice and sugar for me, but my, they are delicious!!

Just thought I'd share a little of my obsession with you!! :) What food could you not live without?

New Year Resolutions, An Update!

I'm please to say that I'm working quite well on a few of my resolutions. I'm drinking far less coffee, turns out it was affecting my sleep by making me over heat! I've been commenting on more blogs, which is great, especially when you get responses, I love the interaction! Sweets have been cut out from my diet, not completely but enough :P we've got a Learn Spanish pack from Mr Shortcake's mum, the Etsy shop exists just need to sell something! The house has also begun it's transformation, I did a big de-clutter in the lounge the other day and my studio is in the process of being kitted out!

This week is half-term holiday so I hope to be very productive, I'll keep you posted on any further developments!


Cloth Dolls

Over Christmas I made this young lady and a couple of others to give as gifts. Very cute and very long!!!! I absolutely loved making them and it has inspired me to create some cloth dolls that may end up in my Etsy shop! This lady was a little too long though so I'm refining the pattern.

I wanted to create my own pattern but wasn't sure where to start. How long should their legs be? Should I give them joints? Clothes or clothing shaped bodies? So many questions!

So I took a couple of patterns from a book and used them as a template, adapting the head and body shape, blending them together, varying the limbs and changing the construction method. Here are the six prototypes I've created.....

My favorite is the fourth one along with the small head but I'd like her limbs to be a little thinner. I also like the last one, although I might give her the small head too!!

They're in the process of getting hair (and body parts!?!) and i've got to dress them! I really enjoying creating these ladies!! I'll keep you updated on their progress and add the development photos!!

A Smitten!!! How Cute!!!

I came across this today on Curbly, a Smitten! It's so adorable!!! Designed by Julie Weisenburger, the pattern is available via Coco Knits. Ok, so it's a little geeky but who cares, you know you all secretly want one!!

I do!!!

The Studio, a Work In Progress!

I'm in a very fortunate position, where Mr Shortcake loves my creativity and has sacrificed the spare room to provide me with a Studio space. However, I do really love the space but it needs a bit of work. I've been so inspired by the Handmade Spaces on Modish, all the beautifully organized rooms, tidy shelves and cupboards that I made a couple of decisions, I recently sold this.......
......My weaving loom, a treasured possession that was invaluable while at University but since then has sat in the corner gathering dust, looking sorry for itself. So I bit the bullet and put it on eBay and it's now winging its way to Sweden to be used and loved. This has given me the cash to sort the studio out! Yay!!

So I thought I would document the before and after look. Now, don't get too excited, the changes will not be massive but hopefully enough to make it a little more usable. As you can see there is a lot of stuff!!! Eventually there will be a new desk in this space but I'm going to make do with this one till I find 'The One'!

This bookcase has never met requirements! I'm hoping to condense two bookcases into one when the new one goes into this space but we'll see.......
The Paint Cupboard!!! This will remain as it is, it does the job and that's all that matters!
The weaving loom lived in this corner, I never realized how much space it took up! Along this wall will be my new sewing desk, it's bright yellow (we got the work-top in the sale already!) I'm very excited about this bit, it's long enough to have both the sewing machine and the overlocker on at the same time if needed!
Overall, very exciting! Mr Shortcake has some spare time at the moment so he's helping to sort it out. I made the cabinets for the sewing desk yesterday and gave the wood for the bookcase a wash of white. Stay tuned for the finished article........

Snow, snow, snow!

Well, to say we were unprepared would be an understatement!!! Although the snow had been forecast for a days, the roads were not gritted, the traffic jams began and the accidents happened.....But on the positive side we had SNOW DAY!!!!! So much fun! I had a lovely 2hr walk with Mr Shortcake, we built a snowman, watched some families sledging in the park and walked round our area investigating the Snowings-on!!!

I've worked hard and tidied the studio, it's helped a lot and I've started to make some rag-dolls/cloth-dolls. I'm experimenting with shapes at the moment and have six patterns I'm working with. I'm also going to be doing different hair and clothing on them too. I'll post some photos when they're completed.

For now, adios!

25 Random Things about ME!!

Time to share a little about me......

A friend sent me a request for 25 random things about me through a networking site, I quite enjoyed the process of writing the list so I thought I would share it with you too!!

Here it goes...

1. I want to be a teacher
2. I don't like kids!
3. I don't drink, smoke or do drugs
4. Shoes are my only addiction
5. I used to have a phobia of knives
6. I used to be afraid of heights!
7. I climb rocks (real and fake)
8. I only had 3 wisdom teeth, now I have none!
9. I won a prize in an Art competition when I was 5
10. I talk to my cats and they understand me :)
11.I can speak a little Spanish
12. Whistling drives me absolutely crazy :(
13. I don't like my knees being touched
14. I collect Bhudda's
15. I eat in my sleep (not literally but I make eating sounds apparently!)
16. 16 is my lucky number
17. I like to act like I'm six, 'cos it's cute!!
18. When I grow up I want to be taller....
19. I talk too much
20. I'm scared of going blind as my Nan did :(
21. Chickens WILL be my next pet!!
22. I want to dress like a Japanese girl ( a little inappropriate for work!)
23. I'm allergic to almost everything!
24. I wish I could sing!
25. I LOVE to CREATE!!! (but I'm a little lazy!)

Try writing your own list, it's funny to see all those things together!!



better late than never.....New Year Resolutions!

With Chinese New Year just passing I've finally got round to settling on my New Year Resoultions! Oh well! Better late than ever! Here they are:

  • Create more
  • Create selfishly
  • Sell my art on Etsy
  • Learn to Crochet
  • Learn to knit
  • Take more photos
  • Leave more comments on other blogs
  • Complete all my projects
  • Work smarter, not harder
  • Manage my time
  • Surround myself with positivity
  • Get better work/life balance
  • Eat healthier
  • Drink less coffee
  • Clean my house and reduce the amount of clutter
  • Be better with money
  • Brush up my spanish
  • Develop my style
  • Read more books
  • Take more walks
  • Go climbing
  • Go on more adventures
  • Learn to love every minute of it!

I'd like to thank the other bloggers that have inspired my resolutions by sharing theirs!
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