Sunday, 25 March 2012

New Brooches

Quick Tutorial
I started with some wooden heart shapes and my stash of gorgeous papers
Pick out some interesting papers and draw around the heart and cut out
then cut out a contrasting colour of paper for the bottom half of the heart (or the top if you prefer)

add a flower cut from one of the papers

along with a word or words cut from old books then coat with gel medium to protect papers

paint the back of the brooches

use inks to distress the edges of the brooches

and they're now ready for the pins to be glued on and for sale at Indigo Moon

....Another room almost finished at the Armoury, we now have a proper living room, just a few bits to tidy up which we'll get on with tomorrow (in between a picnic up at the Castle!!)

Thursday, 15 March 2012

Bright days, busy days and relaxing day out days...

I have a new computer...yaaaaaay, it arrived yesterday and it's soooooooo fast!

Nina Bagley jewellery - stunning
I have a very strong inkling to make jewellery, assemblage (art to wear) jewellery, i'm probably driving my husband mad buying and trying out new supplies.  So far i've had packages arrive containing pliers of all sizes and sorts along with gorgeous glass beads of all kinds....and then last night found me scouring Etsy for gorgeous pieces of fabric to incorporate into some new pieces i have in mind.
(Homestead Treasures on Etsy) is always...custom charges put me off ordering in from abroad, so i decided to make some of my own using a method described by Ruth Rae in her book "Layered Tattered and Stiched"...and this was the result:
 hand stamped muslin
I think these will look really good with different stamps and some gold and coloured machine stitching.
Deryn Mentock Jewellery
I am inspired by the lovely Nina Bagley (and Deryn Mentock, check out her blog "Something Sublime") it's amazing and now that i have supplies available i'm going to see what i can come up with in my own watch this space.

I have a Dr's appointment today, it's taken me almost two weeks to make it, my back pain is getting worse and i've rested really well, but, unfortunately, it doesn't seem to be getting any better and after a final warning from Gav today saying make an appointment or i will for you, i did.  I called the surgery at 8.30am this morning and have an appointment at 4.30pm this afternoon - how's that for amazing service?

  The thing is with working in the shop, i get a lot of well meaning people in here who are very sympathetic and offer all sorts of advice, which can sometimes be quite frightening, most seem to have known someone with similar symptoms and have no qualms in telling me it didn't end well!!  The most bizarre was a lady who recently asked me all my symptoms and then quite worriedly told me to get to my GP as her sisters husband had that and it turned out to be "testicular cancer"..........!!!!  Hmmmm!!!  don't think there's much chance of that actually!!!

Anyway, onto brighter things.......
This was what the centre of our shop looked like last week
and this week........first it looked like this, with all the centre table and shelves moved out. make room for new shelving, made from old 1960's wooden fruit crates, painted and waxed

 Now, it looks like this...
Stunningly gorgeous
 We do have a lot more to do on the shelving side of things (but Gav's having a break bless him, he worked so hard putting them together and painting and waxing them all up).

We had such a nice relaxing day off this week...
...we drove over to Builth Wells (to pick up some old churns) and across to Leominster where we had lunch and a leisurely wander around the vintage, antique and gallery shops there.  Then we went on to Ludlow and took the scenic route home through Ashton on Clun to Bishops castle and then home to Montgomery. Definitely in need of more of these relaxing days.

This made me laugh....i photographed it outside a pub in Leominster!  Especially for my gorgeous girl, it's her kind of philosophy...Ha!
Talking of my gorgeous girl...she'll be here again this weekend, still earning her money for the "Download" festival.  But it's mothers day on Sunday, so i'll whisk the two of us out for a nice lunch somewhere, perfect mother/daughter time, ahhhhhhh.

....and finally...this was my shopping from the market today - hardly ever have a need to do supermarkets these days....we're getting so healthy....he he!!  Off to make soup now.
"The best and most efficient pharmacy is within your own system"
– Robert C. Peale

Friday, 2 March 2012

"The Porcelain Doll" and other gorgeous things...

I just have to show you this beautiful jewellery made by my very gorgeous and talented niece, Angharad Selway.  Her business name is The Porcelain Doll and she makes these pieces out of beads, fabric, jewellery findings and all sorts of other lovely things.  She sent me a box full to put in the shop, i love the handmade hand stamped labels she did for them. they are all displayed at Indigo Moon, they look delicious don't you think?

 I've been feeling a tad sorry for myself these last few weeks, i've had chronic back ache which doesn't seem to be getting better, not helped by moving furniture around again, but needs must.  This is our new middle floor hallway, finally tidy and free from junk, all around is beginning to feel like a home now.  The end room you can see at the bottom of the corridor steps down into what will eventually be our living room and although it's all painted it's still full of junk at the moment.  The next door is Nicci's room and the nearest one is the guest bedroom (also full of junk and unpainted).  The floor boards here could do with a good polish, they're very old, it's on our "to-do" list.
 I love these chairs, Gav bought them from an auction last year they have all sorts of scary carved faces over them, very tribal.
Gav was out all day yesterday at an auction in Shrewsbury.  Whilst we were sorting out some of the rooms we found boxes and boxes of china tea sets under beds and in cupboards - things we bought to sell in the shop before we opened - we'd forgotten how much we had, so we decided to get rid of most of it and took two, full to the brim, car loads of stuff over to Halls on Monday for the sale yesterday.  It all went for a good price, some of it more than we paid for it two years ago, so we were really pleased.

Whilst Gav was out i re-did my window display for Mothers Day.  It's a lways a little difficult as the inside of the shop is below street level and because the window is really tall, i don't get to use the whole space, anyway this is it and i've had lots of nice comments on it!
 The vase will have some flowers in it, but because i don't want to use real ones i'm going to make some out of paper...when i get a minute.

Now, this is a huge ambitious project in itself.  Gav is assembling this shelving in our kitchen at the moment in parts.  He bought some old wooden, rustic fruit boxes and had an idea to make new shelving for the shop out of them.  We've never been entirely happy with the centre of the shop, but were a bit stumped for ideas as we didn't want to move towards the more commercialised shop fittings and lose the unique "aladdiny cavey" (i know thats not a word, but you know what i mean) feel/look to the shop.
As you can see, he's assembled them and used some "1839" chalk paint in various colours to randomly paint/wash over it.  He wasn't entirely happy at first but it grew on him.  Since taking this photo he's brushed them with an antique brushing wax and you would not believe the difference in the look and colour.  The plan is to assemble them over the next 2/3 weeks and fit them on a Monday when we're closed, i think they'll look great.

In the meantime, enjoy some images of the shop as it was yesterday....(er i moved things around a bit after this photo).
Dotty pegs i've been painting over the last week or so whilst my art room was seconded out to Nicci to finish projects for college - apparently i have everything she needs in there!!!!!  How convenient!  She went to London on Tuesday with college, she was so excited bless her.  I had two calls whilst she was there, one to ask me to pay £20 into her account and another to tell me she'd bought my Mothers Day present.....Hmmmm!!! methinks i've been had there!!!  Ha!!
 This was nother project in the week...painting this horrible brown dresser at the front of the shop (and the one next to it), i painted a little yellow on the back to give it an "identity" - it does look nice.  I started it at 5pm when we closed the shop and as it could be re-coated in six hours, i was back in at 11.30pm doing the second coat - worth it though, it makes the shop look brighter.
 Gorgeous soap, lots to choose from
 Bath Bombs to die for... Nicci put some new ones out last weekend, they smell delicious
"Hey baby i'm, the telephone man..."
Lots of phones, all restored and in working order by my very own "telephone man"
These get a lot of attention, our customers love them, we sell absolutely loads of them and have a house full of them too. 
 Vintage Pottery

 View to the back of the shop from the door
So that's what i've been up to the last few weeks.  We've had lots of artisans calling in to the shop to ask me to sell their wares, i wish i could take it all, but i don't have enough space, it's something Gav and i are thinking about a lot, we'd like to extend the shop but it may mean us having to live elsewhere - we'll put it on our five, maybe ten year plan!!

“Virtue and Happiness are Mother and Daughter”

- Benjamin Franklin