Thursday, 21 May 2015

New work, crochet and flowers

May had a slow start but I've ended up very busy, mainly with design work and that is keeping me tied to my desk at the moment.

It's the time of year I do label designs for my vineyard client and this year they are releasing some new wines with my illustrations on the labels. I can give you a sneak preview of the new East Coast and Dalesman wine which sound delicious.

The wines are doing very well and picking up plenty of awards these days.

Next in my in tray is a new client which is something completely different, a logo to design for an American space science institute, wish me luck with that one!

In between proper work I've just completed a commission for a crochet flower garland necklace which I've made in some lovely bright cotton threads.

To continue with a flower theme I'm revisiting a craft I used to do many years ago, or rather trying to get back into it for an idea I have and that is the folk art style decorative painting you see on canal boats.

I got my paints out last weekend and started practising the brush strokes. If I can paint a selection of floral motifs then I will try and create a fabric design. I just need some time to spread my paints out and get on with it, it's difficult when you have to work on the kitchen table and pack it away at meal times. Or rather not pack it away and we eat with loads of stuff on the table! Oh the joys of living in a messy confined space.

Hope the weather cheers up for the bank holiday :)

Thursday, 7 May 2015

Spring is trying to spring into life

It seems a late Spring here and last bank holiday weekend was so chilly that I went back to my thermals I'd recently stored away and had to warm up with vest and long johns again. Don't you find the chillyness always seems to happen when the central heating has been turned off!

Gladys the Great Tit has been visiting me and landing on my hand sometimes 3 or 4 times daily for a bird treat. Sometimes she stays on my hand for more than a second and looks at me and tweets, it really is quite sweet. From previous years of having bird best friends, this will usually last until they have their final brood and then they disappear rather sheepishly so I enjoy her friendship whilst I can.

The blossom on the cherry tree was looking lovely on one fine day the previous week but it has been so windy and wet this week it has virtually all blown off now. 

The Daffs peaked but have been battered this week too.

As some of you know, I find this is a pretty grim place to rent with all it's problems but this time of year it looks a little better with a splash of colour and with the thought of longer warm days.

The cool bank holiday weekend was an excuse to stay in and watch the Tour de Yorkshire cycle race in our area. Nice to see them whizzing through Brid, Scarborough & York but shame there wasn't more TV coverage for the villages nearer to us.
I had designed a beer label for this event for the Malton / Norton area the race was passing through.

The weekend also brought about yet more summer scarf making. I have used the crochet moss stitch I like to make this pastel coloured scarf.

With a new ball of soft alpacha wool I've had a go at a lacy shell stitch scarf. It doesn't look too good here but it's a lovely duck egg blue & speckle.

I've also been doing some teeny tiny embroideries which I've tried to show the scale with a 5p. These will turn up in some textile brooches at some point.

And finally, a delicious little thing to share with any embroidery enthusiasts out there.
A lovely parcel arrived this morning.

Beneath the intriguing wrap was this.

This is a box of vintage embroidery threads made in Sweden in the 1960s.

This beautiful yarn is made from flax and has been hidden away for decades after the factory closed down in Sweden. It has been recently rediscovered (I don't know all the story but will link to the site) and is now for sale. The colours and quality are wonderful and having such amazing vintage thread will make a project truly unique.
Check out the site to find out more and if you'd like to buy some, I can thoroughly recommend it.