Monday, 31 May 2010

Wild Flowers, Part II

How's that for an inspiring blog post title????! Sometimes, words fail me :) So here's a lovely bunch of Marsh Marigolds picked from the roadside at the weekend. 'Little S' added the Cuckoo flowers in an inspired flower-picking dash outside! We had some beautiful weather here in the Hebrides, but 'tweedie' work continues apace - we did manage to pop into our local Art Gallery to see the exhibition of local artwork - members of the public are invited to submit their own work. It's always an interesting exhibition with a wide variety of pieces on show - you really need a few visits to absorb it all!

Back to business as usual today though, more stock to make for the Music Festival this month, and other bits and pieces, so . . . .

Sunday, 30 May 2010

Just a Peek

Here's a little peek of the custom wedding cushion, which I was working on yesterday - can't show it in more detail for obvious reasons! I really enjoyed making it (have one more to do!), and the gold braiding worked really well, I thought. Lots of hand-stitching, but then I enjoy that, so it was very pleasureable to do. This winter-white Harris Tweed is just a dream to use - my little brain is whirring away with all the possibilities for its use - just gorgeous stuff!!

Have a lovely Sunday :)

Thursday, 27 May 2010

Merry Go Round - May

It's 'Merry Go Round' time once again - a group of crafters/artists from around the world, discuss a chosen theme every month, to exchange ideas, viewpoints, etc.

This month we are discussing: "What do you do to network? In what ways does it work or not work?"

This is probably quite an appropriate theme for me as I spent all last weekend getting lost in the 'innards' of the beast, formerly known as Facebook!! I did emerge unscathed from my sojourn into this wonderous, mysterious, and slightly befuddling land, but unfortunately it resulted in a very large laundry pile, and some other unfinished household tasks - there's always a price to pay!

It's been fun though, and I've managed to link up with lots of lovely local people, which I'm delighted about! So, yes, I would say it was worth the exertion (and the build-up of domestic chores!!)

Apart from Facebook, I've been an avid user of Twitter, which I find to be great fun and I think it's an excellent way for people who are working for themselves to socialise too! You can bounce ideas around Twitter, ask questions, get feedback - all immediately. Also advertise your craft fairs, or whatever - a very effective way of communication, particularly if you connect with people in your area, which I think is really important.

My blog in itsef, I see as a great interactive tool and brilliant for linking up with other crafters - nice to be able to give some background information on yourself too, which I think people enjoy (well, after all my ramblings, I hope they do!!) It's a great support network too - which I love, it spurs you on in your creative pursuits in an amazing way!

Flickr is a fantastic, creative place to spend some time, and show your creations to all those who use this site. I've really enjoyed using it and get some nice feedback about my work. But, really, I just like to go and drool over the wonderful things that people have made - I could get lost there for hours!! I recently purchased an artwork, which I caught site of on Flickr - so it does work as a network tool!

Craft fairs can be good for networking and I've gleaned some knowledge from attending some - sales-wise, they can be hit or miss.

. . . and sometimes, in between all that, I even get some time to make stuff, hehe!!! :D (But, after re-reading this post, I'm beginning to wonder when?????!!!!!)

Well, I'm not sure if I've answered the question correctly - I've been so busy networking this week, I can hardly keep my eyes open, hehe! Please read the responses from the other lovely ladies in the group below. Some may be posting at different times of the day, depending on world time zones.

Bye for Now - z z zzzzzzzzz :)

Mitsy at ArtMind
Kim at Vilt a la Kim
Sara at Saras Texture Crafts
Fabienne at Easterya Jewellery
Mariana at Florcita
Agathe at Le Bar du Vent
Lily at Lily Pang Art and Design
Ruth at Birdland Creations

Apologies for not getting back to my Creative Space comments yet, but I will do at the weekend - honest! x

P.S. I am posting a little early as I have to go to my 'other job' and I haven't got the hang of the schedule-post 'thingummy-jig'!

my creative space . . .

Sorry, I can't show any 'works in progress' today as I'm heading off to Stornoway soon, and this week has been very much about production, rather than creativity - that means processing custom orders which is always good! So, I'm showing some of my growing stock-pile for the next craft fair - some miniature versions of my 'tweedies', about 3.5/4 inches in length/height.

I seem to have an obsession with making small things sometimes, perhaps that's because I'm quite a small person, hehe! 'Sod's Law', as soon as I started building up my stock, my custom orders seemed to pop up from nowhere - but I ain't complaining :D

More 'creative types' over here at Kirsty's place :)

Sunday, 23 May 2010

The simple things . . .

The last few days have been a bit mad here at Tweed Delights headquarters - I've been getting to grips with my new Facebook page, which is a whole new ball game for me. Good fun, but lots of head scratching to get it up and running, and tweaked they way I wanted it. Worth the effort though, I think :) Thanks to the lovely girls at work who nudged me into it and recommended my page to all their friends, how nice was that!!

So last night after spending a lot of intensive time on the computer, 'Little S' and I took a walk around our village and picked some of these lovely wild flowers along the way. They are called 'Lady's Smock' or alternatively the 'Cuckoo' flower as they come into bloom at the same time as the cuckoo bird makes an appearance. He's been making his appearance well known around our garden, with its distinctive cuckoo call - I love hearing it at this time of year.

As a result of the Facebook thingy, sort of indirectly, I got a request about making Harris Tweed cushions as a wedding gift. Here's the colour scheme I'm thinking of using - it's all a bit new to me, but I'm excited about the challenge and looking forward to a bit of embroidery as the couple's names will be on the front - I'll keep you updated! (I knew I'd find a special use for that gorgeous cream tweed - it has 'wedding' written all over it!)

Have a lovely Sunday :)

P.S. My Facebook Page is here if you'd, want to "like" it - I'm cringing now and almost under the table with embarrassment, self promotion is not something that comes naturally to us reserved Hebridean types!!

Thursday, 20 May 2010

my creative space . . . supplies

Hoping to play with some of these lovely supplies - most of which arrived in the post yesterday - I just love my postman, hehe :)

Some fabulous bright yellow felt which I'm dying to use to make some 'tweedie' monsters (arms and legs!), some black bungee chord - don't ask!!!, some brooch-back pins to make some 'tweedie' brooches, and . . . not from the postman . . . a lovely tin of buttons from my sister-in-law 'cos she knew I was collecting them. I love the little tin :) I have a custom order to make today, so I won't be able to 'play' until later - it's so tempting though just to dig in!!!

P.S. We have a frog in the garage - just thought you'd like to know that! - I'm not sure about frogs, my Other Half said it squeaked when he came across (the same one?) in the garden yesterday. Do frogs squeak?

More creative peeps here :)

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

How Old?????

Last night we had a good fun family celebration for 'hubby's' ahem, cough, cough, splutter, 50th birthday, hehe :) We did the balloons, the banners and the cards and gifts bit, and tucked into a lovely takeaway. One of the gifts from his family was a particularly generous and exciting one which will involve some travel for all of us later on this year - I'll say no more about it for now, but I'm beginning to hum "the hills are alive with the sound of music", hehe! There's a family connection to this country - the boys are hugely excited!!

As part of his gift from ourselves I had bought this lovely little artwork from 'The7thmagpie' which I'd clocked over on Flickr one Friday evening, during a leisurely browse (positive proof that Flickr certainly works as a marketing tool!!!) I was really delighted to be able to afford a little piece of her artwork as I've admired her work for some time now - my Other Half was really pleased with it as he appreciates a bit of artwork himself. It's about 2.5 inches x 4 inches - he's not quite sure how to keep/frame it yet - I'd popped it along with a book, it would make a very sumptuous artistic bookmark!!

I think it's done using freehand sewing machine embroidery stitching - a technique I've admired for a long time but never got round to learning - some day . . .

Off to enjoy the lovely weather here today, as hubby has a day off after his 'big day'!!

Bye for Now :)

Saturday, 15 May 2010

Much 'tweedieness'

I've been really busy this week, or at least feel like I have been! Tweaking the design/packaging of the mystery 'egg-shaped' parcel has taken up much of my time, and in between trying to make some cheap and cheerful items for craft-fairs. I made up some of these little lavender pouches and fun flower brooches - after deliberating about how to package them, I decided to attach them to my business cards.

I was rather dissapointed with the cards when I got them, although it's the same design I've had for a while, but they are difficult to read as I chose a matt finish - I'm determined to use them up though! I think they look quite nice with the 'tweedie' gifts! Nice for people to be able to see and touch the tweed, rather than having them in cellophane wrapping (which I quite often use, especially for shop/website items, as protective covering)

I was going to reveal the mystery package this weekend, but I think it deserves its very own post, so will have to wait a little longer. Instead, here's 'Little S' beaming after a fun day at his school sports day - he was delighted with all his badges! His little face says it all :)

Please excuse whatever junk seems to be in the background of the pic - much 'tweedieness' also results in much 'messiness'!! I'd better go and sort out all the 'messiness' now as it's hubby's big 50 birthday on Monday - that actually can't quite be right, as I'm far too young to be married to someone that old - ouch!! :)

We're having a simple family celebration at home, which is what he wants, and we're all looking forward to it, so off to prepare for banners and balloons and cake, and the like :) Perhaps a little 'shampers' too!

Cheerio an Drasda :)

Wednesday, 12 May 2010

my creative space . . .

Some yummy brass vintage buttons I bought from an Etsy shop a couple of weeks ago and this fab hessian fabric which arrived in the post today - I just had this notion of hessian and tweed together, and a strong desire to try out my new buttons . . .

I've cut out a tweedie heart and made a template to cut out some more . . . possibly some new cards for the upcoming craft fairs, for which I'm trying to build up some new stock. I said I wouldn't - "just go with what you've got", I told myself, and yet . . . the magnetic force to create new 'tweedies' was just too strong - darn it :)

The mystery of the tweed 'bundle' from my last post is almost ready to be revealed, he/she's a little shy, is all :) Perhaps at the weekend . . .

Have a peek at some more creative spaces here.

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Return of the . . . .

This morning I discovered an interesting (and purely accidental!) design feature of one of my 'reworked' tweedie creations - the ability to wrap itself up into a neat little egg-shaped parcel, handy for taking a snooze or for travelling from 'A to B' :) Can you guess what it is? A little clue - it's a smaller version of an older design . . .

I'll show a pic of some more of them when they're 'hatched' - still in the incubation stage, hehe :)

Sunday, 9 May 2010

Make a 'Musical Note' Embroidered Badge - my 'ahem' first tutorial!

I've been making fabric covered buttons for some time now and really enjoy making embroidered buttons. I love the added texture that the embroidery gives to the button. However, I've been looking longingly at them and wishing I could make them into badges - but how?? With the possibility of the music festival craft fair coming up I though it would be fun to try and make some tweedie badges, so here's how I did it - this is a 'no glue' version, although I'm going to try the 'with glue' version later this week!

For the purposes of this 'alternative tutorial' I stole a few items from various members of the family and used other scraps in the process! If I was a little more organised I might have had them to hand :)

Just to note, I don't own a badge-maker, button-maker, or anything similar (although it would be fun to have one!). To make this 'Musical Note' embroidered badge you will need to 'steal' or find the following items around your home (excl button-blanks):

button blanks (available from good haberdashers), safety-pin (or steal one off your kid's old 'Dalek' badge like I did!!), fabric scraps (linen or denim would work equally well), matching felt for covering the reverse of the button, embroidery thread, old cardboard to mount your badge prettily for a gift or for sale at your next fair :) Oh, and a Guitar/song book for musical note inspiration!! ('hubby's Beatle songbook made for an 'arty' backdrop, hehe!)

Firstly, remove the metal wire loop with pliers, or your fingers, as you won't need this part of the button, then make up your covered button according to the manufacturers instructions. Now you want to cover the reverse of the button in order to attach a safety pin to it. Cut out a small felt circle (using a matching colour if possible), which is slightly smaller than the back of the button itself. Slip stitch the felt circle onto the reverse of the covered button at the very edges, just catching enough fabric to attach the felt.

Now attach the safety pin (the one you stole fom your kid's old badge if you don't have any!!), to the back of the felt covered reverse - use a few stitches to make sure it stays in place. Make sure the felt you use is quite strong or use double thickness of felt for strength.

You can now embroider whatever motif you like onto the button front:

I embroidered a musical note using a simple back stitch - just bring your needle through a little way from where you are starting to sew on the button, make a double stitch and start sewing - cut off the excess thread when done. I used tweed to cover my button but you could use linen or denim to make a nice backdrop for embroidery stitches. I cut some old left over corrugated card to display the button as a gift/craft fair item.

To attach the button to my 'doodled' card I sewed a small stitch on either side of the button, taking the thread through to the back. I used one of my address labels to hide the stitch and added instructions to remove the button, hehe!! ("Remove sticker and cut thread to release the music!")

I'm looking forward to trying a few other musical notes/doodles/flowers, etc to these, for my craft fairs - let's face it, anyone can afford to buy a badge in these hard times, surely!!? I'll try the 'with glue' version later this week when I get some brooch-backs. This would mean simply using 'super glue' and attaching a brooch back to the metal reverse of the covered button - ach, too easy!!! :)

Sorry, very long post/tutorial, but I hope it's of use if you want to make some fun embroidered buttons as gifts, or for sale - this is a 'freebie' tutorial, just don't use Harris Tweed pleeeease, hehe!! P.S. You could embroider numbers, letters, for fun kids-versions :D

Drat, wish I'd thought of this for my little nephew's 3rd birthday this week - Ah well, maybe he'll get a belated one! : /

Edited to add: I must credit ressurection fern for her tutorial which gave me the basic idea of how to convert the fabric button to a badge, by using a felt backing - thankyou :)

Friday, 7 May 2010


Ooooooops! So busy, I forgot to blog about what I've been so busy doing! To be honest I've been having a busy week doing things that aren't really easy to blog about and put into words and pictures. Busy redesigning my iphone pouches and laptop sleeves - both of which I'm really pleased with. The lovely girls in the office where I work, tried and tested out my new iphone design and gave me some good pointers, so that was really helpful. They also really loved them, which was nice!!

I carried through the same method of making the sleeves/pouches for my laptop sleeves . . . or was it the other way about, now I can't remember!! Either way, I got there in the end :)

We are still having sunny weather here, but a bit cold - you can't have everything! I took this photo of a rusty washing line post, at the back of our house this evening - 'teenage son' and his pals, seem to have replanted it there for some reason - perhaps they thought it was modern art or something, hehe!

Some 'tweedie' beach-balls to make for the Gallery shop next week, and then free to do as I please 'craft-wise'. I've just heard that 'Sounds in the Grounds', the fun music festival I had a stall at last year, is on again and have been invited to attend again this year - I was delighted to be asked! 'Live' music and a craft stall - sounds good to me! Better get crafting :)

Tuesday, 4 May 2010

Now I remember . . .

Wild flowers, flotsam and jetsam, a happy boy with a buoy, blue skies:

Now I remember why a few hours on a beautiful Hebridean beach can be so pleasureable . . .

Hope you had a good May holiday weekend - I'm feeling refreshed after a little break from 'tweedying'. Some new designs emerged at the weekend and my Gallery order is progressing well after realising I have some stock ready made which will cut my work in half - hurray!

Back to some fun creating soon, as I hope to have a craft fair at the end of the month - always an incentive to get some new work done!

Cheerio an Drasda :)