Saturday, 30 October 2010

The Borders Christmas Gift Fair

Hooray for festive fairs! I'll be one of many stalls exhibiting over the weekend so if you are in the Borders come on over! We went over yesterday afternoon to set up so this morning would be less of a rush and there is a giant Christmas tree - I know it's still months away but I'm feeling festive! I'd hoped to post this earlier but the internet wasn't playing yesterday.

Friday, 29 October 2010

A Treasury of The Great Children's Book Illustrators

A well designed and thoughtful treasury by Susan E. Meyer rich, as you would expect, in illustrations by Meyer's favourite children's book illustrators.

Includes Edward Lear, John Tenniel, Walter Crane, Randolph Caldecott, Kate Greenaway, Beatirx Potter, Ernest H. Shepherd, Arthur Rackman, Edmund Dulac, Kay Nielsen, Howard Pyle, N. C. Wyeth, W.W.Denslow.

Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Workroom Wednesday

Yesterday involved a lot of filing and shaping so today I have to finish off this sea pottery ring. It's a really cool little blue and white piece of sea pottery which looks a small bit like the Scotland flag!

To finish I'll tidy up the edges with some more filing and sanding, then solder the bezel setting to the ring shank before setting the pottery and polishing the completed piece.

Both this ring and the gorgeous olive green sea glass ring will be available the The Christmas Gift Fair, Springwood Hall, Kelso this Saturday and Sunday, hope to see you there!

Monday, 25 October 2010


On Saturday afternoon we went to the opening of the Berwick Gymnasium Gallery Open Exhibition. We've been to a few exhibitions at the Gymnasium since we moved but this one was extra interesting as R had a painting accepted for inclusion!

So you can see some of his textured boaty rust-acular delight in person at the Gymnasium Gallery until the 11th December 2010 and you can read about the creation of 'Rejoice' on his blog. There is a huge selection of work by local artists and well worth a visit.

Black Dogs by Ian McEwan

"In 1946, a young couple set off on their honeymoon. Fired by their ideal and passion for one another, they plan an idyllic holiday, only to encounter an experience of darkness so terrifying it alters their lives for ever."

The book is much better than the blurb!

Thursday, 21 October 2010

Barking by Tom Holt

Tom Holt makes me laugh. That is all.

If you have ever had a job you aren't exactly in love with you should have a look at Tom Holt books. They might make you laugh.

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Workroom Wednesday

Today's workroom was mainly the great outdoors as we did a bit more in the garden while the weather was bright and then went to the beach. R found this little piece of fabulousness: a piece of pottery with a rather jaunty gent on one side and a section of swirling pattern on the other. So it is resting on my table waiting to be created into something wearable. I'm just not entirely sure what it is going to be yet but I'm thinking a double sided pendant - who doesn't love buy one get one free?!

Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Fairly Prepared

Yesterday was a day for the sort of tasks which need to be done but don't really stoke the fires of excitement.

Although there was plenty of fire and smoke as R made a garden incinerator and we burned the garden trimmings which were too big for the compost bin. I'm still trying to get the smoke out of our clothes, crikey the mundane tasks have leaked on into today!

Having only recently set up the compost bin it needed a bit of a mix around. This proved to be slightly more challenging than I thought due to a big tangle of too long twigs, so I ended up with my head and arms stuck right on in there chopping and mixing. I was an aromatic vision of smokey, twig-haired delight let me tell you.

A bath accompanied by a programme on the radio about people who had changed careers in their 50s made me feel a lot fresher! Interesting to note that many of the people featured on the programme expressed the wish to have changed their careers much earlier; confirming in my mind that despite the challenges of self employment we have done the right thing.

With the first Christmas fair coming up at Springwood Hall, Kelso over the last weekend of October I thought I would pause in the making and do the fair related tasks which I always seem to leave to the last minute.

Thanks to my years as a teacher I am pretty handy with a paper cutter and I now have a plentiful selection of business cards, all printed on lovely recycled card, a set of pretty pillow boxes all glued up, gift bags stamped and price lists updated with new pieces.

Which means today I have been able to crack on with some more earrings having tweaked the design to remove the lower loop replaced with a small hole in the bottom of the heart for wire wrapping the sea glass. As for this afternoon, I have a mug of tea and some rings to finish.

Did I mention I think we've done the right thing?! I love my job!

Saturday, 16 October 2010

Beach Foraging October

A quick shot of last Sunday's collection from a trip to the beach still all sandy before the first wash and sort. I can spot at least one piece which has been used in a piece of jewellery already.

Friday, 15 October 2010

New Recycled Silver Heart and Sea Glass Earrings

An almost finished, ready for the final light sand and polish pair of recycled silver heart and sea glass post earrings, please excuse the poorly lit photo - it's dark outside and I wanted my tea too much to get the light tent out!

All the sea glass earrings I've made so far have been on handmade earwires rather than posts so I wanted to design a style for those who prefer ear posts. These are super light weight and really rather sweet. There should be a few pairs of hearts and a few with stars finished by next week. I'm nearly at the magic number of pieces I want to have for the next fair so there will be new items on the website soon, very probably including some of these earrings.
Two weeks to go until Christmas fair number one and there is still an awful lot to do! My new battery powered lights arrived today and are rather splendid so I will have to have a practice set up once I've finished making my new display stands - I hope they work! If they do I'll post pictures; if they don't we shall never speak of them again.

Wishing you all a happy weekend!

Wednesday, 13 October 2010

Workroom Wednesday

This week's update from the workbench brings you little silver stars and hearts all ready to be brushed, filed, sanded and combined with some pretty sea glass droplets to make earrings.

Creeping in on the left is part of the pile of glass and pottery I have drilled but not yet used and top centre are two rings freshly soldered and pickled ready to brush, file and sand. I was reading about various states of consciousness and how when doing repetitive tasks creativity can begin so with all this brushing, filing and sanding I'm going to have no finger nails and a whole lot of ideas! I'm hoping to use the small square piece of pottery on one of the rings if the bezel wire I have is wide enough. If not it will have to wait until the next silver order.

Secret by Philippe Grimbert

What the papers say:
* 'Secret is a spare, haunting, brilliantly poised evocation of the way experiences of war, pain, and shame, even when unspoken, percolate through the family to shape and distort new generations.'
Lisa Appignanesi

* 'A spare, remarkable novel that reads as easily as a children's tale, yet packs a grown-up punch.'

* 'A slim little book - quick, but heavy with terror.
'Secret is a marvel.'
Financial Times

Tuesday, 12 October 2010

Autumn Leaf

Taken last year in Dawyck. Fiddled with today after a leaf crunching walk down by the river made me think of this folder of beautiful yet still unexplored photos I took when we were up here house hunting during half term.

More soon.

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

Workroom Wednesday

How are you getting on with your festive creating?

With my first Christmas fair being a two day event at the end of this month making is in full swing.

Sea glass earrings have proved popular since I launched my new range in June, however, I think I underestimated the trickiness of finding pieces suitable for pairing. So, I roped R in (fortunately, he doesn't take much in the way of persuasion to forage around the shore for a couple of hours!) and we visited a couple of favourite spots on a mission to find some glass for earrings.

Over the weekend I sprawled out on the floor with our haul and played a giant game of pick a pair! After my mother's comment about my childhood collections of beach stuff I think my regression is well on its way! Anyhoo, I managed to match up a few potential sets and, after an afternoon's drilling and today's wire-y tweaking I now have five pretty pairs of earrings sitting on the workroom windowsill ready for a tumble and final polish.


The little bits you can see creeping into the left hand side of the picture are being collected for some rather delicious little Christmas decorations, more on those when I've finished tweaking the design.

Saturday, 2 October 2010

Art Fire Collection

Can you spot which one is mine?

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