Earlier this year while wandering the beaches nearby, I came across an unusually large number of Mermaids Purses in various colours and shapes, some I had never seen before. These curious flotsam that wash up on the tide are the egg cases of sharks, ray, dogfish and other similar sea beings and yet they conjure up something more mystical, magical and altogether more charming. Continue reading Mermaids Purse
Bringing an idea from the initial thought, to sketch to fruition takes its own sweet time. It has to be allowed to be born when the elements are ready to come together. My current creation is a fantastical hat made from sari silk ribbons, silk, cotton, felt and silk wools. Beads will be added too. There my be Celtic symbols too as this is most definitely an Irish hat. Continue reading Trees and silk, my two loves
While the outdoors continues to draw me to explore and photograph, I am spending some time being creative at home. In a previous post I wrote about the hats we are creating and this is the one I made as a stand alone piece. I have a few others that are paired with a cuff. These hats and cuffs are handmade using traditional millinery techniques and are in silk and cotton.
These are some of the cuffs, I have hand dyed cotton lace and ribbons to match the silk ribbons. While many of my pieces are shabby chic, there are also cuffs in gothic blacks and reds, there will be bridal ones too. I can see young ladies at their graduations wearing them and elegant ladies at garden parties looking fabulous. Any occasion that calls for wearing a statement piece. Continue reading Wherever you lay your hat.
Shibori dates back to the 8th century in Japan where traditionally indigo was used to dye fabrics. There are different forms which with folding, stitching, compressing, binding and twisting the fabrics, form an array of designs and unique patterns. I adore working with silk and have been making hand painted scarves for many years. I like to explore new ways of applying dyes and came across the Arashi Shibori technique a few years ago. Arashi means storm and the patterns formed using this pole wrapped method create designs like driving rain. It is at its best when used on long pieces of cloth. Since the late 19th century, Japanese artisans working 2 together, could wrap up to four 12 yard kimonos on 12 foot poles saving a lot of work on older methods and techniques. This is perfect for silk scarves. Once I had got the gist of the process I played around with it, twisting and folding the fabric as I wrapped it, this created amazing feather like patterns. I try to keep to no more than four colours which in turn when blended will form other colours, these must be thought about too so they are all compatible. Continue reading Arashi Shibori silks