Thursday, 29 December 2011

Bookbinding - New found Love

Hello everyone! Sorry for the awful silence from me, Christmas fairs sort of momentarily took over my life for a while but I'm back and so very excited for 2012! I've had a wonderful Christmas surrounded by loved ones and have been well and truly spoilt rotten. 

Have you had a nice Christmas? Looking forward to the new year? I must write my resolutions but I'm always so worried I'll fail half of them! Anyway, until my 'NY resolution/bye bye 2011 post, I thought I'd flash you a few piccies of my newest venture - Bookbinding! 

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Dearest Jackdaw 2012 Calendars

My 2012 Fine Art calendars are here! Over the past couple of months I've been browsing through thousands of my photographs to find the perfect colour and image combinations for each and I now have four different calendars to choose from, they make PERFECT Christmas gifts and stocking stuffers.

Available in Paris, Flora, Seasonal and Pretty. Just click on any of the images below for more information.

I'd love to know what you think! Page layouts courtesy of my wonderful Cousin Sam

Friday, 11 November 2011

The Rare Brand Market


The Rare Brand Market at Goodwood Racecourse was fantastic! SO many people stopped by and I was surrounded by lovely sellers such as Winter's Moon, Harriet Wooltorton Photography, Graaze, Sudzfun and Jules Miller Cards. For those of you who couldn't make it, here are a few of photos of my stall! Unfortunately I didn't manage to get photos of anyone elses tables as I only had my camera on me during set-up!

Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Overcoming the Dreaded Creative Block

Feel all inspired, sit down to do something and then draw a total blank? You're definitely not alone! I've suffered from artist's block ever since I can remember. It almost always ends with me waiting until the very last minute to get something done, and even then things only ever happen because they HAVE to be done. But procrastination is obviously not always practical when you have deadlines to meet. So what can be done to prevent creative block from taking over far too much of your valuable time?

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Find me this Christmas

I've been so very busy since the move - I've been working, sewing, photographing and creating each and every day to make up the stock for all the events I'm attending this Christmas! For those of you interested in coming along to any of them, here's where you'll be able to find me! 

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

FEATURE - Flutterbydaisy


Meet Natanya Waybourne, brainchild of her very own magical world and creation - Flutterbydaisy. I've been following Natanya's work for a few years now after seeing her photos on DeviantArt way back in 2008/2009 and remember always being intrigued by her style and work. Wearing flowers in her hair, lace, torn fabric and her make-up like a little doll.. She makes beautiful dresses, perfect for hiding in the woods and running through fields, writes enchanting words and takes some gorgeous photographs.. Here's an interview for you all to enjoy with images of pretty people in pretty flutterbydaisy dresses:





Monday, 19 September 2011

RECIPE: Chocolate Coated Oreo Truffles

You may think these sound slightly.. odd, but I can assure you they are one of the yummiest things ever and SO simple to make. No baking involved, they just take a little while to prepare (but they're totally worth it!). This recipe has been floating around the internet for a few years now and so I felt the need to share - Galaxy Coated Oreo Truffles!

Saturday, 27 August 2011

Beautiful Faces

So much is happening right now it's hard to keep up! Midge and I are moving out of our beautiful flat in 2 weeks time and I'm moving in to a brand new studio which is bigger and better than the last, I just can't wait to get back to normal and really knuckle down with my work!

Because of the move I've barely had any time to be creative apart from the odd *AAH I'm supposed to be packing so I'm just going to sit here and make a bracelet quickly before it gets packed away..!* so was seriously excited about a photo shoot that had been in my diary for weeks. So, on Saturday afternoon myself and some good friends Natalie Miller, Oli Norfolk and Caroline Haines got together to shoot these beautiful photos! It was the creative fix I needed amongst the stresses of moving! What do you think?
More of mine here and you can find Nat's images here.

I have some exciting posts lined up for after we've settled in at our new place, including a yummy recipe my friend has given me permission to post. It's amazing, I promise! Until then though I may be rather quiet whilst we get everything sorted ♥

Monday, 1 August 2011

Vintage at Southbank, an honest review.

Firstly I just want to say that those who know me will know I'm not a negative person. I try to see the good in every situation and treat others how I would like to be treated myself, I try to live life by the saying "Always be kind, for everyone is fighting a hard battle". So the decision to write this review and post so publicly on my blog definitely was not taken lightly and I'm still unsure as to whether I want it here on my blog but I feel others just like myself may be looking for answers and so, here it is.

Vintage at Southbank. First impressions? Not great. I'll try and wrap up our experiences in an honest and factual blog post for you. Please note that the opinions expressed in this post are my own and those of the three people with whom i attended. There are plenty of people who enjoyed themselves but sadly plenty of others who didn't and I can't help feeling there is a lot of work to do for the organisers if they take note of anything people are saying - there are links to other blog posts towards the end of the post if you'd like to read other peoples experience of the event. The comments section of this post is also quite insightful.

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Happy Birthday to me!

I'm 23 today!

AND - my books arrived yesterday afternoon, I'm so happy with them. The quality is fantastic, take a peek!

Perfect ♥

Friday, 22 July 2011

What have I been up to?

Well well well, I have been a busy little bee. This is just a flying visit so sorry if it seems a little rushed!
Soo, what have I been up to? Well! As well as putting together a rather large order for a client, I've created a little book full of my prints titled a rather obvious but fitting "What the Jackdaw Saw", I've also been featured in a gorgeous collaborative book curated by the 'Female Photographers of Etsy' (fPOE) team, called "Still - the art of living". Both books should arrive over the weekend so as soon as they get here I'll be updating with images. In the meantime, here's a little snippet from What the Jackdaw Saw - I ADORE the cover design!


Thursday, 7 July 2011

Camping with the New Forest Ponies and my Agfa.

Last weekend we took a well deserved break away to the New forest on the South coast of England, camping! It was a tough decision but due to lack of space in the car I had to limit myself to  just one camera. I had a rummage around in my camera cupboard and pulled out a 1962 Agfa Silette-L that belonged to my late Grandfather. I'd never used it before so thought I'd give myself a challenge, plus the fridge door has been full up with expired film for over 3 years now so it was about time I actually used some of it! I only noticed once we'd got there that the light meter on top of the camera didn't actually work so there was a lot of guess work going on. However, settings-wise and without the use of said light meter I'm happy to say that all photos were at least exposed correctly! 

The combination of me getting confused over feet and metres on the distance dial along with my need to walk and shoot at the same time didn't exactly add to the aesthetics  in many of the photos as the shutter speed only goes up to 1/125th of a second, so most are out of focus. Anyway, here are some results from my first roll of film.

Thursday, 30 June 2011

New peg bag for Mummykins.

This is the last bunting-related post for a while, I promise (maybe)!

A couple of weeks ago Mummykins asked if I could make her a spangly new peg bag as hers had seen better days. I took up the challenge as I had a spare evening and it turned out to be a very simple make, I just traced around the top of the hanger, marked the centre, decided how long it should be, chopped, stitched. Easy-peasy and I didn't even need to fuss around making a pattern, these are always the *best* projects.

I used the same concept as my bunting note cards and cut out some triangles from scraps to sew on the front to add a bit of decoration, added some bias-binding and this is how it turned out:



Monday, 27 June 2011

Running through fields.

This Saturday my baby sister and I spent the whole afternoon running through fields and through woodland taking hundreds of photographs. Here are just a few of the images we came away with. It's so lovely to shoot portraits again, it's been so long!
Yes, she's wearing the BEAUTIFUL leaf dress that a friend made me last year. 

Sunday, 26 June 2011

I ♥ Bunting.

Sweet, simple, lovely wooden and vintage lace bunting necklace. I LOVE this, so so much! The laser cut flags were a gift from the wonderful Becky Button, and I pieced them together one evening not long ago. I'm becoming ridiculously obsessed with bunting. What with the bunting note cards I made earlier this month, I even made another bunting related craft for my 30 days of creativity which I'll be sure to blog about soon!

Thursday, 23 June 2011

Stash-busting Cupcake Brooches!

I don't know about you, but my overflowing stash boxes are getting a little bit out of hand. It's getting to the point of it taking me 10 minutes to remember where I've actually put something in my studio. Possibly the worst culprit is my scrap stash. Boxes - Drawers - Bags. They're everywhere. There is literally stuff - EVERYWHERE.

So in an attempt to scale down the ever growing colossal mountain range of stuff, starting small I came up with these little free machine embroidered applique cupcake brooches. The fabric used in these came straight out of one of these super-amazing Japanese fabric scrap bags from The Eternal Maker, backed with felt with a pin sewn to the back.


I think these are pretty nifty! What scrap stash-busting projects have you done? ♥

Tuesday, 21 June 2011

Oh, hello MOO!

THEY HAVE ARRIVED! Yes, that's right. My MOO rounded corner business cards have made it all the way from moo headquarters in London, straight into my hands and I'm so so happy with them! Look at the loveliness! They arrived 3 days early too. I'm not sure if I'll be able to give any out now though, I want to keep them all for myself!

Monday, 20 June 2011

Odd things

OK ok ok, I have a huge stack of handmade bits and pieces to show you all in the next few days from my 30 days of creativity, I'm not going to go through all of them as some I haven't photographed properly and some aren't exactly blog-worthy.. Anyway, I'm going jump right in and start with day 7. 
Now, for day 7 I created what I can only describe as (one of) the oddest looking things I have ever made, and I've made many, many odd looking things in my time.. This odd thing came From a 1965 Simplicity rag doll pattern I found hiding in my pattern drawer. I've always wanted to sew a rag doll but after this little incident I'm not sure if I want to sew any more..
 

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

FEATURE - Peculiar Forest

Not too long ago I was lucky enough to get my little paws on this beautiful cherry blossom pendant, hand pierced by Peculiar Forest's own hands in copper, hanging from an oxidized sterling silver chain. If you're not familiar with Peculiar Forest then read on, because we've done a lovely little interview for you!

Look, look, isn't it beautiful! Want your own? You will find an abundance of beautiful jewels in her etsy shop so I urge you to go and take a look!
(Psst - She even takes custom orders!)

Thursday, 9 June 2011

TUTORIAL - Decorated Memo Pegs

Got lots of note pages with important scribbles on? Drawings? Photos waiting to go into albums? Recipes waiting to go into books? Ribbons? Samples? Phone numbers? Need somewhere to keep them safe until they have a home? 
Yes? 
Then this super-simple tutorial is for you! 
For day 6 of 30 days of creativity I 'borrowed' some wooden pegs from Mummykin's peg bag and gave them a little spruce up.



Wednesday, 8 June 2011

Floral Crown.

Wire, floral tape, artificial flowers and a bit of bending, and this is what you get. For day five of 30 days of creativity I made a floral crown. I can't wait to use it in a lovely summery photo shoot some time this year! Fun, easy to make and adaptable. 


 Butterflies next time? ♥

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

TUTORIAL - Bunting Note Cards.

My first full day back home after my wonderful break in Dorset, sat in my studio surrounded by boxes, bags and drawers of all my 'stuff'. Aah precious 'stuff' how I missed you! Day four's project for 30 days of creativity was a simple set of bunting note cards. 


They weren't exactly rocket-science to make, but as I'm feeling generous today I thought I'd write you a tutorial so you can make your own.

Recycled Silk Sari Ribbon Nautical Jewellery Wrap.

Day Three of 30 days of creativity. I love plaiting things. In fact, the only thing I can't really plait is my own hair because I can't quite get to grips with the whole backwards-upside-downiness of it (I WILL learn one day!). Plaiting fabric though I definitely can do, and I love making these jewels so much I've got a whole load in my back-up stock, and a few in my shop!

This one was created using recycled silk sari ribbon. If you don't know what sari ribbon is then all I can say is this: you need some in your life and whilst we're on the subject, sari yarn is also mighty beautiful - I can't knit or crochet and even I have some!
I picked out and cut three strands that complimented one another (in this case, turquoise & golden, red & white striped and chequered navy & cream). I secured one end in a loop, plaited my way down the strands, secured the other end in a loop and added a glass cross pendant. Sure, for my nautical-themed jewellery wrap I think an anchor, boat or seashell charm would have looked better but I couldn't find any in my stash and the glass cross had not long arrived in the post amongst dozens of other 'things' I've ordered for no specific reason other that 'it was shiny and I wanted it'. It just seemed to 'go', so on it went.




The longer these are, the more uses they have. This one measures  26 inches so it can be worn as a bracelet, anklet, necklace or anything else you can think of! Lovely ♥

Sunday, 5 June 2011

Origami Butterfly Garland.

Day two of 30 days of creativity was slightly more thought out than day one. For a start, I sort of knew what I wanted to do, all I needed was a sheet of wrapping paper and some string. Sounds simple, right? Do you think a single shop in Wareham sold string? Twine? Cotton? Shop keepers were looking at me as though I was asking for magic beans and by the time I'd rushed around all the shops being told I wouldn't find any string there, it was too late to buy wrapping paper as all the shops had shut. So I went back to the house minus my two vital (and only) components necessary for my project.

Raking around in the house looking for inspiration again, I managed to find a little brochure with pretty images throughout it's pages and found a needle and thread in a drawer. Excellent! I poured myself a glass of wine, sat out in the garden admiring the beautiful view with the sun setting to the wonderful sound of birdsong and Daughter.
 

I cut out nine squares from the pages of the brochure and started folding little origami butterflies. I've never really tried origami before, but I wanted to try something new and I'm so glad I did!

After all nine butterflies had been folded I hand stitched through their middles one by one creating a little garland to hang in the house/garden etc. I was really pleased with how this project turned out given the failures earlier that day trying to gather my materials!



♥ Origami

A photo of a photo of a photo.

The first day of my '30 days of creativity' was a tricky one. After working in the morning I had to run to the train station with a little hold-all filled with all my essentials and hopped on a train to Wareham, Dorset for a mini-break with my family. This meant that I had to pack light and I deliberately chose not to pack anything specifically to 'do', but gave myself the task of improvising for day one, two and three of the project to keep me thinking on my feet.

Fine, I thought - without giving a second thought as to just how much 'stuff' we were going to be doing in Dorset (I'd even been down there the weekend before so should have already known I'd need a plan what with all the 'stuff' we were busy filling the days with then, too)! The only chance we all had time to sit down was when we got back to the house in the evening to have dinner, and then passed out on the sofa for a bit until we were all so tired we had to go to bed!
I tried to do some drawing to begin with. I was sketching a cheeky looking pony with it's tongue poking out, using reference from a photograph I'd taken earlier in the day via my camera's LCD screen. Not ideal, I know but it was the best I could do!


Tuesday, 31 May 2011

30 days of creativity

After reading Becky Button's blog post, I have officially pledged to @createstuff that for each day of June I will create 'something'! As scary as it sounds, I'm actually pretty excited to see what I come up with! Particularly on the 1st, 2nd and 3rd when I won't be at home and have to pack light, I will be creating on-the-move so that should prove to be rather umm.. interesting! I'll need a serious plan of action for these three days but for the rest of the month I'm hoping to just go with the flow and am really excited to see what I come up with!

Why not jump on the bandwagon and join in with #30daysofcreativity? Take a look at the website to find out more about it and how to get involved and if like me you are a little skeptical/scared, Here are 30 reasons to participate. 

Good luck! Let me know if you're joining me! ♥

Thursday, 26 May 2011

I feel pretty, oh so pretty . .

Just the teeniest post today. There's nothing quite like finding out you've been included in a beautiful treasury on etsy. So I was amazingly excited today to find out that not one, but both of my shops have been featured in this wonderful treasury featuring lovely and talented UK etsians, curated by the equally talented Pretty Stitched Up.

Now, who wants to buy me the entire collection?

Saturday, 21 May 2011

Interlude . .

Hello - I've gone quiet, haven't I..? 
NOT FOR LONG! Exciting news because you can now find me and the blog at DearestJackdaw.com!  - (although, if you are reading the blog, it means you are already here!)

In the coming weeks my blog will see a big makeover (you may have noticed the little tabs at the top of the screen that take you over to my online stores, tutorial section etc!). I will be adding more sections so that those of you who are interested in what I've got to say can find it much easier. If there's anything you would particularly like to see then please do let me know!

I've been a busy bee making bits and pieces for the shop, in fact I've been snapping some stock photos this afternoon! The newest addition to Jackdaw Boutique is this sweet silk wrap bracelet with butterfly fastening! Do you like it?

Next on my 'list of things-to-do' is create a logo and get my 'about me' section up (right after I have a cup of tea) so, more updates soon! What have you all been up to? ♥