Saturday 29 November 2008

Tatler deluxe

Christmas is coming and I can't resist posting these gorgeous pics from the December issue of Tatler magazine.The jewellery, clockwise from top left is by Asprey; Mikimoto; David Morris;Moussaieff; David Morris again; Cartier and Adler and the photo is by Karen Berndl. But what about the sumptuous cupcake in the front? That is also a work of art!!

These boots by Jean Paul Gautier are just fabulous. And the pretty torn chiffon skirt by Blumarine - fit for a fairy doll!

Berry reds for winter. These dresses left to right are by Lanvin at Matches; Jaeger and Daks.
Well a girl can dream...
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Favourite things

I bought these pretty cut glass containers in a charity shop for a few pence.
Ideal for holding pretty velvet flowers and my favourite mother of pearl buttons!
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Friday 28 November 2008

Bye badge

I sent her off in an order this week. And I'm wondering if I can paint her again. There is something a bit soulful in her expression that I like.
I met two girls last weekend who really like my face badges. And I realise they're not everyones' cup of tea! The girls make cute jewellery out of fabric and silver. You can see it at It is pretty. It is definitely not scruffy. Am I showing my age here? Maybe 'scruffy' means super cool now? !!
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Monday 24 November 2008

Daring to be different

There's an awful lot of samey stuff out there. And I think the path we creatives are on is towards finding our own style. And making things which totally express who we are. Or in other words daring to be different. Daring to show the true 'me' to the world.

It's very tempting to play it safe. Follow the trends or make something similar to what we've seen. But when we let our imaginations run free and draw or write designs without being conscious of anyone else or anything we've seen it comes out right. We're all different and our work is different and people want to buy that individual truly original piece.

In the present economic climate people are being very choosy about what they buy for presents. They can't afford to waste money this year. They are looking for something special. Something made with love that speaks to them and will speak to the person they are buying for.
This year more than any time before I am noticing that what people want to have is the one-off , slightly eccentric gift. The total opposite of anything that can be found on the High Street.

Wednesday 19 November 2008

Carluccio's - our treat!

I just want to share with you a fab night out at Carluccio's in Islington. After a long day on our feet selling what could be nicer than to sit in comfort amid the Christmassy products like the boxes of panettone above with scarlet walls and dimmed lighting to savour every delicious mouthful of Italian food.
My meal, pictured above is antipasto verdure - artichokes, roasted peppers, aubergine, beans and mozzarella and foccaccia. Then chocolate liquer flavoured sponge with ice cream to follow. The rest of the week we picnicked on bits from the supermarket eaten late at night in the bed and breakfast but this was a well deserved treat at the end of a tiring but enjoyable week.
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All that hard work was worth it!

I met some lovely people last week. People with style, confidence and a real appreciation of hand made one-off products like mine.

I had thought that the 'credit crunch' would stop people spending. But it didn't. Perhaps the spending was more focused than usual. Lot of Christmas lists being referred to and specific not random spending going on.

I always wish I'd made more of some things and less of others. Textile jewellery sold really well; bead jewellery less well. By and large people are looking for the unusual, things they haven't seen before and gifts with the wow factor. For me this means daring to be as original and wacky as possible in my designs. And always producing new ideas. They bought the old designs last year - this year they want something different.

Selling at the Show

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Tuesday 18 November 2008

At the Country Living Christmas Show 2008

Two views of a pretty cabin that magazine staff had made all Christmassy using products you could buy at the show.

The pictures above are of my stand D35. I like the white on white look. And I've been waiting to use the Christmas ribbon for ages.
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Tuesday 11 November 2008

In Country Living magazine

My huggy mummy badges are in the new December issue of Country Living magazine. Hurray!
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Sunday 9 November 2008

Pale pink Christmas stockings to finish

The show I keep mentioning is the Christmas Country Living magazine's show at the Business Design Centre, Islington. It runs for 5 days 12th to the 16th and is the best place to sell my stuff that I know.
Tomorrow I go up to London with as much stock and props as I can carry. I'll go again on Tuesday with everything else and properly set up.

It attracts a great crowd of shoppers. Many women try to get their Christmas shopping done there. As there are 300 stands - including a food hall - this is quite achieveable.

In the present economic climate it will be interesting to see how much people are holding back from spending. A customer said to me on the phone the other day, 'Of course some women will not go this year because they don't want to be tempted.' Fair enough.

I still have three pale pink Christmas stockings to finish and would like to make another 20 or so bracelets but I doubt I'll have time. Today is for pricing and packing and deciding once and for all where and how everything is going to be displayed.

Thursday 6 November 2008

Flapper buttons

These are fun to paint but the wooden base buttons are hard to find.
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Tuesday 4 November 2008

Getting organised

Some days everything seems to go right as the song goes. Yesterday was like that. I had been worried about not having a table on my stand at Country Living - see previous post - but yesterday my friend Kate who sells pottery in a neighbouring stand said she'd take my table in her van. Hurray!

I had also been not getting on with ordering or making business cards. But I found it was really easy with Picasa - just click 12 pics into the photo tray and print them off. Conveniently business card sized. So having cut them out and put my details on the back I'm all set.

I also sorted myself out on paper. Writing it all down. That really sorts it all out for me. I visited Costa and over an Earl Grey and croissant wrote everything down that I needed to do for Country Living and it all started to feel more manageable.

And yesterday my son linked this blog to my website so hopefully a few more people will find it and send me a comment!

Monday 3 November 2008

It's the girls!

I love painting these little wooden badges. They are basically all the same shape but they turn out completely individual. I find that when I paint one I like I want the next one to be similar but I just can't do the same girl twice. I guess that's the joy of handmade.
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