Sunday, November 28, 2010

Party Album

Here's another party I recently did with about 40 kids who each made a page for the gift album that was given to the 'party' girl. It's a wonderful collaborative activity which gets everyone involved and gets the creative juices flowing. I love putting these together - this time the girl chose green as her 'theme' - so green it was.

Chunky Book

It's nice when someone asks me to make a special gift for them to give a loved one. I feel honored that I get asked, and that what I do is valued and admired. Although at the end of the day, it's largely paper, glue, and a few odds and ends, these books are such a beautiful keepsake, and it's kind of cool to know that someone else is receiving something that I've made for them on behalf of someone else who can't make it for them but wants them to have it!

This is another recent order that I made for an aunt to give to her niece.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

A little gift album

I just finished another chunky book for an order. These are a lot of fun to make - but very fiddly with loads of detail.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Handmade to Order

Just finished a nice little handmade to order gift. It's an album that I embellished with a handstitched name tag and flower and a collection of notelets to be filled in by the guests at a party. The client described her friend and it was decided that denim, linen, and shabby neutrals would be the look. Should look lovely sitting on a coffee table.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Recent ATC's

Theme: Tickled Pink

Theme: Fractured Fairy Tales

Theme: Gypsy

I've made so many ATC's but keep on forgetting to take photos.... must get better at that. These are 3 ATC's - Artist Trading Cards, that I made a while back... will put some more recent ones on soon.
They all use various techniques including digital manipulation (photoshop), stamping, stitching, embossing, and collage.
I never thought I'd enjoy ATC swapping so much - but it is a lot of fun. Especially going to the letterbox to collect all the swaps.

Sardine Tin Swap

Who would have thought that the humble sardine tin could become a canvas for a miniature artwork? I recently participated in my first altered sardine tin swap, and this is the result.
The quote reads "life is like a can of sardines and we are all of us looking for the key".
Unfortunately, sardine tins don't come with keys anymore, so I rolled back the lid with pliers, and fashioned a key out of wire, hammered it flat, and attached it to the tin, and added a charm. Decorated the tin with tissue papers, braid, image x 3 (3D), beads, vintage door knob plate, fabric flowers, hand punched metal embellishment 'surrender', inks and paint. Then I attached it to a mini easel which I painted, and hand wrote "seek and ye shall find" on the easel. There's also a keyhole attached to the back of the easel with the word "LIFE" hand punched on metal shim inside the lock.
I'm pretty happy with the result!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Stuck in Paris

It's not every day that you get the stuck on the other side of the world due to a volcano erupting...but we were fortunate enough to be in Paris, and got 5 extra days there as a result of the eruption! I found myself some really interesting stores - no handbags and shoes for me, I just loved all the beautiful crafty, and foodie shops! On day 10 I realised that if I had taken more care with my photos and collecting business cards etc. I could have done a nice little book. Never mind, next time! Anyway, some of the shopkeepers were a bit 'precious' about taking photos in their shops - so maybe it wasn't meant to be.

Here are some of my favourites:

This was in a very cool vintage collectibles shop in Montmartre.
They had all sorts of little bits and pieces for making jewellery, etc. The website is

This was in the best bead shop I've ever seen... . It's in the Marais district in Rue Sevigne.

This was our apartment. It was so comfortable, safe, great area, metro & bus on the street, in the Marais district. I would highly recommend it! We had 2 bedrooms, living room, 2 bathrooms, extra living room, kitchen. And it had all the nicest touches - including Limoges crockery, Krups coffee maker, Esteban Room Frangrance sticks & candles, bronze sculptures, and hand made pottery ornaments... as well as plenty of tourist books, maps, etc.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Customized Album

Just did another album at a large event.... this time the client wanted a red/black/cream theme.

I handmade and customized most of the embellishments. The client wanted something that would look classy and stand the test of time as well as representing her personality.

There was a lot of stitching (all the tags), stamping, and layering of different papers, and the overall album had quite a vintage feel.

The guests use the premade guest cards (all stitched, sized, precut, layered, and co-ordinated), and then add their own individual touch using all the prepared embellishments and message cards.

At the end of the party, the client was thrilled to get her beautiful album with photos and messages from all the (50+) guests.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

A little peek into my studio.

I've been experimenting with some digital collage.....

Here are some little snippets of my studio. It's had a good tidy up, and I'll post some photos another day.

Day trip with a food writer

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

I spent the day with my friend Merelyn who is writing for the Foodies Guide to Sydney. We traipsed from the East to Cronulla, Gymea Bay, and then to Lakemba!! Came home with lots of goodies! We had a really good fun day.

Friday, March 5, 2010


A special event for a special young lady! I worked with Emily's Mum with some of the styling for this party, as well as doing the Memory Book with all the guests. The excitement is always very special at these events, and the children love being part of this special gift, which is presented to the family at the end of the event.

Even the boys love getting into the action....

I like to custom make embellishments for each album or project I make at events.... they add a personal touch to the albums and make them more meaningful for the recipient. Here are some of them:

HARRY gift

This is another customized gift I made. Each letter has special symbolic meaning and message for the recipient - Harry, a 13 year old young man! He has it now displayed proudly on his bookshelf.

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Encaustic adventure

My first experience with encaustic collage was a lot of fun thanks to sharing all the research and preparation with my friend Margaret Weiss. MW is very good at getting all the relevant information which comes in handy for someone like me who tends to just dive in and see what happens.... We decided to combine beeswax with damar crystals to make the encaustic mixture although many mixed media artists just seem to use the beeswax without damar (claudine hellmuth to name one). Maybe next time I'll try it that way.
We started with some collected bits and pieces of collage items:

Then experimented with different ways of fusing, layering, and colouring:

We used oil wax crayons to add colour as well as pure pigments which we rubbed on with our fingers then melted in to the wax. We also melted the crayons or pigments into our melted wax ramekins then applied the coloured wax to the collage.

It got a bit messy but MW had a fabulous stainless steel work table that was quite easy to clean when we were done.

Margaret's finished piece was called "Bird" and you can see it on her blog by clicking the link on my sidebar.

Mine is called "Have Wings Will Fly". I'm happy with it for a first attempt of what will probably be the first of many.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Friday, February 12, 2010

Gypsy swaps

I got a parcel that I've been waiting for today... It was half torn open!

Thankfully the contents were still intact.
It was the gypsy ATC swaps from group I'm in. A beautiful collection.

This is my contribution:

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Monday, January 11, 2010

Studio Furniture...going, going, gone!

It's clean up time in my house....

I have had my studio(s) spread over 2 rooms - with 4 flights of stairs in between them, for about 18 months, and it's time to do something about it and condense everything in one space!

So I started cleaning out shelves, cupboards, baskets and boxes and have some nice things ready to list on ebay.... very good for home studios, with some of the storage especially adapted by me to suit all my various supplies...

I found these vintage bobbins which I'll sell too.... I have quite a big collection now, so don't need these ones. Happy to sell to another collector for $5 each, plus postage.

It will probably take me a couple of weeks to get it all sorted, but I am putting up photos of my furniture for sale, so that I can look back and remember the way I used to work! When my 'new' space is looking tidy enough to be photographed, I will post a picture on my blog. I did take some 'before' shots, but I'm too embarrassed to post those!


Today, whilst sitting in a lovely home discussing an upcoming function that I will be involved with, it dawned on me how lucky I am to be doing what I love doing.... not only do I always have my head and hands busy making something, but I also teach others - albeit very briefly (at an event - for about 15 minutes), how to collaborate to produce something special. Usually, I am working with children at events - mostly aged around 12 - 18, but often adults participate too.

In the pictures below you can see a recent photo collage board made at a private event. I used my portable photo studio to take and print the pictures, and the guests used their pictures on the 'postcard' collage cards, together with personal handwritten messages. All the embellishments and design elements are prepared by me before the event.

A true collaborative effort, and all completed within a couple of hours.