Little Snippets of My Maker Adventuring Through the Lockyer Valley
Happy colourful Springtime to all. Things are warming up in my part of the world and new energy is swirling around. Birds are nesting, the cows are calving, and the days are longer. And I have been a busy little bee. As I’ve been filling my days with arts and crafts and handmade I thought of a hundred stories I could have bought to the blog but too often I was caught up in the moment of just being. My muse has kept me busy, that’s for sure, with classes, painting, experiments, ideas, markets and fairs. And all the while, I am still trying to work on my crafting my blog. It’s a challenge learning all those ropes while I’m trying to get on with my other goals and plans. And speaking of goals and plans, I’ve been helping a friend with her blogging and creative goals too. If you’re thinking of blogging but don’t quite know what you could blog about check out Discover You. It helped me.
It’s no surprise I love colour. In between all my busy Spring activities I made up a few new batches of dyed seam binding. This can be done so quickly. I smoosh a length of binding into a small puddle of Distress Stain and hang it out to dry. These are not permanent colours so I only use these on paper crafting projects. I love the crinkly and blotchy finish and you can see what I did with these later as you read on.
I occasionally get to go to a rural ladies groups at Junction View that meet up for crafting and socialising. There are no towns or shops out that way, so these sorts of groups are an important part of the community. When we heard there was going to be an feltmaker coming out to do a class many of us made sure that we kept that day free. It’s a rare thing to have someone come out this far to teach a class, and it was very reasonably priced. I’ve done some feltmaking before and made the odd flower or two (or twenty!) but I was sure to learn something new. And I did. I learned some new processes and I got to met a some new ladies. We made two flowers and I nested mine together into one, as shown in the photo above.
I’ve been using my new watercolours to make hand lettered tags for Christmas gift giving. I’m expecting more orders for name tags to roll in as we get closer to Christmas. I made a few samples and took myself down to Laidley’s Street Market to set up a table. What do you think of my little set up? It’s a little hodge podge of me. You can see my dyed seambinding spilling out of a silvered dish, which I use to decorate the tags. I got a lot of comments about my seat throw. It’s an unfinished, permanent work-in-progress Suffolk Puff thingy. I’ve been sitting on it for years, as it is usually on my desk chair. I have a very sentimental attachment to that scrappy old thing as it reminds me of my time of being a mum with young children running around in the bush. I would prop a wheelbarrow up as an easy chair and sit and sew and watch.
Marburg, just nearby the Lockyer Valley, held their annual Black Snake Creek Festival and Markets and I went along to help a friend with her stall. She told me there was a display of vintage fashion in the church across the road. WOW, what a display! I hope they are doing this again next year because I’d love to write a story about that. I met the woman who owns a lot of the pieces and she was able to tell me the story behind the garments and accessories. I really struggled to get a good picture inside the building but I wanted to show you this hat display. In case you didn’t know, I love hats, and I’m usually wearing one in most of my photos. Nearly all of these would have been hand crafted by the wearers or someone they knew. Same with the matching handbags. I’d love to find an old pattern and do an updated modern twist with it.
Last weekend the Soap Making Class was on at The Old Dairy at Flagstone Creek. I met Mandy at Handmade Expo a few months ago and I found out she was local to me and was getting her space ready for a vintage wares, specialty yarns and soap shop in the old dairy shed at her property. That sounded pretty magical to me. And she also does demonstrations in soapmaking. I go through goats milk soap like nobody’s business so I was keen to learn how to make my own. So last Sunday I got my opportunity to attend a class. I’ve since collected most of the supplies I need and should be ready to batch up this weekend. Everyone is getting soap for Christmas from me this year!
Back in Laidley, after finishing up my market stall (huh hem…table) I notice a new little vintage wares shop, Alice’s Forgotten Attic, across the street. I found this tidy little sewing basket with a few bits and bobs from past hand made days. At this stage I’m reluctant to separate the contents from their basket as it feels like I’m looking back through a doorway into a past hand made life, when hand made was the norm, if not necessary. A couple of days later I found the beautiful hand made drawn thread linen shown in the background, at a local op-shop. Modern machines might be able to mimic the patterning of the design but I’m quite mesmerised by the imagined process to create that intricate design by hand.
And before I head off, I do have something I conjured up one evening while doodling with my watercolours. A fun, whimsical and colourful, articulated paper doll. She, or he, I can’t decide, is posed to sit on a branch in a collage page in one of my many art journals. I can see I little bit of forgotten journalling at the top that says ” … art outdoors”. I remember I made it sitting out on the lawn on a summer get away. Making things for me ties a memory to a tactile experience. Or, for the case of vintage items, an imagined tactile experience. And if I can, I always go outdoors to create.
I hope you liked my little journey through the valley where I live and a little insight to me and what I like to do and make. I’ve got a couple of bigger projects I’m currently working on, but in the meantime I’ll be working on some smaller quick makes as well. So be sure to subscribe if you want to see what I’m up to next.
Keep making your mark!