Tuesday 31 August 2021

Fun with fusing

Hello again

Back today to share a little more of what I have been up to over the summer. There has been a strong glass theme running over the last few weeks.

For my birthday I was given vouchers for a glass fusing workshop at Fired Works in Chalfont St Peter. I went with my sister at the end of July for an evening workshop. Marie Cavanagh is the owner and artist and some of her works are in the shop for sale. On the introductory workshop you get to make a couple of small sun catchers (I swapped mine for an additional coaster) and four coasters. Some people paid a little extra to make panels for a lantern. We used frit or glass granules to form the designs. I used stencils to draw my shapes on paper and then put the paper under the glass so I could sprinkle the frit on top. It takes a few days for the pieces to be fired before you can collect them.

I got a little muddled with some of my whites on the polar bears and some of them seemed to react together.

My sister went for the lantern option (I only have a little snap).

It was a lovely evening, so much so that when my mother-in-law expressed an interest in going for her birthday present I was all too happy to have another go. Marie was absolutely fantastic and accommodated us at short notice in a workshop on our own and she also fired the glass really quickly so that it was ready for pick up before my mother-in-law had to go home. We both opted for lanterns this time...

...my handiwork, inspired by the northern lights and summer sunsets...

...and my mother-in-law's...inspired by the seasons.


Coincidentally a friend (friend's husband) has got into fused glass and now has his own kiln. Being a bit cheeky I asked if he'd think about letting my sister and I have a go at his home. He was so generous with his time and taught me how to cut glass. His style is more geometric and so I wanted to try something a bit different.

We made a couple of cocktail sticks each.

 I took inspiration from a recent trip to Southend, with a little poetic licence!

I did a rough sketch on paper which I used as a template to cut the pieces.

We made an arch which is formed by first fusing the glass on a flat piece of clear glass and then firing it a second time over a form. As the glass melts it slumps over the form to take the shape. And the finished result is one of the best things I think I have ever made. Love it!

My sister went with an Icelandic theme.

I'm hugely grateful to my friend and her husband for being such generous, wonderful hosts. This summer may not have been the travelling adventures we would have liked but the creative adventures have more than made up for it.

Thank you for taking the time to stop by xxx

Monday 30 August 2021

Bowled Over


I can't believe August is all but over. It's been a very busy month with family birthdays, trips away and visitors. There hasn't been much time for the usual mixed media and papercrafting but I have had a very creative time.

First I'm sharing some bowls made with air dry clay following a tutorial by Giovanna Zara. You can follow the link on her blog Giogiocraft.

My mother-in-law was staying for a while and we had fun having a go at this technique. The clay was easy to roll out like pastry. Unlike pastry, we found when we combined the left over edges it didn't join up again smoothly, but had air bubbles in it. We still managed 5 pieces from one packet. We used Giogiocraft stencils.

Once dry we sanded off the edges for a smoother finish. Here are mine painted...

Then gilded and varnished...

We chose to use a gloss varnish on the top and a matt varnish on the bottom. 

Here are my mother-in-law's...

...the yellow bowl came out especially well.

If you give it a try, do leave enough time for the clay to dry completely before painting, and again enough time for the paint to dry before glazing.

I visited the Museum of Royal Worcester in August and was completely blown away by this piece by George Owen in the collection. The photograph is taken from the website. Having spent a week on and off making our crude, wobbly air dry clay bowls I am in awe of the craftsmanship involved. I would highly recommend the museum if you're in the area.

Thank you for stopping by xxx

Friday 20 August 2021

It's a balancing act


I'm sharing a card today on a circus theme.

I debated whether to make it and I debated whether to share it. I have mixed memories of the delight of going to the circus as a child and seeing the animals, but also knowing now that many of the animals suffered in captivity. Are images like these still OK to use? Would it be better if the elephant wasn't on the ball? I'd welcome your thoughts.

Thank you for taking the time to stop by xxx

Friday 13 August 2021

Heart's delight


Today I'm sharing a card made from a gelli plate background using Giogiocraft stencils. It's a mixture of prints and ghost prints. I generally start with a print of the lightest colour, a second print with a darker colour and finish with a ghost print in the darkest colour.

I love the unpredictability of monoprinting and that every piece is unique.

Thank you for taking the time to stop by. Have a lovely day xxx

Friday 6 August 2021

Fabulous at 50


Today I'm sharing a card using one of the new stencils by Giogiocraft of 20th Century icons.

  The background was an old gelli plate mop up sheet.

Audrey Hepburn was a remarkable woman, remembered not only for her work in film and fashion but also for her humanitarian work with UNICEF. A great example to all of those in their golden decade.

Wishing you a fabulous day wherever you are xxx