Saturday, 19 October 2013

Christmas Cards and Scented Candles

I just wanted to show the process of making one of my paper-cut christmas cards. I print the design onto card, put on the big glasses, find some decent light, and then cut out all the negative shapes. After taking each piece away I can't resist holding up the card and seeing how delightfully lacy it looks. When it's all cut out, I string it on silver thread. I cut a greeting card to fit an envelope and fold it, and then I print a sheet of adhesive with "merry christmas" which I cut to use as stickers to hold the paper-cut ornament it on the front of the card.

 This weekend I finally got a chance to make up some scented soy candles. I bought the wax, wicks and fragrances a little while ago from Natural Candle Supply who are in Matraville, Sydney - where I've spent so much of my adult life - but these days I'm far enough to have it delivered. I chose soy wax with the influence of my daughter, who refuses to use any animal product at all, even wool or bees wax. The containers I've been gathering from op shops over the last few weeks, and have found some nice little glasses just right for the job. Because the shop in Huskisson can be a little dusty especially in windy weather, I thought it would be nice to make up some boxes for them, so I drew up a diecut, added some soft, minimal elements in Illustrator, and printed them on A4 210gsm card. A lot of cutting, glueing, wax-melting, but they look and smell very nice. The house smells great too. The scents are Persia, Vanilla Bean, Chai Latte and still to come is Mango and White Tea!

Thursday, 17 October 2013

October so far!

The Pebbles and Pods shop in Bayside Emporium has been open nearly five weeks now, which is great motivation to keep making and exploring ideas for new products. Today I finished these fabric-covered notebooks, some using upcycled fabric, and finished with a vintage Ric Rac ribbon. 
Other new things are wrapping paper sets made from brown paper stamped with apples or bok-choy, or spray painted with some pre-loved wooden letters as stencils. I've also done a few tags with chlorophyll fern prints. These are done by hammering the fern and creates a beautiful print.
Some Christmas cards featuring bird and deer shapes hand-cut from scrapbook papers and maps. I've been using a lot of maps lately and just loving the colour tones and textures of them. These are from an old atlas I grew up with - many of the countries have changed.
Bird feeders made from wired-up vintage plates. 
More glass-jar lanterns. Some decorated with heart-shaped doilies, some with vintage images of sea creatures.
Paintings on Andy's mum's old piano music. This butterfly I painted while serving at the shop when the international war ships were anchored in Jervis Bay, we had fireworks right outside our door that night.
A decorative wreath made from a native vine that grows in our garden and embellished with artificial leaves and fabric flowers I found in an op shop.
Strings of butterflies! Hand-cut from vintage sheet music, maps, paper doilies and other bits and pieces. They're zig-zagged onto strings and finished with 3 bells that I went to great trouble to rust. They are very pretty and fluttery when hung.
Brown paper cards decorated with paper tea-stained and hand-stamped with both my lino-cut designs and rubber stamps.
I've also had some more bird cards printed with pardalotes and rainbow bee-eaters and 4 other pretty birds. And Some photographic cards of local sights and some quirky things I've spotted in the local area.
Since our big opening celebration over the long weekend, Andy has been making some more juggling sticks, which are heaps of fun for kids when they come in to shop with mum and also gives the stallholder kids something different to play with.
I'm also helping to promote the 'Tricky Words' books by a local author. They are written to aid children with reading and spelling, and are a great project involving lots of talented local kids. More info here.