Tuesday, 29 April 2014

The Cheapside Hoard

A couple of weeks ago my Mum and I took a trip to an exhibition in London. It was the final weeks for one being held at the Museum of London in the Barbican called " The Cheapside Hoard, London's lost jewels" It  showed the world's largest and most exquisite hoard of Elizabethan and early Stuart jewellery. This hoard was found hidden in a cellar floor in London's Cheapside where it had remained for 300 years.
It was discovered by workmen in 1912 and has never been shown until now in it's entirety. The collection is of over 500 pieces and includes a stunning brooch in the form of a salamander as well as cameos, pearls, enameling on necklaces and bracelets, opals and many other precious jewels.

Barbican is a very interesting area and is home to some iconic buildings including the Barbican Estate built in the 1960s.

I love how in London modern building coexist in total harmony with the old world too
I have never visited the Museum of London before, it is a really great place for day out, with some great exhibitions. 

Sadly photography was not allowed inside the  Cheapside Hoard exhibition but this is the flyer featuring a couple of the extraordinary pieces  on show.

One of my favourite pieces was this clock made out of 2 enormous pieces of emerald...it must be priceless.
In the other exhibition areas of the museum  however photography was freely allowed (with no flash). I decided to visit a couple of other parts of the museum later in the day after my Mum and I had enjoyed lunch in the on site cafe.
 This is the Lord Mayor's coach which is still used every year at the Lord Mayor's Show

and there was a great "Through the ages" permanent exhibition showing London from the earliest pre Roman times up until the present day.
Do you remember Woolworth's?

and Biba ...( I have just bought a Biba dress as House of Frazer sell a line of Biba clothing.) I can remember visiting the original Biba Shop in London in the 1970s with my best friend Karen. I had lots of the iconic 
round pots of nail polish in blue, black, green and even yellow. 

Other than the temporary exhibitions the Museum of London has free admission..quite a rare find in the capital. Sadly the Cheapside Hoard exhibition has now finished but if you ever get the chance to see it anywhere else do....it really blew me away.
 No one knows who hid the hoard or who owned it but I am so glad that it made the light of day again.
My card for today features some sacking (burlap) and I like to think of this hoard of jewellery being buried 300 years ago wrapped in sacking.......;0)
It features one of my LOTV pretty vintage sentiment stamps which I have gold embossed. The panel I have stamped it on was made with distress inks and the music script stamp is again from the LOTV pretty vintage range.  I distressed the edges to give a worn look and attached a small charm from my jewellery stash. 

Here are a couple of close ups;

I have put my card up for sale in my Etsy shop..here

I would like to enter my card into the following challenges;

Lili of the Valley 10th Birthday card challenge
The artistic stamper embossing and texture
Bunny Zoe Distress
Crafty Catz anything goes
Vintage Stamping anything goes
Dream Valley say it with words
Pile it On rubber stamping
Whimsy Stamps anything goes
Simon Says Stamp Clean and simple
4 Crafty Chicks embossing

It's the end of the month tomorrow, how quickly has April flown by? Have a great week everyone and here in the UK we are looking forward to the May Day bank holiday next Monday, enjoy.

Back soon,

Bye for now,

Jane x

Friday, 25 April 2014

Four seasons in one day

I have been so looking forward to attending the 2nd Country View Crafts workshop run by my great blogging buddie, Brenda, of Bumblebees and butterflies. The theme for this workshop was to make a set of vintage Nature Garden panels. I was up bright and  breezy on Thursday and caught the train to Flitwick and at 10 am the workshop began.

Brenda is an excellent teacher we soon elbow deep in burlap panels, matt medium and alcohol inks, which I have never used before.

Fueled by delicious cake and pastries and lots of tea our projects evolved as the day flew by.

The bases of the panels are burlap, or to us English ladies....twill/hessian/sacking. I remember potatoes being sold from sacks made of this material in the greengrocers when I was small.  We were shown how to build up lovely layers and textures using grunge paste and book pages.

 I decided that I would like my 4 panels to represent Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter so I chose to use inks and colours to suit  the seasons. We added stamping, remnant rubs and inks and some chatty word embellishments.

We also used die cut images using acetate gives extra depth to each piece. These were coloured with alcohol inks and then bent to shape using a heat gun.

And here are my finished panels .....first up is Spring
next is Summer, with a gorgeous dragonfly
Autumn follows with rich  berry and gold coloured  butterflies

and finally Winter with a robin or 2.

And here is a photo showing my 4 panels as a group.
 I really love them and plan to either link them together with hooks and eyes or put them together into a frame. They will smile down to me from the wall of my garden studio.

I would like to enter my panels into the following challenges;

County View Crafts New beginnings my new beginning is my first dabble into mixed media...and it will certainly not be my last.
A Vintage Journey Spring Flowers I would like to enter my "Spring" panel
Pan Pastels Go grungy
Crafty Catz anything goes
Crafty Ribbons anything but a card
Fashionable Stamping flying things
Vintage Stamping anything goes
Rhedd's Creative Spirit  Altered art
Polkadoodles Springtime I would like to enter my "Spring" panel
A little bit crafty the birds and the bees
Penny Black and More blossoms and bows
The artistic stamper embossing and texture
Bunny Zoe Distress

This will certainly not be my only dabbling this art form....I'm off to buy some grunge paste and matt medium as I have lots of other ideas for my newly acquired skills.

It's Friday again so I am now home from work and looking forward to some crafting both card and jewellery making over the weekend. Thank you  for all your support and encouragement with my recent crafting...I really am branching out into new styles and techniques.  I do still love colouring with my Promarkers and my cute cards and I would never stop making them but I just love getting inky, gluey fingers and mixed media is so interesting. And to think that at school art classes held no interest to me at all.

 My art teacher would never have believed  how much my jewellery making and crafting would become such a big part of my leisure time relaxation. On the subject of my jewellery making I have also added a couple of lovely pieces for sale in my Etsy shop.
 A  haematite bracelet available here
and a gorgeous glass  lampwork seashell pair of dangle earrings here ...thoughts of sunny summer days...mmmmmm

Enjoy your weekend,

Back soon,

Bye for now,

Jane x

Wednesday, 23 April 2014

Tip toe through the tulips

Now that my beloved daffodils are fading fast it has been wonderful to see Mother Nature waking up other flowers. If you remember I planted up some pots last autumn and included some tulips. These are now in full flower and have been stunning...so big, bold and flouncy.

and how about these tulips  for a vibrant zingy colour, which have bloomed in my front garden.

My viola my Mum gave me on my birthday is also looking gorgeous
Over the Easter break I got some time in my studio and I was really inspired by the bold striking colours from my plants. I wanted to use the purples, yellows and greens and I made a backing paper with my distress paints and inks, my wooden flower stamp I bought at the recent Country Life Spring show I attended and some purple craft fabric paint I bought from there.

 I used Tim Holtz Victorian Velvet, Forest Green and Blue Jeans paints and when dry filled in the spaces by blending Mustard Seed and Tattered Rose distress inks. I then stamped randomly over the page with my wooden flower stamp and purple fabric paint....I loved the effect.
I wanted to bring out the yellow more so I die cut some flowers with yellow card and rolled them up.
 I had some left over lattice cut with gold card which I daubed with Victorian Velvet distress paint.
I also wanted to use one of my favrourite Nicecrane images from the Henderson's giant flowering set. This is a brilliant set and I have used it lots. So then it was time to put on the creative hat, gather some other supplies and ideas and put together my card........

and a few close ups...

I think my card is as bold and blousy as my tulips are!

I would like to enter my card into the following challenges;

A Vintage Journey Spring Flowers
Bearly Mine Spring
Divas by Design Let's go to the movies my film inspiration is The Secret Garden. It is also a great book I loved as a child.
Sentimental Sundays bright colour photo inspiration
Pile it on No DPs or make your own mine is all hand made ;0)
Ali Craft spring
Bunny Zoe Distress
A Creative Romance eggcellent spring
Inky Chicks shabby chic
Polkadoodles spring
Chocolate coffee and cards spring
Totally Gorjuss die cuts and punches
We do dobadoo Embellish it
Dream Valley say it with words

I went back to work today after a lovely week off. Tomorrow is a really exciting day for me though as I am joining my blogging friend Brenda for another crafty day in Flitwick. The theme for the workshop this time is floral. I will have a whole day of crafty fun.

Happy Wednesday everyone,

Back soon,

Bye for now,

Jane x

Sunday, 20 April 2014

Easter greetings

Happy Easter everyone and I hope that the chocolate bunny has been good to you. We have been out and about for the last few days so we plan a quiet day at home and I may even get some time for some crafting. After nearly 2 weeks of wonderful sunshine the heavens have opened and it's pouring this morning. I think lots of chocolate will feature today in our house today ;0) It's certainly not a day for the garden.
Here are some photos of the surprises my dear ones are opening this morning

Our Daisy Jane is too young for chocolate yet so here is Nana's gift this year.........
a bag to match her pretty sundress and the sweetest story book...Stripey Horse.
As always all of mine get a little chick in their Easter bags, they are never too old ;0)

I would like to wish all my great blogging friends the happiest of Easter's. Have a peaceful day whether you are relaxing at home or with family.

I can't send you all a card so here is GD one I made for Ignacio of Nicecrane designs using one of his fab Easter sheets called chicks and ducklings available here 
I love his vintage sheets so much. I also used as little "seed packets" another set called Henderson's Giant flowers available here. This is one of my favourite sets.
Here are a couple of close ups;
 I made butterfly with a MS punch which I then inked with distress inks and added some gold embossing powder to and some gems for some sparkle.
I added a little vintage bird box charm from my stash which I tied with twine and also some lace to add to the vintage/shabby chic  feel.

I would like to enter my card into the following challenges;

We do doobadoo Embellish it
Allsorts Birds and feathers
Totally Gorjuss Die cuts/punches
Polkadoodles springtime
Chocolate coffee and cards spring
Inky Chicks shabby chic
A creative romance Eggcellent spring
Jelly Park Happy Easter
Papertake Weekly Happy Easter
Loves Rubberstamps Easter/spring
Party Time Tuesday die cuts
Oldie but a goodie Easter my oldie is my bird charm from my jewellery stash
The Ribbon Girl yellow/lemon
Bearly Mine Spring

Enjoy your long weekend however you are spending it. Thanks as always for your kind visits to me here and the comments that you take the time to leave.

For those of you who love to see my darling granddaughter Daisy...we caught up with them on Good Friday over at my parents' house. She is now 5 months old and was wearing her butterfly dress...I will leave you with a couple of pictures of my little princess busy playing.

 I bought her a new outfit which I think she approved of, a little denim skirt dungarees set...

and just look how big she is in her bath now :0)

she even peeps her feet over the top....so funny! I could eat this little sweetie, she is just adorable.

Back soon,

Bye for now,

Jane x (and Daisy waving with her feet)