Thursday 8 October 2015

Let's talk cushions.

 Such a lot has happened since last we met, so much in fact that I'm not sure what you've seen and what you haven't, so today I think we'll just talk....
Not just any old cushions...MarmaladerRose cushions.
Yes, cushions will ease me into blog posting very nicely.
There are rather a lot of them now... these are my answer to a print problem I've got. You see so far I've not been able to successfully recreate my original felt pictures as paper prints. I get asked quite a lot if I do limited edition prints...or ...any prints at all in fact.
 It seems I'm able to have my work reproduced on fabric very well but when it comes to art paper, they just appear flat and dead. Not at all the quality that I expect. It's very strange.
 But the cushions... soft suedey cushions...
 Washable suedey cushions...
They look really rather wonderful...
Not to mention feeling rather soft and scrummy too!
They have on more than one occasion been mistaken for felted wool. Many a hand has stroked and caressed expecting to feel wool and stitches but instead has glided over their velvety finish.
So maybe we'll just stick to cushions, oh! And the odd greeting card or two. 

Till next time (and hopefully it will be sooner rather than later)
love Fi x

Tuesday 16 June 2015

Exhibition Update.

Well my lovelies, I'm sitting here in bed trying to organise my thoughts so as to make a sensible, flowing blog post for you but there is so much I want to share with you all and I'm so far behind this year that I shall just dive in and splash some photos and words about.

Our exhibition at The Station in Richmond has been and gone. Here I am with Sue trying not to look too sweaty and dishevelled after spending an afternoon up and down step ladders hanging our work on the platform gallery. 
Sue has exhibited her work here before but this was a first for me, hanging my work from proper gallery fittings and locking my greetings cards in a glass display cabinet. Ooo! it felt very grown up! A nice change from trying to make a sheep pen look like an art gallery! (Not long to Art in the Pen and Yarndale ;)
The Station is a lovely venue... an old railway station that has had a new lease of life as a cinema, art gallery and retail outlet with a restaurant, vintage shop, artisan bakery, chocolatier, ice-cream parlour, cheese maker and micro brewery. Something for everyone eh! 
Sue and I shared the space, mixing her work and mine on some walls
and keeping them separate on others.
'Heather Rest'
On the middle Saturday of our two week exhibition Sue and I had a 'meet the artist day'. Sue took her pastels and paper while I demonstrated with water and wool. We had a lovely time chatting about our work and sharing some of the creative magic. 

I can't help but delight at the sight of peoples faces when they first view my work thinking they are pastels or painting and then I point out that they are all made from wool. It's one of the best things ever, teehee!
'Robin with Berries'
Now I don't want you to think I'm greedy but this wasn't the only exhibition of my work. No, the day after we set up at Richmond, Wonderful Man and I dropped of some more of my work at the Royal Horticultural Society Gardens, Harlow Carr in Harrogate.
This is the Bath House in the RHS gardens where my work will be part of the 'Just Makers' summer art exhibition. I was a very good girl and took some photos of the current work on display to give you an idea of the crafts for sale. 
Let's take a closer look.

Full of lots of quality craft items and artwork, beautifully displayed. 
After a spot of lunch at the 'Betty's' outdoor tea room we took a little stroll around the gardens.
Hmmm...boxing hares, where have I seen those before!
 The flowers were glorious.
A true inspiration.
Flower brooch anyone?

Till next time.
Love Fi x

PS. A small selection of felted flower brooches are available from my Etsy shop.

Friday 29 May 2015

Exhibition Time!

Gosh! It's only one more sleep until my exhibition!
I say 'my' exhibition but it's not really. The lovely and very talented artist Sue Godden asked me if I'd like to share her exhibition as we both create animal pictures which would compliment each other nicely. Mine as you know are made from wet felted wool and Sue's are pastel drawings.
Beautiful, isn't he?
The exhibition is called Natural Magic and it's on at the Station, Richmond, North Yorkshire for a couple of weeks.
So today has been a day of glass polishing, labelling and wrapping. I know this sounds silly but I forget quite how big my work is. It's only when I'm fighting with huge sheets of bubble wrap and heavy pictures that I think maybe I should try and work on a bit smaller scale.
This is 'Fox'. 
I think he's rather a handsome chap. Let's hope somebody else does and whisks him away to new home. 
If they don't I shall send him to Harrogate as I'm also taking part in an exhibition there for most of June into July. A handful of my works will be at the Bath House at the RHS Harlow Carr Gardens in their Summer Art Exhibition run by Just Makers. 

This one is that big that I can't even see over the top of it! 

More glass polishing!

There has been a bit of card packing too. 
Well I better say good night as I've got a lot of lifting and hanging to do tomorrow. Oh! I nearly forgot... We'll be doing a 'meet the artist day' on Saturday 6th June at Richmond Station so if you're popping to the cinema or catching a bite to eat don't forget to look for us and say hello.
So till next time
love Fi x

Tuesday 12 May 2015

A Mouse for Mum.

At long last I've finally made a felt picture for my Mum. It's not that I haven't wanted to or that she hasn't wanted one but demands elsewhere got in the way last year. So this year I was determined that for her birthday I would make her a felt picture of her own. 

It had to be a little animal as she loves nature especially the wildlife that visits her garden. It's always full of birds and she and my Dad have a couple of squirrels that visit. Last year there was also a cute little field mouse that would visit looking for bird food that had fallen to the floor, so there was no doubt which little animal I should choose. 

This one tested my patience though. It nearly ended up in the bin on a couple of occasions but I don't like to be beaten and once you've invested hours of work in a piece it seems silly to abandon it, much better to persevere and strive to make it right...and I'm so glad I did. It wasn't until the very end, after the felt had dried and I was adding the whiskers that I was happy with it.

Till next time
love Fi x

Wednesday 6 May 2015

Cushion Love

Hello from the hills!
It was a bit blustery and very fresh but well worth the climb! Only joking we drove up in the car, lol. This is the view from the Buttertubs Pass looking down at the valley. 
We had a little ride up to a small viewing area after dropping our daughter off at our local train station. Would you like to see that too? It's very pretty, well for a train station anyway. Here it is.
Small but perfectly formed. Very pretty and remote, surrounded by nothing but hills and moorland. Beautiful in the sunshine but on a stormy winters evening it's more Wuthering Heights, burrrr!

Back indoors and I've been busy stitching away on my sewing machine. I've been making  more cushion covers, this time with digital prints from some new felted wool pictures. 
You can't tell from the photo but these are printed onto faux suede fabric and feel lovely and... well... suede-y. 
The backs are also a faux suede fabric in a neutral colour and all of it washable too. I sound very smug don't I? Well I can tell you ladies...I certainly don't feel smug when I'm sewing them, I don't find it a very easy fabric to work with at all. It kind of sticks to the cutting mat and won't slide into position. I wouldn't say it frays but long clingy strands come off when your cutting it but...when you touch the finished piece, if feels luuuverly!
And just to give you an idea of size here I am trying to balance on the kitchen table while holding a cushion in one hand and taking a picture in the mirror with my phone in the other, at the same time trying to look relaxed as if I do this all the time.
These cushions, along with a few previous designs are now available in my Etsy Shop.

Till next time.

love Fi x

Monday 23 March 2015

And the Winners are....

Hello my lovelies. 
Well...What an overwhelming response to my little give away. Quite a surprise really as my blog posts over the last 12 months have been a bit a hit and miss and I thought you must have all got fed up of waiting around, teehee. I should have known better, what a loyal lot you are. 

Thank you for all of your lovely comments, I enjoyed reading every single one of them. It was especially nice to hear from so many of you who already own a piece of my work. I take it the felt handbags are holding up well and the wall art still raises a smile each day? I do hope so ;)

Firstly I must just give you the link for 'embroidery' magazine as I know it was requested and it really is a fabulous publication. If you like textile art, this it the cream of the crop, I really feel honoured to have my work in it. 

Secondly, Lillian, I'm sorry there is nothing in my Etsy shop, I am trying honestly. It's just that I never seem to be able to make enough! I am hoping to at least have some cushions available in there at some point this year. I have been working hard, as well as exploring digitally printed fabric I'm also in the middle of trying to find someone who can make some prints of my work. Not as easy as it sound as textiles are not easy to reproduce, you seem to lose the texture and vitality so it's all a bit up in the air at the moment.  I  also have my first event of 2015 on the horizon...
The Designer Makers Market at the Witham in Barnard Castle, County Durham. This is to be held on Good Friday and Easter Saturday, it's a great event with the best craftspeople in the region selling their own high quality pieces. Honestly, I'm sure I only just scraped in ;)

Right! I won't keep you waiting any longer. 
A drum roll pleeeease....
For the first prize of the 'Violet Hare' cushion cover, a copy of 'embroidery' magazine and one of my little hand embroidered felt brooches (everything in the picture at the top of the post). The winner is comment number...
"Seven years -- congratulations! I love your work, which I have been admiring for the past four years. Your felted wall hangings (especially the hares) are exquisite! 

The second prize of a copy of 'embroidery' magazine and one of my little hand embroidered felt brooches (pictured below) 
Is comment number...
50...Leslie A

"Thank you for thinking of us in such a nice way! Congrats on 7 years."

Thankyou to everyone who left a comment.  I wish I could send you all a little gift but I think the postage would bankrupt me!
To Marty and Leslie, I'll email you shortly to arrange delivery of your goodies.

Till Next time
Love Fi x

Monday 16 March 2015

Anniversary Give Away Time!


Hello all. As per usual I'm playing catch up and to be honest I think that's the way it's likely to be for the rest of this year. It's either catch up or no blog posts at all. 

I do keep toying with the idea of taking a break from my blog as I struggle to find the time to post. On the other hand it would be like losing the Rose from the Marmalade, as to me you are all as much a part of MarmaladeRose as I am. Without you lot out there and this blog, there would be no MarmaladeRose, the very thing that has spawned my little business. 

Can you believe we've been sharing creative ideas and chatting for SEVEN years! Seven years this week in fact!

 Well, we can't let a seventh anniversary pass with marking it somehow so I thought I'd have a little give away, in fact two give aways. You'll have spied the brand new MarmaladeRose cushion at the top of the page, well this is my first prototype cushion cover that I have made using a digital print of my original felt work, on fabric. When I get my act together a selection of cushions showing prints of some of my original felt art will be available, probably later this year.
I have to add this cover isn't perfect as I was so excited when the print arrived that I made the cushion using a remnant of green check fabric for the back instead of waiting to source faux suede to compliment the front but if you don't look at the back it's quite passable. So... I thought I'd give away this cushion cover (you'd need to provide your own cushion inner)  

I also happen to have received a couple of spare copies of the March/April issue of 'Embroidery, the Textile Art Magazine'.
Such a super-lovely magazine, full of the most beautiful textile art and embroidery that you could ever wish to see. So much gorgeousness on every page, I know you'll all love it. Well I'm not quite sure how I managed it but...
 I seem to have 
wangled a spot
on page 25!

Honestly, I didn't bribe anyone! There was no hard cash or chocolate changing hands... I swear!

Anyway the lovely people at 'Embroidery' have sent me a couple of copies, so I thought I'd share them with you.
I have two copies going spare, so there will be two winners. I thought I'd also add one of my little hand felted and embroidered brooches too.
So to sum up...

All you have to do to enter the give away is leave a comment below making sure there is some way for me to contact you (no contact link, no prize). 
I'll only count one entry per person so leaving duplicate comments won't count cos I'm strict like that. ;)
I'll use a random number generator to choose the winner. 

The first person picked will win the cushion cover, the magazine and a brooch. 

The second person picked will win the magazine and a brooch.  

You have until my next blog post (I have no idea when that's going to be) to enter. So what are you waiting for? Spit-spot, seize the moment!

Till next time
love Fi x


Sunday 8 February 2015

A Stitch in Time.

 Hello my lovelies! Today's post is documenting something I've not really done before. No, I don't mean mending, I've done plenty of that. I'm talking about mending with soluble fabric. The pretty little skirt pictured above belongs to child #2 and this is a very special skirt because this is the first skirt child #2 has worn in about 15 years! Yay, mark it on the calender! She's very much a skinny jeans girl normally. 
 So she was a little upset on first wearing of the skirt to find said skirt caught up on someone else handbag and little tug of war going on. The end result being a large hole in the beautiful lace. 
"Would you like me to see if I can mend that for you?" I said, having absolutely no idea how I was going to do it. 
"OO! Yes please." came her reply.
 Kerching! A little idea popped into my head! Quite a rarity these days so I grabbed it quick. Soluble fabric! The idea was to place the soluble fabric under the lace and try to fill in the broken strands that made up the spiderweb pattern. 
 It was a bit fiddly to hold it all in place without stretching the lace out of shape. And there was quite a lot of backwardsing and forwardsing over the same area but...

 I managed to fill in the area that was missing.
 A quick rinse under the tap to dissolve the soluble fabric, breath held in case it all unravelled.

 And there it is. The bit I mended is just above my fingers! 
Mum wins the day again!