Tag Archives: beach hut

Grand Designs Workshop

One of the great things about being a textile artist is being able to share my passion for creativity with others, I offer a range of workshops and talks that can be tailored to meet the needs of all ages and abilities.

I’ve just spent a lovely couple of days in North Yorkshire.  The fabulous Snape Textile Group invited me down to teach my workshop on making 3D beach huts and garden sheds.

 

The village itself is gorgeous  – reached via an avenue of lime trees with a carpet of snowdrops and aconites.The village hall, right in the centre of the village, was a perfect venue.

Lots of room to spread out and the newly refurbished kitchen meant hot food and plenty of cuppas were available – big thanks to Mary and Sarah! Having lunch together was a great way to find out more about the group’s interests – even if it did go a bit off topic sometimes (murder and mayhem with your apple sponge anyone!!)

So working with a group of 12 each day we got cracking on converting old tin cans into ‘des res’ on a miniature scale.

The main elements of these pieces are the building (obviously!) the side panel that wraps around the tin and the ‘ground’ that the building sits on. its important to have a good plan of what the finished piece will look like , so that each of the elements will harmonise and make a complimentary whole. Other than that, its up to the maker as to what the finished item will look like – a beach retreat? a gardener’s hide away? There’s lots of fun to be had working out how to make miniature features to perfect the scene – this time I shared top tips for making bunting…and cabbages!

It was lovely to see everyone get stuck in and really engage with the project. I’d sent down a materials list prior to the workshop and I always bring a lot of supplies to help people along, so the hall was soon a colourful hub full of beads, threads, fabrics and tins! (Frist job; check that the templates fit around your chosen tin – if not – adapt them!)

It is easiest to customise the building before it is constructed, so people added doors and windows, embroidered flowers and made bunting. Similarly, the roof can be one piece of fabric, or can be layered with tiles and finished with rick rack or ribbon. Decisions, decisions!!

 

The side panel wraps around the tin lets you ‘set the scene’ of the building, this weekend we had pebbles, flower gardens, fish and boats decorating the surfaces.

After a full day of stitching and constructing we had some very nearly complete Grand Designs, the plan is that the group will get their pieces completed for their annual show at the end of August…I can’t wait to see the final results!

 

Summer Time Workshop

Just to show that it hasn’t ALL been about maps lately!

Back at the end of May I did a One day Workshop with a group of Y9 High School students. They had been given the opportunity to exhibit as part of the Alnmouth Arts Festival 2015 in the lovely Aln Gift Shop . So we had the task of making something appropriate in one day.

After discussion with their teacher, I took the group through my ‘Tin Can Metamorphosis’ workshop, where simple mackerel tins are upcycled to become beautiful miniature works of art. The Y9 group used the technique of needle felting to create seaside and holiday scenes that were then housed in the upcycled tins.

(I should point out that the tins were emptied of their fishy contents, washed and dried before they became artworks – and yes, I eat a lot of mackerel!)

As you will see below, the outcomes were stunning, all reflecting the individuality of their makers and showing great skill and creativity.

Big thanks to all the Y9 pupils and Mrs Brown, I really enjoyed working with you all and hope you had a great day as well!

Many thanks to the Aln Gift Shop for taking the time to display the work so beautifully, staging it with similarly themed gifts and artworks from their stock.

And thank you to the Alnmouth Arts Festival for giving me a name check in their programme:)

Aln 1 Aln 2 Aln 3

September Sunshine

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A day in my workroom today, lovely to be here after a busy time delivering workshops but with several small selling opportunities coming up in November and a big show next Spring I need to get stitching!

This little beach hut is called ‘Pier Inn’ – I love the punning names these huts are given:) Just trying to decide what to put behind the door in this one…a deckchair, a bottle of something, a kayak?? We’ll see!
It’s going to join my series of beach huts in this style, hoping to get about 10 done in this format.

Then it’ll be on to more landscapes, thinking about all the lovely views of Dumfries & Galloway that I saw this summer. Lots of hills rolling away in shades of green and gold, under blue skies mostly but some dramatic purple clouds too. Looking forward to working on those:)

It may officially be Spring but it’s still pretty chilly up North, flowers are braving the cold, just hope there’s not a late frost!

Magnolia Stellata

Magnolia Stellata

I’m developing some more beach hut pieces (hoping to encourage warmer weather!) This one, Sandy Bay, is almost ready to go to Etsy. I’ve used a combination of machine and hand stitch with applique and needle felting. The little hut sits on a shingle and sand beach with gentle waves lapping at the shore, the bunting is up but, being a British beach hut the clouds aren’t too far behind – but what’s a beach hut for if not to provide shelter, and refreshments in the Great British Summer;)

 

Sandy Bay Peek Inside!

Sandy Bay                                            Peek Inside!

It will be joined by two others, Sole Bay *see below* and the Lobster Pot. On each one, the door of the beach hut can be opened to show a little scene inside:)

Sole Bay

Sole Bay – the textile so far and its original sketch

Somewhere to sit and watch the sea..

Somewhere to sit and watch the sea..