Sunday, 29 September 2013

Another lovely mosaic sunday

view over the estuary

tulip in my garden

Karin and I had another great Sunday enjoying our mosaic time, because of the nice spring weather we went for a walk first with my old dog phoebe.
Mapua has beautiful areas to enjoy the view over the estuary and not far from my house is this great spot to sit and look out over the water.
Its a  peaceful place and I will go back and do some sketching there.
Karin had a lot of grouting to do today, but she finished her two tiles and cup and saucer.
I worked on a little wind chime and garden stone, hope to grout those pieces tomorrow.

Karins grouted tiles

The big teacup

Saturday, 28 September 2013


Last week I had a small stall at the local Mapua Flower festival with some of my vintage crafts.
Most of the items are made from vintage and recycled materials and I am slowly changing my vintage crafts into a more shabby chic look and mixed medium paintings.
I will be part of the craft coop in Wakefield for a few months and like to sell my crafts there over the Christmas period.

Saturday, 21 September 2013

Shabby chic course: finishing

 The last night of the shabby Chic course for this term.
The end results are really beautiful and all so different.
From a recycled frame made into a nautical picture, a decoupaged and gilded mannequin, a shabby chic table with a printed image and a decoupaged and gilded angel.
These are just a few of the amazing finished pieces the ladies worked on over the last 6 weeks.
Its great to see the creativity and the individuality of the work the ladies produced and I hope they will continue making more beautiful art.

Sunday, 15 September 2013

Shabby chic course: antiquing

In the shabby chic course this week we did antiquing and painting 'shabby chic roses'.
Mostly I use burnt umber oil paint and odourless turps for antiquing, but  an acrylic burnt umber paint can be used thinned down with water.
The only disadvantage with a water base antiquing medium is the quicker drying time.
Another great way is to colour clear furniture bees wax with a little burnt umber acrylic paint and use this for antiquing furniture. The wax needs to be buffed up with a soft cloth.
The furniture piece doesn't need to be varnished anymore after waxing.
The "shabby chic roses" are simple folk art roses from France and looks nice painted in soft colours and sanded back to create an aged look.

Saturday, 14 September 2013

Button necklaces

For the local craft group in Mapua I taught a workshop this week making button necklaces.
The group meets every Friday morning in the local community church and is going for many years.
Around nine ladies took part in the workshop and we had so many buttons to choose from and the ladies made some wonderful necklaces.
The buttons are woven onto waxed cord and the necklace can be long or short.
In two weeks time we are going to make a window art display for the Ruby Coast Arts Week in November.

Monday, 9 September 2013

Spring in Mapua

Spring has come to Mapua, slowly blossom is appearing and when I am working in the garden I can hear the lambs calling out to their mums!
I think living in a village surrounded by paddocks and orchards is especially great in spring time.
Karin and I had another wonderful afternoon of making mosaic for the garden.
Karin's bird on a tile is taking shape and a stepping stone for the garden club raffle is coming along.
For afternoon tea we had a citrus slice and because Karin and a few of my friends can't eat gluten, this slice is made with gluten free flour. My lemon tree provided the spray free lemons.

                                                    Lemon slice
100 grams butter                                                    
half a cup of sugar                                                  
2 eggs                                                                    
2 cups of gluten free flour                          
2 teaspoons of baking powder                                
zest of two lemons
juice of two lemons

In a bowl beat the softened butter, flour and sugar.
In a different bowl mix the lemon juice/zest and sugar together
Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients
Beat together for 2 minutes
Pour into a greased baking tin and bake for 25 minutes on 170 Celsius
Don't over bake,otherwise the slice becomes dry.

Beat together lemon juice/ zest of 1 lemon and 1 cup of icing sugar and when slice is cooled use a spatula to spread the icing evenly.

This slice is nice served with yoghurt on the side, very refreshing.


Friday, 6 September 2013

Shabby chic Decoupage

Decoupage looks great on furniture, boxes, old vases and many other items.
I think decoupage objects add charm to the shabby chic interior, because it evokes feelings of the past and many memories.
Not only photographs, but wrapping papers,traveling documents, postcards, music paper and serviettes can be used. The list is endless.
It was great to see the many different ideas on Wednesday night and the ladies spend the time on cutting and gluing the images.
I used PVA glue mixed with water: 2 parts of glue to 1 part of water so to speak.
Mixed well in a glass jar with lid,the glue will keep for a while.
When gluing the images onto the object its very important to brush enough glue on the back of the image and then brush glue on top of the image as well and I use my fingers to carefully spread the glue and get rid of air bubbles.
Also a damp sponge can be used to take of excess glue.
Normally ink jet copies from the photocopier are a no no for decoupage, but two ladies used ink jet copies and the ink didn't bleed when the glue was applied, so that was interesting.
Next week we will antique all the pieces done during the course and try our hand at painting shabby chic roses!
The last photograph is a decoupage icon I did a few years ago.

Tuesday, 3 September 2013

Spring in Mapua

In our local park Spring is showing its beautiful colours.
Being in the southern hemisphere Spring starts on the 1 September, the day my daughter Rachel was born and it last till beginning of November when we slowly go into summer.
Spring is always a time of lovely green hills in the area I live and because Mapua is situated between apple orchards and vineyards, the blossoms of the fruit trees is just amazing and walking with my dog early evening the air is filled with blossom perfume.