Sunday, 26 July 2015

An away day to recharge the batteries.

Its been a long time for me to have difficulty sleeping because you've got so many craft ideas racing round my brain (work issues do keep me awake, thank goodness for Iplayer, it took me 10 attempts to listen to Benedict Cumberpatch in Rumpole the other week) but last night loads of what ifs and oh would that work?

Why, well I had a fantastic day at Hope & Elvis near Worksop run by Louise on a Liz Cooksey workshop.  I spotted the workshop ages ago and Liz's use of metal and grid arrangements with mixed media elements really spoke to me.

After a horrendous journey up the M1 I made the 10.00am start - just!  Liz explained her methods and design principles and she made loads of metal elements for us to use if we didn't want to have ago ourselves. Although all materials were available Id taken a load of stuff as I'd decided I wanted to work with a neutral colour scheme.

First thing I did was nick some used teabags and dyed some cotton scraps I had and the A4 Kraft card, left them out in the courtyard to dry.

I then stated to have a play with the metal elements thinking about what I wanted to "do" Started doing some crochet with linen thread (bit of a faff, think I needed a bigger hook) and sticking. 

Once my A4 was dry I added some book pages and then layered the cotton and some silk strips on the swankiest sewing machine I ever seen, I felt like I was driving an Aston Martin, so many buttons and oh so quiet. I felt really naughty sewing on paper with such a majestic beast.

Metal and shaping and bashing, oh how I enjoyed that, all afternoon you could hear the rhythmic ringing of metal on metal out in the courtyard.

The flower on the left is one I made, I love how hitting the metal wire with a hammer of a metal block stretches the metal, flattens its and changes the colour The wire Liz supplied was malleable enough to twist and make shapes and the tendril on the flower on right was done this way.

The stems had more wire twisted round and hammered flat and were attached with some of the line thread. 

The day ended at 4.00pm and that was good because I was knackered, all that thinking and pondering had taken its toll!  I knew the piece wasn't quite finished for me as I wanted to add some pencil marks and little bit of highlight colour.  So once home got the water colour pencils out and added in the brown, purple and red. 

I did start making a more Liz inspired grid arrangement, but this one just sort of demanded to be worked on. Ive got some ideas for the grid that will form a companion to this.

It was a great day, working with all my favourite materials in a beautiful space created by Louise and talking to other like minded people creating and chatting, lovely, lovely, lovely.



  1. Sounds like you had a fabulous day and some much deserved relaxation time! Love the end results.

  2. Wow Jo! How inspiring is this! Love the shapes on the grungy background! Everything goes together so well, as though they evolved! The shapes are a bit Jofy and also remind me of Honesty! If there is a repeat of anything like this I would love to join in! Making me salivate! Slurp!

  3. It does sound as though you had a brilliant day if a tiring one and I love the result! Look forward to seeing your next piece.

    Lesley Xx

  4. It was great to meet you Jo and I look forward to welcoming you again. You really got your head down and it shows in the results! Creative wishes Louise


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