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Showing posts with the label how to

Advent Calendar

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Hello everyone,  Exciting times!  Christmas is but a few weeks away and things are getting really special.  😊 My little elves (in the form of my grandchildren) arrived as usual to decorate my tree and what a wonderful job they did!  I’m very pleased. This year I decided to make my own advent calendar.  Well, I say make, but I mean decorate and fill a pre-made one and I found this tree shaped wooden advent calendar which really appealed to me. These are sold at various places and in a multitude of different designs and shapes.  I chose this one that is sold at both The Range and Hobbycraft here in the UK. If you didn’t want to paint or decorate your own and just want to fill it yourself, you can also purchase ready decorated calendars and just fill them yourself. Here is an example: There are lots of others available too. I decided to spray paint the outer part with gold paint and then paint each drawer in green acrylic paint.  I then attached red felt sticky numbers. Then I added fest

Doll restoration

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 So I was given this poor little lady to restore as she had fallen apart, literally!  She is a Denys Fisher Jennie doll, a tiny little lady at 7 1/2 inches. After cleaning off the sticky stuff (seems she was glued at some point), I then set about restringing her. Removing the old elastic which had perished proved to be easier than I expected.  There was a tiny holed plastic pieces inside a tiny cup which the elastic was threaded through.  Could have used a finer gauge elastic cord to replace the original, but I went with what I had at hand and it seemed to work pretty well. Very pleased with the outcome!  Dressed in her original brownies uniform, Jennie is looking a lot more put together!  I’m busy now sewing some new clothes for this dear little doll. Feel free to comment or contact me if you need advice on restringing dolls.  I really enjoyed this little challenge. Until next time! Love Shari 💕

Challenged!

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 Hello everyone! When I’m stuck or in need of motivation I always look for a challenge.  It gets me off my butt and making.  It’s great fun too. So with this in mind I signed up to take part in the Find Your Joy challenge this year. So far I’ve only done assignment 1, but my goodness, it’s such fun! Take a large piece of paper.  Using masking tape divide it up into either 4 or 6 sections.  Then using just 3 colours plus black and white, play, make marks, mix colours, have fun.  Paint over the tape disregarding it.  The only limit is to keep within 30 minutes. When finished, peel off the masking tape and magic happens! I enjoyed it so much it became almost addictive and I now have lots of little paintings to use in my journal or as collage or book covers, whatever. I decided to use yellow ochre, ultramarine blue and magenta as my 3 colours plus mars black and titanium white. First try:- Old masking tape gripped paper so hard and ripped it when removed! Second try:-  I used same colours

Back to Landscapes

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 I’m revisiting painting landscapes in acrylics and here is the start of my process. 1. Rough sketch 2. Block-in  3. Refine 4. Detail. 5. One thing!  (What’s the one thing I can do to improve this painting?) My set up with acrylic paints - limited palette Rough sketch Sorry forgot to photograph the block in stage! Refine the painting Still got the detail to do, but I’m pleased with how it’s going. Have a great day! Best wishes Shari 💕

Meet Kira

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Hi all Yes it’s back to the Doll’s Hospital for an update.  Bear with me, this obsession will ease up soon, I promise. 😉 Beautiful girl - another throwback to my childhood dolls.     She was in need of a great deal of attention and in a bit of a sorry state when she arrived.  Firstly, she needed a pampering session to give her some much needed tlc.  After a bath and hairdressing session, she was feeling much happier. Her sticky eyes were fine after her cleanup. We then investigated what would be needed in terms of repair and the most obvious problem was that her voice box was missing, so I booked her a laryngectopy or replacement voice box. Next we picked out a lovely new outfit for after her procedure during this shopping expedition she let me know that her name was Kira and she was so happy to be home at last. The larynx was soon repaired and Kira’s voice is restored. Welcome Kira. Looking so much happier now. 💕 Thank you to all my followers/readers for sharing my new passion. Best

Childhood revisited

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 Hello all, Well the doll addiction has increased and it’s not over yet! I came across this lovely vinyl doll which reminded me of a favourite from my childhood.  Of course I had to have her.  She was a bargain price and I got her from a very nice lady.  However she needed some tender loving care, which I felt I would be able to give her. Her eyes were unfortunately broken and were in need of replacement.  This is a first for me, but I bravely took on the task.  I watched YouTube videos and read up as much as I could on how to tackle this.  With the advice of some lovely friends on FB groups I sent off for the replacement eyes. In the meantime, Susie was bandaged and given lots of hugs in the Dolls Hospital until her surgery. She was very brave and once she was sedated her surgery began. And the eye transplant was completed in very quick time, without any problems at all.   Susie is delighted with her new warm brown eyes and she is now joining her friends in the Recovery Suite. I feel

Straw bales

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 Acrylic painting on canvas board, Straw bales. This reminds me so much of home, our old house, where we were surrounded by fields and after the harvest the straw bales in the fields.  It was such a lovely peaceful place and we had a clear view over the fields to watch the beautiful sunsets. Anyway, back to the painting.  With this one again, I did the simplistic drawing, then blocked in, followed by the refining and detail. “Hay Bales“ acrylic on canvas board 16” x 12” Not quite finished yet as I need to lighten the background bales a tad and strengthen the foreground shrubbery on the right. Feeling quite happy with this one. Hope I have inspired you to have a go at painting.  Remember, three colours, three brushes and three steps.  It’s so easy.  The colours I used are Ultramarine blue, Alizarin crimson and Yellow ochre, plus Titanium white.  You can mix all the colours you need from these and create a very harmonic painting.  Look out for my painting classes coming soon, where I wil

Making a bottle fairy house

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This was such fun to make and I changed things as I went along.  Using a glass bottle (this one is a gin bottle as I rather liked the blue glass) and some air drying clay, I left gaps for windows as I wanted to add lights inside.  An egg box was used to create one wall as it was my intention to make it look like stonework (kind of like crazy paving). Originally I intended to make the roof with strips of card stuck to the bottle stopper, but then I realised this would not be practical as I couldn’t easily open the bottle to add the lights or replace them if necessary (when the battery fails).  So I scrapped that idea and chose to make the roof slightly lower down. I used little strips of wood for the panelled door. Will get some updated pics of the progress shortly. Happy creating!  See you soon. Best wishes Shari 😊  

Mastering Mosaic

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 Hello everyone! Thought I would have a play with mosaics once again.  I’m self taught and have only made a few projects with mosaic, but it’s a very satisfying craft and quite easy to do. I have an old wooden cabinet in my bathroom that I wanted to brighten up and to mosaic seemed a really good option.  I cleaned up the top and proceeded to design the mosaic.  I wanted to keep with my nautical theme in the bathroom and designed a fish for the centre of my mosaic.   Before grouting Grouting done!   You can’t tell from this photo but I added a little pale blue acrylic paint to the grouting which really seems to harmonise the whole piece.  Just got to clean up and give it a rub up.  I’m very happy with the finished piece and it’s so much brighter and cleaner than just plain wood. I hope I’ve inspired you to have a go with mosaic. I’d love to see what you make, if you’d like to share.   It’s really satisfying and quite addictive! See you soon.  Happy making! Best wishes Shari 💕

Fantasy paintings

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 Sorry for my recent absence from the blog, I have been incredibly busy with my painting and other creative works that I will post on the blog shortly.  But first, I just wanted to talk about painting fantasy paintings.  This is really outside my comfort zone but always eager to get to grips with a challenge, I decided to have a go with some moon paintings. Firstly, “Harvest Moon” painted in acrylics on canvas. “Harvest Moon” acrylics on canvas I began by a simple drawing of the pathway, tree area and moon on black canvas. Using a limited palette, I set about blocking in the main shapes - And then I began to refine: Adding in more detail: I hope you enjoy the pictures of my process.  The second fantasy painting was “Lovers’ Moon” again painted in acrylics.  I’m really starting to enjoy using acrylics, even though I normally  use oils.  Not sure this one was as successful as Harvest Moon, but I enjoyed painting it.  The only thing with this one was getting the darkness right. The third

Hillside Cottage in oils

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 Really getting back into my painting now.  Love this little painting and using a limited palette has really improved my colour mixing skills.  Hillside Cottage I intend to start getting together some step-by-step projects soon online, maybe on YouTube or something similar.  The idea is that you can follow along and actually create your own painting.  They will be aimed at beginner painters, so if you’ve always wanted to paint but not sure where to start these videos will show you.  Please let me know if you would be interested in these videos. Best wishes Shaz

Sewing Design Linocut

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 Hello everyone, sorry I’m a little late with this post. Well this week has definitely been a printing week.  I have once again succumbed to the lure of linocut printing! I wanted a design centred around another of my hobbies, sewing.  I am upcycling a sewing box (which I will publish here later) and am considering using a linocut print to decorate. Having arranged some sewing elements - scissors, thimble, button and needle - I drew the design directly on to the Lino. Then I used my Lino gouger to cut away the area that was not part of the print - the part I cut away is the negative space around the design elements. As I am completely self taught in the art of linocutting I am not sure if my technique is correct, but it works for me.  At this stage I am reasonably happy with the result.  I had finished cutting and was happy with the linocut, so I tried a trial print to identify areas that needed more work. At this stage I felt either too much ink was used or I need to work more on the

Another Practice at Handmade Stamps

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 Hi Everyone, Shari is back in the room!  Well, in the blog anyway, 😂. I have been trying my skills again at the handmade rubber stamps.  I have designed a flower stamp and a logo for Sharon Golding Designs… just the initials. Having bought a supply of rubbers, I got out the gouger again and set to work.  After drawing my design and transferring it to the rubber (back to front so that it comes out correct when inked), I started removing the negative space around the design with the gouger.  Care must be taken especially close to the design as one false move could destroy the whole piece.  So if you do try this yourself, remember to take your time and remove just a little at a time. Using the gouger to remove the negative space around the flower design Taking care not to remove any petals from the design. After a while I used my trusty penknife to remove more rubber enabling the design to stand out. The penknife used with care flattened out the cutaway sections and really made the desi