Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Bat Brooch

Bats are regarded as auspicious creatures in the Chinese culture. The Chinese name of bat is bian fu -- fu being a homophone for good fortune. They also appear in Japanese art and design. I think they make a great motif with their flowing angular shapes and dark colour. I love catching a rare glimpse of bats, they remind me of late summer evenings sitting in the garden at my old house.
With a nod to Halloween I've made a glittery black bat brooch. It's hand cut from plastic and covered in fine black glitter then resin, finished of with little black plastic diamond eyes. It dose kind of look like the batman symbol, but I've tried to avoid that with the more Art Nouveau lines.
Happy Halloween!

Monday, 29 October 2012

Put on a Happy Face

One thing I could do with my blank ceramics is turn them into little characters! The egg cups especially look like the head neck and shoulders of a person. Here is a collection of porcelain I've had my eye on for a while. Just adding a few lines and dots to a mug can turn it into a little person. So cute!

1: Mr & Mrs Face Coffee Cups.
2: Collection of Hand drawn plates
3: Hand drawn pot with Face
4: Heart cheek cup & saucers
5: Cold to Hot Face Mugs
6: My own photo of Japanese orange drink, so happy!
7: Three layers pot
6: Girl bathing in cup and saucer

Friday, 26 October 2012

Ceramic Painting at Home!

I've started a new project. For a while now I've been gathering the items for painting my own pottery. It's a great way to jazz up some old mugs or make a unique set of items for your shelves (great for gifts!) I love home accessories that are pretty and quirky and I've been wanting to put my own designs onto ceramics for a long time! This is the cheap and domestic way of doing it.

I've got some plain white egg cups, tea pots and mugs to start practicing with, but when I get more confident I'll buy some fancy cups and saucer to decorate. Charity shops are a good place to buy cheap cups and things to start decorating, as well as supper markets for the plain white items, or even craft shops.

The pens I'm using to decorate with are 'Marabu Porcelain Painter' pens, in a small range of bright colours. They're ideal for me because you can let them air dry over a few days (no baking or kilning!) and then they're ready to use and dishwasher safe.

Now what to put on them...

Monday, 15 October 2012

Nation Baking Week

It's National Baking Week! From the 15th - 21st of October we have a great excuse to bake. I plan to celebrate by posting a few recipes and pics of my attempts at baking, eating the spoils and watching the final Great British Bake of Tuesday night!

This recipe for scones is great, it's very simple to make and the less you do to it the better it is! No kneading or folding or separating needed here:

11oz of Plain white flour.
1 tsp Salt
1 tsp of bicarbonate of soda
1 carton of butter milk (about 350ml)
1oz of sugar.

How to Make:
Pre-heat your oven to 230 'c / Gas mark 8
Sift the flour, salt and bi'carb' into a bowl and add the sugar.
Then tip the butter milk into the dry ingredients. Using one hand in a open handed claw position (much like a panto witch) mix the ingredients together just until it forms a dough. (you really don't need to mix it that much!)

Then transfer the dough onto a board and flatten out a bit with your hand so its about 3cm tick, touching the dough as little as possible. Use a knife to cut the scones into rough squares and place on baking parchment on a baking tray.
Then pop in the oven for about 10-15 minuets. Until golden brown. It's really quick!

Eat with clotted cream and your favourite jam.
You can use cutters to make nice shapes if you like, I used a star shape, but as the dough expands in the cooking these shapes can be unrecognizable, so I wouldn't bother...

Friday, 5 October 2012

Folk Art Rings

 These rings are the first of a new range of hand painted jewelery by my self. Inspired by traditional British and European folk art the collection mixes perfectly with the colours and textures of Autumn.