Thursday, 26 March 2009

Button love

If, like me, you used to love rummaging through your Grandma's old button tin and pulling out unusual or particularly vintage looking buttons to sort through on the floor, then you'll probably like these unique, ceramic buttons, handmade by Etsy user siennaorlando. They look like buttons from a strange children's story - perfect! Personally I love the owl button! Be sure to check out her Etsy for plenty of other designs.

Edit: If you are clumsy, fear not! I'm told these precious buttons are very durable \(^o^)/ That's music to my clumsy ears!

Tuesday, 24 March 2009

Joanna Rutter

I've been looking at Joanna Rutter's work for a while now on Etsy as her wonderful silver jewellery kept coming up when I searched for bird and fox-based jewellery.... so I figured it was about time I bought something by her to add to my collection! I'd love to buy the fox pin but unfortunatley it seems to be sold out at the moment so I have bought this sweet little chick necklace (from here) and can't wait for it to arrive!
Also, how can you not fall in love with Joanna's earring display cards? (See images below) I'm going to have to keep re-visiting her shop non-stop until the earrings and fox pin are back in stock... (sorry bank balance, I love you really)

EDIT: My little bird necklace arrived yesterday - it's so nice and was packaged really thoughtfully. I love it and am wearing it as I type along with a little silver bee necklace I found in a shop in London (Mum told me to be careful incase the bird and the bee get busy and I end up with a load of them round my neck.... Oo-kaaay... lol)

Tuesday, 10 March 2009

Window shopping birds

Anthropologie have some unique bird ornaments on their site right now. Made from wood, bits of rulers, clock parts, compases, brass, arrows, keys and key holes, the birds each have quite a distinct character and are called Gladiator Birds. Unfortunately they are a bit pricey (especially with Anthropologie's ridiculously expensive extra charges added on!) Anyway, they are nice to look at!

Bird 1 - Gladiator Bird - Finch with Key

£222.99 + £34.12 (Duty/VAT) + £23.43 (Shipping) = £280.54

Bird 2 - Gladiator Bird - Raven

£484.89 + £73.41 (Duty/VAT) + £23.43 (Shipping) = £587.73
Bird 3 - Wren

Monday, 9 March 2009

Poor Little Rich Girl

Over the past week or so I’ve discovered quite a lot about the brief life of Edie Sedgwick – I don’t know why this whole bubble of time has captivated my imagination and attention recently, I'm not even sure of my opinion of her or Warhol's Factory... but since it has grabbed me in some way I thought I should include it in my blog – seen as how this is meant to be about things which inspire me.

I'm not sure how to form sentences about this character so here are some words for you: Fashion icon, underground film star, muse, Andy Warhol, "superstar", drug addict, party girl, born to die young, big eyes, double set of lashes, honest, vulnerable, damaged, socialite, spent money as if it was water, model, artist, “poor little rich girl”, overdose, Ciao Manhattan, Beauty #2, horses, leotards, chandelier earrings, Factory Girl, 28, Fuzzy, amphetamines, Chelsea Hotel fire, Bob Dylan …

All this might inspire me to get back to writing short stories. Who knows.

Edie Sedgwick and Andy Warhol

Friday, 6 March 2009

Little Fluffy Clouds

Shoegazer Creative:

I finally broke the creative-block and made a new brooch last night. It's a sad little cloud...

Made of felt with raindrop-shaped glass beads. I plan to make more and stock them in the up-and-coming webshop :)

Thursday, 5 March 2009

Dead flies DO have a use...

Wow is all I can say. Check out these microscopic sculptures by Willard Wigan. The pieces have been hailed as the "eigth wonder of the world." A bulk, if not all, of the collection has been bought by tennis player and businessman David Lloyd (he of the gym chain) and insured for £11.2million. The sculptures fit in the eye of a needle or on the very tip of a pin - absolutely tiny. And apparently are painted with the hair from a dead fly (completely gross! lol)
Willard hails from Birmingham, England and was awarded an MBE for services to art in 2007. Apparently he has trained himself to work "between heartbeats" to avoid destroying the sculptures.
This is from Wikipedia:
Wigan uses a tiny surgical blade to carve microscopic figures out of gold, and fragments of grains of sand which are then mounted on pinheads. To paint his creations, he uses a hair plucked from a dead fly (the fly has to have died from natural causes, as he refuses to kill them for the sake of his art).

The Wizard of Oz in the eye of a needle

The Titanic on the point of a pin
The Obama Family in the eye of a needle
Dressage on a pin head


I am loving some of the stuff in Plumo's spring collection! Especially the Toadstool Tea Set :D I have ordered the jar and the salt & pepper pots - can't wait for them to arrive!
I also love their cake stands made from vintage plates... and lots of other stuff. Check out their website if you are after some nice homeware and accessories.

Salt & Pepper pots set: £15 / Mushroom Pot: £18 / Cake stand: £39.95 / Sugar Shaker: £18

Biscuit plate £24 / Two-tier cake stand £49

Tuesday, 3 March 2009

Art Inspiration. Part 1.

Last Friday, after the train journey hell I went through on Thursday to get to see The Cure (who were, as always, utterly magnificent) in the soulless, corporate, cloakroomless hangar that is the O2, I had a rather relaxing day up in London with my boyfriend.

We decided to go for lunch on the South Bank and ended up walking up the river from Waterloo to London Bridge, popping in to the Tate Modern as we passed by. We wondered around the gallery for a while and became mentally scarred by a piece of explicit video art in the process (seriously, if you are planning on going to the Tate, avoid a video installation called Taboo… It.Was.Disturbing o_O).

Up in the Material Gestures room I came across three pieces of art, by three different artists that really caught my attention and even prompted the ex-art-student in me to whip out my notebook and scribble down some information and thoughts. These three pieces of art were all next to each other on the same wall – the grouping was so good – and inspired me through their inclusion of mixed media – college, magazine pages, beads, gems, glitter, acrylic, stacked paper… all stuff I love working with.

The first of these artists is Raqib Shaw (b.1974, India). His portrait entitled Jane takes the work of Hans Holbein the Younger - one of the most well known portrait artists of the Tudor period - and quite literally rips its guts out.

Above: Jane - Raqib Shaw. 2006.

Above: Jane Seymour - Hans Holbein. 1536/37.

Raqib’s Jane depicts Holbein’s Jane Seymour with her chest ripped open and several truly grotesque alien-like creatures bursting forth and cluttering the air above her. Her face has also been replaced by that of a piranha-esque beast. Fetching, no? But it is the gore’s juxtaposition with the hundreds and hundreds of beautiful, sparkling gems used to adorn the figure’s dress which really made the piece stand out to me. No photo could ever do the piece justice as you can’t see how intricate and vibrant the glitter and jewels really are. I got right up close to the piece and was so busy looking at the detail of the dress that I didn’t even notice the gruesome creatures for a while.
Back home I discovered that Raqib Shaw has done a whole range of Holbein-inspired portraits in this style as Holbein was the first Western painter Raqib came across when he arrived in London, aged 16.
Others from the series:

Top: Henry VIII - Raqib Shaw.
Above: Lady with Squirrel and Starling- Raqib Shaw.

Sorry that this has turned into a mini art essay! It’s not often I feel inspired to blog about “real art”, but I do think this piece, and the two others I have yet to blog about can inspire my own multimedia canvases in the future – and hopefully yours too! Who knows!

(images from and wikipedia - not meant to infringe copyright)

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