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Sunday, 29 August 2010

I've done it!

I know that for many people working with Photoshop can be simple - but I'm not one of them. It's taken me hours of trying to get my new banner ready. I'd downloaded fonts and couldn't find them using Elements. I then realized that I had to re-boot to have them on my font list, but I didn't twig till much later and gnashing of teeth (slight exaggeration there).

I used one of my paintings as background but changing from portrait to landscape stretched it beyond recognition. So I turned it on its side and cropped it.

So it's up and I'm pleased with the result.

Friday, 27 August 2010

It's Late

This morning I started to create my own banner for this blog - but got side-tracked and have been out till this evening. I had some TV programmes that I wanted to see first so haven't done much with Photoshop.

And tomorrow my youngest daughter, Julia, is arriving from Florence for a week with her partner and little Edoardo who is 5. So not sure when I'll get a chance, but soon I hope!

Thursday, 26 August 2010

Papier Mache

Today I had a great play-day with my dear friend Lolly who showed me how to make a doll properly in papier mache!! So I have the frame and will make the face and shoes, and will finish with fabric and maybe a bit of knitting. So watch this space hehe!

Wednesday, 25 August 2010

Lost Bird Studio

I came upon this beautiful blog and thought you might like it too. Marie has photos taken in 'Nesting' in Maine which are really fantastic. With all the mouth-watering pale colours which are so fashionable just now - makes me want to pay a visit but I'm in Scotland!

Tuesday, 24 August 2010


I'm so frazzled having spent literally hours trying to get my printers to print pictures. Oh everything was messed up. How can that happen? Faded colours, horizontal banding, bits missing - and even the text was hardly visible, not to mention the bleeding -- oh rats!

I even changed all the ink cartridges but have probably used up half already with all the nozzle checks etc. and head cleaning - I hate it when I'm beaten by machines! Will have another go tomorrow.....

Monday, 23 August 2010

What a result!

I'm trying to de-clutter and thought it'd be a good idea to start on my non-fiction books. I had a look at ebay but having to scan the covers etc. was going to take too long.

So I went to Amazon and became a marketplace seller. As long as the book is listed on Amazon, it's OK to sell it used. Listed seven books and within 45 minutes I'd sold one. I looked at that email thinking it must be something to do with the listing - but it was a sale. Can you believe that? I know that they have millions of hits but ..... and the buyer lives not very far from me!

Sunday, 22 August 2010

Ipod/Iphone padded sleeves

I've been creating a new line and have the first two ready and listed on Pavlova on Folksy - these have vintage style images which are guaranteed colour fast and the sleeves can be washed on a delicate setting.I've padded them with wool felt and they're cosy! The toddler's sleeve is delicate hand-dyed pink muslin, and the lady is on cafe-au-lait muslin.

I've added my usual bits of lace and beads - I just can't sew anything without!!

Friday, 20 August 2010

This book is not for me!

I got this book yesterday from amazon and the reviews were really great and probably helped to make up my mind.

I do like illustrated books and love Nick Bantock, but this book Sometimes I Think, Sometimes I Am by Sara Fanelli just left me disappointed and I didn't even look at more than a few pages. So it's going back today!

Thursday, 19 August 2010

Another Leo in the Family

Here's my gorgeous grandson Max on his 18th - these rocket candles are fab! We've had quite a few occasions recently when the champagne corks popped. And September looks like the same!

And my beautiful grand-daughter Alice all suntanned literally just back from Spain .

Wednesday, 18 August 2010

Painted Insights - Victoria Crowe

Today I went to see an exhibition by Victoria Crowe at the Scottish Gallery - it was inspiring and exciting. She paints exquisitely with such delicacy and almost mysterious treatment - she lives in Venice 3 months of the year and you can see the influence of the Renaissance art coming to life in her work.

Seemingly, at the preview people were jostling each other and rushing to buy her paintings and in fact most of the exhibition is already sold. She really is a phenomenon. I was chuffed to have her dedicate my exhibition book.

Tuesday, 17 August 2010

How many cookbooks can one need?

I'm in the middle of a huge revolution in my house - tidying the cupboards and the wardrobe shelves (as soon as I get something out of there it's a mess again sigh!) and trying to be ruthless with my de-stashing. BUT when it came to the kitchen I just couldn't give even one cookbook away and I'm almost embarrassed to say that I have 76 cookbooks. My latest one is marinades for BBQ although with the Scottish weather we haven't done more than 2 or 3 this year. But I think it would still work with grilled food.

I do occasionally try a new recipe, that's so enjoyable - but, glass of wine in hand, often I thumb through and lose all sense of time and so end up starving, and cook something that takes the least time.

My favourite cuisine is of course Italian, but I also like Indian and Moroccan.

Saturday, 14 August 2010

Vintage dolls and dresser

I feel so satisfied, my dresser is now blue!! The whole room has come to life with the pastel blue furniture and at night with the lamps on, it's just so relaxing.

Here are the before and after shots, and a few of my vintage dolls have put in an appearance. The littlest one is Edwardian and about 100 years old, shows that it was loved - still wearing its original clothes and with a grubby face which I haven't tried to clean in case I damage it.

Wednesday, 11 August 2010

How could I resist?

I was all set to finish painting today when my daughter Angela phoned to see if I wanted to go to Ikea. Hah! As if I could resist that!

But all I bought were paper napkins and wine glasses - but Angela was worse than me, she bought batteries!! I would have taken an orchid but they didn't have the colour I wanted.

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

Apartment Therapy

I came across this book from another blog but can't now remember where, sorry!
I'm always on the lookout for ways to cut down realistically on clutter (with my art supplies) and revamp even the tiniest space.

With surprising ease and without elaborate professional help, Apartment Therapy will help you clear a path through disorder and indecision - to reveal a home you'll love.

So as soon as I've finished my furniture painting, I'm going to make a start, in fact, I've really already started because I moved all my vintage dolls to another room!

Monday, 9 August 2010

Fashionable Tote on Facebook

If you're in the mood for a new tote to make you feel more trendy, have a look at the one I just listed on Facebook - you get two for the price of one because it's reversible!!

Contemporary Painting THE HARVEST

I was going to keep this painting for myself but decided on a whim to list it on Folksy ArtBazaar, and at a very reasonable price.

I love the colours and the semi-abstract feel it has. What do you think??

Sunday, 8 August 2010

Edinburgh International Festival

Well the city's bursting at the seams - thousands of visitors and even more to see than last year. Loads of specials offers like 2 for 1.

I'm going to see some street theatre this afternoon and will take some photos. Nice warm weather today!

Friday, 6 August 2010

My blue mantelpiece

Well funnily enough after painting my mantelpiece with the same paint as the table - it dried too dark. So I had to then give it another coat of very pale blue paint which I had left over from something else. And now I like it.

I've had a passion for any shade of green for years and I was able to display my green ornaments together on that lovely pale blue. The peacock feathers I picked up from the villa I worked in for the European University Institute in Florence where we had peacocks strolling about - beautiful but very noisy!

Now that I'm changing the look of my lounge, I've started thinking about moving the furniture around - I don't know what's happening but I really am in the mood for pastures new but without moving house, just moving things in it hehe!

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

Blue Furniture

Here's my table that I painted with a white undercoat and two coats of duck egg blue. I'm not going to put everything back on it because I need a kind of minimalist effect.

Now the next piece is an antique dresser and I can't wait till my room is transformed with paint. I also have a beautiful fireplace with a georgian wood surround which will also be painted. I remember a friend of mine being aghast at me wanting to paint it, like it was sacrilege. But I'm going to do it because it makes me happy.

Monday, 2 August 2010

Necessary Repairs

I've had this wooden couch for years and I love it. Imagine my horror to discover that all the dovetail joints had sprung open and it's all wobbly. I really thought that it wasn't fixable and all the beautiful cushions with irises would have to find a new home.

But a dear friend put me in touch with a cabinet maker who is coming this a.m. to fix it by using a super strong glue. Happy person here!!