off-loading

Standard
off-loading

I just realised how long it’s actually been since i’ve blogged. I am  known for my fads  and famous for starting something but never finishing. I like to think it as a condition called ‘toomanyideasnotenoughtime-itis’, so before i start with blogging  for the new year I’d like to
offload my project highlights from the last year. At the same time clear some memory space on my phone 🙂

Here’s the first window for H &G and features the doily chandelier, which i still love and really would love to make again. I think it be gorgeous to decorate a wedding reception with some of these hanging over every table . maybe
even dye the doilys.

This chandelier still get the most ‘hits’ on my blog from and all over the world, like really random countries i barely know never mind
tell you where they are. Yet we all love a paper doily 😉

image

image

image

then came the motorbike window, watching the recent tv series ‘Mr Selfridge’,i smiled to myself when one of the characters said ‘you mean to tell me you would put a real motorbike in the window? oh  my, how marvellous’

image

After this there were a couple of windows I never blogged about. I was always just doing the windows for fun, never thinking it could lead anywhere else so the pics are rubbish but I’ll share them anyway

Sewing workshops

image

I made this sign by cutting letters from foam and covering with layers of fabrics using the trusty old glue gun. I also made meters and meters of bunting for this window. Although It is a little ironic that for a window promoting sewing classes i used a glue gun for everything 🙂

image

image

image

No tricks just treats

Aside from the wedding window this is the other one that took the longest to prepare for, lots of late nights painting & eating sweets ( purely for research of course ) but through this window i got approached to do my first freelance job so every cloud had a sweetie flavoured lining 🙂 i will share photos of this freelance job one the whole project is complete

image

image

plain& simple

Again this is another window that I never got round to blogging!  bad me!! i love the concept behind this company, where all tshirts are all ethically produced and just simply just have very cool designs. http://plain&simple.org

image

image

Fabricyard

Terrible pictures that unfortunately don’t do this window any justice, not because of my merchandising but because the fabrics are amazing. Very ‘Get Cutie’

image

I used several small pieces of fabric pinned into shape to make the dress, i wish i had the skills to make it properly 🙂 here’s bit of close up, sorry if it hurts your eyes, lol

image

if you find yourself ever looking for fabric please check this local business out. http://thefabricyard.co.uk

Christmas

the most wonderful time of the  year! need i say any more really

image

image

Hubby and friends go out for a big breakfast on Christmas eve morning in the most seasonal jumper they can find. hubby didn’t have one so i made this 🙂

image

& then some Christmas crafts

image

image

image

image

the current hope &  gloria window

image

image

<img

Advertisements
Aside

“This is the very reason why you were brought into Narnia, that by knowing me here for a little, you may know me better there”

You may have been just freshly bathed, tucked up snugly into your bed when you first read of the Pevensie’s adventures in Land of Spare’ oom. Or maybe as a child of the 80’s  many cold lazy Sunday afternoons were enjoyed laying by a blazing fire watching the now ‘Vintage’ BBC Tv series. Or perhaps its wasn’t until Disney took on mighty challenge of bringing the Chronicles of Narnia to the big screen, that for the first time when no one was watching you walking into your wardrobe with the slightest glimmer of hope that you too would not be able to find the back.

No matter how you have come across The Chronicles of Narnia, there are several iconic pictures and quotes that are instantaneously recognisable with the story of ‘The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe”. It was these images that I wanted to bring together for the Christmas window of Hope & Gloria, Anyone who has visited Hope & Gloria may have probably noticed a rather lovely wardrobe full of vintage fur coats and when I first saw it I was instantly reminded of that scene where Lucy Pevensie enters the wardrobe during a game of hide and seek only to discover the land that is hidden behind the fur coats.  (this is one of those magical iconic images I’m talking about)

One evening in September while doing another window display my mum called in. She seen the same wardrobe and said ‘isn’t that just like the one from Narnia’ so I knew it wasn’t just me. Since then I have been playing around with the idea of doing of a Narnia themed display, but I knew I wanted to save the idea till Christmas. I felt it was a subtle but pretty way of making Christmas shopping less commercial. Oh my goodness!! who knew windows displays could mean so much, lol.!!! Its fair to say I was ridiculously excited about doing display and the time came closer I was waking early with the excitement of it but with it I felt a real sense of pressure and responsibility to get it right.

For now I’m posting pics of the finished window, since going back to work life has got a lot busier. Even though i’m part time now and work 10 mins from home there still doesn’t seem to enough hours in the day but hopefully within the next few days I’ll post some pictures from behind the scenes.

Wardrobe pic

Leaving the land of spare oom

 

 

Mini Book tree

Mini book trees

 

 

 

 

Mr Tumnus

“Meanwhile,' said Mr Tumnus, 'it is winter in Narnia, and has been for ever so long, and we shall both catch cold if we stand here talking in the snow.Daughter of Eve from the far land of Spare Oom where eternal summer reigns around the bright city of War Drobe, how would it be if you came and had tea with me?”

“Meanwhile,’ said Mr Tumnus, ‘it is winter in Narnia, and has been for ever so long, and we shall both catch cold if we stand here talking in the snow.Daughter of Eve from the far land of Spare Oom where eternal summer reigns around the bright city of War Drobe, how would it be if you came and had tea with me?”

Her spell on Narnia has made it always winter but never Christmas!!

Her spell on Narnia has made it always winter but never Christmas!!

261421_227511747381880_2071981288_n

“It is dull, Son of Adam, to drink without eating,” said the Queen presently. “What would you like to eat?”
“Turkish Delight, please, your Majesty,” said Edmund

100_0238

 

 

 

100_0264

“Once a king or queen of Narnia, always a king or queen of Narnia.”

 

To the glistening eastern sea, I give you Queen Lucy the Valiant. To the great western woods, King Edmund the Just. To the radiant southern sun, Queen Susan the Gentle. And to the clear northern skies, I give you King Peter the Magnificent. Once a king or queen of Narnia, always a king or queen of Narnia. May your wisdom grace us until the stars rain down from the heavens.” To the glistening eastern sea, I give you Queen Lucy the Valiant. To the great western woods, King Edmund the Just. To the radiant southern sun, Queen Susan the Gentle. And to the clear northern skies, I give you King Peter the Magnificent. Once a king or queen of Narnia, always a king or queen of Narnia. May your wisdom grace us until the stars rain down from the heavens.”

100_0267

Since the whole window was themed around a book why not theme our tree from books 🙂

381580_227690320697356_405675337_n

 

 

 

“It isn’t Narnia, you know,” sobbed Lucy. “It’s you. We shan’t meet you there. And how can we live, never meeting you?”
“But you shall meet me, dear one,” said Aslan.
“Are -are you there too, Sir?” said Edmund.
“I am,” said Aslan. “But there I have another name. You must learn to know me by that name. This was the very reason why you were brought to Narnia, that by knowing me here for a little, you may know me better there.” 
― C.S Lewis

Aslan is on the move

Virtually there!

Standard

A few weeks ago I posted on my Facebook that I would loooooooovvvvve a day trip to London. Unfortunately as of yet a plane ticket hasn’t magically arrived in the post (or I suppose it would be an e-ticket in my inbox). So I Thought I’d take us all on a little virtual tour to see what is happening ‘cross the water 🙂

Harrods

I ‘liked’ Harrods Facebook page a few weeks ago and instantly fell in love with their Disney Princess Christmas Windows!! Imagine all the Disney Princesses were attending the Oscars this would answer the question “Who are you wearing???”

Image

Cinderella In Versace

Image

Jasmine in Escada

Image

Pocahontas in Roberto Cavalli

Image

Tiana in Ralph & Russo

Image

Sleeping Beauty By Elie Saab

Image

Belle in Valentino

Image

Mulan in Missoni

Image

Snow White in Oscar de la Renta

Ariel in Marchesa

Who was your favourite when you were little? I loved Beauty and the beast and I still know all the words to The Little Mermaid. If you want to see more of the windows and the designers sketches click here

SELFRIDGES

ImageImageImageImageImageImageImage

PAPERCHASE

ImageImage

LIBERTY LONDON

ImageImageImageImageImageImage

BANANA REPUBLIC

Image

HARVEY NICHOLLS

ImageImageImageImage

Merry Oriental Christmas

COVENT GARDENS

Image

Image


Hope you enjoyed these as much as I did and may your days be merry & bright xx

My unexpected alphabet game

Standard

image

The alphabet game has made an unexpected return to my nights! It really has been a long long time since I’ve had to play it. Let me explain……

The alphabet game is my version of counting sheep 🙂 it is literally one of the most boring games in the world, it even bores me to tell you about. I like to use it though to distract myself from whatever is keeping me awake that night, I just pick a topic, start at the letter A working my way through every letter to Z, and its works as I’m normally fast asleep by J, lol. My favourite topic is names, as its so easy but a little word of advice from me to you is never pick fruit as you’ll be up all night.

You see the fact that i’m having trouble sleeping again is really exciting for me (not so much for Mr H when I am super grumpy the next day). Since I’ve started doing the H&G windows I have re-found all the passion I once had for all things creative.

Like any new parent knows my days are currently filled with entertaining a highly active and extremely inquisitive 8 month old baby, on top of that add the bottomless baskets of washing and constant dirty dishes, I only just manage to think ahead to the next meal. Different story though once my head hits the pillow, instead off passing out like I want to my mind becomes so overflooded with ideas and designs I feel like my head will explode.

You might wander why this is exciting to be, but it recently dawned on me that for the last few years I’ve going about day to day on auto-pilot. Getting up, going to work, coming home,making dinner then heading to bed. My days were so uninspired and quite often so unnessarily stressful that I had no problem switching to sleep mode and sleeping like a log.
So while I am seriously suffering from lack of a full nights, I am so much more enjoying feeling like the old me again. (dare I say it but I even feel like a much better version of that girl too)

So the decision has been made that I am not going to be returning to my old job and while I really will miss my old team mates, I will not miss the long long days , the hours  driving around the country and the weeks spent away from family and friends. It seems as though one door has shut but many many more are opening up. I have a tattoo on my foot saying “Proverbs 3v6” ( look it up )  When I was designing it I always knew that it would be significant to my life and I would never regret having it. Especially at times like this when I really believe its time to follow the path that has been so clearly laid before me.

Its getting kinda late now and I’ve a feeling Eden has another little tooth coming through and will be up shortly, so that’s really all for now except to say…..
A- Alice
B- Barbara
C- Clare
D- zzzzzzzzz

😉

No Tricks, Just treats

Standard

This little blog has jumped up the queue a little, as there is a special treat day planned in Hope & Gloria to run alongside this window design. If your around Coleraine tomorrow Sat 27th or just fancy a little trip to the North Coast please call in, there is live music all day, 20% off all stock  and lots of treats for everyone, seriously there is no trick 🙂

When we were planning themes for the window it was never our intention to do a window around Halloween, that was until I seen a cute little pic of a jar of sweets with ‘No tricks, just treats’ on the label and I thought this would make a great theme to base a window on. At this time of year I thought it would be a good idea that our window was really bright, colourful and cheerful especially as nearly every other shop has really dark and eerie displays. Everyone who knows me well knows that I am all about the Christmas, so for me Halloween is really just a time to start the countdown to Christmas. Also the fact that I am a total wuss plays a major part in why I don’t like this time of year, especially after a rather traumatic experience at the cinema last year watching paranormal activity 3where I was so scared I thought I was going to end up going into labour early.

So before you read on I would strongly advise you to stock up on some sweets, just like we did, although it was purely for research purposes of course 🙂

I need to thank my new best friend at the dump, who has kept aside loads polystyrene for me so I could make these lollipops

Here is my little sweetie lending a very helpful hand, he definitely has his uses. I only like to think I am a perfectionist but really don’t have the patience, whereas Steve is a total perfectionist, you wouldn’t believe the lengths he went to make sure these Lollipops were perfectly symmetrical.

 

I made this ‘candy curtain’ with my trusty nylon thread and glue gun. How good would this be in your house instead of actual curtains, imagine any time you need a little sugar fix you could go up to it and have a little lick. When making it I used Lovehearts, rainbow drops and some other yummy gummy sweets and used the ‘one for you one for me method’.

Here are the finished results

Well-a well-a well-a, uh!!!!

Standard

This is just a little short but sweet post 🙂 I promise

So summer has been (did it really tho) and gone, and it was time for a quick change in the Hope & Gloria windows. What I love about the window I’m about to show you is that it was totally unplanned, Georgina and I knew what we were doing for one part but we were totally winging it for the rest. I love nights like these. I mean what could be better than great conversation and dressing life sized dolls, lol.

First I’ll show you the part that was planned because the story behind it is so lovely. When I took these pictures I had no intention of showing them to anyone, never mind sticking them on the internet for all to see, so I’m sorry for the crappy quality and annoying reflections.

I can’t do the story justice so you’ll have to click here and scroll down a little bit for the whole story. Please please do, it is so worth the read and you get to have a little peak at more stunning (professional) pictures.

When it came to the rest of the displays we just had fun playing around with different looks using all the fab stock that was surrounding us. Once we had all the dummies dressed, we stood back and I’m not sure who said it but the words “wouldn’t it be amazing if we had a vintage motorbike to go in there” were spoken. So here we have it, Hope and Gloria your wish is my command. With a huuuuugggggeee thanks to the guys at Motoplus Kawasaki who very generously lent us this little beauty for two weeks, (they were even willing to lend us a brand new bike worth over £8000, eeeeeek, but there was just too much could’ve gone wrong)

Again sorry for the rubbish pics, I am working on persuading a budding photographer to help me out.

Altogether now!!!

Summer lovin’ had me a blast, Summer lovin’ happened so fast, Met a girl crazy for me, met a boy cute as can be,Summer days drftin’ away, to ah those summer nights.

I think Danny and Sandy should’ve rode into the sunset on something like this rather than the flying car, I never did get why that happened.

Perfect End to a perfect summer ❤

 

Oh and one last thing check out this video of the beautiful Georgina by the hugely talented Samuel Steele of [Missing]Piece Films, the North Coast has so many talented people

Doily Delights

Standard
Doily Delights

Note to  Martha Stewart.com:  Spent so long drooling over your stuff you owe me a new laptop.

Ok, its time for me to confess. I am just ever so slightly addicted to pinterest!!! I absolutely love seeing pictures of all the creativeness going on in the world. My pinterest page is full of pins about weddings, partys, room/set dressing, table settings, etc. Seeing people take the special events in their lives and the extras touches they add to make it that little bit more special. I am constantly pinning things to my board thinking “ooohhh if I was doing a party I could do that” or “that would be amazing at someones wedding”. I  just need that someone to let me, lol. Don’t even get me started on Christmas 🙂 I guess this is why I love window dressing, I look at each one as a mini event and love adding my own touches.

In the short space of time it has been opened Hope & Gloria have been donated a number of wedding dresses.  So while the sun was shining and wedding season was in full swing, we wanted to dedicate the windows to a wedding theme. I headed straight to my laptop and delved into Pinterest, google and instagram for some inspiration. It wasn’t long before I came across MarthaStewartwedding.com, what she doesn’t know about what to do with a glue-gun and a bit of ribbon isn’t worth knowing. I knew I was looking for something that would have a great impact, but would also look delicate, like a wedding dress, however the greatest challenge was going to be the budget. For those of you that don’t know Hope & Gloria is a not for profit store so all money made goes directly to the charities it supports, so I was very aware that  I would have to be able to design a display for next to nothing.

Since the Royal wedding last year I think its fair to say that we are all partial to bit of lace.  I also don’t think anything says wedding more than lace.  After a bit more digging around online I found an amazing  image of a chandelier made of paper doilies – Perfect!!! Looks like lace and cheap 🙂 Cue that little voice again saying ” Oooooh I could make that”. So one trip to Poundland and B&Q later I was armed with 210 paper doilies, pva glue, wire and nylon thread. As per usual one thing leads to another as you will soon see. Hope you enjoy the pics xxx

Doily delights

First steps to the chandelier

How I made the chandelier:

The doilies I used were approx 5″ , each one was folded into quarters and stuck along the join so that it formed a cone shape. Once they were all done the next step was to make the top of the chandelier. I made this by shaping 3 different sized rings out of thick wire to fit inside each other, and joined them with yet more wire, my pliers got a good bashing, as did the plasters.lol.  Once all the basics were done, the fun really started.

Each doily had to be delicately threaded onto a string of nylon thread, I started with the inner circle and and the longest strings working my way to the outer circle with shorter strings. Each string has about 6 doilies on it all hung at alternate heights, in the pictures above you should be able to see the process of the chandelier filling out. As you can hopefully tell  it took quite a long time to make this chandelier and A LOT of patience, there are many things in life I don’t have patience for but when it comes to things like this I find really therapeutic.

Vintage Wedding Theme

So here it is in the window, to be honest if I had of had more time I would love to have made a couple more chandeliers but I do think this works as we really just wanted to keep it simple but pretty 🙂

Smile for your close up! 😉

As if the chandelier wasn’t enough to be getting on with I decided to go one step further, as usual, lol.  There were also the other windows to prepare for, I knew for continuity purposes I wanted to keep the doily theme but I wanted to use them differently.  So back to the inspiration-station I went, lol. I wanted the two smaller windows to be more colourful and since hydrangeas are one of my favourite flowers where better to start.  I played around for awhile with the doilies and  by complete accident I got them to look like a flower, I’m not so sure I would remember how to do it now, lol.

So here we go, Vintage Wedding Window Part deux

I started off by dying all of the doilies blue, green and pink using food colouring, as you can see I also dyed my hands too, think it took 2 days for it to come off. (My nails are nail wraps and amazingly stayed put  – priorities. lol) This was quite difficult to do and has to be in small batches as once the doilies were soaked they tore really easily, which was not theraputic at all. When they were all dyed and dried, I cut each one into a swirl and folded it to what eventually looked like a rose 🙂   Out came the trusty nylon thread again and Voilà!

Few little interesting things about this window!

Sad story comes with the dress, that the bride never got to wear it 😦

In the frame is a wedding certifate over a hundred years old

Its all in the little details

Just want to finish off with this little gem

My Mum and Dad ❤