Printing in Woodlands, A botanical journey, POP UP EXHIBITION

FREE POP UP EXHIBITION :

23rd November 11am to 4.30 pm

Woodlands Workspace – 66 Ashley Street – Glasgow G3

We will steam bundles  (20 on first come first serve) and show Eco Printing work realised by Artist Elisabeth Viguie Culshaw and novice participants.

PRINTING IN WOODLANDS – THE PROJECT

In the summer of 2019 I eco-printed in the Woodlands Community garden with Betty the gardener and … together, every Wednesday afternoon we welcomed visitors.  Some from the local area and some from far afield… they  helped us creating beautiful prints. We used Botanical material gathered in the garden and some recycled material from my various workshops or donated by Amadeus Guest House a local bed and breakfast with a very generous owner.

We worked in the open air, sometimes under the rain and sometimes under the glorious sun, we just made prints, no agenda but just to adapt to the material I had available from the previous week end workshop. This has been a voluntary project and I have no budget for it. It is always a challenge to create something beautiful when you know your technique inside out. But it becomes a real challenge when every week you work with different material, dyes, mordants… leaves and flowers and complete novices… but still we made prints… beautiful prints… we became more and more confident and visitors kept on coming.

Vicky and Jerry who run the garden for the Woodlands community trust tolerated the project to start with a gentle smile but gradually as I became part of the garden  they welcomed me with a bigger and bigger smile, assuming something beautiful would be achieved by the end of the afternoon…

Heather one of the volunteer searched her back room and her attic for “stuff” to donate to the project, one day a pack of tiles, one day a lovely aluminium kettle which has become one of my favourite container to eco print in small bundles…. a donated baby’s blanket became a stunning Logwood blanket creating our “triptych” piece and some 20 + years old envelopes were simmered in Logwood to create beautiful prints of the Aquilegia plant which always gives a stunning orange imprint….

My daughter and her boyfriend when visiting from Germany came to print him a sleeping bag bedlinen for his trip to the Highlands. On the last day we had the visit of a long term Instagram follower who could not contain her joy when we opened our bundle… Her smile is forever in my memory as a souvenir of a fun day in the garden.

Printing in Woodlands is one of the best experience I have ever had with Eco Printing and it beats by far any organised workshop. It has been a spontaneous, generous, challenging and so very rewarding experience. My creativity and technical knowledge have been pushed to the limit. How to make something outstanding with NOTHING ! has become my forte… If I can make it work standing under the rain with the wind blowing my leaves out of the way and the fire refusing the catch on… I can make it happen everywhere.

My participants have made me work with some seriously weird material out of necessity, like the painter’s heavy cotton canvas… or the cloth I have been carrying in the boot of my car for an odd 20 years which is now holding one of our best prints… I have used onion skins, Logwood, Sapanwood, Heather, St Johns’ wort and so on as dye and some rain water for water. I have dipped my hands in icy cold tub of water to wet my cloth and carried my very large size catering Aluminium pot every week  to the garden in a huge Ikea bag… so much that the neighbour smile when I was past… They all know where I am heading for…Off course I could have driven there but its not very environment friendly and you cant park there anyway… I have made friends with the gardeners and the volunteers… I have my favourite trees and bushes I pick up leaves from on the way. Like a Botanical map of the West end…

I love the colourful tiled bbq in the garden where my pot stands… its right in the middle of the garden and from there, wherever you look its all green and lush, with to the left those huge lush artichoke leaves … the ones from the banner in the photo. Huge purple flowers a bit like thistle just not quite. There we stand chatting away while the pot steams the bundles waiting to see what magic is going to come out of it. That pot never failed to please our sense of smell (yes simmering leaves have a delightful smell) and off course the delightful prints which emerge during the “Big Reveal” are a total pleasure to the eye. I am rejoicing every-time with the OHHH and AHHH and OMG look at this:)

So no wonder I want to share with you all we made…The Garden printed through the 6 months of our project … every single of our afternoon from the fuzzy prints of our debut to the very successful Triptych.

If you could not make it to our Wednesday afternoon sessions do not worry… we will be back in the garden next Spring from May 2020 onwards hoping we can meet you there and take up where we stopped. New leaves… New prints… We will go through the greens and the reds till the leaves turn red again… I just cant wait to be back but in the meantime… please come and marvel !

Pop up exhibition :

23rd November 2019 between 11 and 4.30 pm   – Woodlands workspace 66 Ashley Street Glasgow G3

29th February and 1st of March 2020 between 11 and 4.30 – Glasgow Botanical Gardens (Kibble Palace). We will put some bundles on, We will show the peace cloth and some hand made books by Cassandra Barron, we will run simple bookbinding demo and some cyanotype demo.

Both exhibitions are FREE and Eco friendly…. If you want to donate any material to our project please bring it along (PS we only take natural fibres and paper).

Cant wait to meet you…

With Love

Betty xxx

 

The Fashion Revolution meets Eco Printing ! Farcap Fashion in my Glasgow Studio

This week was just super, I was teaching Eco Printing to 4 individuals well connected with The Fashion Revolution…. AZADI FASHION visited me and The story is …

Sometimes you know that you meet someone who will be present in your life for a long time and will make a difference. Barbara Denker, Head of Fashion School of Nuremberg came into my life a couple of years ago when I was running The Big Banner Project during the Mackintosh Festival. Her Fashion students wanted to take part and learn all about Mackintosh stencilling. We got on really well and the rest is History.  Since then we speak from time to time and we have been involved in several projects. I was invited when her students presented the most superb fashion items in a fashion show at Kelvingrove during the Mackintosh year…. So I was not surprised when she came to ask me to organise an Eco Printing workshop for some participants who were involved in a Dye garden and had just won an award about sustainability for a clothing project…

Barbara, Judith, Rainer and Elke arrived a couple of days ago in my studio to spend two days learning all about using Natural dyes and Eco Printing… they were textile based and beginners. We had a ball, they learned a lot and made beautiful pieces… they asked a trillion questions about dyes, mordant, more mordant, about prints, leaves, blankets, cloth, and so on… and they told me about their project…

It all started with a young Indian girl visiting Elke in Germany talking about a AZADI a NGO in India, a safe place where young girls who had been involved in trafficking learned a new textile skill and could work safely, get a new future.  Elke like a lot of us had heard about the terrible tragedy of “The Plaza” in Bangladesh and saw a great way to work in cooperation with skilled and deserving workers who needed to earn a reasonable wage by producing great garments. Farcap was born as a Social Enterprise and has been growing from strength to strength…    Every year a collection is designed, and the workers of project AZADI make them in an ethical way, earning a good wage, a wage that allows them to have a good life and be safe.

They make the clothes and Elke’s company sell them… So what is Barbara doing in there… well we all need a good designer for a great collection and Barbara is Head of Fashion in the Textile college in Nuremberg. The cooperation goes further and further when you include young students in fashion to design Fair Trade Fashion no? No Fast Fashion there…

How exciting for me was it to be asked to teach Eco Printing to a Head of Fashion, to one of the Textile experts in Nuremberg and to two Fair Trade entrepreneurs all of them involved in this Award Winning project… I truly believe in the Fashion Revolution and have been so for many years now. I feel so blessed to be able to add a little bit to this project and I had such a great time working with those four individuals with such great drive and passion.

So they learned all about cloth, mordants, dyes, leaves, blankets, colour fastness etc… we made many tests… in between we had coffee and kept warm by my cosy fire as the weather in Glasgow is now truly Autumnal. We achieved a lot and I learned a lot about how to run a small social enterprise… this is my one little step towards getting closer to The Fashion Revolution.

I have not yet made your clothes but I may have taught something useful to someone who will be involved in making them…

Oh did I not say? We recycled some cotton from my local bed and breakfast during the workshop and my visitors stayed the night in that very place… My world is a Village and I love it. Everyone is so very interconnected !

Love

Betty xx

PS : Barbara left me her travel bottle so she will be back for sure… I wonder who she will bring me next time… I cant wait to find out !

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Open studios – Up cycle your old jeans in our studios

Everyone has some pairs of jeans in their wardrobe… those that you cant quite throw away but don’t want to wear anymore…

Cassandra Barron from Bookbinding with Cass and me .. The Lansdowne House we have decided to welcome you in our studios this winter… We want to share our  amazing creative spaces with you and recycle your old jeans in good looking books…

Open Studios -19th October – From Sashiko to Bookbinding book here for Glasgow workshop

Open Studios – 20th October – From Sashiko to Bookbinding Book here for the Edinburgh workshop

Open Studios – 16th November – From Boro to Bookbinding Book here for the Edinburgh workshop

Open Studios – 17th November – From Boro to Bookbinding Book here for the Glasgow workshop

Two different people than us two is difficult to find…

Me, French middle aged Eco Up-cycler in Glasgow, Christie’s trained and working her Art in an old Victorian kitchen in the West end of Glasgow she loves everything Art and walks about a bag on her shoulder and a pair of clippers in her hands in the search for the perfect leaf…

Her, British young and upcoming Bookbinder (with a deep love for recycling too) Art School trained housed in a trendy studio container in Leith, Edinburgh and walking around dragging a suitcase full of awls and curved needles … give her your old handbag she will make it into a book…

And Yet !!! the best pals for a few years now and running regularly the most amazing workshop as a duo, we Indigo dye and make a book, we eco print and make a book, we stencil and make a book and so on… many of those books can be found around, made with LOVE and our skills… I found one of them, Indigo dyed at the Glasgow Botanical garden workshop at the GSA degree show this year as a visitors book… and another one Eco Printed at the Bridgend Farm Eco Retreat found its way to the Eco Pavillion of the Kilt Show in Birmingham…

SO WE JUST HAD TO OFFER OUR COURSE FOLLOWERS SOMETHING REALLY EXCITING FOR THIS AUTUMN…

It went a bit like this…

“Cass what should we do this autumn… I would like to do something Blue?”

“Why don’t we recycle some jeans? Berenice said she has loads of jeans her boys have grown out of…”

“Cass do you think we should offer one workshop a month this time again?”

“Defo… load of folks enjoyed making three books for Christmas present… just imagine using your own old denims to make three trendy books for Christmas present… that would just be so …. ZERO WASTE !  CREATIVE ! UNIQUE ! ”

“What techniques ? You said blue”

“Well I am thinking Japanese type of thing… like some of this stitching I have been doing for fun … I mean like we could mend the holes using some of my Asia fabrics … Blue on Blue would be just beautiful… The good pieces we could print them … or stitch patterns on them… wait that’s three techniques…

Boro – Japanese visible mending

Sashiko – Pattern stitching

That sounds like a plan… where do you want to look for premises??? Wait how about we do them here? …. WHERE??? Here in our own studio… Ok I would have to tidy up a bit but your studio and my studio are just so very … Unique… what about we welcome people here in our studios and make books out of their old jeans…

And so was born the idea of our Winter special “Open Studio” workshop and we are so very excited about them …

So will you join us for this… we cant wait to do good work with you saving the world by Upcycling your old jeans and make gorgeous books in our workshops…

See you soon.

Betty xx

 

From Weeds and Rags !

JOIN ME FOR SOME FUN ! 

You can join me most Wednesday in the Woodlands Community gardens in Glasgow to help printing the garden through the seasons… this runs from 1pm to 4pm and is free, the work produced is kept for the project exhibition later this week. details here

I will run a full day workshop in the Woodlands workspace on the 15th of September where we will print some on the garden’s botanics and stitch what we print… if you want to join look here

I will run a full week end workshop in my lovely Glasgow West end studio in October in Eco Printing… details and booking here

I will be running a creative retreat week end in Edinburgh with the bookbinder Cassandra Barron on the 1/2nd of November we will produce beautiful work with recycled material and some botanical material… bookings are here

THE STORY :

Everyone who knows me will be aware of my passion for leaves, any leaves or botanical material sends me into deep meditation… I am well known for crossing a busy road at rush hour to pick up a couple of small leaves on the other side to print on a piece of paper/cloth. It is an addiction , but in this case something I am proud off. It connects me deeply with Nature and the real world.

I have never been much of a drawn but by printing this material onto surfaces I know they will produce the most delicate watercolour type impression. And I cant stop myself from testing on any possible surfaces 🙂 my worst possible surface so far a glazed mug and the best … my recent banner initiated in the community garden I work with this summer onto Painter’s cloth… a beautiful impression of the seasonal changes of the garden.

When it comes to selecting material I am quite choosy… it has to print well, be of good nature and be very very cheap… I just can not cope with wasting lenght of silk on testing colours at a beginners worshop. So I use recycled all the time… and if preferable if it has been donated to me by local bed and breakfast… and I invest in my own time at preparing it to give the best print.

I am an Eco Up cycler. Off course I love a beautifully printed raw silk scarf … but nothing pleases me more than seeing a beginner unrolling their first bundle and finding out about the magic of a print from the leaf they only picked up in the garden earlier.

I am a child of the 60’s and I first discovered the concept of pollution in the 70’s so the whole Climate Challenge/save the world thing is like the music on which I danced my adult life … and it makes me cringe to see the wastage in “creative material” all around me in the name of “hobby time” my participants always leave my workshop with harmful of achievements having learned a lot and recycled a lot … but before anything … it is beautiful!

I like working with communities and this summer I am running an EcoPrinting workshop in the Woodlands Community Gardens in Glasgow with the locals and it is so much fun … every Wednesday we print whatever the garden has to offer.  This is a typical Weeds and Rags work but it does not mean that the technic I use for it is Hap Hazard…

I like to be in control of the results I produce nothing happens by complete accident… that is what happens when you lack knowledge and don’t understand fully your skills. You play with it happy with whatever result you get. I prefer to know in advance that I can get a great result… for that reason I prep always all my workshops wether they are with a full fee paying group or a community group. I like the technique I use to be fully proof because I like participants to be able to understand what they do.

My love for Rags and Weeds comes from a deep sense of achievement when you produce great work out of your sheer determination to save the world 🙂 don’t you agree thats a great way to live your creative life?

Why don’t you join me one day to see how it works? my next dates are above.

Have a great recycling day…

Betty x

How Far does the Hand Reach – Global Botanical Collaboration

Each craft technique has its own community and very often in the past geographical areas have been instrumental in groups or sometimes even guild being thrown together with the aim of giving all members support, companionship, collaboration, training in practising their technique…. In past days one set of Eco Dyers gathered in a specific area to perfect one specific shade of blue, working with local plants and recipes… while on the other side of the world another group of the same Eco Dyers worked with local roots on a shade of red… and so regional specificities were born and local secrets were transferred from father to sons and remained geographically bound.

In my earlier life as an artist saw collaborations inter-frontiers happening to a greater extend through publications, exchanges, even sometimes funded by public bodies to increase knowledge and skills transfer. I once worked on European projects promoting such a great cause… making local knowledge available across borders, allowing great craftsmen and women talk to one another, exchange their know how and all gain in fraternity, skills, standard, sharing practises and knowledge…

And the Internet was born…. a true game changer, a page was turned and in what seems like a second… I was able to speak to my “sister” eco dyer in Norther Thailand and swap recipes with her on how best dye with Sapanwood. That was a generation ago… I am from the generation who saw this miracle happening… I am one of the ones who think the web has added such a quality in my life and has made the World my village… brought me a lot closer to those I share so many ideas with. So unlike many children of the 60’s I embraced it and got myself on as many Social Media sites as possible and joined pages, and groups to start the dialogue…  Finally after years trying to find local people with my passion it was here just next to me at “Hands reach”

I do really feel that the current young generation while benefiting from this somehow miracle does not quite grasp how HUGE it is and treat it in a casual way… They have no memories of writing REAL letters to their family when working abroad on their year off and having to wait about two weeks to get the answer. Everything is now so instant…

So when Maria Clarke contacted me to see if I would take part in her Global Project “How Far does the Hand Reach” it stroke a cord immediately… what 100 people sharing their Botanical signature all stitched in the same blanket? One cloth cut and sent away to destinations as far as the post can reach on the other side of the world being printed in local pots with the makers very own version of Eco Printing sounded just MAGICAL. Those cloths printed then would be returned to Maria who would lovingly stitch them in a big technicolor blanket… made of the colours of the world of Eco-printing.

So I made my squares, one of silk of my local Horse Chestnut leaf with a lovely Logwood blanket and a running stitch across the bottom of the panel, and a cotton one folded in my travel printing kettle just like what I like doing… both representing who I am, where I live and what I do…

They are below for you to admire 🙂

Many used their local leaves and local techniques, the result is like Joseph’s technicolor dreamcoat…

That was a huge undertake and for working in collaborations I can just imagine how many hours Maria put into this project, relentless communicating, coaxing, organising, answering, sharing all this while completing her own degree… because lets not forget that this project is part of Maria’s textile degree and not only she was giving her “sisters” a great deal for what we were sharing back with her… but she also had to come up with a very high standard and was being judged on it. I honestly hope that she is getting the top marks for what is an amazing project…

100 squares of the most beautiful silk were stitched together and form the most delightful cloth, representing all I was not able to see happening in my young years as an artist, GLOBAL COLLABORATION, like a magical ring around the world of creative and kind ladies sharing not only their designs but also their warmth, stories, worries, hopes, questions, exchanging and sharing their projects…

See the beautiful cloth here

And All because of one individual and Facebook … yes yes… the very Facebook which is getting so many criticism but brought a group of 100 ladies from around the world in this enormous ring of love and creativity

So the blanket is ready now and will be part of an exhibition in Norwich this coming few days… should you be in this area you should go and see it

Botanical Signatures

Textile Art Exhibition by Marie Clarke-Wilson and

100 other Botanical printers lovers from around the world

Studio 20, 20 Wensum Street

Norwich NR31HY

18 to 20th July between 10am and 4pm

I am hope to be able to host it in a local venue… I will keep you posted…

Have a great day… I am off to print some leaves in the garden.

Big Hugs.

Betty xx

Blue dye for the spinning ladies !

My next Indigo workshop week end is in Glasgow on the 7/8 September look Here for detail

I love passing on my passion for blue to whoever wants to learn to dye with Indigo. Over the past years I have spent many days teaching numerous participants to Indigo Shibori their cloth, or clothes when we were recycling… A few weeks back I was asked to help the ladies from the Bowland Guild of Weavers, Spinners and Dyers to dye the wool they spin, some of it is very special indeed. I was told they had acquired recently  a blend of bluefaced Leicester, tussah silk and yak. It was made for them as a very unique mix.

Indigo dye is a wonderful and ancient dye it comes from natural source, in fact its source plants with Indigofera tintoria in them and great to use on any fibres but on wool yarn it becomes specially alive. If you have any silk blended in your yarn it gives an extraordinary shine to this already stunning blue shade. The fact is protein fibres always takes natural dyes in a much more powerful way than cotton or linen. You could dye a number of samples in a pot of Indigo in the one bath and end up with a great range of blue shades… the darker being either your silk or wool the lighter probably linen. You should try it.

Bowland (Lancashire) is not just around the corner (actually it is about 163 miles from Glasgow… so not so easy to travel too with a whole car full of blue making stuff… It so happens my husband has a great aunt who was due a visit… So off we went on Friday morning with the boot of my car full to the roof with Vats, hot plates, hangers, Indigo powder and blue spoons, etc… etc. It had to be so very special at this Saturday was the 10th anniversary of the guild. It would have been easy to forget about the anniversary if it was not for the scrumptious home baking the guild ladies had brought… and in some quantity. They are were a very welcoming group and the Hall we were working in was just so typically English and lovely with wooden floor and a courtyard where I set up my two vats to work outdoor…

So on the Saturday morning I arrived a bit early in front of the Gisburn Festival Hall (1 hours in advance actually). and just before 10, ladies and their spinning wheels arrived and the festivities began 🙂

30 ladies each holding a very strange bag … not with a bike but with a spinning wheel … for spinning … and eager to learn all there is to know with Indigo dye.

After a few hiccups related to electricity not arriving in my hot plate… about 12.40 the vat (a stainless steel vat) of Indigo is hot and ready to be used. Hip Hip Hurray… we have truly fantastic Blue Indigo in Good quantity… and more cakes 🙂

And it begins… despite planning for about 5 kgs of dyed wool and a little bit more… I am quite confident we dyed at least twice that… and did some Shibory and dyed items of closing….  There were so many different type of wools… I run regular workshops but usually as I supply the wool/cloth it is all very uniform… but this time it was magical how everything came together… but wool, fleece, cotton, etc… were dyed in some of the 75 litres of Indigo I had prepared.

A little treat for me… all the spinning done bare foot… by the ladies. And the interest they had in my Eco Printing… I was so surprised they wanted to also try… So we have planned to have another session next year for their 11th anniversary..

 

 

For me I have decided to join the Glasgow part of the WSD guild… I want a second shot at dyeing wool of all sort…

And My friend Maria Clarke has suggested to me to start preparing the Certificate of Achievement in Natural dyeing  with the Guilds… I might just…

Love

Betty xxx

Printing in Woodlands, a botanical journey

If you want to keep in touch with this project please check the FB page

In the Woodland’s area in the West end of Glasgow lies a community garden.
Little heaven of peace encased in the middle of Victorian architecture, it is where keen local gardeners, and others gather regularly to tend to their small patch (allotments). Green and lush it has been growing for a few years around the corner from my studio. The Botanics in it are varied and a reflect of the each gardener’s identity and their effort to make them grow. Seasonal trees mix with fruit and vegetable and leaves are abundant. There are hanging apples for the birds, a bug hotel, and many … many different type of fruit and vegetables.

Recording the gardeners’ journey, unleashing creativity based on the elements found in the garden, passing on my knowledge of Eco printing (printing the leaf with no “man made ink”, engaging on a journey to allow the gardeners and others to set on the page the beauty of their hard work and dedication, engaging with a local community group to allow them to see “converse” via the natural print medium… are some my reasons for approaching the group with a Botanical Print project.

Along the month we will record the seasons by printing the ever changing colours of leaves and plants onto paper and recycled cloth… hopefully with the help of everyone.

I am hopping to run a great workshop at the beginning of the autumn to engage the gardeners and the others with techniques all creative like, printing, drawing, stitching etc…

The late autumn production of a memory book based on printing/dyeing with Botanical on paper/cloth/recycled elements produced/collected locally. I want to leave this to flow organically to allow an input from the gardeners (and others).

I am hoping to have enough elements at the end of October to organise an exhibition of everyone’s work in the Working Space in November. Where we will be able to rejoice at whatever work we produced.

Involving and training one of the gardeners with the Eco Printing technique to create a link between the artist and the garden.. Betty, one of the volunteers would be my fav candidate… she took part in one of my workshops last september and was so good… Betty working with Betty can only produce a great miracle of work…

Please come and check regularly what we are up to.

Keep well… Love Betty xxx

Being a Textile Artist and an Eco Up-cycler in Scotland

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You tube video here ! Being a textile artist and Eco Upcycler in Scotland 

(credit for this video goes to Gemma Munro Media & Eve Christie)

I am a textile artist based in the West end of Glasgow, and I am an Eco Upcycler… I use local leaves and locally sourced natural dyes like Onion skin, Turmeric, St John’s wort. I recycle bed linen donated by my local bed and breakfast and Ephemera paper from the Oxfam bookshop… I share my knowledge with course participants, the public, school children… I just love my creative life…. If you would be interested to share my creativity via a class, please see the bottom of this blog post for detail on my new classes.

“I start the day with a walk in the park where I pick up my essential supplies (leaves) before returning to my studio where i find the essentials needed to create my art… via my local B & B where I will be given discarded bed linen to up-cycle… I love “remaking” and mixing old with new, gathering the elements of my creations from well loved objects”

 

My artistic practise finds its roots in a conflicts between Ecology and Industrial waste. Through my creations ephemeral botanical beauties gain an eternal lease of life and join forces with discarded objects to become desirable pieces.
My work find its sources in traditional well executed crafts techniques associated with witchcraft. Hot cauldrons, needles and thread and sand paper are side by side on my worktable.

 

In my personal work I am forcing a relationship and a personal narrative between nature and nurture.
My work takes place in the circular local economy, I remake discarded objects drawing on botanical witchery and industrial texture building. For those who want to learn my craft I have endless passion and skills to pass on… Bring me the children I will make them into creative men and women who treat the world in a kinder way and make Eco-recycling a way of Life.Glasgow 2019

 

 

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Eco Printing Week end retreat in Scotland – 25th, 26th May

I am very excited to be running an Eco Printing Week end creative Retreat on 25/26 May at the great Bridgend Farmhouse  in  Edinburgh with the gifted Edinburgh based Book binder Cassandra Barron from   Bookbinding with Cass   not only you will learn all about Eco Printing with  Elisabeth Viguie Culshaw both on cloth and paper (including recycled paper)… but you will also make make numerous prints on paper and cloth on the first day with leaves harvested around the Farmhouse building… but on day two Cassandra will take us through the magic of Informal Book Binding and we will make using some of our prints some journals and some hand stitched books,   f you would like to join Book here

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Eco Printing Week end in Glasgow – 13th, 14th July

I will be running a full week end of Eco Printing in my Glasgow West end based Studio on the 13th, 14th July, we will explore Eco Printing with Scottish leaves on a variety of cloth and paper, we will use natural dyes which can be sourced locally and a bit of Indigo. I usually  only take a small number of participants to allow complete interaction and i offer a home made lunch and fresh made coffee both days. You leave with a lot of prints and a beautifully printed scarf. This is quite a unique workshop… I will teach you how to prepare your material, which equipment to use and how to care for your prints…. If you want to join or more info look look here

I hope to meet you again to share with you my passion…

Have a great week end.

Betty xx

Up-cycle as a way of Life, from boxes to chairs, your loved objects need some TLC and you a new skill !

To book on one of my Up-cycling Furniture workshops see below for link ! I cant wait to meet you there … 

Spring is coming along and with it pink flowers on the Japanese trees and a new urge to declutter.… suddenly the windows are flying opened and dust start showing up in the lovely sun-rays … Do you ever feel you have all too much “stuff” around you and have the urge to take it all to the nearer charity shop… dump ??? Ready for some fresh, clean, crisp new items to replace the old ones….

Well I say stop right there ! … you could be making such a big mistake… how about up-cycling them ? giving objects who have fallen out of your Love… a new lease of life, I believe objects have a soul and they hate being discarded at the first ray of sunshine … they want to be given a chance to shine again, to be loved, to become again your fav box… your fav chair… and you could be doing just this.

Up-cycling, is one of these new buzz word… Remaking is another one. Well you don’t exactly make anything… you just give them a good clean, a fresh coat of paint and some fancy finishes… fancy like stencilling, Decoupage, textured stencilling….  you know just like when you feel you need a change and get your hair cut or coloured… you would not want to change head when you need a change right?  they always say if you don’t feel so well go to the hairdresser and suddenly you feel much better.  Why not apply this rule to your loved objects…. give them a make over and suddenly the shape you always liked but now pink and stencilled will make you happy again.

They say images say 1000 word… just check out those babies…. three boxes “remade” by some of my up-cycling participants this season… three ladies age between 20 and 60 with very different taste… so much diversity and yet same techniques… painting, stencilling, decoupage…

I have a few spaces left on my next blocks of Up-cycling furniture workshops … do you have any objects to up-cycle? We are a match made in heaven… join my class and I will fill you in techniques … you do the hard work and get the reward… and your objects… are so happy to be given another chance…

Another buzz word is “ZERO WASTE” …

So if you want to join in the fun check the two links below… :

My block of 8 weeks of Upcycling Furniture in Glasgow starting on the 30th April Book here

My block of 8 weeks of Upcycling Furniture in Glasgow starting on the 2nd May Book here

I look forward to see you and your old boxes there…

Love

 

Betty xx

 

#2019 CraftsNine challenge – a year full of learning crafts in a challenge !

Would you like to join me on my #2019craftsnine challenge on Instagram to channel my creativity towards a better end result ? I will also post on a Face book page

This is about being creative and pushing your creative boundaries further… in an organised manner .. Through my #2019craftsnine I want to give myself a focus.

It would be nice to claim the credit for this idea but I was inspired by Rochelle from Home Row Fiber who for two years now has been running a sewing challenge in 9 projects. I found her approach refreshing and decided to jump in the band wagon in my own context as sewing is not my thing.

January is always a good time for new resolutions, eat better, work more reasonable hours, take time off, etc… the fact is I would not change my working life as a creative artist… it is perfect and I love every minute of every day. But I could do with a focus when it comes to special projects. This will do nicely.

I have picked 9 areas where I want to work through the next twelve months at improving my work… either learning from scratch, like batik work, like weaving, and in those I will just make a head start. In other like Eco Printing I will be looking at improving my technique in one particular area…. and you can do the same if you have a list long like a piece of string of what you aim to achieve… You have to be realistic through… I have booked myself on some workshops (for example I have booked myself this gorgeous Eco Printing workshop with Irit Dullman next June in Holland… a complete treat and I am sure she will make me work hard), for other projects I just want to focus on using what I have accumulated at home like this little pattern I bought several months ago and never used.

You could decide to spend the year working on your embroidery skills, one stitch at a time? or book yourself on a pottery class and aim at throwing the perfect mug before the end of the year… or using up your stash of recycled paper cutting to make greeting cards for every occasions, one subject a month… the word is your oyster !

So here it is my very own crafts challenge and yours if you would like to join me. Nine projects I will work on during this year, 9 new directions in my creative practise and for each some new artwork, a new class, an exhibition… some kind of result to show the result of my achievement… but really all I am doing is working on my personal development with the help of my Craftsninechallenge plan of action…

I put together my photo by using my phone App Diptic but there are many available… if you struggle send me a message I will make a suggestion…

crafts nine square

My 2019craftsninechallenge action plan:

From top to bottom, from left to right…:

1 – Embroidery: I will learn to use simple embroidery inspired by the South East of Asia Hill Tribe in my textile work. I have brought back from Thailand a simple step by step guide … in Lanna language 🙂 but with sketches…

2 – Batik work: I will add to my Indigo work some simple Batik technique, probably not as skilled as this beautiful work I saw in at the creative market of the Chiangmai design week but in the same direction.

3 – Eco-Dye: I had the great chance to experiment with Eco-dyes in Thailand this winter using local dyes to there and I want to experiment further with this technique using local botanical elements to my home in Scotland.

4 – Adorn: I will make a point of using in my mix media pieces, some of the “treasures” I have gathered when travelling, here beads from my last holidays. It makes projects so much more meaningful, I have in mind a batch of hand stitched bracelets.

5 : Eco Print: I will work on my Eco Printing composition techniques, I have booked myself on a master workshop with the great Irit Dulman for the summer and cant wait to catch Irit’s techniques.

6 : Sewing: I will make this little dress/shirt I bought the pattern for last year. I know it is not an essential part of my practise but it is good to do something different and complete a project you have dreamed about…

7 : Pottery: I will make a point of throwing more pots on the wheel… I had a glorious day in Chiang Mai last december working at the InClay studio and now I cant wait to find a local studio to my Glasgow Home to get the chance to have another go…

8 : Stencilling: In 2018 I focused my stencilling work in using textured stencilling to create books with the book binding Cassandra Barron, I loved stretching the technique and want to go further in using stencils in an out of the box way…

9 : Tool Making: I have wanted for a while using elements around me to create tools to help my creative work. here a brush made out of twigs, I will look further in what I can use to make small tools.

I will post my progress regularly on my Instagram page @bettysbeautifullife and my Face book page.

I would love if you would like to join me in this challenge to improve your creativity in an organised manner .

If you decide to do so, please create your own #2019craftsninechallenge image on Instagram, by using a phone app similar to Diptic. Post your photo not forgetting to add the tag #2019craftsninechallenge and tagging me on instagram @bettysbeautifullife, it would be great if you explained in a few words what you will be covering.

You may struggle to decide the direction to follow. I looked back through my 2018 photos and decided on the 9 which represented my creative needs the most. You might look at your existing projects, your various stash, your half started projects. My practise is quite vast you may decide to only go in one direction… make this a knitting project, or a drawing one. The important thing is to choose a technique which really brings you immense satisfaction.

Dont be too ambitious and you will surprise yourself. Focus on what you can achieve. There is always next year for the rest…

Dont try to achieve too much on your own… I have linked a couple of my aims to workshops I will attend like the glorious Eco Printing and Eco Dyeing workshops with artists who have all to give me. My aim in that case is to grab their knowledge. I may make something out of it… or not. My aim is to learn not to remake the world.

Do connect things together, quite a few of the techniques I am looking at are linked with my textile practise and my travelling in Asia…. Is there something you can connect? Do you live on a farm and have wool you would like to learn to felt, spin, dye?

Aim low and get great satisfaction in your achievements. Think collectively.

But more importantly think creatively, and get great pleasure in what you decide to go for. Crafts is the new meditation and its practise gives great relaxation and pleasure.

If you are insure and would like help with this please email me on bettysbeautifullife@gmail.com

Happy New Year and lots of love

 

Betty xx