Making the wristlet took an unduly amount of concentration. Cutting the leather with precision, inserting the special mustard coloured lining, hammering silver rivets and wielding my favourite tool - the hole punch. It took almost all day to get the job done, and the mess I created was nothing short of impressive. The top image shows my wonderful little old blue industrial sewing machine, which sews through leather beautifully. I have been leaning towards using kangaroo leather as it is lightweight and one of the strongest leathers available. I hope you enjoy browsing through my final product shots of the wristlet, it was fun bringing this piece to life. Time for me to zip it and get on with my next project!
Pure oatmeal linen hand stamped using my hand carved stripe block. I chose to use a turquoise fabric ink, which has come up beautifully. I'm loving the decaying grandeur of this printing method.
Here I have brought the elements together. The yellow screen printed floral design, again on the oatmeal linen and the hand stamped stripe. And for extra pizzazz, I sewed hot pink piping to the edges.
The finished product!
I've been wanting to make one of these wristlet style purses for some time now. I've seen many a yummy mummy in the play-ground sporting these handy little purses. Especially good when you end up lugging backpacks, musical instruments, half eaten sandwiches and the like. Who needs a cumbersome handbag in times like this? So here it is, the 'Bondi Swimmer' wristlet, designed for your convenience.
I sewed up another cushion cover using my block printed black stripe textile and the taupe screen printed floral. The block printed fabric is so appealing to me, the imperfections, the varying densities of ink, the slightly off kilter placements. It has a very primitive vibe, and one that I'm wanting to explore in more depth. I finished the pillow with gold lame piping, adding a touch of luxury to my primitive textiles.
I stumbled across this gold rope piping in my local Spotlight store and thought it could add a touch of glamour to my rustic textiles.
Rolling out the black fabric ink onto my hand carved block.
Printing lots of squares to form a striped pattern.
I'm liking the Turkish vibe...
Attempting to play around with the direction of the block creating a woven effect.
The rustic charm of block printing is so appealing to me.
Mix and matching my screen printed fabric with my block printed fabric. All in all, a very enjoyable morning.
Now that I have a nice stash of printed yardage I have been compelled to sew a variety of products for my Etsy shop.
Using my 'Bondi Swimmers" design, I decided to sew a rectangular cushion. I even went the extra step and added some nautical inspired piping. I was pretty happy with how this turned out and have a new love for piping!
Years ago I lived in Japan, so my 'Kimino' design holds a sentimental spot in my heart. I'd love to take my family there and immerse ourselves in the culture.
I spiced the reverse side of the cushion with a hot pink woven wool and finished with black piping.
This time I made a tote using my 'Aussie Flora' design. I went for an earthy look, using a taupe coloured hand loomed hemp as the base and kangaroo leather straps.
The thing I love about Kangaroo leather is that it's so lightweight yet so incredibly strong...plus it's Australian of course.
Creating the silk screens for printing is getting easier and I am learning a few more tricks along the way. My 'Aussie Floral' design, shown here, has many delicate lines, which can be a challenge when printing, so am learning to make heavier marks so I don't lose definition.
Mustard yellow is a colour I naturally gravitate towards, and decided to use it as my first colour way in this print run. The results were pretty good and the colour gently radiates from the oatmeal linen.
I had enough linen left for another print run and chose a warm latte coloured ink, which I have fallen in love with..it's earthy and elegant all at once.
Printing with two colours is something I will have to attempt soon and can't wait to do.
Creating a negative image instead of a positive image for screen printing yardage was a little trickier than I thought. You can see the screen that I made, using light sensitive emulsion. I thought it would look interesting to have the raw fabric show through for the arms and legs of the swimmers. When I created this design, I was imagining I was lying on the sea bed looking up at all the swimmers above me. Ocean swimming races are popular at Bondi Beach, where I live, and I only ever see them from the shore. I'm pretty happy with how it turned out and decided to make a beach tote for my Etsy shop.
This printing session is using the same 'Kimino' design but in a red colour way. You can see the repeat between each tile as well as the exposed screen. I'm learning that screen printing yardage requires precision all the way through the design process, from the the initial sketches, creating the technical repeat in Illustrator, exposing the screen for the right time, marking out your fabric repeats and then finally dragging inks across the screen accurately!
'Kimino' is a design I created just after Christmas. Once the excitement of the festive season had simmered down, I sat at my computer and arranged all my floral sketches into a large scale technical repeat, ready for screen printing. Under the expert guidance of the studio manager, Carizza, I exposed a huge silk screen with my image. Once my screen was dry, I rolled out my fabric and marked where the repeats occurred. There is nothing more satisfying than seeing your art come to life on such a big scale. It took two of us to screen print the fabric due to the width of the screen, and by the end if the session, had more than enough to work with.
What a nice surprise to see my clutch design in Elle's Chrissy wish list this week. I'm loving that hat..could come in handy on Bondi Beach this summer. http://www.elle.com.au/news/zeitgeist/2015/11/elles-christmas-gift-guide/elles-christmas-gift-guide-juantia-field/
I thought I'd share an update on the my Etsy Shop, Sir Tom. I have added quite a few new pillows featuring my latest designs. I'm enjoying giving these designs some purpose, and have used every spare moment to cut and sew the pillows together. I have had the work printed onto a beautiful linen/cotton fabric which has a lovely crispness and durable quality. https://www.etsy.com/au/shop/sirtom?ref=hdr_shop_menu
I have been busy sewing up many of my designs into pillow covers for my Etsy shop. I have used quality natural linen/cotton fabrics, both crisp and durable. You can head over here to see more. https://www.etsy.com/au/shop/sirtom?ref=hdr_shop_menu
This afternoon saw me paint and sketch a handful of corals and geometrics. Thought it would be fun to see what it would look like mocked up as a cushion..could look nice in a beach pad up the coast.
The theme of this years Fabric8 contest, held by Spoonflower and Moda Fabrics is 'Botanical Sketchbook'. I could not have been happier as I love the world of botany. Being an Aussie, I naturally chose Australian wildflowers. I tried to give the illusion of plant specimens that had been collected and scattered across the surface...awaiting identification.
A closer look at some of the fun details I was playing with today.
I loved piecing all the elements of my designs together today. I wanted the birds to shine, so I tried to keep the background fairly calm in tone, without being too bland, content wise. Feeling tempted to have this printed as fabric through Spoonflower, and maybe sew some products for my Etsy shop?
Broke out the paints and scissors and created these mixed media birds. I started out quite small and then had to follow through to keep the continuity going, so the collages were fairly fiddly to piece together. I'll definitely try this method again, but in a larger format so as to save my eyes!
The final assignment for Lilla Rogers' bootcamp course...an editorial illustration. This months topic - 'The Digital Nomad'. I thought long and hard about how I would approach this idea without being too obvious, and at the same time, keeping it general. I had heard about the Hololens - special glasses you wear that cast a holograph into your environment. I spliced two disparate items together, the Australian outback and an orchestra. This savvy digital nomad has pulled over in her old car and set up her work space out in the middle of nowhere. All she needs now is an audience!