Getting Messy With Markmaking

Happy Friday!

One of the small tasks I gave myself to help get out of my two year creative slump was to start using a sketchbook again and I decided today was the day.

I used everything from sponges, acrylics, fine liners, watercolours to a whole host of other things and had a blast. I wound up with two messy pages of fun and it felt good!

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It’s not pretty, but it got me thinking about colour and design again.

Who loves Lego? I love Lego!

Awhile back I heard about this really cool fundraiser Durham Cathedral was doing for their Open Treasure exhibit. They decided to replicate the Cathedral in Lego and charged £1 per brick to help build it.

I really needed to see this and was lucky enough to get there to help build it, and see it again after it was completed.

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My bricks!

The finished creation used roughly 300,000 pieces of Lego, stands 5ft 6in (1.7m) high, is 12ft 6in (3.84m) long and 5ft (1.53m) wide. The photos below are from during the build.

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The finished product was really cool. There were windows that opened up so you could see everything inside, all the details were amazing. Below are some photos from when it was completed.

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My photos truly don’t do it justice. It was quite hard to take decent pictures because both times I went (especially the second time!) it was very busy. I would recommend checking out the Durham Cathedral Lego Build site for a 360 degree tour as well as their cool photos.

I loved this! I would highly recommend you check it out! It’s free to get in to the Cathedral, so if you’re into this kind of thing and in the Durham area it’s worth a visit.

The food in their restaurant is nice too🙂

4 Reads to Help You Get Out of a Creative Slump

Over the last 2 years or so, due to major stress, I’ve been really struggling creatively. Not necessarily coming up with ideas, but implementing them. Going from making and creating all the time to completing nada was a horrible feeling. Honestly that feeling probably helped pushed me away more from any small idea I came up with.

This may be something that is fairly common for everyone at different points in their lives.

Recently I took it upon myself to make some changes in my life that could possibly help with my problem.

  • I’ve created a very loose schedule for myself. If something really important comes up, OK I’ll have to craft another time
  • I’m starting with smaller projects to help me get back into the groove
  • I’m going to try and be kinder to myself and spend more time doing things I enjoy
  • I’m going to get back into using a sketchbook as often as possible

Those a few of the very basic steps I’ve taken and should help me out!

Below I’ve included a few links to some articles that cover some more in-depth ideas.

Please let me know what you’ve done if you’ve ever felt this way!

XO Jane – The Creative Slump: 4 Tips For Finding Your Way Out Of Them

Alyson Stanfield – 10 Paths to Help You Emerge from a Creative Slump

Aileen Swanson – How to “Sketch Book” Your Way Out Of A Creative Slump

Stepping Into Big – 5 Ways Out of a Creative Slump

 

Art Car Bootique

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Afternoon all! Long time! I’m hoping my post will become much less intermittent now and all the craziness will be dying down.

This past weekend we had fantastic weather here and Cardiff and I went to check out the Art Car Bootique at Chapter Arts. I went to this event last year too and can highly recommend it for a great day out with the kids or friends.

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There is everything from bands, face painting, crafts, art, beer from around the world, as well many other things. Oh, I almost forgot all the delicious food!

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This year there was a bit of an EU referendum theme. Eddie Izzard was there giving a talk on the UK staying. I don’t remember there being any sort of a theme last year.
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We had a blast, the weather was great, bumped into friends, there was a great vibe and we will be going back again next year!

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I was lucky enough to a few photos right after Eddie Izzard spoke so most people were still near the stage, the place was packed! Again I would highly recommend this as a day out.

Made in Roath – Made in Spring

Happy Summertime! Due to life craziness (I won’t even get into it!) I haven’t been able to post about anything at all, but I’m back!
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Back in May I attended a mini street festival that was part of the Made in Roath events happening in Cardiff this year. There was a music stage that featured musicians as well as DJs, loads of cool arty/crafty things to see and do and quite a bit of yummy food.

I’d have to say that if I had to pick a favourite from everything on offer it would be very difficult. I really loved taking part in something that was called Bike Art. There was an old drum attached to a bike, when the bike was used it would cause the drum to spin. I got to pick colours, drop them on a piece of paper that was inside the drum and then watch my paint become art. It was super cool!
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It now hangs proudly on my wall.
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There was free personalised poetry, art projects for kids and a great atmosphere. I will be attending future events and will hopefully be taking part in some capacity. I would highly recommend checking out some of the events if you’re in the area. I was very impressed!

My While in Canada Knitting Project

I’m still in Canada and fly back to the UK later in the week.

Before I came over I offered to make my Mom something as a belated Mother’s Day gift. She opted for a woolly hat and some kind of a neck warmer with buttons.

The hat bit was easy so we headed off to buy wool. I had to look into the neck warmer with buttons and came across this tutorial on Instructables.

Everything started off well, the steps seemed easy enough to follow. I’m a super beginner knitter and felt I’d be able to do it.

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I was quite happy with the wool we chose. Once I find the wrapper I’ll let you know what it’s called. The wool was challenging at times as it has a thin thread running through it as well as little thicker chunks of colour every so often. Over all no trouble with it and would happily use it again.

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Other than the occasional hole and picked up stitch my only issue was the buttonholes. Ok, I had the hardest time getting my head around them, but after a couple of YouTube videos I jumped in and just gave it a go and they turned out pretty much ok.

I chose not to place my buttons right at the end of the neck warmer because my mom didn’t want them there🙂 It was 23.5 inches long (I just measured it now) which is basically what the tutorial called for.
There I am modelling the woolly goodies wearing my “Mom, it’s 34c out could we hurry this photo up a bit?” face. The hat looks small on me, but fits my Mom ok. Really I should have had her model it.

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The tutorial was great. I would totally recommend it and make a similar thing again. I’m happy with how the neck warmer turned out.

I hope you’re all having a great summer so far!

Preston, Ontario – crafty supplies and things

I’ve dropped off the face of the earth a bit! Our move to Wales went well but it’s taking forever to get the internet in our house. A week after we moved to flew to Canada. I’ll be here about a month.

I’m staying with my parents in Preston which is part of Cambridge. I’ve visited a few crafty stores…from a quick google search there seem to be more but I haven’t seen them, and that isn’t exactly a good thing. Then again maybe I don’t know where to look!🙂

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I’m not at all into doll houses, but I can appreciate how much work goes into decorating(?) them. I’d have to say that if you’re in Preston and need some stuff for your doll house check out Out of the Ordinary on King St. E. This place was well stocked and seemed to have everything. The web shop seems to have loads as well.

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I also visited Stitcher’s Place. Now I feel I was a led up the wrong path here. I was looking for wool and the picture on the website (above) says “knitting” so I assumed I’d find wool. Unfortunately for me the sign no longer says knitting and they don’t have any knitting supplies, but they have stitching supplies galore! I’ve never seen so much cross stitch stuff in one place.

I also visited an art gallery that sold some painting supplies. I believe it was called Studio 1291, but I could be wrong. They had some canvases, paints and brushes but mostly sold art.

I wound up buying some things at Michael’s. Most people from North America will know about Michael’s. They seem to have everything under one gigantic overwhelming roof. It felt pricey, even with the exchange rate, but I managed to pick up a few cool bits & bobs on sale. I do prefer independent shops.

I’ll be keeping my eye open for other places in the area because I’m certain I missed some places. If anyone knows of any please let me know.

In other news I made a super cute wooly hat for my mom and will soon be starting a matching scarf. The wool is fab, so I’ll post it soon.🙂