30 January 2013

Annabelle's Butterfly Dance

Hi all,

I am very sorry for how long I have left without posting! I have been super busy with Uni applications, which are slowly becoming less busy. I am very excited as I have had an offer from UCA Epsom, after I did an interview there last week!

I have also been busy with college work, and I have made a butterfly cape thing... which I will be sharing with you shortly. But until then here is what I did yesterday in a watercolour workshop. I had to choose a film still (based on my project) so I chose a beautiful film still from Annabelle's Butterfly Dance (which is a restored Edison film) I highly recommend you look it up on youtube, its quite an early film and I believe that the stills were hand coloured.

So here are my loose interpretations of this beautiful image. I mostly focused on the colours...

Bleeding in the black ink, with some fine liner over the top.

Completely wet on wet process, and I softened the overall image by using brown ocher rather than the harsher black.

I really enjoyed the workshop, and I think I will definitely be experimenting more with watercolours, to try to improve my skills with them. As someone who loves precision, watercolours are really pushing my limits as they are quite unpredictable, but I loved watching the colour seep over the page like little veins.

xox Niamh xox

19 January 2013


Hi all,

We have had Snow!!! Yesterday my college was closed, so apart from catching up on all my work I also went round to a friends to enjoy the snow. Here are a few pics from my day:

I cant claim the rights to this igloo. But it was pretty awesome. The people who were making it were using actual snow bricks! And they had little windows in it!!!
Our headless snowman :)

Have you had any snow where you live?

xox Niamh xox

16 January 2013

Felt Making

Hi all,

So recently I took part in a day workshop making felt. It was quite labour intensive but I really enjoyed it. I made a big piece of felt (which I am yet to do something with), some felted beads, and a weird shaped felted bag thing... enjoy...
To do the felting we laid down an old towel onto the table, then put a similar sized piece of bubble wrap over the top (with the bubbles facing up) I then laid down pieces of wool tops, in relatively thin layer alternating the direction of the layers as I built them up.
I added a few bits of yarn and muslin for added textural interest.  

I then laid a piece of cheap netting over the top, and with washing up liquid, warm water, and a fair amount of elbow grease I felted the fibres together. It did take a while to fully felt. I also used a rolling pin and rolled the felt around it whilst rolling at the same time, just to increase the amount of friction the felt was being attacked by.
So this is what it turned out like. Keep in mind when you are felting that the size of your piece is going to shrink as the fibres contract and lock together.
Here are the little (well not that little) felt beads that I made. Building up the layers on a small ball of wool tops, until the ball is stable. I am going to stitch into them with a metallic thread to make them look a bit more pretty.

And then here is the 'interesting bag' that I created. I basically made it by making a single layer of felt, then laying down a cut out piece of bubble wrap (the size of the bag I wanted) then building up on either side of the bubble wrap. When I got the the thickness of felt I wanted cut the parcel shape open and removed the cut piece of bubble wrap. I then attempted to shape it into this rather attractive bag shape.
I think I might shove it into the washing machine, to see what happens when it shrinks (an irreversible process!!!)

So, that is what happened on my day of felting (along with getting very sore arm muscles!)

xox Niamh xox

10 January 2013

Tim Walker Story Teller

Hi all,

'What I am photographing is an imaginary place that never existed but is often connected to something that has already been. Fashion photography is the dream department of photography.' - Tim Walker

In November I made a day trip to London with my art college, and I went to the Tim Walker Story Teller exhibition which was at the Somerset House. It was AMAZING!!! Unfortunately there was no photography permitted (which some people still disobeyed... (disappointed shake of head) ), but I can kind of describe the scene. The first room had the spitfire which was used in a shoot he did, coming out of the wall, and the photos from the shoot were on the walls of the room. Every now and again there were areas of text on the wall too (one of them curved around a wall.)

So there were images from shoots on the walls, and props used in the centre of the rooms as you walked through. The swan boat.. Giant skeleton man... Really big doll... band of insects playing the violin, cello and viola. It was so incredible. All of the photos are beautifully lit and staged. They all have a very theatrical, dramatic and sometimes quite romantic feel to them which I really appreciate. Also BIG plus, a lot of the photos have models wearing Dior (by John Galliano) or Alexander McQueen designs... which for me sold it!

I was very lucky that for Christmas I received the book that went along with the exhibition, and I am going to share a few of my favourite images. (unfortunately the band of insects are not in it)

Jonas Kesseler and Lily Donaldson in blue spitfire
Fashion : Bottega Veneta
Glemham Hall, Sussex, 2009

Karlie Kloss on yellow brick road.
Fashion : Dior Haute Couture
Rye East Sussex 2010
Christina Carey and apple tree bough
Fashion : Roberto Cavalli
Eglingham Hall, Northumberland, 2008

Stella Tennant and Imogen Morris-Clarke with demolished piano
Fashion : Dior Haute Couture
Howick Hall, Northumberland, 2010

Stella Tennant in hare mask and Charles Guislain in 'bird of paradise' crown with sword
Fashion : Giorgio Armani, Privé and Gaultier
Howick Hall, Northumberland, 2010

Stella Tennant as Lady Grey
Fashion : Dior Haute Couture
Howick Hall, Northumberland, 2010

Imogen Morris-Clarke as blue sprite
Fashion : Givenchy Haute Couture and Vivienne Westwood
Howick Hall, Northumberland, 2010

Stella Tennant and pink powder cloud
Fashion : Peter Jensen
Eglingham Hall, Northumberland, 2007

Sophie Srej as Beetlejuice and Evelina Mambetova as Edward Scissorhands
Fashion : Salvatore Ferragamo and Rodarte
Kings Seeds, Colchester, Essex, 2009

Malgosia Bela and crying skeleton
Fashion : Ralph Lauren
Cants of Colchester, Colchester, Essex, 2008

Helena Bonham Carter as disgruntled queen
Fashion : Vivienne Westwood
Shoreditch, London, 2010

Olga Shearer on blue horse
Fashion : Valentino
The Winter Garden, Sennowe Park, Norfolk, 2007

Laura McCone and Luke Field-Wright as floral figures
Costumes by Angels the Costumiers
Glemham Hall, Sussex, 2010

Hope you enjoyed this look at this amazing book

xox Niamh xox

8 January 2013

Cara Kabuki Boot

Hi all,

So this is the other thing(s) I bought with my christmas money. I have had a pair of browny red boot from Kurt Geiger for three years now, and as much as I still love them they are beginning to show how much they have been worn. I really wanted to get a pair of brown boots, as I am not completely replacing my kurt Geiger boots yet (I will continue to wear them until they kick the bucket) 
I love riding boots, and in the ideal world where money and location was no issue I would probably buy a pair of Frye boots. (I occasionally drool over their website) 
But I spotted these boots from Cara London, and decided to get them. They are really comfortable, with a nice sized heel and good tread (perfect for snow if we had any...) The leather is really nice, and the metallic details are great. Cara shoes are a little more expensive, but the quality is so good it really justifies it (I also had a £20 voucher)

Here they are:

These boots are quite long, they come to just below my knee, and will be perfect with leggings, skinny jeans or tights. I got them a little roomy so I can squeeze some knee high socks in too.

The zipper and popper at the back are not functional. They are just for decoration, which the girl at the shop had to explain to me as I spent 5 minuets trying to undo the zip :)
The functional zip is on the side of the boot.

I really like how the colour changes towards the toe, as it gradually gets darker.

If your interested in seeing more then click here

xox Niamh xox

6 January 2013

Fat Face Gemma Gilet

Hi all,

So a couple of days ago I went on a little shopping trip, with the aims of spending some money I received for Christmas. I spotted this gilet in Fat Face and was torn as to if I should buy it.
When I was little I used to always wear gilets, which were more often hand me downs from my cousins. They used to be metallic purple, or pink. After that I kind of said I would never wear them again. But I decided to try it on regardless. I always like gilets on other people, but didn't think it would suit me.

This one is soo warm and cosy, I wanted it almost as soon as I put it on. Its a good length, and has a fuzzy lining which makes it really comfortable to wear. The outer fabric is also really soft. Once I had decided that I was going to get it, next came the decision of which colour to get. I decided on the colour Mulberry.  (though I was quite tempted by the navy) Although they are not overly stylish they are incredibly warm and cosy!!!
These are three of the colours that the Gemma Gilet is available in.

The inside is really soft and fuzzy. There is a zipped pocket on the inside, and an opening for headphones to come out of. There is piping in the seams also, with the polka dot light pink lining.
Two pockets on the outside (on both sides of the gilet) One has a flap and a popper, ideal for more security. The other is open, ideal for warming cold hands!
What do you think of gilets? Are they something you would wear?

xox Niamh xox

5 January 2013

Outfit of the day - Gilet

Hi all,

Outfit of the day here. I will have a couple of posts featuring new items that I am wearing in this outfit which are the gilet and the boots :) The heating in our house wasn't working, so I basically wore the very warm gilet for the entire day.

What I am wearing :  

- Gilet from Fat Face
- Leggings from Jack Wills
- Burgundy lace edged vest from Hollister
- Grey and lace jumper from Topshop
- Scarf from Fat Face
- Boots from Cara London

Hope you like this outfit, and your 2013 is going well

xox Niamh xox

3 January 2013

Happy New Year 2013

Hi all,

So we survived 2012. Happy New year to you all, I hope you have a happy healthy year. I have a lot on my plate this year as I go through the University application process. My form has been submitted so all there is left to do now is wait... and of course work as hard as possible.

I hope to bring some more exciting things to this blog this year, so watch this space :)

xox Niamh xox