Sunday, 31 January 2010

Best of Scottish Crafters - BeScene Photography

This photographer combines my favourite place (Scotland) with my favourite animal (the horse). Some of his black and white pictures just take my breath away.

It makes me start to think about how I photograph items for my Etsy listings. Yes, I know there is a useful guide on How to Improve your Photos - you can find it here: - but I think you still have to be creative in what props you use to support your items.
I tried using a wicker tray behind one of my cushions and I liked the texture it created - I'd really appreciate any ideas you may have that can make cushions look exciting!
Might even have a giveaway for the best idea.

Wednesday, 27 January 2010

My sewing assistants

Meet Bracken (he's the colour of the Scottish hills in winter when the fern has died back) and Bert (who was named by my husband who has no imagination and picked a name beginning with B).
I just love these two boys who have been sharing our home now for 6 months. Each cat I've ever had the pleasure of opening my home to has become my favourite and these two are no exception.

They greet me each morning with nuzzles and purrs and follow me around the house wherever I go (yes, even into the smallest room if I don't lock the door). But why is it that they just can't wait to get into my sewing room? I guess I can understand it really - there's just so much to play with in there. You see, I've looked at other folks' sewing rooms and I see shelves, cupboards, racks, tables, storage, etc. galore. Mine is a mess I confess but I'm happy with it. Sometimes I do tidy it up at the end of a project but usually I can't wait to start another. It's the one room in the house that the vacuum cleaner only ventures into occasionally and oh my gosh the threads on the floor play havock with the rollers (another reason why I don't let the cats in as they would eat the threads and that could be bad news).

Occasionally they do have supervised access (or they just sneak in) but this usually only lasts around 5 minutes at the most before they get into some sort of trouble whether it be chasing a new paper pattern around the room and tear it to shreds, unravelling a cone of thread or jumping on the foot controller of my sewing machine and creating a new design on my latest quilt. Do I forgive them? Of course, every time. They even get rewarded with a little tidbit for being so cute. Where are they now? Sitting on the computer of course.

Enough about them, and more about today's crafter, Ben Mcfuzzylugs. Now, I know he would not be Bracken and Bert's favourite crafter being that he's a canine but I would really like one of these bookmarks and I just love that he calls them Splat - reminds me of the film Fish called Wanda when the concrete block falls out of the sky onto the toy dog and .... Splat!

Monday, 4 January 2010

Best of Scottish Crafts and Crafters

So, what do I mean by craft and crafter. There are so many mediums that fall under this category including:

  • glass

  • wood

  • basketry

  • paper

  • metal

  • fabric
  • yarn
  • leather

For one person it might mean making items from home and selling them through craft fairs; for another it may be working from a studio and being commissioned to make one-off exclusive pieces of artwork. To me they all have one thing in common and that is that the items have been made by the individual in a creative way and made with passion. I really do believe that most crafters are almost reluctant to sell their pieces.

For this New Year I'm searching the whole of Scotland to find out what I think is the best. I'd like to start with glass as this is one of my favourite mediums. Geoffrey Mann produces the most amazing glass I've ever seen. To be quite honest, I'm not sure I understand the process he goes through to make his art but it just blows me away. Tell me? Is this art or is this craft - you decide.