Monthly Archives

March 2014

Lifestyle and Interviews

Operation Organisation – DIY Jewellery Hanger

March 26, 2014

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It is a shame to keep beautiful necklaces hidden in a dark drawer, they end up getting tangled and damaged.

I made this DIY jewellery hanger so that my necklaces could be forever on display and at my fingertips when I am getting ready in a rush.

Here’s what you need to make your own:

  • Wooden coat-hanger
  • Hammer
  • Tacks

Tip – Pick a coat-hanger with a bar across the bottom as this will keep it balanced when you start to add your jewels.

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Hammer the tacks into the hanger symmetrically at equal distance across the top. You only need to tap them around a third of the way in.

Hammer a nail into the wall and secure the hook of the hanger in place with an elastic band to stop it slipping. I used a feather hair-clip to hide the hook, you can see this in the photo below.

Now you are ready to start hanging your necklaces, this is a bit of a balancing act! Start at the edges and work your way in.

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You could even jazz up your jewellery hanger by adding a splash of colour, read my Paint Project blog for tips.

For more Operation Organisation projects check out the Jewels in Jam Jars post.

Fashion & Beauty, Travel & Places

Eiffel Tower Outfit Post

March 19, 2014

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My first trip to Paris was magical. I fell head over heels in love with the city and enjoyed the first signs of spring by the Eiffel Tower.

I am wearing: Moda in Pelle Mary Jane shoes, a Lavand dress and a Sisley pink cashmere cardigan.

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Thanks to the girls at Moda in Pelle for sending me the shoes, they were perfect for Paris!

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I bought myself a little souvenir, an Eiffel Tower shaped sugar shaker!

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Suggested Post: WEARING WEDDING DRESSES AT MELANIE JAMES

Lifestyle and Interviews

Interview With Artist Tash Willcocks

March 9, 2014

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 Tash Willcocks’ artwork is peppered across Manchester transforming spaces such as Tech Hub and The Juice Academy. When she isn’t creating her own artwork, she is teaching as the Graphic Design programme leader at The University of Salford.

Tash recently posted the pictures featured in this blog onto Instagram, they are drawn directly onto the pages of Red Magazine, check out her hashtag #Mundaneaday for a daily dose of doodles.

 I interviewed Tash to find out more.

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  What tips would you give to new artists just starting out in their career?

There’s so much advice out there, it’s easy to get lost. Social media has really opened up the opportunities available, you can find yourself talking to your design idols on Twitter, but it can quickly turn from a happy design pond into an ocean of information. I think this is where some people can drown (don’t worry I’ll leave that metaphor there haha).

Basically, talk to people. In Manchester the design community is amazing and there are plenty of great places to hang out, have a tipple and a talk to other artists.

I recommend meet-ups like Northern Digitals, talks like BLAB and places like 2022NQ.

I was once told to ‘make friends not contacts’, sage advice. Another piece of good advice is an Anthony Burrill quote: ‘work hard and be nice to people’.

Which piece of your artwork are you most proud of?

 

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Elbow debut album cover, Asleep In The Back (above).

So, although I wouldn’t say it’s the best (it’s now over ten years old) it’s still one of my favourites.

The building is long gone now. At the time I was very interested in what went on behind closed doors. It felt like that was what Elbow was hinting at in the album.

The photo is hand developed and printed/tinted, I don’t think you can ever quite replicate that feel. The logo was a handmade print as well that almost killed me when it needed to be enlarged.

The main reason that I love this piece is because the Elbow boys and V2 took a chance on me. I had to pitch against others but mine got chosen in the end. Along with Micah who did the inners with me, we beavered away after our late night jobs and sent zip discs nervously to-and-fro. The day I first saw the entire window plastered with my artwork my mind almost popped!

So there you are, I think this may always be my favourite design.

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 I love following your #mundaneaday posts on Instagram, what is your favourite account to follow?

 Oh, so hard! I LOVE Instagram, can I have a couple?

  • MrsEaves101: amazing lettering from Australia, also best pseudonym ever
  • Laylasailor: fantastic stylist, hoping to hook up on project soon
  • BIJDVLEET: just ace hand lettering
  • Staygoldmaryrose: a friend who moved away, AMAZING jewellery and general taste
  • Luanna90:  just an Instagram crush… ace hair

My favourite Instagram hashtag is #TYPEBRUT, it was started by ex Salford Uni student @lemike76 and it’s going global. It’s addictive, like the typographic version of Pringles, once you pop…

 

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Where do you go/what do you do when you have artist’s block?

 I’m incredibly lucky to teach, I have 300 creative brains to bounce off every day at Salford Uni. I’m also a ‘doer’. I do a #Mundanaday everyday and I believe in research through practice.

I’m permanently grazing images and looking around me, but there’s nothing better than just DOING to actually get the creative blood flowing, or go for a walk, look around you, dance with your cat and just loosen up.

My fear is the internet is the first stop for most people and you just get bombarded with images/generic design. Don’t get me wrong there’s some incredible work out there but it becomes all consuming and I fear that you can get trapped looking and not doing (and just because it’s out there doesn’t mean it’s all good)…

Just dance like no one’s looking, be aware of everything around you visually/physically/aurally, live a bit and learn to love your mistakes. You need to make them to make you better…

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You might also enjoy Owl Cats and Morrissey Dolls Interview with Liz Kenny Creator of Bettie’s Pets

Fashion & Beauty

Wearing Wedding Dresses at Melanie James

March 5, 2014

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My friend owns Melanie James, a beautiful bridal boutique in Chorlton which champions the work of independent designers. She asked me if I would help out and model the new range of Eliza Jane Howell dresses at an open day.

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I felt like a starlet with my 1930s inspired up-do thanks to the handy-work of the stylists at Bethany Jane Davies.

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The most difficult part of the day was answering the questions of budding brides to be. They all wanted to know which dress was my favorite and I was spoiled for choice!

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My mum didn’t know that I’d agreed to model for Melanie that day so I sent her this picture with the caption ‘we decided to get married, sorry that we didn’t invite you’. My phone rang immediately. Sorry Mum!

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The photographs with a signature in the corner in were taken by Craige Barker and those without are by Jo Gendle. They are so talented, you can click on the names to visit their websites.

Jo specialises in wedding videos and footage from the event features in this exquisite short film.

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