Monday, 19 December 2016

Comfort and Joy

I have been meaning to give my Star Heart Dolls a makeover for quite some time and over the summer I found some time to do just that. It started with my desire to create two attractive Christmas dolls called Comfort and Joy. Attractiveness was key and I worked on making the dresses, hair flowers and shoes as lovely as possible and also to find pretty ribbons to finish them off. Working on Comfort and Joy encouraged me to create more dolls, I call them the four seasons. As well as Winter Comfort and Spring Joy, I now also have Summer Bliss and Autumn Reflection.

I also gave makeovers to the Dream Box dolls; Chloe, Jane and Alice, and the ALF dolls; Lorna and Amy.


 My dolls are made using old white sheets that are no longer suitable for bed linen, my daughter said I could have different colour dolls so I will be hoping to create more different colour dolls using different material in the new year.

Monday, 12 December 2016

Resolutions resolved

I wrote some resolutions for myself back in January. This is a consideration on how I got on with each of them.

1. Piano teaching - I taught piano to eight people this year, and despite a lot of coming and going I managed to keep teaching all year (except August). I also helped one of my pupils achieve a distinction in her grade one.
2. Concerts - I performed ten piano pieces in concerts this year, the tune that went down best of all was Queste Notte by Einaudi.
3. Zumba- my main source of exercise became zumba which I started in February. Zumba has changed venue since then but has been a real find this year. It is also a good activity to do with my daughter.

1. Wattpad -  I said I would make more use of Wattpad this year and I did. I now have twelve items on there. My story 'Underground' has proved to be the most popular so far. It is written in the first person and is about sinsiter goings on during a commuter's daily tube journey.
2. A social media strategy - I feel a little happier with FaceBook; I made more friends and managed to make my news feed a little more pleasant, although I still find it a quite unsatisfactory virtual environment, I think GooglePlus feels a lot nicer. I'm also happier with other social media; blogger, Pinterest, YouTube. I'm not very popular on other Social Media, but they feel more open and honest. I've been developing Deviant Art and Wattpad. I hope 'At the Piano' on 8tracks might get enough likes to go gold. I also have nearly 50 book reviews on GoodReads.

1. ALF Creations - I raised some money for charity through my arts and crafts stall, as well as through my regular contributions.
2. Landscape paintings - although I have been painting pictures for many years, most of them are portraits, this year I produced a few more landscapes, primarily so they could be more easily used in an ALF calendar and to represent some of my songs on YouTube.

1. Walking - as well as zumba I walked more in 2016 and I would like to do more walking in 2017
2. Giving - I would like to expand my charity and voluntary work next year. Maybe 2017 should be a year of living more generously.
3. Blogging - I feel that working on my blog has helped both my art and my writing; having to think about the combination of words and pictures that make up a good blog post.
4. Creativity - art, music and writing are areas I continually want to develop, I think next year will be similar, plus a longed for visit to New York.

Saturday, 3 December 2016

Craft stall for Trinity Homeless

The chairty coffee morning for Trinity Homeless at the URC, Northwood Hills, was quieter than previous occasions. I was joined by both my mother and my daughter, so that made the occassion extra special.


The table was smaller than usual and I had brought new display items with me so it took a little longer to set my stall up. Amy helped a lot in this, arranging the dolls and the books very nicely. I was also given a smaller table which I used exclusively for my variety of cards.

We enjoyed a cup of tea and a chat and Amy took pictures of the church's interior which she thought might be useful for a life and death art project. Despite a slow start, interest in my crafts grew and in the end I sold over twenty cards, mostly Christmas cards, and about ten lavender scenters. The church was cleared and locked up very swiftly, but I was able to donate money to the homeless charity via a lady who took part in the Big Sleep Out.

This was my ninth craft stall since presenting my first one in a wine bar in Eastcote in 2013. I hope to branch out a little more for craft stall number ten and maybe go somewhere where my Star Heart Dolls might prove to be more popular.

Thursday, 1 December 2016

ALF Christmas Cards

I worked out that the best time of year to work on Christmas ideas was in January. You are not caught up in the pre-Christmas rush, the taste of Christmas is still in the air, there is a bit of a lull in many other areas of life and the memory of the festive season is still fresh. I started on my batch of Christmas cards in January 2015.

And Amy's were developed in October 2015.