Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Spring Thrifting

It's time for a round up of everything I thrifted this Spring! Over the Spring months I have had a really good run of luck with thrift finds. I actually worked for a chain of charity shops until this year, and although I found a lot of awesome stuff at work, the last thing I wanted to do in my free time was thrift. Leaving that job has re-awoken my love of searching for thrifted treasures, and I've been enjoying exploring some of the charity and second hand shops in my new area. 

I picked up some brilliant art supply bargains, starting with this wooden case full of watercolour paints for only £2. I'm still finding my feet with watercolour, so having some low cost paints to play around with without worrying about the expense is perfect.

I also found a set of synthetic paint brushes, a big palette (which I've been wanting for ages!) and a roll of painting canvas. Now I just need to make time to actually do some artwork...

This punch and eyelet set was just £1 and seems to be really good quality. I think the eyelets are intended for scrapbooking, but I'm hoping they'll be strong enough for some decorative eyelet and lacing details on some clothing I'm planning to make.

After seeing them everywhere on the stationery tags on Instagram, I really wanted a vintage letter writing case, and I found a gorgeous black leather one! I also got a vintage brown leather case which originally held a toiletry set, but I am going to fill it with art supplies and use it as a portable art kit. 

When I went to the sculpture event at Bristol Botanic Garden there was a book sale being held to raise money for the gardens. Most of the books were gardening related, but there were a few natural history books, and I snapped up this Mushrooms and Toadstools book and Marjorie Blamey's Flowers of the Countryside. The people running the book sale were so helpful and sweet, and looked through all the books, trying to find ones with good illustrations for me! The mushroom book is very detailed and describes the biology and growth of fungi, which is exactly what I have been looking for. Flowers of the Countryside has the most gorgeous illustrations, and a surprising amount of information on creating your own botanical illustrations. I also got a tiny little Observer Book of Birds, which has the most charming pictures, from a charity shop.

I got this sheer blouse, which has a photographic print of fields of lupins in pastel colours. The print reminds me of the flowers in Skyrim. It will need some altering to make it suit me-right now it is baggy in all the wrong places and has tight elastic at a sort of awkward mid hip level. I couldn't pass up pastel lupins though!

I got some gorgeous jewellery from a charity shop that always seems to have loads of jewellery for really low prices. The silver necklace is Indian, and has a beautiful intricate design and shiny rhinestones. The lily of the valley pin is so precious, and I really like that the leaf pendant can also be taken off the chain and used as a pin. I think it looks a bit Lord of the Rings-esque.

One of my luckiest finds perhaps of all time was a pristine Arthurian Tarot deck, in the original box with the book.  The illustrations are absolutely beautiful, and Arthurian imagery is very significant to me-I first learned about paganism from reading The Mists of Avalon, and the legends have had a huge influence on my aesthetic and interests. It seemed really magical that this deck found me, especially as I bought it on Beltane.
[As a side note, is anyone interested in some posts on Tarot? Let me know in the comments if so!]

I have been really getting back into pastels recently, and especially loving soft blues and purples. Fitting the pastel phase was this darling vintage biscuit tin, which has Japanese scenes in misty hues on the lid and each side. I finally found a stunning paua shell, which is entirely iridescent mother of pearl gorgeousness on both sides, and makes me very happy to look at. I also got some vintage trim with a lovely cherry blossom design. 

The pastel piece de resistance was this AMAZING painting, which mixes autumnal trees (one of my favourite things) with the dreamiest lilac mountains. It is kitschy as heck but I love it so much! I can't wait to get it up on a wall.

I hope you enjoyed seeing all my thrift finds! Let me know which was your favourite in the comments.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

My Crystal Collection

Over the last few years I have slowly built up a collection of crystals. Many of them were bought in a very lucky charity (thrift) shop find of what must have been someones geology collection, and I have added more thrifted finds and a few pieces from various crystal shops. I love how crystals look and they are very much a part of my "aesthetic", I enjoy learning about geology and the scientific aspects of them, and I also like to have them around for their energy and metaphysical properties.

Sunday, May 07, 2017

Jack In The Green

 ♫ Dance with me Jack, dance along the highway ♪

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Sculpture Festival at Bristol Botanic Garden

Over the Easter bank holiday weekend I visited Bristol Botanic Garden, for their Easter Sculpture Festival and Quilting Exhibition. I had been to the Botanic Garden many times before, but never for this particular event, so I was intrigued.

Friday, April 21, 2017

Playlist: Moving On to Better Things

I wasn't really sure how to phrase this post. Suffice to say, there's been a lot of crappy stuff happening in the last half decade or so of my life, and it has weighed heavy on me. I finally feel like my life is moving on from that. I really want to leave it all well and truly behind me and emerge shiny, happy and FABULOUS from the ashes!

Sunday, April 09, 2017

Adventures In Fabric Dyeing

A while ago I thrifted a carrier bag full of very old Dylon dyes (the ones that came in tins, anyone remember those?). There were an array of wonderful colours, and I wanted to experiment, so I grabbed all the light coloured natural fabrics I had to hand and set to work.

Sunday, April 02, 2017

Museum of the Moon

I've been following Bristol based artist Luke Jerram's work since I went to his wonderful, surreal Withdrawn installation in 2015. So when I read that he would be touring a new, moon themed installation, I was very excited, and hoped that it would stop off in his home city at some point. After much anticipation, it was announced that Museum of the Moon would be open to the public at the beautiful Wills Memorial Building (part of Bristol University) over the last weekend in March. The amazing Neo Gothic architecture of the building was the perfect backdrop to the surreal sight of a mini (but still pretty large!) moon, seemingly floating above the ground of its own accord.