A truly beautiful Minxy mix of charm, inspiration, practical advice, and pretty projects to simplify and beautify your life and home. - Jane Brocket, The Gentle Art of Domesticity
Last week we had a small shindig (at home, of course) to celebrate the launch of the new book. This was really so I could thank everyone involved for all their hard work and for being so supportive.
It was truly special working with the team we had on The Crafty Minx at Home. Here’s some of my favourite images – more to follow soon.
A few of you asked if I’ll be doing any Christmas craft this year, and I’ve certainly been working on decorations for magazines, even if my own home is looking decidedly un-festive so far.
Here’s a few projects I made for Australian Women’s Weekly’s December issue. Grab a copy from any newsagent for the instructions or create your own riff on these simple ideas: French linen and Liberty print fabric (torn into ribbon strips) from Calico & Ivy, old printer’s letters from Lawson’s Auctioneers, hessian sack from Reverse Garbage and pompom wool from Rozelle Markets.
My tips? Have fun, and keep it low-fi.
Meet Maya, our gorgeous model for my craft project in this month’s Australian Women’s Weekly. I have to tell you, she was a STAR – we nailed this shot in less than ten minutes. Not bad for a four-year-old.
This is a super-simple crafty project and a great idea for turning old saucers into something new. Grab a copy of AWW for the instructions (or wait for my next book, out in early 2013 – yet another sneak peek at what’s inside).
I visited Channel 9 again last Friday to demonstrate simple decoupage on Mornings. Here’s my favourite tea tray, decorated with a Marie Antoinette-style postcard from Versailles and a bunch of Redoutes roses – just a little sneak peek at what’s inside my next book, out early next year.
I should have some video links to post soon if you missed the segments, but will be appearing again at 9:45am this Thursday to share a cute, inexpensive idea for decorating childrens’ rooms, and then the following Friday. Stay tuned.
I’ve started doing a regular craft segment for Mornings on Ch9, and today was the first one. I had such fun – Sonia & David are hilarious. We made three fairly simple fabric wall hangings in the five or so minutes I was on air with these inexpensive IKEA fabrics and frames from a discount store. David’s was a bit dodgy (too eager with the staple gun) but Sonia gets top marks. My tip? Buy the fabric from Publisher Textiles for cool & original wall art, or try designs by Florence Broadhurst at Signature Prints.
Stay tuned for news of the next one – it’s likely to be Thursday or Friday next week around 9:45am. We may be getting into some sticky business with decoupage. More soon.
Fabric Wall Hanging project
This has to be one of the thriftiest, most striking ways to decorate the walls of your home. Choose any fabric you like and turn it into a framed canvas. It’s easy to DIY and inexpensive compared with buying original art or prints.
- Wooden frame
- Printed fabric (heavy linen or upholstery fabric works best) to fit frame; enough to cover the surface, sides and a good few inches extra to tuck neatly out of sight against the wall. A metre provides a good-sized canvas to gaze upon and fits well above most beds or sofas
- Staple gun and staples
- Iron your fabric flat, print down.
- Place your frame over the fabric then fold up the edges of one side and staple along the edge at 2 or 3-inch intervals.
- Continue stapling while keeping the fabric taught. You might want to focus on the corners first before stapling along each edge.
- When you get to a corner, fold the fabric carefully around the edge like you would if you were wrapping a gift, then staple in place.
- Keep going until you’ve finished all four sides. Snip off any excess fabric with scissors.
Measure down approx. 10-15cm from the top of the frame on either side. Make a mark of the measurements with the pencil – this is where your screw hooks will go. Take hooks and tap into place with the hammer, then screw into wood until secure. Tie wire around one side, then stretch to the other side and tie as well by wrapping wire over on itself at least 6-10 times and then bending backwards to secure. Clip off any excess wire with tin snips/pliers.
We have a sort of alcove in the hallway which, up until recently, was decorated with mismatched frames portraying family photographs, illustrations, artwork and favourite postcards, but I took them all down in readiness for a change. I know the entire hallway would look striking and gorgeous wallpapered on both sides, but I’m loathe to make such a big commitment (have you seen what a faff it is to remove? Scary). So my new thought is creating a stencil to repeat in the alcove, then try out down one wall and then the other, depending on how it looks. At the very worst, I can paint over the lot.
Here’s a few motifs I’m considering – fleur de lys, crowns, tropical birds or orchids – but perhaps we’ll steer away from the traditional with a Banksy-inspired graffiti print, which could work a treat. Decisions, decisions.
If the craft material of choice for winter is woolly yarn, for the sizzling days of summer it must surely be paper. I’ve long admired the cool, modern style of Sydney-based artist Anna-Wili Highfield’s paper sculptures, having seen them in various magazines and window displays over the years. They have the still-life fascination of taxidermy but the abstract details of torn paper, hanging threads and hinted-at forms make them more lively and desirable than any stuffed animal.
Currently working with paper and copper pipe, Highfield’s paper pieces are constructed from archival cotton paper which is painted and sewn together. Her commercial clients include Carla Zampatti, Bianca Spender, Anthropologie and Hermès, with client commissions from across the globe. One day I would love to purchase one of my own. Perhaps a paper Pegasus, or one of her many fine owl studies.