Monday, 30 March 2009

A weekend in pictures..

How the weekends just fly by, all my good intentions of posting last night flew out the window for a lovely romantic evening with my hubby. I have so many little things to share I thought it be best just to show my weekend in pictures...

Friday Afternoon

Collages and inspiration an inspiration board

A beautiful owl brooch from Betty Jo Designs (we had a little brooch swap)

Saturday

Channeling Coco Chanel

Fabulous books from our morning rummage of Salvo's Op Shop

Tiny treasures for the Writing Workshop, 'Treasure Box' activity

Lights off for Earth Hour - reading by candlelight

Sunday

Custom brooches for Georgie Love's 3rd Birthday

A beautiful 'just because' pressie from my hubby
The Sun's Babies by Edith Howes 1911

A beautiful weekend and a fabulous new week beginning, four days until holidays, I can't wait! Many wonderful things to do, including a zine to create, stock to make for some up coming projects, an interview with the local paper, two novels to read, a makeover of the lounge room and backyard and a visit from my beautiful in-laws all the way from Queensland. I think I will be a busy girl!

Much love and vintage book pages
xxx



Saturday, 28 March 2009

Shopping List Saturday..

Deep in the bottom of the garden under the ivy and weeping willows little mushroom rings appear. If you listen carefully you can hear tiny voices catching on the wind. Are they the fairies or the mushrooms themselves coming to dance in the afternoon sunshine? Find your secret garden key and come down the garden path with me to explore the world of mushrooms and toadstools..








Inspired by the memories of my childhood and art that is the beautiful red mushroom with white polka dots, all my inquisitive dreams came true when I saw these beautiful works on Etsy... You see mushrooms really do come to life. Perhaps they are the ones who get the fairies into mischief!

Take a moment to brew a fresh pot of tea and pop over to the fabulous Fancy Picnic to check out the other amazing Shopping Lists. The perfect Saturday afternoon.

My writing workshop was so fabulous, new ideas and stories galore! Including a fabulous little children's tale I must bring to life about one little girl, a very special key and a giant and intriguing old house.

Much love and mystical dreams
xxx



Congratulations! Giveaway Winners!!

Happy Birthday little blog! What a wonderful week it has been! Thank you to everyone who entered my first giveaway, I was just so excited and overwhelmed this morning when I counted the entries and there was over 130! I just adored everyone's sweet comments and wish we could all celebrate with a lovely big tea party.

After a lovely morning of putting all the entries into my favourite little box my lovely hubby drew out the two lucky winners....

The little box of entries

So a BIG congratulations and thank you to.......

fancypicnic the winner of the mixed media original collage 'Ballet History'

Blossom the winner of the three custom brooches

Thank you so much for all your support, i just love my little blog and being able to share my world and all my favourite things with you. I hope there will be many more years of blogging to come.

Have a wonderful Saturday whatever you are up to! I'm off to get ready for the writing workshop. Can't wait to spend some quality time with my pen and notebook.

Much love and birthday celebrations!
xxx


Friday, 27 March 2009

Words and Pictures - Little Things

In my world fairies have always lived at the bottom of my garden. We would take have high tea together from tiny daisy cups and hide amongst the wild mushrooms when they occasionally blossomed between the birds of paradise and giant palms that inhabited my childhood backyard.

I grew up in the Tropics, not the best place to find a fairy, I occasionally thought, as I opened my picture books and saw beautiful cottages with autumn leaves littering the ground, whilst the fairies danced by bubbling brooks.


But my fairies were very special, they didn't mind a little rain or wind during the wet season. I made them tiny houses, cyclone proof of course and we would dance the rainy afternoons away with giggles and whispers, my fairies and I.

I have long since left my lovely house in the Tropics and often wonder what trouble my fairies are making now. I know of course they are being well loved, you see when set off on my adventure, I left some very special instructions for my new little sister to one day find. Tricks about how to build fairy houses and secret rules for fairy games.

Occasionally I still hear a whisper on the wind, calling me out to play and when I see a tiny mushroom growing or collect a beautiful feather, I smile and remember all my adventurous afternoons deep in the garden. So when brew a pot of tea and watch the sun go down over my rose bushes and lavender, I always make a special tiny pot for my dearest little friends, my fairies...

'A rustle on the wind reminds us a fairy is near' - Anonymous


Thank you so much Pip from Meet me at Mikes who has created this inspiring writing exercise each week. It is a beautiful opportunity to share stories and adventures.

Much love and tea in daisy cups..
xxx

Thursday, 26 March 2009

My Creative Space..

What a wonderful wild and busy week it has been! My is it really Thursday already! Between winding up the first term of school, all the wonderful messages and sales from my giveaway and crocheting like a crazy woman to get my gorgeous friend Moana's baby blanket finished before her beautiful little boy Bailey entered the world, it has been an exciting and exhausting week indeed.

My creative space this week are my preparations for the Creative Writing workshop I'm running this Saturday, the first for the year for our local writers group, Poetic Justice Publishing. I'm so excited and love taking some time out to write and workshop with other creative people.

My creative space: writing books, artline pens, ink, three notebooks (I have a moleskine journal, a cheap notebook for writing practice and drafts and a tiny moleskine cahier that I keep on me always for lists and little thoughts) and the format for the workshop. In my notebook is the draft I wrote for this week's words and pictures which I will post tomorrow.

My favourite writing books Writing Down the Bones and Wild Mind by Natalie Goldberg and my new favourite Bird by Bird by Ann Lamott. I've also been on working on my goal to send beautiful words throughout the world and have been letter writing throughout the week. I'm sending them around the globe to new friends and old ones, I just love the idea of taking a moment to pen ones thoughts and feelings. If you would like a letter just let me know and soon your mailbox will be full of lovely words.

Remeber my anniversary giveaway is being drawn on Saturday midday (Australian time) so if you haven't entered yet just pop a comment onto Sunday's post. I'm so overwhelmed by the amazing response, I wish everyone could win! I think I might have to have another one very soon.

Head over to Kristy at Kootoyoo to join in the fun and show off your Creative Space.

Hope everyone is having a wonderful week, not long until the weekend!
Much love and autumn leaves.
xxx

Tuesday, 24 March 2009

My Favourite Things...

It's report writing time again, so I must make this post short and sweet. I just needed a moment away from the marking and the madness to share with you my favourite things for today. This is procrastination at its finest. I think I have officially mastered the art of delaying the inevitable... and what better way to steal a few moments than with some beautiful creations.

The amazing artwork of Sarajo Frieden

Oh so delightful (I need it now) fabric created by the fabulous Ink and Spindle

Must have bag of the week - Recycled canvas and lace tote by Forest Bound

The most beautiful of flying dreams created by the incredibly talented Jayme McGowan of Roadside Projects

Oh and I must tell you my lovely friend in blogland, Grechenmist is having a giveaway to celebrate to blog's anniversary. We share the same week which I thought was very sweet. Pop over and say hi for your chance to win this amazing print set.

the dream stay with me and we get together and dream

Hope you are having a wonderful and inspiring Tuesday. Don't forget to enter my special first anniversary giveaway. To enter just read and comment on Sunday's post, only four days to go!

Thank you to everyone who has already entered, blogged and bought brooches. I'm just so touched by the response and just adore everyone's messages. Thank you so much for all your love and support. You are all amazing!

Much love for my little studio that needs a tidy up and some rain to help my roses grow.
xxx



Sunday, 22 March 2009

First Anniversary GIVEAWAY!

As promised I'm very excited to announce my first anniversary giveaway. It has been a truly amazing year and what better way to say thank you for all your support, comments and kindness then with a delightful giveaway. My anniversary is next Saturday so this is really a whole week celebration and why not, I just love a party.

So because I just couldn't decide what I want to giveaway there will be two prizes, so two lucky people will be receiving lovely little packages in the mail.

The first item is an new original mixed media collage titled 'Ballet History'. I've put this piece together especially for the giveaway and the Ballet theme is because I created the artwork on the cover of a lovely 1950's Ballet appreciation manual called 'Prelude to Ballet'. Some of the pages and images also feature in the collage along with part of a vintage fan, lace and a 19th century letter.

Ballet History -Original Mixed Media Collage

The second giveaway item is a very special custom design collection of three brooches to celebrate what you love in the world. Created just for you this custom collection is one of a kind, you even get to name it!

Your very own collection..

To go into the draw to win one of special prizes all you have to do is follow these really super easy instructions.

1. Go to my Etsy Shop and find one thing you love.
2. Come back here and leave a comment on this post and let me know what you found!
3. 2 bonus entries if you blog about my little giveaway! (please comment and let me know so I can come visit your blog and say hi.)
4. 3 bonus entries if you buy something from my Etsy shop between now and Saturday the 28th.

Too easy! The giveaway will be drawn on Saturday the 28th at midday(Australian time).

Good luck and thank you so much for making my first year of blogging so wonderful!

Hope you are having a wonderful day
xxx



Little Sunday Shop Update

With so much lovely fabric and so many things to heart I just adore sitting down at my desk and creating little brooches filled with love. After a stock up on fabulous fabric yesterday I created a new little collection which is available in my Etsy shop now.

There is a little something for everyone, especially those who love stationary, flea markets and my secret favourite tattoos.

Each brooch is very special and is one of a kind, so make sure you pop in and check them out and celebrate what you love.

I will be back later this afternoon to announce my first anniversary giveaway which will run until next Saturday. I'm so excited that Her Library Adventures is turning one and to celebrate I have an original piece of artwork and a special collection of three custom brooches to giveaway. Pictures and more details to come so stay tuned.

Hope you are having a lovely Sunday indeed!
xxx


Saturday, 21 March 2009

Shopping List Saturday

As I search the world for inspiration I find myself drawn to parts of my childhood, stories, tales and adventures captured somewhere deep in my memory. Last week on my search for beautiful old keys, I stumbled upon another of my very favourite things... the postcard and realised just how much the art of correspondence has inspired my world.

I've always been obsessed with mail, I know the very sound of the postman's bike and as I child I would race down our driveway to retrieve all the delights in the mailbox. I was utterly captured by Nick Bantock's exquisite series of books Griffin & Sabine - An Extraordinary Correspondence, which dance the worlds between a picture book, a love story and a series of letters and postcards. It was these books that inspired my collection of vintage postcards, discarded notes and shopping lists and my fascination with art of letter writing.







1. The Love Letter- Original Painting by penandpaper
2. Monsieur and Madame Carte Postale by mulberrymuse
3. Vintage Postcard on linen -pillow by Flax and Spindle
4. Postcup by bailey doesn't bark
5. Postcard Garland Rouge by lobsterandswan
6. British Envelope purse by Tabitha Emma

Seeing these beautiful creations by some of my very favourite Etsians, I am engulfed with the same feeling I used to get running down the drive way to the letter box full of anticipation and longing for the beginnings of an extrodinary correspondance. Bring back the letters, folded and sealed with wax, the postcards stained with ink, if our world is an English village there should be people bustling around the streets delivering us letters on pretty silver trays.

Take a moment to brew a fresh pot of tea and pop over to the fabulous Fancy Picnic to check out the other amazing Shopping Lists. The perfect start to your Saturday.

Today my adventures include, finishing my beautiful friend's baby blanket as she is due any day now, creating some new mixed media collages inspired by this morning's post and a search for some postcards and writing paper to begin my own artful correspondence. What are your plans for the day?

PS. I love writing letters, if you would like one in your letterbox let me know, my goal for the year is to fill the world with beautiful words one letter at a time.

Much love, stamps and ink
xxx



Friday, 20 March 2009

On this rosy kind of afternoon..

I'm feeling rather rosy this afternoon, I was even tap dancing around my classroom in my new red shoes, as my students looked on in amusement. You see it is Friday again... and the world slows down just for a brief moment so I can stop and capture its beauty.

I'm also rosy because there was a lovely little parcel in my mail box this afternoon from Readings bookstore! I heart Readings, they are so wonderful, if you live in Australia and need a book, they are your people. After reading Pip from Meet me at Mikes post about the inspiring book 'Bird by Bird' I just had to purchase myself a copy and it arrived, in under three days, all beautiful and new. I just love books to pieces.

Bird by Bird - Anne Lamott

With all this rosy enthusiasm and inspiration I am eager to get out my sewing machine this evening and fill my shop with some new delights. It never seizes to amaze me how inspired I am at the most peculiar of time. Last night at 1am, I was scrabbling for a pen and paper (this is why you need a notebook beside you bed) to scribble down some new phrases and an idea for a new mixed media series. This is what I found beside my bed this morning.

Now to deciphering what it all says and start the creative process!

To celebrate my rosy afternoon I sat back with my beautiful new copy of mix tape, a cup of Lady Grey tea in my favourite cup which belonged to my great grandmother and a beautiful recipe book called Cupcakes by Susanna Tee getting inspired to make some delightful rose petal cupcakes.

A pretty pink afternoon...

So many reasons to be rosy! I'm so excited and owe a big thank you to the beautiful Emma Lamb for this lovely award... to read all about it check out Emma's fabulous blog...

I just adore the amazing all the people I have met through blogging and I think this award is a beautiful way to celebrate the wonderful friendships and bonds formed through these wonderful communities. I would like to give this award to some very special people for their amazing support and kindness...

Cam of CurlyPops, Cathy of TinnieGirl, Kristy of Kootoyoo, Megan of This Byron Life and Linda of two pink possums....

Well I'm off to refill my tea cup, pull out my scissors and start creating. Pop into my little shop later this evening and tomorrow for a new collection of brooches and artwork. I'll be back in the morning with my Saturday Shopping List, inspired this week, by the art of correspondence.

Much love and rosy hugs!
xxx



Thursday, 19 March 2009

My Creative Space..

My creative space this week is the beginnings of my new little adventure. For the past five years I have been dreaming up ideas, drawing layouts, scribbling text and gluing pages, all with the distant thoughts of create a literary zine. Finally after all these years of dreaming are now coming together as I am finally beginning the production of my very first zine appropriately titled.. Her Library Adventures.

Part fiction, a little literary theory and great deal of musing amongst text and photography, Her Library Adventures is a journey through the written word and the tales and dreams behind dusty bookshelves. I hope to have it complete and for sale in my little Etsy shop in early May.

Filled with notebooks, scribbles, photography, drafts, ink and inspiring works by Nick Bantock, T.S Eliot, Lewis Carroll and Virginia Woolf my desk is overflowing with centuries of words.

I stumble upon old artworks and collages and am inspired to rework, redesign and bring all my years of work together into beautiful ink stained and hand stitched pages.

Head over to Kristy at Kootoyoo to join in the fun and show off your Creative Space.

I'm off to create, read, laugh and enjoy a delightful evening with my hubby over wine and homemade pizza.

Much love on this beautiful Thursday
xxx



Wednesday, 18 March 2009

Words and Pictures - Cosy

Cosy - to me this word brings many images, a lovely cup of tea, hugs on a cold night, curling up with a book in my favourite chair, sleeping in on Sunday morning. I have thought all day about what makes me feel really cosy in life and I realised it was not to be warm or nurtured, it was in fact to feel at home.. deep within my soul.

It has taken me many years to find the key to my home and after much searching I found it were closer than I thought, there in the bottom of my handbag.. was my pen.


On my Grade three report card, my teacher told me I was a prolific writer and from that moment I have written almost everyday since. Hundreds of pages, more words than I can image created with ink, staining my soul. They may not amount to an acclaimed novel just yet, but they are all mine. Filled with emotion, drawn from deep within, a place I can only find in those quiet moments. My world is warm, inviting and cosy.. when I have a pen in my hand and my journal in front of me, a fire rages in my soul. There is nothing between my heart and my words except my ink stained hands.

Thank you to all those writers who inspire me daily.. Jane Austen, Beatrix Potter, Emily Bronte, Virgina Woolf, Sonya Hartnett, Sophie Gee and my very favourite fictional writer Josephine March, for all your beautiful words...

Thank you also to Pip from Meet me at Mikes who has created this inspiring writing exercise each week. It is a beautiful time to remember all the things you love.


Much love and ink stains..
xxx



Sunday, 15 March 2009

A literary weekend..

Searching through a shelf of old books may not seem like much to some but I find just adore the search for that very special piece of history. I must have married well because my hubby seems to enjoy it almost as much as I do. Saturday we wondered down to Sweet Lily, a lovely little cottage style homewares shop with antiques out the back. They have a wonderful collection of books and antiques. I was looking for some cheap damaged books to use in my artwork but what we discovered was very special indeed.


From top to bottom:
Beautiful red leather early 1900's copy of Sesame and Lilies by John Ruskin. Another 'Rules of Syntax' book for my collection filled with sweet ink stained pages. A 1895 copy stunning hardcover copy of Sweetheart Travellers by S. R Crochett. My hubby's pick - A History of the English-Speaking Peoples by Winston S. Churchill


Sesame & Lilies and Sweetheart Travellers came from the same collection and both have these amazing worn pages that I just adore.

Inspired by these beautiful pages I just couldn't resist creating a new mixed media collage, inspired by my favourite tale of adventure by Mr. Lewis Carroll.

Many Tea Things - Original Mixed Media Collage

Created on an early 20th century prescription book cover, this collage is something I've been dreaming up for a little while and can't wait to make some more in the series. You can find it in my little shop now.

Remember to let me know if you have fabric scraps you would like created into a collage brooch. For more information read my post from earlier today. Also my new collection of brooches is selling quickly so make sure you pop over to my shop and see if there is something special for you or a loved one.

I hope you have had a wonderful weekend, I'm off to cook dinner and get ready for 'Lost in Austen' I can't wait. Everyone needs a little Austen in their lives.

Much love
xxx


Shop Update!

Sophie Isobel Designs is simply bursting with new brooches including two new scrap collage brooches hot off the sewing machine. Inspired my the changing seasons there is a little bit of Spring and a touch of Autumn in this new collection.

A little something for the artist, the shutter bug and those who can't resist a garden party.

Two of my favourites - 'I heart Owls' and The Photographer.

This lovely little one off collection is now available in my Etsy shop. As you can see I'm getting very close to 100 sales which is very exciting! To mark this special event, my 100th sale will receive TWO custom brooches as a special gift with their purchase. Sale 99 will also receive a special treat so get in quick!

Do you have lovely little scraps just lying around your studio? If you send me your scrap fabric, I will create a lovely scrap collage brooch for you for half price. Not only will you be cleaning your studio and helping the planet, you get a fab one of a kind brooch for only four dollars (US). Interested? Leave a comment or email at sophieisobeldesigns@hotmail.com and tell me about your ideas and lovely scraps. Can't wait to hear from you!

Hope you are having a wonderful Sunday! I will be back later after a little more creating and some essay marking with the delights I found antiquing yesterday.

I'm can hear the kettle calling my name.
Much love
xxx

Saturday, 14 March 2009

Shopping List Saturday

As you wonder deep down the garden path, through the roses bushes and weeping willows you come to a door, a secret door that only a key will open... My shopping list this week is inspired by one of my favourite little trinkets, vintage keys. So come with me as we explore the depth of cupboard drawers and shoe boxes to find the perfect key to open the secret garden.







1. Keep to the key - greeting card by littlebrownsparrow
2. Locked Away Print by LeaSeguin
3. Favorite Things Print by MarmeeCraft
4. Home by OpulentOddities
5. The Letter -Print Canvas by ArtoftheMoment
6. Nest -fine art photograph by AliHarper

My fascination with old keys began with an old TV movie version of the novel The Secret Garden and a beautiful children's book titled The Secret Staircase by Jill Barklem. With old keys comes many adventures, doors to be unlocked and secrets waiting to be revealed. Today they are scattered all over my house and often around my neck as a reminder to always keep my eyes and imagination open and on the look out for my very own Secret Garden.

Take a moment to brew a fresh pot of tea and pop over to the fabulous Fancy Picnic to check out the other amazing Shopping Lists. The perfect Saturday afternoon..

My, it's Saturday and there are just so many wonderful things to do, I'm going to pop out to one of my favourite antique shops to and scour through the old books and photographs for a treasure or two. I'm also on the look out for new fabric and the chance to take my new ruby slippers on their first outing.
Have a beautiful Saturday
xxx