Sunday 3 March 2024

3 Organizational Tips for Sorting your Fabric Stash



As you build your own fabric collect of painted fabrics and textiles while they can be the start of some beautiful creative projects you have to also think about how you store and maintain your collection.  When things are all over the place it can become overwhelming and a barrier to spending time in your creative space, so I have three simple tips to help you keep on top of your growing fabric collection and make them readily accessible: 


Embrace Categorization:

The first step is to create a system that separates your fabrics based on type of fabric and color. Group similar fabrics together, like all your cotton fabrics in one section, silks in another, etc. Within each type category, further subdivide them by color. This way, you can easily locate a specific fabric..

Clear Containers:

I found with the space I have that having clear plastic bins or storage boxes allows you to easily see the contents without needing to rummage through each container. I have two different sizes for the larger fabric and then smaller ones. Choose containers in various sizes to accommodate different fabrics. Think about the space you have and what would use the space more effectively.

Labelling:

Label each container clearly and you can go further to add the colors or type of fabric. You can use a label maker for a clean and professional look, or handwrite labels on sturdy cardstock and secure them with tape.

By implementing these simple tips, you'll transform your fabric collection from a jumbled mess to a well-organized haven of inspiration. Remember, a little planning goes a long way in ensuring your creative flow remains uninterrupted as you delve into your next creative adventure!


Declutter/swap:

Regular Decluttering and Donation: By regularly reviewing what you have you can think about ways to reduce, or you can do a swap with another artist and brings new and interesting fabrics into your stash. I find it difficult to part ways with my fabric but I guess it gets easier the more you do it.

Saturday 24 February 2024

100 Days of Art - with Amanda Trought (Day 1-7) - #100dayproject



What would happen if you shared what you do for the next 100 days?


I'm excited to announce that I'm joining the 100 Day Project! For the next 100 days, I'll be sharing 100 pieces of my art, from mixed media and sculptures to fabric creations and jewelry.

I plan to share a diverse mix of styles and inspirations! Each piece comes with a little story, and I hope it sparks your own creativity, whether you're a seasoned artist or just starting out.

Catch all the daily updates on my Instagram account, where some of the art will even be available for purchase! For a weekly recap come back here to my blog every Saturday.

Join me on Instagram

If you are still on the fence about joining the 100 Day Project, there's still time! Jump in for any number of days, leave encouraging comments on others' posts, and most importantly, enjoy the creative journey! Remember, progress over perfection – you'll be surprised where you end up.

Staying Stress-Free During a 100 Day Project - 

  1. Be Flexible: Don't pressure yourself to create, you can share tips, your work, process, behind the scenes - it is totally up to you. Some days will be easier than others, so allow for flexibility in your approach and output. 
  2. Focus on Progress, Not Perfection: This project is about exploring your creativity, not achieving instant perfection. Embrace the journey, celebrate small wins, and learn from every step along the way.
  3. Supportive Community: Connect with other participants online or in person. Share your work, offer encouragement, and draw inspiration from each other's experiences. Remember, you're not alone in this!
I hope this helps! Remember, the most important thing is to have fun and enjoy the creative process. 

Here are the first 7 days of the artwork that I have shared:

Day 1 of 100 Days of Art

Day 2 of 100 Days of Art

Day 3 of 100 Days of Art

Day 4 of 100 Days of Art

Day 5 of 100 Days of Art

Day 6 of 100 Days of Art

Day 7 of 100 Days of Art


Before you go - Come and join us in the Art Resource Hub





Thursday 22 February 2024

Material Musings - Stay Inspired with Slow Stitching and Fabric Art

 



Welcome to this weeks Material Musings, I'll be sharing some of my projects that feature stitched faces, These pieces reminder us of the possibilities that slow stitching and fabric art offer.

As you check out the video, also take a look at 4 ways that you can paint and stitch on fabric and tell your story:

1. Embrace the Storytelling Aspect

Each face stitched onto fabric tells a unique story, capturing moments, emotions, and memories. Slow stitching and creativity allows you to express those things that words might not be able to express. Using needle and thread enables you to weave tales of love, loss, joy, and resilience. As you bring your stories to life through fabric art. let the storytelling aspect of slow stitching fuel your creativity and expression.



2. Experiment with Texture and Depth

Explore possibilities of texture and depth with wax resist hand-dyed fabric, you can get some amazing effects. This technique adds a layer interest to your fabric art. Play with different colors, patterns, and resist techniques to achieve unique effects. Experimenting with texture and depth opens up a world of creative possibilities that will keep you inspired and engaged.


3. Add Beading

The addition of beads not only adds visual interest but also infuses your creations with additional pops of color. Experiment with bead placement, size, and color to enhance the beauty of your stitched pieces and bring them to life.



4. Therapeutic effects

There is also the therapeutic effects of slow stitching and creating on fabric to consider. The repetitive motion of stitches brings about a calmness that you can dip into whenever the mood takes you.


As you step into your own fabric art journey, remember to embrace the storytelling aspect and experiment with texture and depth. Let your creativity flow freely as you explore the endless possibilities of slow stitching and fabric art and watch as your imagination takes flight. So, grab your needles, threads, and fabrics, and let's dive into a world of creativity, inspiration, and endless possibilities together.



You can check out my Fabric Fragments kit which includes a selection of fabric both hand painted, dyed and pre printed. It has also included one of my painted and stitched pieces and videos on working with your fabric. Patrons get a discount on all courses and digital products on my course platform. 

I would love to see what you create, let me know what you are working on.
Blessings!

Before You Go...

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Thursday 15 February 2024

Arts and Wellness Cafe - Stress Free


Welcome to the Arts and Wellness Cafe: Your Destination for Stress-Free Living

It's that time of the week again where we gather in our virtual studio for another session of the Arts and Wellness Cafe. Today, we're diving into the theme of a "Stress Free," creative environment and life.

We can feel 
frazzled and overwhelmed at the curveballs that can be thrown at us when we least expect them, and we look at different ways we can change our point of view and look at some creative practices that will help you navigate those moments with a bit of ease.  Check out the video above where I will discuss this and share some inspiring activities that you can try out.

I also have 3 additional tips for you to think about:

Tip 1: Art Journaling Joy

Art journaling is a great activity for you to try if you haven't done so yet.  Grab your favorite pens, paints, and take a therapeutic journey of self-expression. Whether you're sketching, doodling, or splashing colors onto the page, let your creativity flow freely as you release your emotions in the journal. You will find an art journal page that I have ready to add doodling and mark making.  Have some pages prepared that you can go back to when you need something quick to get on with.



In my course Filling The Creative Well, we look at ways in which we can develop our creative practice and maintain ways in which we can dip into our creative well and do activities that inspire and encourage us.

More Info HERE

Tip 2: Stitching - Material Musings

I have a number of slow-stitched projects on the go.  I am able to start working on ones depending on how I am feeling,  it is a great mindfulness practice for the busy soul. With each stitch, you are able to let your mind quieten and your worries melt away. I have prepared a Fabric Fragments bag with a selection of hand painted and preprinted fabrics with a series of videos for inspiration.  You also get a mixed media stitched piece as well.  You can check them out HERE or click on the image.


Contents of the kit will vary

Tip 3: Feed Your Soul with Inspiration around you

Find inspiration in the smallest of things.  I share a book called 'Treasured Notions'  which has some really inspiring projects in it.  You can have fun with fabric and paper scraps and use the creative ideas in the books that you have on your shelves.  I made these mini medals with some of my scrap fabric and some cardboard spools for my fabric ribbon and homemade washi tape. 



Learn to make your own stamps and stencils in my FREE course - Creative Habits




I hope you get to watch the video and think about how you can make your creative process stress free, what things do you need to change in your environment or your practice.


Until next time, stay creative, stay mindful, and above all, stay stress-free.

Before You Go

Come and check out over 400 inspiring posts, videos, digital downloads for your creative enjoyment!  Enjoy the 7 day FREE trial.



Tuesday 6 February 2024

Material Musings - Wax Resist Reveals



In Material Musings I share several projects that use combination of wax resist dyeing, clay baths, and tea solutions! The results were gorgeous and I show some of the designs that are my favorite.  There are endless possibilities when you take the time to experiment with your supplies.


Here are some suggestions for using your wax resist creations:

  • Wall Hangings - I hope to use some of the larger fabric pieces as wall hangings, adding to their backing and maybe adding some beading or other embellishments.
  • Quilting - You could incorporate the wax resist dyed fabric as part of the fabric for your quilt 
  • Make one-of-a-kind clothes using your dyed fabric. 
  • Collage - Layering, using different dyed pieces to create a fabric collage.  You could add additional elements such as paints, paper, or found objects. 
  • Slow Stitching - This is such a peaceful activity.  You could use your wax resist dyed fabric as a base or cut out shapes and stitch them onto the chosen fabric

I worked on the woven piece and will take a break from it while I think about the next steps, and maybe add beading and other embellishments. 


Fabric Fragments - I am putting together a series of fabric bags that showcase a mix of wax resist, avocado-dyed, and hand-painted fabrics. In another accompanying bag, I have placed a selection of printed fabrics The bag holds a special stitched art piece, making it a collector's item.  

Keep an eye out! These fragment bags will soon be available for purchase on my course platform HERE. Don't miss your chance to own a piece of this artistic adventure!

Before You Go






Sunday 4 February 2024

Wax Resist - Material Musings Short

 


Here is a snippet showing how I create my wax resist pieces and add clay to dye the fabric, the wax stops any color from adhering to the fabric.  You can see the full video HERE


I would then use some of the dyed fabric in some of my stitched projects.  This one has a clay dyed piece of fabric and a conventional dyed piece (the blue element) which has been stitched onto the fabric.


This meditative prayer wall hanging was initially wax resist dyed and then I added the stitches over time.  Come and join me for Material Musings to see some of the rest of the projects, on my YouTube channel.

Before You Go

Join us in the Art Resource Hub

Friday 2 February 2024

Artists Studio Tours - Barbados 2024 - A Self-Guided Tour in Barbados

 

The Artists Studio Tours Barbados 2024 is Here!

Imagine immersing yourself in the vibrant art scene of Barbados, wandering through artists studios brimming with creativity. Meet the passionate artists and witness their techniques while you discover one-of-a-kind pieces that you can cherish.  This self-guided tour isn't just about art; it's an immersive journey into the heart of Bajan culture.

I have put together some tips to help you make the most of your visit as you embark on your artistic adventure

Choose Your Studios to visit:
  • Immerse yourself in diverse mediums like painting, sculpture, textiles, and jewelry - there are 44 Artists in 27 studios.
  • Check out the online brochure if you have not yet picked one up you get to see examples of the artists work - Follow your interests! Explore as many of the studios as you can!
  • All of the studios are free to enter and the artists are happy to chat and talk about their work.

Planning:
  • Download the map - Grab a digital or physical map from the event website to chart your course.
  • Pace Yourself - Spread your visits across the two weekends (February 3rd & 4th, March 23rd & 24th) to savor the experience.
  • Studios are open 11am-5pm, so relax and arrive when inspiration strikes - artists have included their telephone numbers if you need to make additional arrangements.

Tips for a Smooth Journey:

  • Pack Light: Wear comfortable shoes, bring water, a hat and sunscreen, and consider a bag for any treasures you find.
  • Connect with the Artists and engage in conversation, ask questions, and learn about their creative process.
  • Support Local Art: If a piece speaks to you, consider purchasing it as a unique souvenir and a meaningful contribution to the community.

Bonus 
  • Combine studios with sightseeing - Plan your route so you can take pit stops on the way - take in one of the many beautiful beaches.  There are artists studios in most of the Parishes
  • Fuel your creativity, remember to take time to have something to eat and enjoy delicious Bajan cuisine.
  • Share your experience and use #ASTB2024 to connect with fellow art lovers and artists and showcase your finds.

Google Map Directions

Remember, this is your artistic adventure. Wander freely, be inspired, and bring home memories and art that will forever connect you to the magic of Barbados!


Before You Go check out the Art Resource Hub:




Arts and Wellness Cafe - Words, Creativity and Art Events



Looking forward to having you join us in the Arts and Wellness Cafe.

I take you through the word of the week and look at ways in which we can use the inspiration around us in our work.  Who are your favorite artists and what influence do they have on your growth?  I share some of mine too.

The other things that we look at in this episode is:

  • Art journal process -  we look at how we can explore the different effects we can get with the supplies that we have including graphite, and water-soluble graphite tints.
  • Fabric Art projects and resist dyeing sneak peak!
  • Question and Tip for the week to encourage and motivate you - What would be your dream collaboration?
  • Arts and Artists spotlight, lots of things are happening in Barbados with the Artists Studio Tours happening over the weekend - 3rd and 4th of February.




Take a self-guided tour of the many artists' studios scattered throughout Barbados. Meet the talented artists, view their galleries, and bring home a beautiful piece of local art to cherish. In addition, this tour provides the bonus of experiencing the beauty of Barbados itself!  Hope you can join us in this adventure!

Before you go:

Check out my online course - Filling the Creative Well












Saturday 27 January 2024

Material Musings: Weaving Big and Dyeing with Wax Resist

 


Welcome to Material Musings! This week, we're diving into two exciting textile adventures: a larger weaving project and wax resist dyeing with tea and clay.

Weaving in a Bigger Way

I originally created a series of smaller looms and wanted to increase the size so created a larger one from the wood from a canvas frame.  When weaving on a larger scale you can explore the possibilities that come with using a wider loom and thicker yarns. I have used the yarn I currently have and found ways to increase the size which you will see.  I hope you are inspired to try some of the techniques for yourself.


Wax Resist

I have been experimenting with wax resist techniques for a while now and I will show you an easy way to apply it to your fabric in various patterns and creates a barrier that prevents dye from reaching certain areas. You can create stunning designs, and unexpected color combinations.


Wax resist and clay dyed

We'll be using natural and readily available materials like tea and clay as our dyes! This allows you to experiment with unique color palettes and textures. from the earthy browns from the tea and clay, and shades of pink from avocado pits – the options and combinations are endless!

Join the Fun!

Come join me in this Material Musings adventure!  Be inspired, learn new skills, and create something truly unique and beautiful.

So, grab your favorite cup of tea (or maybe some clay!), and get ready to join me in Material Musings! I can't wait to share this journey with you, and don't forget to share your own textile creations with me on social media . I'd love to see what you come up with!



Saturday 20 January 2024

8 Ways to Recharge your Creativity

How have you been feeling creatively?  We can sometimes feel creatively parched and need a spark to help us 'refill the wells'.  Are you looking for ways to jumpstart your creativity and hit the ground running with new and innovative ideas? Here are some 8 tips to help you get started:


1. Set your sights. Whether it's a new creative idea, a writing challenge, or simply picking up a new skill, having a goal guides your creative compass. Try something new. There are usually quite a few online challenges for you to sink your teeth into, I will also be sharing a Free 12 week course called 'Kickstart Your Creativity Series' in a couple of weeks so sign up to my course platform to be notified. Sign up HERE

2. Make time for daydreaming. Schedule dedicated brain-sparking sessions. Brainstorm in the morning light, doodle during your lunch break, or let your mind wander after dark. In my latest Arts and Wellness Cafe I look at one of the Words for the Month - Stillness In our stillness we can find treasures.

3. Shake things up. Ditch the familiar. Try a new art form, write with a different voice, or explore a tool you've never touched. New experiences unlock hidden creative talents.


4. Find your inspiration tribe. Soak up the creative energy of others. Follow inspiring artists, attend workshops, or join a local group of fellow dreamers. Join us in the Creative Community on the course platform - Check it out HERE

5. Disconnect to reconnect. Sometimes, the best ideas bloom in the quiet. Take a digital detox, go for a nature walk, or lose yourself in a good book. Unplug and let your mind wander. Read that book that you have been promising yourself.


6. Tame the mental chatter. Mindfulness practices like meditation can help you focus and quiet your inner critic. A calm mind is a fertile ground for creativity. Take out your needles and thread and do some slow stitching - You can pick up some inspiration in Material Musings

7. Embrace the unknown. Step outside your comfort zone. Learn a new dance, travel to a new place, or take a class in something totally unfamiliar. New experiences jumpstart innovation.

8. Just start. Perfectionism is the creativity killer. Don't overthink it, just dive in. Pick up a pen, play with some paint supplies, doodle, create with recycled materials, do some slow stitching. The act of creation itself is the magic spark that ignites imagination.

Remember, creativity is a journey, not a destination. Keep experimenting, keep exploring, and keep feeding your curiosity. The well of wonder is always waiting to be refilled, and the greatest creations start with a single step. Now go forth and create!

Check out my course Filling the Creative Well for more creative inspiration









Wednesday 17 January 2024

Cultivating Creativity and Reflection: A Visit to the Arts and Wellness Cafe

Welcome to the Arts and Wellness Cafe, a place for those seeking inspiration to unleash their creativity and unlock their hidden talent. Today, let's embark on a journey that delves into the importance of spending time being creative and finding moments for reflection.


Word for the Month: Stillness

Our chosen word for the month is "Stillness, while I do have additional words that I will use alongside they help me to focus on areas of my life that might need attention.  Consider the idea of carving out moments of quiet in your day. It might be a few minutes of meditation, a stroll in nature, or simply sitting with your thoughts. Stillness provides the space for creativity to blossom and ideas to take root.  

Take a moment to reflect on how you can incorporate this word into your daily activities. Whether it's through art, writing, or any other creative outlet, allow yourself to reflect and be still.

Tip and Question of the Week: Balancing Act

Our tip of the week encourages you to strike a balance between productivity and relaxation. When engrossed in a project, set aside specific breaks to recharge your mind. Ask yourself: "Am I allowing myself enough time to rest and rejuvenate?" Finding this balance is key to sustained creativity and well-being.

Art Journal Process

Dive into the art journal process as a form of self-expression. Capture your thoughts, dreams, and emotions through a mix of colors, textures, and words.  I have used magazine images for inspiration and created a collage.  I also look at how you would adapt the activity for a carer, and ways to make the most of the activity. Let your creativity flow without judgment. Your art journal can become a place to explore and discover hidden parts of yourself.

Mixed Media idea for creating a collage - looking at colors and words that connect with you and creating a collage. It can be adapted for the one you are caring for.


Stitched Projects: Weaving Stories Through Craft

In the video we look at a variety of stitched projects that I have worked on.  I feel that each of them tells a story in their own way with the stitches, and the colors of the fabric and additional embellishments. These activities provide a therapeutic escape. Take the time to create something beautiful with your hands, allowing your mind to unwind and unravel the complexities of daily life.

This piece was created in Material Musings, you can check out its progress HERE


As you embrace your word of the month, seek stillness in the midst of chaos, and find the delicate balance between work and rest. Enjoy the video and let me know what your word for the month is and how you are incorporating it into your new year so far.

Before You Go


Check out my Poetry book - Sometimes I write poetry, - Learn more HERE




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