19 Oct 2013

Salvaged lamp stand make-over

I recently found an old lamp stand dumped on the side of a road. I rewired and painted it.
As there was no shade, I decided to make one using 1950's style fabric
Before and after

29 Sep 2013

The Glamour of Bellville Sassoon!

I love the Fashion and Textile museum in Bermondsey! Their exhibitions are a real indulgence of colour, lush fabrics, prints and design! Focusing on the glamour of the couture label Bellville Sassoon, including Irish designer Lorcan Mullany, the current exhibition is no exception. I took a few pics of my favourite "details" from some of the many beautiful gowns.  

Rose printed satin ball dress with ivory tulle skirt A modern bustle!
A sculpture!. No need for a necklace with such a detailed neck line! Many dresses had to be designed for a clients specific piece of jewellery with the designer visiting vaults to view the jewels in person as they were too valuable to bring to the salon! One lady visited with  a pen line on her neck showing where her necklace would sit as the insurance would be too expensive to remove from the vault!! 
It must have taken hours to hand embroider and bead these exquisite corset type tops!
I love bows, especially a quirky oversized one tipped upside down to great effect!
I thought the clever woven fabric detail on the chest of the chiffon ball gown gave it a Grecian feel!
Virginal, lady-like and slinky! The blue frock had such elegant attitude!!
Very similar designs....yet the difference a colour can make!
The beading!! And the flattering swathe of fabric in the body....must have taken days to design and actually create!
Princess Diana's going away outfit after her wedding - the simplest and least fussy garment on display. It seemed very forlorn and plane on the dummy...yet worn it came to life.

The exhibition is on until January 2014

Johnsons Island

Johnsons Island is one of London's hidden secrets! It opens it's doors to the public only twice a year. I visited over the summer and felt as if I'd stepped into a magical world!
Accessed by a footbridge off Catherine Bridge Rd, it is located on the Grand Union Canal in Brentford.
It is home to a small community of talented artists working in an eclectic collection of cosy....
...and creative huts!
This regal "Grey heron" wire drawing by sculptor Dianne Preston flew back home with me....and..
...if there was enough room in my lily pad, this handsome chap would have also come home with me! 

Although I loved all the huts and the different art works, I had a soft spot for Dianne Prestons birds. She actually lives on a narrow boat on the canal, where the birds inspire her work. For a list of all artists and details of future open days, please visit the website 

Attendant Café (Formerly victorian loos!)

This is the most unusual place I have ever had a hot chocolate!
Attendant was built in the late 1800's and for almost 100 years was an underground men's toilet!
Vacant for over 50 years, it was recently lovingly restored to become a café! 

The entrance/exit is still via the original staircase at 27 Foley street, Central London
One of the original cubicle doors has been left for customers to "graffiti"!
The old Attendant’s office has been turned into a little kitchen
The original porcelain urinals remain surrounded by the original Victorian floor tiles.
...the rich hot chocolate was delicious...
but ironically the only facility Attendant seemed to be lacking was a customer toilet!

28 Sep 2013

Endless Stair - London Design Festival 2013

This years London Design Festivals Landmark project is "Endless Stair" in front of Tate Modern. 
Translating Eschers 2D drawing into a 3D structure of 15 interlocking staircases proved challenging for the team of architects, engineers and designers headed by Alex de Rijke. For more details watch this clip
In order to be able to easily transport the installation and to make it weather proof, tulipwood, rather than traditional soft wood was used.

I visited on a rainy day and the effect of the sheet of raindrops gave the impression that the stairs had been highly polished which further showed off and highlighted the beautiful wood blocking and detail! 

18 Aug 2013

Jason Hackenworth: "Dance of the honey bees" balloon sculpture

New York artist, Jason Hackenworth, known for his organic and biological forms made from latex balloons, unveiled his latest sculptures last week at the Manchester "Dig the city festival 2013".
Suspended over Exchange Street, near Harvey Nicholls and Selfridges, I just love the bright colours, texture and shape of these beautiful "Honey bees!"



Take a seat....
....it all started with a loud noise outside which seemed to be attracting Blue-Belles attention.....
..on closer inspection, it materialised that a skip had just been delivered to a neighbours house....
...the skip started to fill up until I couldn't resist any longer! I strolled over and asked the owner if I may have a quick rummage! To my delight, it turned into a very fruitful rummage.....
....I sourced these two elegant chairs, completely free!

14 Jul 2013

"Stayin' Alive!" Chris Bracey and Christian Furr seductive neon exhibition!

Stayin' Alive!
On until the end of August 2013. First floor bar, 45 Park Lane Hotel, London
Kitsch, Happy, Over flowing with attitude, Gorgeous!
Good to be here - A nod to Keith Richards - Laser cut black metal, Swarovski crystal words, Murano crystal neon glass
Essex Girls - Wayne Hemingway drinks coasters,  Murano crystal neon glass, black metal background 
All you need is love! A colour changing homage to The Beatles
American Pie!
Enjoy a cocktail and be seduced by beautiful artworks!