Friday, 30 July 2010

Announcing.... Dark Mills Alternative Festival!

It's finally confirmed, I will be having a stall at the upcoming Dark Mills Alternative festival in London on 4-5th September! This is also a FREE festival - and there aren't many of those these days!

The event is at Merton Abbey Mills, Merantun way, SW19 2RD, close to Colliers Wood tube station . There are going to be quite a range of strange events, from Burlesque dancers to alternative art, live bands, even seminars with actors and actresses, directors and writers of top horror and sci-fi films. A few of the events have to be paid for, but there is lots going on for free too, and I think there is even a regular arts and crafts fair on too. I'm going (unless something changes at the last minute) to be on a corner stall opposite The Coles Shop which houses a restaurant and cafe, and near to the 'Goth Market' at the bandstand.

I'll be taking along many of my new cyber pendants, some which will be UV reactive glowing, so ideal for clubbing! Also I've been hard at work perfecting some new improved versions of galaxy marbles which I'll have as bottle stoppers, along with a whole load of other bits and bobs. There will be a great deal of new things that I have barely listed up, so please do pop along and see me and the glass! It's going to be quite an unusual mix of people going along, so I'm planning on taking a good selection of items from nebula pendants to flower drops so hopefully there will be something for everyone.

Don't forget, it's FREE to get in, and you don't have to be 'into' alternative fashions or lifestyles to come along, it's open to all and it would be lovely to see some of you there!

More info on the Dark Mills website here,

Monday, 26 July 2010

A Shower of Flowers

This has been a manic week! I've been so busy this is the first chance to stop to update my blog for nearly two weeks as I've been making a mad amount of flowers!

Aside from final deadline for a bit of 'day-job' work that I needed to complete last week, I was approached by a Lady in USA who wanted some of my flower bottle stoppers for a wedding shower, to give as gifts to everyone who was attending! That seems such a lovely thing to do, however the date was only a few weeks away, and it meant making 25 stoppers! Plus I needed to make 4 flower pendants as well for some 'younger' guests whom the wine stoppers wouldn't have been appropriate for! EKK!

My main worry wasn't so much making them, the Lady was very flexible in taking them mixed whites to go in with the theme of 'Magnolia.' My big worry was (and always is) once they leave me and go into the hands of the post office! I figured that could easily add a couple of weeks to the deadline which meant I'd have only until the end of the month to get them on their way.

I originally was going to send in two or three batches, so that they could go as soon as ready rather than send them all at the last minute, but I managed to get them done quicker than expected. First job was to get my 'day job' work out of the way, so I went into midnight oil burning mode and did a couple of late nights of number punching. It's odd, I often find I can get more done late at night than during the day. One thing I didn't count on was a sudden heat-wave, which made torching rather 'warm' to say the least!

By Friday I was so close to having them all done I decided I might as well get them all ready and send via express service - as much for my peace of mind - so I would know they'd turn up in time. So Monday morning (today) I finally sent off the box, I nearly passed out when I was told the cost though, it seems peace of mind is rather dear after all!

I didn't manage to get very good photo's, but here are a could of quick snaps of the first 16 I did.

On top of all this I also got confirmation about a very big event that I'll be attending - I will be a tease and tell you more about that in a few days time, so watch this space!

Wednesday, 14 July 2010

Glow in the Dark Adventures continued!

I've been trying to take some photos of some of the pendants I've made with glow in the dark and UV reactive materials, but it seems my camera didn't like it! While I was struggling to get the UV light in position to show maximum 'glow', the auto-focus and light sensors got rather confused and wandered around! I got better results with the 'firework' setting, but the camera then decided fireworks would be a long way away, so everything went blurry! Anyway, here are the pictures!

and with the UV! I've tried to keep the effect subtle in this one. that way it doesn't glow during the day and only when it's hit by UV light so the wearer won't look like a glowing neon sign when walking around during the day!

Sory about the duff pictures on this one, the normal one is a bit washed out, but it shows how the pink UV reactive glass changes so dramatically under the blacklight. It's normally clear so I put some white underneath it to help reflect up more light and colour. When the light is more distant to the UV tube it looks much more pink, but my camera has made it look purple!

It's been great fun to play with, and I've been trying to keep the effects subtle so they don't come across like cheap halloween jewellery! I've already listed the first one on Etsy, but I need to find the best way of using the very rare pink one before I use more of that.

Wednesday, 7 July 2010

Computer Meltdown

To keep the wolf from the door I've been working on some hugely boring spreadsheets and Access documents. I start the morning with good intentions but by about 12 o'clock (ok, 10 o'clock if I'm really honest!) I'm bored witless and falling asleep at my PC. However it has meant an end to commuting; on one particularly tough day when I was struggling to get motivated I got a call from the office, where they mentioned the air conditioner was broken (again) and it was +30 degrees before 10 in the morning! Suddenly waltzing to the bottom of my stairs to start work seemed to be put back into perspective.

However the one thing that has been struggling with this new regime is my old PC. It's been grinding and making some worrying noises of late, it was only a few months ago that I had to replace the power supply. That was a wake-up call and after that I did a big back-up of information.

Then yesterday I flicked on the pc, went to make a coffee whilst it booted up, and came back to see a new error message, 'Windows was unable to open normally,' blah, blah, various options were given - why don't they give an option 'I don't care, stop ******* around and just ****** get on and start up!' I am sure EVERYONE would hit that one!

After an hour going from calm attempting all options to bad tempered ranting (I wonder if Bill Gates ears are always burning?) I conceded that it's time was finally up after 8 years of troublesome service. When it had started looking dodgy I considered getting a new hard drive (I think this is was has been corrupted) but it's getting so flaky I figured it was going to have to be a new PC.......... groan. So much for me saving for a new torch.

Well the new PC arrived early today, and I've spent most of the day loading up software, which takes an age! However it's rather nice to have a PC I can't hear! I now realise how clunky the old one was, but I am struggling to get used to Windows 7 after XP - yep, it was that old! I'm just glad the old one lasted long enough for me to miss out Vista!