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Creativity

black and white photography project

What to do when your photos don’t match your Instagram! (A black and white photography project)

The use of Instagram means something different to different people, and I’ll write more about my feelings on that in another post, but briefly, I’ll tell you that my Instagram, @HelenHobden is fairly curated with some of my best photography included. However, whilst away in Connecticut, slouched on the hotel-room armchair, having a break from typing; I realised that the simple scene with my feet up on the arm would look great as a square-cropped photo in grainy high-contrast black and white….

Creativity, Photography,
handmade thank you cards with zig brush pens

Zig Kuretake Clean Colour watercolour brush pens review & a handmade thank you card idea

After some research, I put the Zig Kuretake Clean Color real brush watercolour brush pens on my wishlist and was lucky enough to receive a pack from my cousin for my birthday. Ever since I was a little girl I have wanted brush pens like this! I think it must have been an episode of Blue Peter when they showed an artist who decorated narrow boats with beautifully crafted swirls that inspired me to recreate the style as best I could. When I grow up I want to paint narrow boats!….

Creativity, Equipment reviews,
Derwent Inktense pencils review

Review of the Derwent Inktense ink pencils

Drawing and painting was a hobby of mine that I spent an awful lot of hours on when I was a child. I took GCSE and A-level Art, but since then, I have rarely allowed myself the time to just enjoy it again. You may already know that I have an Etsy shop where I sell my pyrographed items, which often is a form of drawing, but when I’m making something to sell, it’s never quite as fun! I have resolved to stop thinking of time spent drawing and painting as an indulgence, and started allowing myself some free time to enjoy myself and relax. So last year, whilst away in the Lake District, I treated myself to some new art supplies from the Derwent shop in Keswick, and following my discovery of the Derwent Inktense sticks, I put the Derwent Inktense pencils on my wishlist. Chris obliged with them as a gift on our wedding anniversary, and here’s what I think of them so far…

Creativity, Equipment reviews,
review of things are what you make of them by adam j. kurtz

A review of ‘Things are what you make of them’ – Life advice for Creatives by Adam J. Kurtz

Rain kindly bought this book for me for Mothers’ Day, and I’ve since managed to fit in the odd five minutes here and there to read it. That’s one good thing about Things Are What You Make Of Them – it doesn’t take long to read! Oh that makes me sound like I don’t like it, which isn’t true. It’s a book for the current generation who take their entertainment and information in snippets; in bite-size chunks of Instagram stories. There are even perforated edges so you can choose your favourite little pages of words of wisdom to put up on your copper magnet board next to the foiled print that says Eat Sleep Create….

Books, Craft business, Creativity, Entertainment,
Visit New England in Winter

10 Photos that will make you want to visit New England in winter

Chris and I recently returned from a month in Connecticut, near the city of New York, and each weekend we went exploring in every direction. I’ve put together ten of my favourite photos – and this was a challenge to get it down to only ten! – in the hope that the cold weather doesn’t put you off from visiting the New England area of America. I thought it was absolutely beautiful!….

Creativity, Photography, Places to visit, Travel,
how to make a rustic advent calendar

How to make a simple beautiful rustic advent calendar

I don’t know about you, but I’ve really struggled to find nice (and affordable) advent calendars in the shops this year. I haven’t seen any from Cadbury at all in Tescos, so I don’t know if there’s a general shift away from the chocolate advent calendar, or whether there’s just a short supply in my area. Anyway, it doesn’t matter too much to me, because I’d already planned on making a rustic pretty advent calendar for my kids. (By the way – this last point is a “blogger lie” ie. I made it last year, but was too late to write a blog post about it!) This one is pretty quick and easy to make, and is really effective….

Creativity, Tutorials and how to's,
photobook review

How to take control of all your photographs

About this time last year, I worked with a company called Printerpix – it’s one of those online places that print your photos on all manner of gifts as well as your standard prints. I actually had two photo books printed by them and was very pleased with the quality and ease of use of the website. My parents recently came to stay, and I produced my most recent one for them to have a look at, and Mum asked if I had seen her Italy holiday photos yet. I hadn’t; and I knew it would mean squashing up next to her while going through all her photography files on her small laptop. It got me thinking how strange it is that in a time when we are taking more photos than we ever have done before; we’re actually getting far less printed. They remain a fleeting post on Facebook or Instagram, but are rarely printed and displayed or treasured in a large and heavy book. Has our old family tradition of passing around the photo album at Christmas or after a Sunday roast been lost?….

Creativity, Photography,
green fairy wedding dress

How to make a woodland fairy wedding gown – The story behind the dress

If you’re new here, I should begin by saying that I make dresses for my business, Threads of a Fairytale. My husband, Chris and I had the photoshoot in mind before I even started making the dress, so I knew exactly what I wanted to begin with, which is fairly unusual for me! So the dress originated as a vintage pure silk Indian tunic that more-or-less fitted me. It’s a gorgeous mottled moss green pure silk fabric with lovely metallic dots – called Mukesh work – which give a beautiful shimmer in the light. Then I went round my various stashes of fabric round the house, gathering bits and pieces that would blend well with the colour…..

Creativity, Fashion, Lifestyle, Threads of a Fairytale - my handmade clothing label, Tutorials and how to's,