Sunday, 22 November 2015

A Collaboration

We've been working on an exciting collaboration here at Fingerprint. We've teamed up with the lovely Rosemary from Charlton Interiors who's producing a fabulous range of upholstered antique chairs, footstools and coordinating cushions all using digitally printed fabrics.

Rosemary is part of a very creative family, her late father was a talented artist who documented hundreds of buildings and street scenes here in Shropshire, being published and having works commissioned by the likes of the National Trust. It's his artworks that adorn the chairs and cushions in these photos.

Rosemary's sister Sally is also a painter and her beautiful watercolours have digitally printed to fabric so well. For this chair we printed this riverscape onto a cotton/linen fabric which takes the print so well and has a lovely 'country' feel, perfect for this traditional chair.

It's not all about the traditional look though. For Rosemary's latest range we've gone for brights and printed this great image of Bridgnorth Town and Market Hall onto vibrant coloured cotton velvets. I love the mix of detailed drawing with the eye-popping colour.

Two of my chairs are in Rosemary's safe hands at the moment. She's waiting on me to come up with some fabric designs to complete the makeover. I better get on with it!

If you'd like any of the items shown in this post, or to find out about more about Rosemary's upholstery please get in touch with her via her Facebook page or website.

Bye for now,

Wednesday, 18 November 2015

Fingerprint Custom Infinity Scarves

Sometimes we get asked to print a custom order here at Fingerprint and it'll be one I just have to share. Just recently we helped Fraser design and print a beautiful personalised infinity scarf for his wife to mark their wedding anniversary. On the scarf we printed their wedding vows in a soft charcoal grey against a stone background to create a lovely vintage feel. Isn't that a special idea for an anniversary present? I think full marks must go to Fraser in the 'thoughtful husband' category!

Infinity scarves, with your custom design digitally printed on beautiful quality cotton lawn, and sewn with care in our studio are only £29. We accept both UK and international orders. The completed scarf will be sent to you, or direct to the lucky recipient wrapped in acid free tissue and if it's to be a gift just let us know and we can include a gift card with your message free of charge.

There's still plenty of time to order before Christmas, but please help us out and don't leave it till the last moment. I don't want to be up with the elves working all hours until Christmas Eve! Please place your order via the website, and we'll get in touch with you via email to advise you on how to finalise your design and send it to us. Of course, as always, any questions just email me.

Thanks for visiting the blog today.
Bye for now,

Monday, 16 November 2015

Still beauty

I have been meaning to post for the last couple of days, but everything I had to say seemed rather insignificant in light of recent events. I went out walking in the grey drizzle yesterday to remind myself that the world, despite how precarious it may be, still has so much beauty. I feel I want to live in a quiet bubble and hope, for all it's worth, that today won't be the day it bursts.

The falling leaves herald the return of the bare hedges that I love so much, in all their angular, spiky perfection. They've been trimmed with precision, but still a few have kept their berries adding a glorious deep red.

The hawthorn and blackthorn hedges look pretty intimidating, but it's just a question of scale. They're sanctuary for small birds like this little character.

The light was flat, not great for photos but it was still and quietly beautiful. I keep promising myself time for painting and am mentally saving up subject matter to tackle when I finally find some time to get stuck in. I like the potential of the thorny hedges against a broader landscape with stands of trees. I'm not sure how I would paint something like this yet, but that's my main reason for trying, to see if I can find a way that works.

Thank you for visiting. Back soon.

Thursday, 5 November 2015

Mixed Media Monoprint

Monoprint has been by far the most requested subject for workshops this year so it seems right it was the subject of the final class of the year. I was joined by a group of lovely students who worked so hard and were so productive. I think one of the reasons monoprint is so useful is that it combines so beautifully with other methods. I love to mix it with collage and drawing.

Students warmed up with a few prints to help get a feel for the plates, inks, papers and tools, before being more thoughtful about creating simple collages from prints and as a support for more printing.

It's not always easy in a classroom situation to produce your best work, the materials and equipment might be unfamiliar, the techniques might be new, and I'm constantly making suggestions of new things to try. That said, there's no substitute for just getting on with it and trying. Ideas and results only come about from working, not wondering what if. Yesterday's students all went home with collage/monoprint compositions that were really well-resolved and a pile of prints to play with at home. They all did brilliantly. I've been fortunate to have such great students at all of my classes this year. A big thank you to everyone who came to play in the Wooden House. It's been fun.

I have really enjoyed teaching the workshops here this year. I joked yesterday that I'd be quite pleased if all the students could just leave so I could play with the techniques myself. But of course it's not really a joke, seeing what the students have produced in this class and in all the other workshops this year has been really inspiring. We've produced so much work in that room, the walls have been filled with colour, pattern, drama and ideas. Now all I want to do is close the door and get busy myself. I have lots of ideas that I just need to try.

While there won't be any more workshops here for a while, I do have plans to turn some of what we've done this year into some online workshops. They'll take a bit of time to put together but I'll keep you posted.

My apprentice waited patiently until the end of class and then joined me as I cleared up. Her latest favourite thing to draw? Aliens!

Thanks for visiting the blog today.
Back soon,

Wednesday, 28 October 2015


Autumn marches on and all of a sudden it's dark by tea time and our garden is covered with the glorious colour of fallen leaves.

They provided the perfect backdrop for a quick Halloween photoshoot. Here's the apprentice doing her best spooky face.

She designed the pumpkins faces, drawing on them with a marker so I could cut out the features under her watchful supervision.


Wednesday, 21 October 2015

Art Quilt Adventures

Students were back today for another instalment of Art Quilt Adventures. After the class Linda asked me if I thought it had gone well and I suddenly had a panic moment that the students might have expected to actually make a quilt! Needless to say that while some fabric did come out, there was no cutting or sewing done in the class. Why?

My aim with these classes is to help the students make the art quilts that they want to make. I think three things are needed - ideas, design and technique. Ideas must always be the students own, technique is easy to come by, it's design that's the tricky one. Knowing what to do and why, understanding why a design 'works' and why another doesn't, that's what I think is often the step that's not covered so much, and the one that we've been tackling bit by bit in our Adventures. If you can understand composition, colour, balance, rhythm, harmony, line and all of the other elements and principles of design then you can apply them to whatever you're doing from painting to art quilt. So for now, the technicalities of making a quilt and some of the self imposed limitations that that can create are set aside.

Today we worked on honing our critical eye. Learning to identify why an art work is successful and keeping that in mind when working on our own pieces with composition being the main concern. All of the students are working independently on their own self-chosen themes and each have different end goals.

Quiltmaking is a slow process and I think that can sometimes hinder the design process. To speed things up we explored design using screenprinted drawings. They are fast and free and I just love how they enable compositional ideas to be developed so easily. Very quickly the pinboards filled up with lots of exciting ideas.

Of course the aim of the game is to end up with something that is either a design for a quilt, or is a quilt, so some students also printed onto fabric or explored ways for working onto paper so that it could be stitched.

Each student went home with piles of printed papers which I hope they'll enjoy cutting up and drawing and painting into. All with a critical eye of course!

Thanks for visiting the blog today.
Back soon,

Tuesday, 20 October 2015

Drypoint Landscape

I watched with envy while Linda's been printmaking lately and so when she invited me over to use the press in her studio I was there like a shot. I made a drypoint plate on plastic of a landscape image similar to some that I've been monoprinting.

Here I'm part way through polishing off the excess ink from the plate.

And taking a print.

We just printed off a few. It's been ages since I used this method so it took a couple of prints to get a feel for how much to wipe when inking. Love this technique!

Sunday, 18 October 2015

First Sewing Lesson

I suppose it goes without saying that Amelie spends a lot of time with people who are making art and doing other creative things. She's always very keen to join in and this week demanded sewing. Course I was happy to oblige.

An old embroidery hoop, some binca, a big plastic needle (needles are very sharp Mommy you have to be careful...), some yarn and she was away.

I tied a ginormous knot in the end of the yarn so it wouldn't pull through the holes and that was all the help she needed. I guess she's been paying attention all this time.

Thanks for dropping by,

Wednesday, 14 October 2015

Published! Patchwork Professional

Hello everyone, and in particular any German visitors to the blog. Linda and I have just been featured in the latest issue of Patchwork Professional magazine. It's their 10 year anniversary special issue and we're delighted to be featured.

Find out more on their website:

Bye for now,

Saturday, 10 October 2015

Jasper Dress #2

It's not often I find myself home alone, but having been given the choice of an afternoon with me or with Grandma, Amelie chose G'ma. You can't win them all. So I found myself with a few hours, a pile of fabric and the time to make another Jasper Dress. Turns out the piece of fabric I'd chosen wasn't quite enough, but after a bit of head scratching, fiddling about with pattern pieces and a dodge on the inside pocket piece, I just about cut it out.

I like it even better than the first! The fabric is much nicer - a softer heavy knit jersey, one of my bargains from the market. This dress has cost £4 with a few little scraps left.

Please excuse the terrible selfie, that's what you get when you're on your own and can't be bothered to get the tripod out!

The sleeves are a bit long on me. I've found that I've been pushing them up all the time so I might shorten them next time.

The softer jersey produces more of a cowl than a stand-up collar but I still think it works nicely.

I did the welt pockets again. Eeking out the fabric meant I didn't have enough for the inner pocket piece so I had to use the same fabric as for the pocket lining. It means you can see more of it than the designer intended but I reckon it's OK. I went for a black and white aztec type print so it at least looks like I meant it. If you're going to fudge something always do it with conviction!

bye for now,