What will I make this year?

As you know; the start of anything new is exciting and also a bit nerve-racking. Planning projects involves a fair amount of research, testing, making and remaking until any of the pitfalls are mastered. I strive to not just copy what already exists on the ‘net, but actually design my own unique original version. Tell me; what should I make this year?

How to decide what to make:

I find that certain ideas just seem to resonate with me… often involving some aspect of nature or a way to reuse what I already have. You know I am not your usual ‘crafter’, actually I’d rather not be called a ‘crafter’ as that sounds like a ‘hot-glue& glitter’ project!

Making ‘do’ with your own supplies to create something beautiful is very rewarding in many ways. It makes your project unique. Sure, sometimes you need to buy art supplies but often not, which is much better. What will this year hold?

It’s quite natural to take inspiration from what you see. As an artist I was trained to be original when creating my art. I learnt my vocation long before the advent of digital art or even the internet. Yes, I know, that sounds like eons ago but it was a special time where you only saw what was really geographically close to you. Nowadays you are seeing the WHOLE WORLD at your fingertips. I am not sure that is always a good thing as we compare ourselves to that vast global gallery. Did you know that you can still be totally unique, truly ‘One-of-a-kind’?!

Should I Combine Art with Glass?:

As an illustrator I see much beauty in my natural surroundings. Line, Shape, Space, Colour, texture and pattern are a lot of design elements to work with. Use your inner intuition about your designs and let them be totally your’s; not having to fit someone else’s vision.

My new discovery of using glass as my ‘paint’ has me excited to create more! Where I used to put a stroke of paint I now want to use glass, like tiny shards of light! The Glass-on-glass method is fun, especially since it is like putting puzzle pieces together with no rules…

My collection of glass waste (especially satisfying to use what another was throwing out) is sitting & waiting for me. Can you imagine it?

If you can see shapes of colour and value you can apply glass. The fact that you can use a sheet of glass to see the image through makes it even easier… Check back soon!

Shpould I make more of Nature’s Prints?:

Once again nature is involved but this time it provides the prints and the ability to transfer pigment from the leaves and foliage – Eco Printing. Yes, I have a whole category of my Eco Printing Adventures; much that I learnt through trial and error.

There’s always more ways & variations to try. It’s half science and also art with a fair bit fibre art thrown in. Where can you create a fabric that can then be used as clothing or decor?!

Being practical makes the art even more meaningful. How did I do that? There’s still a few secrets up my sleeve… that I’ll explain soon.

Should I make new Designs in Denim?:

I can not help but hang on to things that have potential. Why not? They are often free so finding some truly beautiful potential with those supplies does help the environment.

Let me bring together my love for sewing and making with some more use of denim, As a blank canvas, strength and casual style this medium keeps finding my attention.

Dye it, cut it, sew it, embroider it, paint it, bleach it, dip in cement… I’ll bring some new designs into the Jean & denim world. What would you really like to see in denim? I’d be happy to hear your thoughts.

Should I use Cyanotype prints in Project?:

It’s one thing to create some detailed and unique prints on fabric but then using those for further creative showcases is even better.

You may have guessed that these used to be pants… I’ve really only scratched the surface with the huge amount of potentials that this simple photographic art form has.

Did you know that you can use all kinds of things to use in the Cyanotype process? Blocking light can be done by all kinds of things albeit that plants are amazingly beautiful. I’ll explore some new techniques for the love of ‘blue’!

Join me in getting outside, stopping to smell the fresh air and get inspired by nature. Look closely at the bounties from Mother nature, appreciate the ability to be able to create something from little…

‘And yes, I am looking forward to some warmer weather, the warmth of the sun and variety of seasons.

Can you guess what these are?

This may make you wonder if I have finally actually lost my mind…

As I said; sometimes I just like to surrender to the odd visions and ideas I have in my head. If only you could see some of the visions in my dreams! I’m pretty sure this concept developed somehow in my childhood… At this point in my life I feel like I deserve to listen to myself and follow a creative vision, even if it’s a bit odd – if not now, then when?! Have you guessed; Owls!

My 3D sewing pattern making & design has been quite popular lately so I am planning to create some more. That allows others to share easily in the making but also add their touch.

Should I make more Needle Felting?

As I discover even more potential with working with fibre there’s plans for some realistic sculptures. This may be quite interesting for those who would rather not sew.

This fellow is far from being done, but so far it is quite enjoyable to sculpt this way. I can completely understand the allure of this art form already. What would you love to see made? I welcome your input in the comments below.

Should I combine multiple Disciplines?

It gets more interesting when we travel off the beaten path… Be a bit unconventional, combine, try something new! Follow your heart & I may be able to guide you through your process. What should I make?

What should I make?

There’s a small sampling of ideas… Has something caught your eye? Is there a creative idea that you would like me to tackle? Since I have many decades in a lot of creative fields I have probably come across that media before.

Let me know what ‘speaks’ to you! Don’t be shy, I love hearing from you! It’s going to be the best year yet!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


  1. Oops- a question…where do you source textured or fancy white wool for gnomes beards. I’ve been unraveling the triple strands but would like a different look with fancy loops, etc.

    1. Ah, I know faux fur at fabric stores can be quite expensive so I always keep an eye out at the thrift stores! It can be a vest, even a rug, pillow, scarf, etc… There’s a lot of great furs to be found that way! I have a collection of some amazing ones that will hopefully become owls! I have also seen that some people will steam wool roving on skewers to get curly locks… The possibilities of fibre are endless. Glad to have you follow me…

  2. Needle felting and upcycled denim are my two votes. All your work is fascinating, but these two are least messy and most accessible for me.

    1. I am sometimes getting a bit weary when working in media that requires a lot of clean up! When I am in the creative zone I don’t think about that part and then am exhausted when I need to clean up.I totally understand! Those 2 have been on my radar a lot lately… Yay!

  3. I love the recyled demin projects and the stained glass projects. Have you ever considered working in an autocad software such as TinkerCad? My husband and I are thinking of this because he has an old sportscar that has parts he needs that are no longer available. If we can master a cad program then we can make almost any part with a 3d printer not just for a car but for any product.

    1. Yes, I have thought about it… I’m enticed but need to limit my enthusiasm sometimes! I did have access to 3D printers at the college but it’s more software to learn, and this web publishing already does a number on my brain! Go for it! ‘Could be amazing!

  4. Oh, I had a question too please Barb. How strong are the items that you make from the clay? Is it like the strength of a clay pot? Just wondering. Thanks for your wonderful website.

  5. Hi Barb, I love all your projects but am most interested in more eco-printing on paper techniques and I plan to to try the concrete fabric draped planters when it gets warmer–haven’t been able to get portland cement for a long time tho( not being stocked by home improvement stores).
    With appreciation,

    1. Oh, interesting! Paper is so forgiving with Eco printing that you can pretty well adapt any of the fabric methods. I’ll keep that in mind. You’d prbably like the cyanotype on paper! I hope this year the concrete cement supplies will be better as I also had issues.

    1. Thanks! I really enjoy pushing the boundaries with this media. I was thinking of putting together a book. I tend to be a bit unconventional but like the fact it is so instant. I always think of new concrete ideas but Canada tends to challenge my outside workability…

  6. More ways to create with cyanotype prints please. Thank you for all of your clever posts. I enjoy your blog immensely.

  7. Happy New Year Barb! Kind of you to ask….I like the idea of seeing how to use glass in different applications. I’m varied in my work although primarily make wearable sculptural jewellery in copper/silver metal clay, some felted mixed media paintings. I would love to see your ideas of cyanotype used differently as well as your denim creations. Anything to do with making birdies either in two/three dim and unique materials…..thank you!!

    1. I am very happy to see that I am not alone in working with a lot of varied media! I should make a showcase/story section of the site to display the pictures I get from makers! Oh, I loved working with silver metal clay! I guess it’s fair to say that artists and makers love trying new things… Yay! and more birds!

  8. Barb, do you have a recipe for ‘molding cement’. I would like to make cement that acts like clay. Thanks!