Monday, December 8, 2008
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
The great thing about these decorations is that you can make them out of any paper and ribbon combination you like. you can cover your entire tree with one style. It's a cheap way of making a gorgeous tree and you can get together with other families and kids and decorate the tree in your own handmade gems.
Monday, November 24, 2008
Saturday, November 8, 2008
Start by wrapping all the presents in the plain brown kraft paper.
Cut out the desired patterns, shapes or images that you'd like to use.
Arrange all your pieces so you can clearly see what you've got to work with.
Glue the back of each piece and stick it onto the wrapped gift in a pattern of your choice. It's a good idea to lay out even a bit of the pattern before you glue it on so you can see what's going to fit and what won't.
Wrap string around each present or ribbon if you prefer.
For something different write on the side of the gift instead of using a seperat gift tag. You'll be able to write a longer greeting and won't have to fuss about with a tag! And there you have it, a gorgeous stack of pressies ready to go under the tree!
image source: Real Living magazine, November 2008, (p 59.)
Also have a look at this amazing paper. It's called Juliette Paper in Blue and it's from Pepe's Paperie.
Monday, November 3, 2008
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Having recently done some new wrapping paper I loved the design of it so much that I decided to use it to make a wallhanging. I'm reluctant to overuse the same pattern on too mnay things but I couldn't resist this wall hanging. I used 100% raw silk and screenprinted directly onto a large piece. The edges are stitched to give it a neat finish and the bottom is freyed to keep in style with many other traditional wall hangings. A simple stick from my garden through the top and some twine to hang it. I'm pleased with the result and will do some in other colours too. I must say a huge thank you to my friend Lisa from http://www.theredthread.com.au/ and check out her fabulous blog too http://www.theredthreadblog.blogspot.com/ for allowing me to use her home and her sensational camera to photograph this wall hanging recently as well as all my other products. Thank you Lisa!
All my work at Laikonik has been about connecting me back to my own Polish culture. I have spent a lot of time recently reading about the cultural habits of the Poles as well as the creative aspect of their daily lives. One thing that came up again and again in the books I'm reading is the idea that the folk art was created out of a sense of tradition and belonging to a culture and a group. There was no personal authorship and no one person strived to stand out for the sake of fame or money. People created their art and craft out of a basic need and desire for an aesthetic environment coupled with cultural meaning behind patterns, colours and shapes. This is what I believe gives the work such purity and innocence. If you have a look at most of it there is no attachment to precision or perfection of line or shape. Have a look at the dowry chests. They have a beauty in their imperfection.
The basic need for aesthetic is, I believe, something that we all share. We all surround ourselves with beautiful things. We decorate our homes and our bodies. We like to see beauty, it is part of being human. It's precisely this kind of philosophy and approach to creativity that drives me. I can not stand anything that is created because it will sell or because it follows current trends. I will be posting some more examples of work from these wonderful books in days to come. For now I hope you enjoy some of these images.
image: "Polska Sztuka Ludowa", Aleksander Jackowski
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
This project has been a labour of utter love for me. All my products are made with love but this one was special. Firstly I saw the wrapping paper sheet as a canvass for a big folk art design. Secondly I've always been inspired by the embroidery on a collar of a particular mens coat. It's a traditional Polish coat and the embroidery has never ceased to draw my attention and amaze me. I've always wanted to do something with it.
The wrapping paper design features elements of it as well as a fragment of a decorative butter mould. It's incredible how things used to be treasured in those days. That someone would go to the trouble of decorating and carving a wooden butter mould and then pouring the butter in, letting it set and serving it on some special occasion. Just imagine how much care would have gone into all the food being served and the table cloths ironed and the cutlery polished if just the butter was so beautifully decorated.
I will be using the design for the wrapping paper on other products amongst other things I'll be making small notebooks and propably other bits and pieces just because I won't be able to help myself. I'll add them to the blog as soon as they're done.
Tuesday, August 5, 2008
These are some new paper cutouts I did a couple of days ago. I love paper cutouts mainly because of the symmetry which I am addicted to. I think I will dedicate a post one day to the importance of symmetry in my work. Paper cutouts are a very important and popular element in Polish folk art. They are used mainly as wall decorations in traditional homes. I am also planning on turning the paper cutouts into a Laikonik product one day. If you'd like to see some other amazing paper cutouts have a look at Elsa Moras blog http://elsita.typepad.com/ She is incredibly creative and her work is so inspirational.
Here is my latest craze: gourds. I have had these sitting in a basket at home for many years and only the other day did i pick them up and decorate them. I love the result and am now desperately searching for a gourd farm in Australia where I can buy some more. I'd be very grateful if someone could recommend where I can buy gourds from?
This is our bedroom lampshade. It has been white for a very long time and I have been eyeing it since I bought it, wanting to put something on it. Here is the result. I used fabric markers for the design.
And lastly I found some gorgeous bamboo spoons at a cafe recently. I couldn't stir my coffee with them and then just throw them in the bin so after buying four coffees for myself and my partner I brought these beauties home. Naturally they quickly became part of my "Decorated Objects" family.
Monday, July 28, 2008
It showed me that she didn't think that a lack of paper should stop her completing her picture. She quickly found a way around a limitation and made the best of it. Heck she propably didn't even see it as a limitation.
So if you feel like keeping a record of your childrens artworks you can do so very easily. If you don't feel like doing the whole scrapbook thing; cutting, gluing, arranging, then just get yourself a large box. A3 size is best and start collecting! It's totally up to you what you decide to put in. No doubt when your child starts drawing you'll put everything in that box, and why not. After a while you'll find that your children will have some favourite drawings that they would like to keep. Or perhaps its a simple drawing with a lot of meaning behind it. Like expressing their emotion by use of pictures. You could add a note on the back describing what it is. If you're feeling particulary creative you could have a book made of their drawings. There are now bound books you can have made at photo developing places. You just hand in your images and they make a book for you bound and printed on high quality stock. I saw some very good ones at Harvey Norman.
I've just started a book of drawings for the kids. I will be adding to it periodically but the drawings will be scanned in with backgrounds cleaned up or background colours changed. I'd like to create a kind of fun illustrative work of their artworks. Here are the first few pages...
Monday, July 14, 2008
The Once-A-Year Book
I keep other records of the kids such as the things they say (they are 3 and 4) and the art works they create. I keep a simple notebook for each one of them handy by the fridge and every time one of them says someting that makes me laugh or someting incredibly wise or loving I quickly jot it down. I will write more about this later on. I also keep a couple of standard scrapbooks for the drawings and paintings and photos of sculptures. I will be adding to this blog all my ideas about keeping records, storing photos and keeping photo albums.
Some of the photo albums and journals I have made in the past
I have been keeping records, journal etc for many years. Passionately when I had the time and sporadically when I didn't. All in all I have collected a lot of information about my own life up to this point. I have nothing however about the first 18 year sof my life or there abouts. Nothing about my growing up and even very few photos. Many of which were lost in the moves from one place to another while migrating out of Poland with my mum.
Having two children of my own now I want to create for them a record of their gowing up years. They are too busy to think about the future now or how they will view their past. And good on them for being too busy as they are discovering their world and themselves and finding their place. I will keep records for them. I will write down all their little habits, their triumphs and sad moments. I hope that this endevour will help me know them better and help me slow down a little to observe more, listen more, do less and talk less.
One day they will want to know about their past and I just know they will be fascinated with a story of their own lives that spanned the first 18 years. I will include things not just about them but also about our world and what is happening in it. I hope that perhaps one day all that I have recorded may help them in some way to know themselves better.
I wondered the other day about all the things I loved to do when I was little. I could only remember loving to do crafty things which makes sense as it's now become my job running Laikonik and handmaking all my products. But I wondered if I could have discovered more about myself if somewhere there was a record of my childhood. I have heard it said that what we love to do the most as children is what we should be doing in our jobs as adults. I am slowly observing my son and daughter and I smile as I wonder where all the paper cutting and glueing and drawing intricate train engines and dressing up will lead...