Winged Rose Photo Pebble for Mrs Cupcake

All these roses that have been floating around recently, gave me the inspiration for a new Zendoodle… and in turn an idea for a birthday gift for Mrs Cupcake!

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I got to work making her one of my photo pebbles.

She loves huge jewellery… so I hope she’ll like this HUGE pendant!!

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All polished up and pretty, I displayed the finished necklace on a frame containing the original Zendoodle drawing. Oh and the beads of the chain are faceted carnelians.

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I do realise the back looks a little devilish, especially with the red stitching… this wasn’t my intention! but it did make her laugh!!

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Oh and the portrait inside? My parents of course! Snapped on a little campervanning holiday down in the New Forest.White (14)

What do you think?

I love these photo pebbles so much I’ve opened them up for commissions!

These pebbles can be made in any metal you want, they can feature any surface design you want, you can use any photo you want, and I can turn them into any form of jewellery you want! Prices start from £60 and all pieces come with lovely custom packaging! So, if you love them just as much as I do, pop on over to my commissions page and drop me a message at info[@] and we can start our design process :)

Chloe out.

Silver Birthday Roses

I was commissioned to make a full set of silver roses based upon a junk-jewellery rose earring the client bought, loved, and lost part of on holiday. My instructions were to stick to the basic shape of the earring, but add my own flair, add a texture to the silver and make them much much bigger!

This is the original earring:


After a few copper samples…

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… and a leafy moustache…


… I got to work on the silver set…

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… and this is how it turned out all polished up and pretty:

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Hopefully, when she’s feeling better I’ll got some cute modelled shots too :)

What do you think?

This commission was a bit of a challenge for me. I’ve never make a structured piece with so many layers before, and I’m pretty proud of how they turned out… I might have to add this sculptural layering way of making into my current project somewhere!

If you’re interested in setting up a commission, please pop on over to my Commissions Page for more details.

Chloe out.

How to turn your unused tins into cute upcycled jewellery… and save the tin!!

I love blogging, and I’m always looking for ways to expand my internet-based ramblings…. so……. tutorials! I’m going to have a go at sharing some of my arts and craftyness with ya’ll! This way, I can share the bits and pieces I create when I’m distracting myself from my own project work…. ie. the times when I just need to cover myself in glitter because otherwise I’d drown inside my own work!!

Can’t wait to conjure up lots of these wee posts!!


How to turn your unused tins into cute upcycled jewellery… and save the tin!!

If, like me, you always keep those beautiful little tins that you get candy and odds and ends in, you’ll probably also have a pile of empty ones collecting dust somewhere!

This is the tutorial for you!!

This tutorial uses a small pink flowery tin and transforms it into a pair of earrings, but you can use any tin you want and you can turn it into any form of jewellery you want! This tutorial goes over the basic steps, but the fun bit is using your own creativity to come up with endless tin jewellery possibilities!

These make perfect gifts as they are present and packaging all in one!!

Beginner level but does require the use of a jeweller’s saw (the scissor alternative won’t save the tin but can be ued) and drill, so not recommended for young children, and with older children there should be full adult supervision when using any sharp/dangerous tools.


– A tin!

– Beads (small seed beads work best, but your imagination should know no bounds!)

– Chain, ribbon, findings, etc.

– Wrapping material (an organza bag, tissue paper, ribbon, gift tags, fabric, etc.)

– A jeweller’s saw and 4/0 blade(s!) or scissors (i’ll take about this in more detail later)

– Files and sandpaper

– A drill and 1mm drill bit (for beginners I would recommend the hand archimedian drill)

– Needles and threads


1. Select your tin! This is my tin :) It used to contain yummy French rose candies! and is approx. 8.5X6cm


2. Cut a template out of cardboard. I’m using two 3cm heart shapes that will become the earrings.

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3. Draw around your templates straight onto the tin using a non-permanent marker. Select areas of the design you like the best, but remember that you’ll be saving the tin so think about the design placement of the cut-out segments.

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4. If you are not using the jeweller’s saw, ignore these next few steps and carefully cut out your design using sharp scissors. Unfortunately, doing it this way makes t very hard/impossible to save the tin, but does make it easier to do with older children or those less experienced with jewellery techniques.

If you are using the saw, you’ll need to drill a hole in one area of your shape to thread the blade through. I would suggest using a corner as this makes it easier to clean up.

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5. Thread your blade through the drilled holes. I would suggest using a size 4/0 blade or higher.

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6. Carefully saw-out your shapes. Be careful not to press down on tin when cutting as you don’t want to bend the metal.

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7. Scissor fans you can join us again for the next steps!

Wipe away the marker lines with a littler water (or acetone/nail polish remover if the water won’t budge it, but be cautious not to damage the tin design).

File the edges of your cut out pieces and the cut out segments within the tin lid. You can use sandpaper here as well to smooth the edges further.

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8. Drill 1mm holes all around the edges of your cut out shapes and the cut out holes in the tin lid.

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9. Sand down the drilled edges on the backs of the shapes and the tin lid, until smooth.

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10. This is where you can get creative with threads and beads!

For my tin lid, I stitched over the cut out shapes to create a pink thready web! This way, nothing will fall out of my tin and it gives the piece a kitsch patchwork feel that I quite like!

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I beaded around the edges as well for a little extra bling!

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11. Again this is a creative stitching and beading session!

My cut-out shapes were made into earrings. I stitched around the edges of the hearts in the same direction to give them a visibly stitched feel.

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Then strung them from a dangle of seed beads and a silver ear hook.

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Hope you enjoyed this tutorial!

If you have any questions or comments please feel free to drop me a message below and I’ll get back to you asap!

Looking forward to making more of these in the future :)

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Chloe out.

DCA Bookbinding (Part 6/6)

Was rather sad when the final session came around :( It was such a nice wee course, with lovely people. Thanks for a lovely six weeks lovely people :) and thank you Emma for putting up with us all :)

Well. Last session. Last book.

This time, Japanese Atlas Structure. A fun and pretty simple little book that we whipped up in a couple of hours.

Commonly this book is used to contain atlases into a small book… but i’ve gone for pages from an old book! I think a wee book like this would make a wonderful travel companian, each little segment of book could contain a different piece of your trip; stick in notes, tickets, photos, etc. So that’s kind of what i’m going for in mine… i’m going to make it into a memento of my 21st birthday (which i still need to post about!).

Anyway, step 1: gather your paper. Four sheets for the inner pages, and then something to cover the boards with.

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Here are a few shots of the folding procedures for the inner sections…

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Did that make sense? So, your folding it long ways in on itself in half, with a little gap left in the middle. Then you’re doing the same the other way and leaving a slightly bigger gap in the middle.

Do this with all four sections. Use the first one as a guide, as this will ensure they are all the same size.

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Flatten the folded edges using a bone folder.

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Mark out and cut your board. It needs to fit one edge (ie. the bound edge) exactly, but can be a little bigger on the other three edges.

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Cover your boards. We made cushioned boards, ie. only the inside edges you see here are glued, the front is not, therefore giving it a cushioned effect. But… i’m always one for encouraging creativity, so go wild with your cover!!

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This strip of paper is the binding. Cut it to fit the side of your board, and fold as shown (ensuring you have enough valleys for your sections).

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Glue the two edges to your two cover boards. Hold tightly shut while the glue dries.

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Then glue in each section. Sections are glued to each other, not the binding. So the first section is glued to the cover, the next section is glued to that first section, and so on until you have a finished book… oh and top tip with this is to hold it tightly shut for about an hour or so until it is completely dry to avoid any movements in the binding and…..


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Well this wee course has filled me with a love for a handmade book and i can say i don’t think i’ll ever buy a sketchbook again (unless it is truly superly awesome)!

Now all i’ve got to do is whip up five artist’s books for each of my Lexicon collections…….. no bother!!!….

See you on the other side…

Chloe out.

DCA Bookbinding (Part 3/6)

After last session’s successful binding! we’ve moved on to a new stitch in this week’s bookbinding class.

Coptic Stitch, and to make it more exciting (and learn more skills) we are also making a hard cover, covered with book cloth.

But first, a little background on the coptic stitch before going into the how to’s……..

Coptic binding or Coptic sewing comprises methods of bookbinding employed by early native Christians in Egypt, the Copts, and used from as early as the 2nd century AD to the 11th century. The term is also used to describe modern bindings sewn in the same style. Coptic bindings, the first true codices (a book made up of a number of sheets), are characterized by one or more sections of parchment, papyrus, or paper sewn through their folds, and (if more than one section) attached to each other with chain stitch linkings across the spine, rather than to the thongs or cords running across the spine that characterise European bindings from the 8th century onwards.

And this is the sample that we were shown to aim towards:

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And here are a few more image examples, i’ve been collecting up on pinterest, of coptic stitched books i adore:

After that wonderful inspiration, on to the making i go!

First step: folding the paper into sections. For this wee book, we have 8 sections, and have used three different colours of paper.

Must ensure paper is properly folded by using the end of the cutting utensil, a butter knife, to smooth down each crease.

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Turning the knife over, and cut along the crease. Some of my cutting was a little dodgy, it’s hard to get into the rhythm of it and some of my edges tore… in future binding i must work on ensuring that i don’t tear my paper (especially as i don’t have a handy guillotine to trim down the edges!).

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After all that creasing and folding and cutting, we have 8 little sections each! As you can see, i was cutting the vanilla white paper!

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A little bit of swapping and we soon had different coloured sections: vanilla white, caramel cream and mushroom grey!

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Using the handy guillotine we trimmed down the edges into smooth, neat sections. And we trimmed little covers to fit using thick card. It’s important at this stage that the card cover fits exactly flush to the book as when the cloth covers it a millimeter or so is added and if it isn’t a flush cut cover the whole thing ends up looking a little wonky!

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Next we set our sections to one side and picked out our book cloths. There were so many to choose from, but i, naturally, settled on this wonderful purple! But isn’t that yellow magnificent too? and the cream?

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We cut our cloths to fit the covers, just a centimeter or so larger on each side.

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Next the glueing process… i didn’t take any photos of this part due to sticky fingers! but basically we were sticking cloth to the cover.

Couple of tips: glue from the middle of the sheet out, ensuring your cover is pressed firmly against the table surface, this way no glue gets onto the front/underside of the cover. Also, use a bone folder to ensure the cloth is firmly stuck along the edges and corners.


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These covers will go in the press for the week and they will be all flat, dry and lovely by the time we’re ready to start stitching next week!

See you on the other side…..

Chloe out.



DCA Bookbinding (Part 2/6)

This time i’ve got photos!!

If you remember from the last post, we were making long stitch bound books with a slotted wrapper cover. Well, this week we finished it! So, here is a mini-tutorial of what we did:

Last week we started the folding process. No photos of that, but it is simply a matter of folding up sections (or folios as they are otherwise known!) so they are all the same size! It was a little tricky and i’m wishing that i had a big guillotine in my home studio to neaten up the edges of my future books… but i guess i’ll just have to make sure my folding is REALLY precise! We made 8 folios, but you can make as many or as little as you want. A tip for making it easier: don’t make each section too thick/have too many individual pages as it will be too touch to hand pierce and ensure you have an even number of sections.

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Next step: piercing the sections.

The holes need to be measured out exactly. Measure your section from head to tail and divide the measurement by 5 exactly. Take a scrap of paper, fold it in half, and mark up the measurements in the fold.

These marks will give you a guide of where to pierce. Take a braddle (the wooden handled piercing tool pictured above) and pierce each of the holes all the way through. Repeat step for each section.

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Next measure out a cover. Select a paper that is thicker and more sturdy than the pages of your sections. As we were in a print studio, we got to choose from beautiful printed scraps… and i naturally picked out something purple and pretty!

The cover needs to be able to fit all the way around your books, with a good deal of overlap for the slot binding… as you’ll see below the cover i picked wasn’t quite long enough for a slot binding… but i’m going to stitch a button into it instead!!

Also, the cover should fit snuggly over the sections. It should be almost identical in size from head to tail. As you’ll see below mind is slightly too big and the cover has buckled with the tight stitching. Next time i’ll measure out my cover with better precision!

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Take a section and measure it against the cover, then using a bone folder mark a crease in the cover. Then take all of your sections and measure them against the crease to form the centre of the spine. Mark another crease on the opposite side of your spine with bone folder.

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Four slits need to be made. Line up a section and mark out where the holes are. Take a braddle and make a hole in either side of the spine, just inside the line of the crease.

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Make the slits from hole to hole.

Now we’re ready to stitch!

The stitching process was kind of complicated to photograph…. but if you google “long stitch binding” there are lots of diagrams and tutorials that show you what to do!

I’ve just discovered Sea Lemon and her wonderful booky youtube tutorials and they are fantastic! If you’re into making booky things, definitely give her channel a wander through. Here is her one demonstrating the long stitch binding method:

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One great tip i can give with the stitching, is that every section will look different. As long as you follow the pattern of single stitches and double stitches (as pictured above and below) you’ll never go wrong!

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……… and TA-DAH!

The finished book:

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The cover is too large, as you can see the edges have buckled with the tight stitching… i now know what to do for next time!

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There are a couple of things i would do differently if i was to go back and make this book again… but that’s what learning is for and on the whole i’m pretty gloriously happy with how my first ever book has turned out!!

Now… what to fill it with?………

See you next time for a whole new book!

Chloe out.

DCA Bookbinding (Part 1/6)

Last Monday night i wandered along to the first day of the DCA Bookbinding course… and it was wonderful!

For those of you that don’t know, for my final year project at DJCAD, i’m focusing on telling stories through wearable art, and promoting and obsession with storytelling. Part of the way i’m achieving this is by (planning on) using artists’ books for each piece to tell the story to the viewer/wearer.

So… a course billed as:

Try a range of bookbinding techniques to create beautiful, professionally finished books and pamphlets using only the simplest of hand-tools. You may want to create a special gift or album. Individual projects catered for.

I just had to try it out!

The course is run in the little print studio, that’s tucked away behind the restaurant downstairs in the DCA, by Emma Fraser. Emma is a book conservator and a little background would go something like this…

BA (Hons) Fine Art from the University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa, 1993.After graduation she worked as a volunteer at the Conservation Studio of theJohannesburg Art Gallery, South Africa.She completedher MA in Conservation at Camberwell College of Arts, London in 1997.During this time, Emma also attended bookbinding courses at London College of Printing . At the beginning of 1998 she started work as Book Conservator in the Conservation Studio at The Brenthurst Library, South Africa until March 2000 when she joined the Book & Paper Conservation Studio.She is a member of Icon and a former Regional Secretary of the Society of Bookbinders. Specialises in book conservation, photograph albums, and fine binding.

So we were in knowledgeable hands! and she did answer all my pestering studenty questions very patiently!

We started our first book! a long stitch through slotted wrapper cover binding!

…. but i forgot my camera, so you’ll have to wait until next time to see how i got on!

For now, here are some beautiful artists’ books that i aspire to:

See you for part 2…

Chloe out.