July 2018 - EAU Brink Studio

July 30, 2018

Running your own studio sounds like the perfect dream. And it is for me. But it is not as easy as many think.

I am reminded on a regular basis by many people of how lucky I am to be able to work when it suits me.

Many say things like ” oh your so lucky to be able to get up when you like” ” you can take a day off when every it suits you” and my favourite one is ” if you don’t feel like opening your studio any day you are are lucky because you don’t have to”  The reality is I do have to. To make enough money to pay the bills I have to work all the time. There is no switching off at all as many independent business owners will tell you.

surprises
Working with only two colours

Why I am Writing about this you think?

Because I have met a number of people who want me to tell them its okay to leave their nice safe jobs and careers to start up their business. I cannot tell anyone to do it but I can tell you how it is of me.

I get up at 6 am most mornings to make sure that I have everything ready for the day. On workshop days I bake fresh cakes for my lovely customers. I then come into the studio and finish setting it up for the day. A workshop day starts at 10 am and ends at 4 pm. However, there are times when it over runs and times when customers stay for a chat. Once everyone has left the premises I then clear up and reset the studio for the following day.

On days where there are no workshops I spend my day making items to sell, or during school term times prepare items for the children to make. Or  I may be attending a fair and that again means a long day and lots of preparation and packing and unpacking of items at the end of the day.

 

I  do all my own ordering,  spend time  finding the best bargains but not the cheapest items as I want to use good quality fabrics and threads.

Accounts have to be kept to send to the accountant, Plans have to be made for the coming weeks and for the year. These are completed in the evenings. And on the evenings like Mondays when I am teaching I do it afterwards. There is also the website to keep up to date, social media to plan and schedule and the booking system to be kept up to date. Again by me as an assistant is out of the question.

My day usually ends with me bathed and in bed by 10 pm but working on the planning or looking up what to teach for the weeks workshops. I usually fall asleep whilst doing this.

There are the occasional days that I do take off, or shall we say take out of the studio where I attend network meetings for women in business where we have to set targets for the month and be accountable. This makes me do the things that I always leave to the last minute. One such group has a great lady running it who will make me break the jobs I do not like down into small chunks so that it is easier to do them.

What about family time I hear you ask? I am a workaholic and always have been but I do plan a away day a month for my lovely man, son and me. I also take a a week of in August for a family get together. And of course Bank Holidays are off to spend with family. I take the occasional evening off to have dinner with friends too. So its not all work.

This lifestyle does not suit everyone but I enjoy it. And this is the reason why I cannot tell anyone to take the plunge but can tell you my working life is the same for most business owners big and small.

She is very hot but mum called her out to eat

Many of you ready this already know most of the above and know that I have a number of animals to care for too. but do you also know that I host Airbnb experiences in the studio? or that my home is registered on Airbnb too? that mean a lot of breakfasts to cook and a huge amount of linen to launder. And yes I do iron it too.

So my advice to anyone wanting to take the plunge is plan it, cost it, and be prepared to work all the hours you can.

Thank you for reading this little bit of news.


July 29, 2018
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Tiny Acorns to Terrific Tassels! Passementerie Workshop at Eau Brink Studio. With Clare Hedges.
Lovely little Acorns
Handmade Acorns

Ever wondered just how trimmings are made?  This 2-day workshop enables you to learn the basics of hand-made Passementerie, and let you try your hand at making a tasselled button and an acorn similar to those made for a bed at Marchmont House, Berwickshire.

Who is this for?

Ideal for anyone interested in textile crafts, as well as professional curtain makers and interior designers. Come along and learn new techniques to create unique finishing touches for your projects or just gain a better understanding of what’s involved in the making process, and the options that bespoke Passementerie can give your clients, giving you a better understanding of the design process involved in bespoke work, making the commissioning process easier to navigate.

What will we learn?

Day one will cover the basic techniques regularly used in hand made passementerie. Then day two you will put those techniques together to complete a tasselled button suitable for a bolster cushion and a decorative acorn.

Reviews

 

Tassels
Tassels made on a previous workshop

The feedback on this two day course is always good as Students said: “Clare is calm and informative, a great tutor”           

“It was a brilliant course, thank you” “Thoroughly enjoyed the weekend”

Clare is in demand with her heritage work as you can see at http://clarehedges.com/category/heritage/

So why not give it a go and join us at Eau Brink Studio for two days of traditional crafting.

To book you place go to https://www.eaubrinkstudio.co.uk/event/tiny-acorns-to-terrific-tassels-passementerie-workshop/2018-10-06/

 


July 20, 2018

The End of the Academic Year is upon us and that means the holidays are just around the corner. The fun starts for the children but for the parents this can be a problem with childcare.

I have planned a series of workshops for children over the summer break to enlighten and fire the imagination with practical art workshops.

On a Wednesday the younger children can come and play with paint and mixed media including Powertex.

Learning art can take many forms from mark making to creating 3D objects using found materials and the children will get to experience all forms of art during the five week available to them.

For further information go to https://www.eaubrinkstudio.co.uk/event/younger-experimental-wednesday

 

All Saints Ladies
wet felting pictures

On Fridays the older children can come and learn how to sew, create and be an artist by building a portfolio of work and techniques ready for the new academic year.

Over the six week period the young learners will learn how to use a sewing machine for both creative and constructive projects. How to felt fibres, create backgrounds in a sketchbook, and how to create substrates for new projects from different materials including man made fibres.

For more information go to https://www.eaubrinkstudio.co.uk/event/young-textilers 

 

What else is new?

Children’s Parties.

For three hours your child can explore the world of art and crafts. The party can be theme specific or materials led. For example, a Powertex party can include the children making a Powertex animal or fish. Or a jar or box for their bedroom. A theme can be the circus or  under the sea where the children will get to create a piece of art using different materials to great affect. It is amazing what can be achieved with just using found materials like sweet wrappers and plastic.  The older children may want to make jewellery or fridge magnets.

So whats included in the cost? A buffet meal consisting of children’s favourites such a little sausages, Pizza, sausage rolls, Sandwiches and little cakes. Parents can supply a birthday cake for the day. Your child will receive a book of memories for the party. Each child will be given a page to make and photographs will be taken of the party. I will then make this into a book for your child.

For more information on parties or any of the other items in this news page pleas do not hesitate to contact me by email at [email protected], or by phone on 01553 762115. If you leave me a message I will return your call usually withing two days.


July 2, 2018

Last week I spoke about techniques and news for Eau Brink Studio.

This week I am going to show you one of the techniques taught to us by Alison Hulme. Just follow this link to my Instagram Tv to see how to put colour and pattern onto your fabrics. Once it has dried you do need to iron it to fix the paint. The longer you leave it before washing it the better the colour fixes.

printing on fabric
Screen printing with layers of colours

This week I have spent my time making items for the fairs and shows as well as local shops. This means that a big pile of scissor holders is emerging along with few peg bags. The making up of these items does not take too long but the preparation does. The patching of the fabrics for the peg bags takes ages and then there is the cutting out of everything. If its not right it will not sew together properly.

So what can you expect in July?

As usual the weekly workshops are all going ahead. That is Embroidery Mondays, Experimental Wednesdays, and Powertex  Thursdays.  At the end of the month the children are starting their summer holidays and at Eau Brink Studio we are going to help those who want to move on their portfolios for their GCSE or College diplomas by offering a workshop every Friday for a small sum with a different technique each week for 6 weeks. Young Textillers commences on July 27th. By the end of the 6 week period if you attend all the weeks your portfolio will be stuffed full of exciting processes s to use in your training.

And not forgetting the younger ones every Wednesday you can bring them along for a morning or afternoon to learn some of the basics of art and crafts, commencing on July 25th. The only Wednesday this is not offered is Wednesday 1st August as the Experimentals always come in on the first Wednesday of the month.

All Workshops start from 10am or 2pm if its the afternoon. Booking is through the links or go to https://www.eaubrinkstudio.co.uk/events/

Our sheep are very grateful that they had their fleece removed last month as it is very hot. But the lambs are beginning to feel the heat a bit and tend to stay under the shady trees until mum moves them.

A very hot Lamb but mum wanted to eat to out of the trees.

Quick update.

The following workshops still have spaces : Natural dye Day, Procion Dye DayAbigail Mill, Clare Hedges, as well as the Young Textillers during the holiday period.

I am looking at moving the Embroidery Monday evenings to the afternoons or doing something different with this workshop from September.

I hope you find this information useful.

Anita