Petal & Pins

Category: Fashion Design

The Fairy & The Farmer

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Two of the highlights of my year have been about collaboration.

In April Lisa Britzman, a ceramic artist and sustainable boutique farmer in the Huon Valley of Tasmania got in touch to see if I would be interested in having some of her autumn blooming saffron flowers to design my minature botanical couture with.

Mr Petal & Pins and I drove down to Campo de Flori Farm which is picturesquely located high in the hills. It was facinating to see saffron growing  and Lisa showed us how it is harvested. I brought a basketful of the striking purple flowers home and designed a mini collection of dresses that has kicked off the Farmgate Project by petal & pins.

Recently we went back to the farm for olive blossoms and culinary lavender – and of course we were only too happy to come home with some freshly baked lavender shortbread biscuits too!

The other wonderful collaboration began in the Spring of 2016 when Carolyn  Turgeon editor-in-chief of Faerie Magazine interviewed me by skype for the The Faeirie Handbook – ‘an enchanting compendium of Literature, Lore, Art, Recipes and Projects’.

In winter this year I got a sneek peek at the proofs for the pages featuring my Garden Fairy’s Wardrobe® and the beautiful cover featuring Euphaeidae from the Wonderland series by Kirsty Mitchell Photography but of course had to keep it a secret until its release.

The book launched in November and I was very excited when my copy from publisher Harper Collins New York office arrived!

It’s an exquisite hardback book with silver edged pages and I couldn’t be more proud to be featured within it.

There’s something for everyone who loves a bit of whimsy and magic of any age with chapters on Flora & Fauna, Fashion & Beauty, Arts & Culture and Home, Food & Entertaining.

So let me know if you see The Faerie Handbook in your local bookstore…or if you have a suggestion for a collaboration why not get in touch!

My limited edition prints can be purchased from the petal & pins online shop and selected stockists. Wholesale inquiries welcome.

The Faerie Handbook is available from bookshops worldwide and online through Amazon, Booktopia, Dymocks and the Faerie Magazine online store. 

Pink Skies & Shrimp Tails

winter sky

Winter skies are always beautiful in Hobart around dusk with pink hued clouds alluminated by the setting sun.

The aptly named flowering Shrimp Tail Salvia echos the colours of the evening sky and the leaves turn to patches of burgundy and green like an exotic camouflage print, perfect for the Garden Fairy’s Wardrobe.™

I once mistakenly picked this flower for a floral arrangement,  the strong scent becomes more intense inside and is not at all pleasant – definitely a flower to simply admire in the garden.

botanical couture by petal & pins

Sweet Cécile Brünner

cecile-brunner-rose-in-my-front-gardencecile-brunner-dress-in-the-making-and-petal-pins-card

We’re having such a great season for roses in Hobart and one of my favourites is the sweet Cécile Brünner.

I love to pick petite posies of them whilst still in bud and their size is perfect for creating my miniature flower couture!

Atelier Pétale

Atelier Pétale by petal & pins

Last week petal & pins launched a new range of limited edition prints at the Life Instyle trade fair held in Melbourne.

I’ve designed hats with geraniums, violets and hellebores to grace one of my fashion illustrations – I invite you to take a look and let me know which is your favourite!

We ship worldwide from the petal & pins online shop and they will soon be available from some of our lovely Australian stockists (international enquiries about becoming a petal & pins stockist most welcome!)

 

View the collection –

Atelier Pétale Spring 2016 Collection

 

Fashionable Flowers

dresses in an exhibitionmannequindress detail

On a recent trip to Melbourne I saw the 200 Years of Australian Fashion exhibition at the NGV and this wedding dress (circa 1952) designed by Beril Jents was just one of the dresses that not surprisingly caught my eye.

Over the years I’ve made a garden full of flowers from fabric myself – from evening and wedding dress embellishments to adornments for lapels or hats. Just lately I’ve been making ‘spring blossom’ out of paper for part of our petal & pins display at our second trade fair appearance.

We’re launching our new Garden Party card collection, a Black Label range of notecard sets and I have designed a new collection of limited edition prints we’ve called Atelier Pétale featuring a vintage fashion inspired sketch with hats I’ve styled from flowers from our garden.

So our garden flowers continue to inspire me creatively and petal & pins continues to grow! We head to Melbourne next week for the trade fair and Mr Petal & Pins and I are getting excited, thank you for following us on this journey you are part of our story!

 

 

A Floral Gift

petal & pins hydrangea gown print

Sunday May the 9th is Mothers Day in Australia and a print from my Garden Fairy’s Wardrobe range would make a lovely gift.

Pictured is the Hydrangea Gown – Hydrangeas remind me of my grandmother, I remember watching  and learning from her what to do with the stems before putting them in a vase.

Nasturtium flowers are one I associate with my mother – I have designed and written about them previously in Slightly Defiant & Carefree .

My signed art prints are made with a high quality digital inkjet printer using fine cotton rag art paper and water based archival inks for beautiful long lasting images.

Available in A4 and A3 sizes from the petal & pins online shop (we ship worldwide) and  selected retailers .

In May you can also find me at the following design markets –

Sunday 1st May in Hobart at the market.

Friday to Sunday 6th, 7th & 8th May in Adelaide at Bowerbird Bazaar

Is there a flower that reminds you of your mother or grandmother?

 

Short & Sweet

hydrangea mannequin

I had  planned to write about something all together different – I’ve had a post half written and something new from my Garden Fairy’s Wardrobe to share for well over a week… best laid plans and all that.

So it is just going to be short and sweet – a bit like this dress I created this morning on the miniature dressmaker’s stand that usually sits on my workroom mantle piece.

 

The Ugly Duckling

delphiniumIf the French epithet ‘joile laide’ could apply  to a flower I think this delphinium would be a good candidate.

The lone stem in a bucket full of blue caught my eye when leaving the local farmers market, I turned on my heels and retraced my steps to have a closer look.

It was a bit of an ugly duckling surrounded by that magnificent blue yet strangely elegant – if there were more the same I imagined you could create a very sophisticated floral arrangement mixed in with white flowers and greenery.

delphinium detail

Now I have a self imposed ‘rule’ not to buy flowers to design with for my Garden Fairy’s Wardrobe’ but this lone stem was impossible to resist  – it’s petals patterned like they’ve been drawn on with charcoal captivated me and once home inspired several dresses too.

delphinium dress from petal & pins

Happy First Day Of Spring

camellias and blossoms

Last week started out sunny in Hobart, there was even enough sunshine to decide to eat lunch outside and linger but by the end of the week Winter wanted a last hurrah and it rained, hailed and howled.

More snow fell on the mountain and my early flowering camellias dropped on the ground.

They are too pretty to leave languishing so I brought a few inside to enjoy before the petals had a chance to brown. Combined with a few pretty pink blossoms on a vintage plate I think they look rather scrumptious.

It could be reinterpreted into a dessert – meringue and raspberries perhaps?!
Instead I created a confection of a dress for my Garden Fairy’s Wardrobe.

Spring dress

© Sandra Alcorn 2015  petal & pins

All words and images on this blog are my own work (unless otherwise credited) please respect this and contact me before reproducing elsewhere.

Early Signs Of Spring

© Sandra Alcorn 2015

© Sandra Alcorn 2015

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