Petal & Pins

Category: Fashion Design

A Lovely Reminder

If you joined me on ‘A Twilight Stroll’ you will have seen some of the blossom that is out at the moment in my neighbourhood.
blossom dress detail
The other day I created a blossom dress for my Garden Fairy’s Wardrobe from the first of our plum trees to flower.  I don’t harvest a lot of the fruit from this tree as it is a small variety of plum and the birds are quick to feast on them.

blossom dress bodice detail

In the past I’ve made a sweet chilli plum sauce, a rather laborious process I must confess, but a delicious result. Perhaps it’s the year to make the effort to do so again.

I do however always pick some branches of the blossom to bring inside. They don’t last long but are such a pretty thing to have in a vase – and a lovely reminder to savour life’s fleeting moments.

My great aunt passed on her secret of spraying blossom with hairspray to make it last a little longer. Practical tip or old wives tale who knows, but I like to believe it does work not least for the fond memories it conjures up of her!

With guests for dinner on Saturday night, naturally at least one of the many vases I filled featured blossom.

Our other plum is now flowering so I combined branches of the two. The one I created my garden fairy’s dress with has lovely deep reddish brown leaves and the softest of pink blossom and the other has light green leaves and a pure white blossom.

plum blossom

I put this arrangement in the bathroom (with a squirt of hairspray!) and I’m sharing it as my ‘In A Vase On Monday’ – started by Cathy from Rambling in the Garden she invites you to share what you gather from your garden each week.

By the time I photographed it this afternoon the warmth of being inside had unfurled most of the leaves…meanwhile outside one tree is a fairy floss like froth of blossom and the other just a sprinkling of blooms.

Is it any wonder they have inspired a Garden Fairy’s dress!

petal & pins plum blossom dress

Flowers & Seedpods

With the sun shining this morning I created two dresses with the flowers of Leonotis Leonurus and the seedpods from Iris foetidissima.

I’ve often combined the two in a vase – the splash of orange is a dramatic inclusion to an Autumn arrangement – but this is the first time using them for my Garden Fairy’s Wardrobe.

This is one of the dresses and you can can see the other at the petal & pins Facebook page.


© 2015 Sandra Alcorn

Leafy Layers #2

© Sandra Alcorn 2015  petalandpins.com

© Sandra Alcorn 2015 petalandpins.com

Leafy Layers #1

When Old Is New Again

© Sandra Alcorn 2012

© Sandra Alcorn 2012

If your wardrobe is anything like mine it is easy to lose something – it gets pushed to the back where it doesn’t rub shoulders with the favourites and can easily be forgotten.

And then one day you reach for that particular hanger and are met with a pleasant surprise. Like this rhododendron dress from my Garden Fairy’s Wardrobe.

I created it in October 2012 using flowers from a friend’s garden after a fun day of rhubarb plants, tea cake and gin & tonics.

In Rhubarb & Rhododendrons – inspired by that day – you can see another style rhododendron dress which became part of my Spring Gala card collection.

Today we are getting together to bottle apples from my garden. I’ll resist serving cake as we are joining another friend later for dinner but a gin & tonic might be a nice reward when all the apples are peeled and done.

And I think this dress I’ve unearthed from the back of the wardrobe might just be my new favourite!

My Garden Fairy’s Wardrobe Cards

© Sandra Alcorn 2015

© Sandra Alcorn 2015

The list of stockists for my Garden Fairy’s Wardobe cards has grown! You will find a selection at the following places –

TASMANIA

The Brown Dog Stanley 15 Church Street Stanley

FIG flowers.interiors.garden 244 Elizabeth Street Hobart

Because gallery + giftware 7a Gregory Street Sandy Bay

Verde  112 Landsdowne Crescent West Hobart

QUEENSLAND

Bloom in Design Shop 3b cnr Ashmore & Blundall Rds Surfers Paradise

USA

Fort Pond Native Plants 26 S. Embassy Street Montauk, NY

Most of the dresses in the wardrobe have a story behind them – if you would like to read the stories behind these two designs you will find them in my posts Crocosmia and Lucky Strike.

Gather & Mingle

nasturtiums in jar

© Sandra Alcorn 2015

‘Ahh nasturtiums…I’ve written about you before and the lesson your carefree habits bring. You have really taken off at the bottom of my garden now – several colours mingling together sprouted from seeds gathered from those unexpected places’

© Sandra Alcorn 2015

© Sandra Alcorn 2015

This Garden Fairy’s nasturtium sundress is embellished with tiny daisies from my lawn. You can see another in my previous post  Slightly Defiant & Carefree.

Teddy Bear Muse

Last November, in anticipation of seeing the exhibition The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier:From the Sidewalk to the Catwalk, I created two Gaultier inspired designs for my Garden Fairy’s Wardrobe.

For fans of “the enfant terrible of French fashion” it will be no surprise that one of these was a corset.

For inspiration I chose the conical bra style he first showed in the early 1980s and which was famously worn by pop icon Madonna on her Blonde Ambition World Tour.

Here is my take on it for my garden fairy and some photos I took at the exhibition.

corset

Jean Paul Gaultier exhibition

Jean Paul Gaultier exhibition

Jean Paul Gaultier exhibitionIn the exhibition monograph, Jean Paul Gaultier thanks many including his teddy bear – which features in the exhibition wearing the cone bra he fashioned for it as a child!

The Fashion World of Jean Paul Gaultier:From the Sidewalk to the Catwalk:

“…thanks also to my teddy bear Nana who was my first model and without whom my whole career not to speak of the cone breasts, would not have been possible…”

In my post Good Things Come To Those That Wait I spoke of waiting for several years to see this exhibition. It was first shown in Montreal in 2011, then in Dallas, San Francisco, Madrid, Rotterdam, Stockholm, New York, London and finally Melbourne in 2014.

It was worth the wait – so much so that I went to see it twice on that weekend trip to Melbourne in November!

Purse Project #2

© Sandra Alcorn 2014

© Sandra Alcorn 2014

Following my Purse Project last year using my Kaleidoscope Garden photos I decided to make one for myself using some of my Garden Fairy’s Wardrobe designs.

Choosing just which four dresses was the most difficult part!

Aphrodite’s Garden

Legend has it, the Goddess Aphrodite created aromatic oregano as a symbol of joy and grew it in her garden on Mount Olympus.

It’s in flower at the moment in my garden and there’s ample for cooking and creating.

© Sandra Alcorn 2015

© Sandra Alcorn 2015

© Sandra Alcorn 2015

© Sandra Alcorn 2015

 

Shades Of Pink, Shades Of Green

This morning I made my first Garden Fairy’s Wardrobe dress for 2015 with two different pink geraniums that grow in my front garden.

© Sandra Alcorn 2015

© Sandra Alcorn 2015

I decided to use two shades of pink together inspired by the two colour effect of the fabric twine I’ve started making.

A Xmas gift of The Sustainable Fashion Handbook by Sandy Black combined with a workroom tidy up spurred the start of this new project to recycle some of the smaller scraps that mount up in my studio.

© Sandra Alcorn 2015

© Sandra Alcorn 2015

© Sandra Alcorn 2015

© Sandra Alcorn 2015

I found the instructions on My Poppet. It’s easy to make and all ready my mind is sparking with ideas for what I might do with it.

You can see other ways I use my scraps in my posts Macarons, Memories & Momentoes and Treasure & Mermaids.

Always better than them ending up in landfill.

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