Petal & Pins

Category: Silk

The Last Days Of Summer

© Sandra Alcorn 2014

© Sandra Alcorn 2014

As summer draws to a close so too does the wedding season.

A bride picked up her dress yesterday for a wedding this weekend on Bruny Island and I’m finishing off another for a garden wedding next weekend.

With a slightly less hectic schedule, today I made time for some other creative pursuits.

It’s been a few weeks since my Garden Fairy’s Wardrobe gained something new so that was the first thing I did.

Already there are little signs of Autumn appearing when I look around the garden – the apples are almost ready to pick, there are rose hips and a blush of colour on the leaves of the lilac bushes.

Some of the geraniums I struck last year are coming into their own and it’s the flowers from one of these that I’ve combined with fuchsias for this Garden Fairy dress.

With a birthday party to go to tonight I then turned to making a present. I had decided earlier in the week to make a bag and came up with the idea of printing some of my ‘kaleidoscope’ photos onto the smooth underside of a heavy cotton drill.

I chose a different image for each side of the bag and finished it off with a pink zip closure and hot pink silk lining. The bag could be used as a clutch purse, to hold jewellery or a pencil case.

I’ve been wanting to play with those images on fabric since I took them and I’m pleased with how it’s turned out.

I’ll post some photos soon – for now it’s wrapped up ready to give to the birthday girl – I just have to write on a card – a Petal & Pins ‘Garden Fairy’s Wardrobe’ card of course!

Spilt Wine

© Sandra Alcorn 2014

© Sandra Alcorn 2014

My silk macaron project isn’t complete but it has progressed.

The Ladurée box I brought back from Paris that sparked the idea for the project had a little mishap with a glass of red wine.

By way of explanation, evenings in the winter months are usually when I work on projects like this – free of my work deadlines that fill summer and spring – a bit of fireside stitching and a glass of red are very complementary – as long as you don’t bump your glass!

© Sandra Alcorn 2014

© Sandra Alcorn 2014

I think La Belle Miette in Melbourne is the closest thing  to a Parisian macaron experience I have found in Australia and their boxes are just gorgeous so I’ve swapped to using one of theirs.

It’s a smaller box but I do have a larger one for when my collection – or should that be selection grows.

So when the last of this season’s brides is complete I’ll dive back into my silk scraps and boxes of beads….and be careful where I place my glass.

Treasure & Mermaids

© Sandra Alcorn 2013

© Sandra Alcorn 2013

Silk scraps are like treasure to me and even throwing out the tiniest piece is hard to do.

Occasionally I find a moment to create something whimsical with them – no planning just making something spontaneously and seeing what takes shape.

This mermaid is one such result – her face and hair machine embroidered and her tail hand stitched with sequin scales.

It reminds me of the old figureheads on ships as she has no arms. Perhaps she sings a siren song to the other characters in my cabinet of curios.

Georgie’s Dress

Dress Front

If you read my previous posts The Beginnings Of A Dress and Embellish And Adorn you will find the story behind the creation of this dress.

flower detailBodice detailhandcut silk flowers

These silk organza flowers are handcut and embellished with a Swarovski crystal in the centre.

The dress does up with small silk covered buttons down the back.

Dress - back

From Petal To Cloth

Spring/Summer  2013/14 © Sandra Alcorn 2013

Spring/Summer 2013/14
© Sandra Alcorn 2013

In my previous post Roses Of Winter  the flowers of the hellebores were just starting to appear and now they’re out everywhere.

I’ve been sketching wedding dress ideas for Summer brides in the last few weeks and I think that’s influenced this Garden Fairy’s Wardrobe design.

I can imagine it reinterpreted in silk gazaar – a fabric that was developed for the couturier Christobel Balenciaga who used it in his collections in the 1960’s. Like a heavier silk organza the fabric has a crisp hand and a smooth texture – perfect for the ‘petal’ layers. The green ‘blush’ would be hand painted and the cream stamens and magenta speckles a delicate scattering of caviar beads.

Petal Hearts & Silk Roses

© Sandra Alcorn 2013

© Sandra Alcorn 2013

© Sandra Alcorn 2013



organza jacket silk satin bow neck dress sequined bag silk and lace bodice silk and french lace dress  beaded feather hair comb embroidered tulle drape flower brooch georgette ruffle shirt

© Sandra Alcorn 2013

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