Thursday, 17 January 2013


Aaaaah, another weekend dawns! As you know, last weekend was successful on both the artistic and engineering fronts. Whilst Matt slaved away building the studio, I trotted off to Ikea looking for storage solutions for it. The sea of people was terrifying, but it was a most successful trip. On my return, we had the obligatory session with allen keys, but as it was just some  clothes racks, it wasn't too much of  a challenge!
On my way back, I couldn't resist a stop off at Loot. If I had any room here at all, I would have also indulged - unfortunately, I recently found a massive mirror for my studio in a skip bin for nix!!



 In the current state of disarray, this is the neatest part of my current upstairs studio. This is my desk where I have been tooling, dyeing and painting leather. It and Betty Bernina are the two constants at the moment as everything shifts around them, as the studio accommodates my dressing room, and starts to move downstairs.

This week on the way to work I found some fabulous 'Footpath Fruit' - a black metal shelving unit which has become the perfect mobile interim storage for my shoe collection! It wouldn't fit any which way into the Kombi, but was only around the corner, so I popped it in and had it hanging out of the sliding door whilst I carefully drove home! Luckily, discovering footpath fruit is a valid excuse for being late for work around here!!
Just look at the studio progress this week - and as of tonight it's even further along! This wall has been sheeted, and the third wall has been half sheeted. Just that and the doors to go before I start painting - so exciting!!  It's starting to look like quite a decent room now - I just want in!


I thought Matt's tools and the offcuts made rather a lovely image..

So, this has been just a quick update before this weekends adventures which start at 8:30am tomorrow (before the heat gets crazy!) with a visit to MacLace for rivets for my leather.
 Happy creating, folks!

Saturday, 12 January 2013

Studio Progress Report



One week until there will be three extra humans living in our house! No more for me the luxury of spreading my work throughout the entire house. Currently the entire lounge is filled with 6 mannequins, 2 heads, a torso, cardboard patterns aplenty, and a multitude of moulded leather pieces drying on towels on the floor, not to mention a pile of leather scraps down the hallway! I don't think this will work with a full house. I have worked hard today to get past this stage of designing the shapes for my pieces, which creates this incredible mess! I feel I have been pretty successful in this - I've really only got two headpieces left to design and cut. Unfortunately I can't show you the chaos, as it will give too much away, but here is a picture of the leather as I cut it into shape with a stanley knife - hard work indeed! Then I soak it in the bath for a while before I mould it into shape and let it dry.

Back to the building of StudioSvenja. Last weekend and during the week, I spray painted the roof of StudioSvenja. Stained hardwood, it would never be pure white, but I am happy with the result of 'shabby-chic' white! It already looks so much lighter.
From this.......
Today, whilst I was working upstairs in the air-conditioning, Matt was out picking up more building materials. When he dared rest for a while, I said "How's that construction going there?". (Cruel, yes, but after all, I need to move in ASAP! As it is, there are going to be racks of outfits and bolts of fabric cluttering up the  house for a few weeks yet!) Guilted, he went down, and did great work, and now my fabric stash shelves are finished. So too are the seven fluorescent lights!
....to this!!!!\  
The man at work.
Over the last few weeks, I have been practicing my leather-working skills on a special commission - an armband designed by photophilanthropist. The first version was too thick and flat - it had no life. The second did not allow for the shrinkage that occurs after I discovered how I could mould it - and so became mine!

The third encorporated all the lessons I had learned, and is ready to present to the designer for his birthday tomorrow.
It has been really good to have a practice piece with purpose - I have learnt moulding, dyeing, edge burnishing and finishing - all knowledge to be applied to my WoW designs. With ten weeks to go, I feel as though I might manage to finish my three entries! For the first year ever, I hope to enter more than one. It will be the 25th year of The World of WearableArt, and my fifth year as a designer. A special year indeed.
Happy Creating!
Svenja

Tuesday, 1 January 2013

2013 begins

After a civilised evening with friends, ending with a most welcome gift of Moet & Chandon, 2013 has begun. It has been a beautiful, quiet, and peaceful day for me. Just what I needed. I enjoyed starting the day by working in my long-neglected wet studio, making the new diary cover as is now my annual tradition. This year I have incorporated materials from my nuno felt bridal collection, and have used new techniques I learned at Viltes'workshop, which seems such a long time ago now!
The initial layout....
The final product!

Done by 11am, it was brunch time with Matt, and a toast to the new year with some Veuve - no better way to start! We admired the fantastic progress of StudioSvenja by Mr Matt - it won't be long now! I'm looking forward to the opening party already!
I think it's going to be a cracking year - Best Wishes to all for the same!
Svenja