Thursday, October 30, 2014

Bog Oak at Boora, Caught My Eye no. 33

Caught My Eye  is a series of blog posts showing scenes I found interesting, odd, curious or beautiful. I am artistic and therefore an observer but I am not a photographer by any description. So if you expect top quality photography I'm afraid you will be disappointed.  But please do enjoy a snap shot glimpse of the world through my creative eyes. 

Working with Connemara green, Kilkenny black and Cork red marbles as well as local sea glass, I am very fond of native, Irish materials. I have yet to get my greedy little hands on a piece of bog oak to see if I can fashion it into something wearable. Bog oak is the darkened remains of ancient oak, pine and yew which have been naturally preserved in the acidic, anaerobic peaty soil for hundreds,  even thousands of years. Irish bog oak can be from 3000 to 8000 years old. It can be stained brown from tannins in the soil, or be as black as ebony.

bog oak, Boora park, Ireland. Own photo

Several weeks ago I visited Lough Boora Parklands in the heart of the Irish boglands. (Click HERE to see inspiration I gained from the visit.) The above photo is one I took of a huge specimen of bog oak - a beautiful tree trunk with the beginnings of the roots. 
Irish bog oak. Own photo
I got in a little closer to check out the textures. It might be a bit of an old tree to some, but I think it's beautiful. If you have Irish roots, so might you... teehee...
bog oak 'Stonehenge' at Boora. Own photo

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Tuesday Treasuries

Like most crafty Etsy people it's always such a compliment to see one of your handmade items featured in a treasury. This week I am so happy to see mine in two. As ever, I am thankful.

Angie of Vintage True has compiled this wonderfully subtle combination, 'Saturday Bliss' . The air of lightness is stunning. Thanks for including my Irish sea glass pendant Angie!
Gabriella of Knot by Thread Alone has curated an atmospheric list with clever colour choices, titled 'Unique.' I'm so pleased to see my clear quartz earrings in there and chuffed they were considered unique enough.  You can learn about the stone clear crystal quartz HERE.
I apologise for lopping this gorgeous photo by Petite Pastiche off the bottom of the treasury in favour of symmetry, but unfortunately some of the listings were gone by the time I saw the list. This scenic photo deserves to be seen!

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Inspirations from the Irish Boglands in Autumn

Like many an artist or craftsperson, I gather much of my inspiration from nature. This summer, I spent much time out and about in the countryside  both while on holidays in Jersey (UK) and also here in Ireland.
bog oak sculpture, Boora Parklands, own photo
Early September, I spent a few relaxing days visiting family in county Offaly in the heart of Ireland, where my mother grew up. We visited Lough Boora Parklands, a most unusual area of natural beauty, deep in the Irish bog. I must warn you, it is not well sign posted. We were not the only ones driving up and down the same country roads in frustration as we tried to find this mysterious site.

And mysterious it is indeed. The sculptures created out of ancient bog oak and industrial relics from the turf cutting industry seemed abandoned and ghostly in this eerie place . The early Autumn haze lent an ethereal atmosphere to the marshy landscapes and the stillness was so deep even the birds dared not break the silence.  I doubt any artistic soul could leave this moody park without taking inspiration with them.

old bog train art installation, Boora parklands, own photo

yellow serpentine pendant on brown cotton crochet chain
This yellow serpentine stone pendant on a brown cotton chain (chain by Huggle Knits) was inspired entirely by the old bog train! The colour combination may not be to everyone's taste, but will appeal to someone who adores Autumnal tones. It will go beautifully with a chocolate, beige or cream outfit but would really come into its own with petrol blue or navy.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Tuesday Treasuries October

Treasuries are showcase lists of Etsy goodies from a mix of shops. They are artfully curated by members of the Etsy community. As always, I am thankful to be included this week.

The hot and cold contrasts in this 'October' list by Uk seller, Eve of Eve Collection, very much reflect the weather at this time of year!  I'm not sure if you are experiencing the same unseasonable bursts of sunshine over there as your neighbours here in Ireland are, but thank you Eve for including my carnelian and agate statement necklace in this wonderful list.

'Going to Grandma's House' was cleverly put together by PJ of Seaside Collectibles. I'm chuffed to see my butterfly pendant in this very nostalgic list. Reminds me of my own dear Gran, who was a truly wonderful woman.
I love the original combination  in ''Autumn leaves' by Eweline of  Eibhlin's Jewelry. So flattering to see my yellow serpentine necklace got chosen. Thank you!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Creepy Tale Treasury

Making an Etsy treasury is becoming a luxury for me as my time is spread very thinly these days. I was working yesterday and didn't feel up to going out last night so I decided to indulge in a little fun and creativity while getting in the mood for Halloween. 

The result was this creepy treasury to showcase listings from fellow members of the Top Treasury team. Click on the image to see it better. The story is linear, but a little open to your own interpretation. Who pushed whom in the water and left them to drown and why? Tell it your own way.....mwahahaha
Creepy Tale, curated by Handmade by Amo'r

And if you look, you may find something a little Gothic in my Etsy store...
Irish, Cork red marble heart pendant
black Kilkenny marble heart pendant

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Tuesday Treasuries

Treasuries are showcase lists of Etsy goodies from various shops. They are artfully put together by members of the Etsy community. As always, I am grateful to be included.

My blog has been rather quiet of late due to family commitments. I have sea glass from my holiday to Jersey, inspiring vistas and current projects to share plus the next installment of my ABC of jewellery to post if only I get the time to do it these days. 

In the meantime, I have just discovered this citrus treasury, 'Marmalade' by Lynn Corrigan of Lynn's Lynn's Creative Crochet. Thanks Lynn for featuring my carnelian, citrine and red agate necklace.