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Heidi Meier

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Heidi Meier Textiles Identity

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Welcome to my blog

 

My blog is where I chat about random things connected with running my small business!

By Heidi Meier, Nov 17 2017 11:59AM

I thought you might be interested in a glimpse at my workroom, given it's just been decorated and is now at the very tidiest it will EVER be!!



It's decorated in Farrow & Ball's 'Wimborne White' (Wimborne in Dorset is coincidentally where some of my closest family live!!).


There are still too many boxes around for my liking but once I have disposed of some of my older artworks, I will be paring down the number of boxes and ultimately the idea is to have most of my stores and stocks in cupboards or hidden under the big table.


I do my sewing on a desk, which is actually a Studybed, which folds out to become a double bed when needed.



There's plenty of work room and I am going to resist the temptation to put 'stuff' on there, and keep it to just sewing machine, cotton reels and current project...


I also have a large table where some of my fabric scraps are kept in clear drawers, alongside other stashes such as embelishments, inks, and so on.




I've left a nice clear space on the worktable so that I can cut larger pieces of fabric, or set out projects such as keyring making or card-making. Like most creative people, I tend to work on a number of projects concurrently, which can sometimes lead to a challenging use of space!!


I also have a chest of drawers and a small cupboard, where I store packaging, fabrics, pens, books, sketches, paperwork, tools, trimmings and more fabric!



At some point I will get a hanging rail system, so that I can display some current original artworks on the walls and add a bit of colour. But for now, I can't wait to start on my next project!




By Heidi Meier, Nov 11 2017 02:09PM

Today I thought I’d chat to you about Folksy and why it would be great if more people knew about Folksy.




Folksy is an online shopping platform, where thousands of small micro businesses and gifted amateurs run their own mini-shops. Absolutely everything in these stores is created by the shop owners using a multitude and art and craft skills. You can find anything from a textile greetings card, a beautiful hand made ceramic bowl, a piece of fine art or piece of gorgeous hand worked jewellery.


Some people have heard of Etsy, which is a similar American marketplace. Folksy is 100% British and only people who are based in the UK are allowed to open up shop on Folksy. So it’s great if you want to buy British.



(Above - original textile artwork from Heidi Meier Textiles £35 plus p&p)


Many people have heard of NotOnTheHighStreet.com, which is a slicker version of Etsy, but where mass produced goods sit alongside handmade stuff. Curiously, many things on NOTH are actually available to buy on the High Street, but that’s another story...


On Folksy, it’s all about handmade, and it’s not curated. This means the ‘professional’ artisan who pays their mortgage from their online sales sits alongside the talented amateur who just loves to create things. So all the photos may not be professionally staged and shot, but if you want something custom made that’s 100% unique to you or the gift recipient, you can bet they can do that for you too.


On a political note (as I do love my politics!), if you supported Brexit then what better way to show allegiance to your fellow British makers by buying cards, gifts and personal indulgences via Folksy, and if you voted to remain in the EU what better way to ensure British small businesses are given a helping hand through the current turbulent transition. Buying British, even in a small way, is a great way to support your country.


Every purchase makes a big difference to these micro shops. When a big corporate shop makes a sale, they probably don’t do a little dance or shriek ‘Yay!’. But the shop owners of Folksy do – some do a little jig, some jump up and down and some get happy as they realize maybe they can afford that extra treat for their family now.


So can you buy everything you could ever possibly need from Folksy? No. If you want cheap TVs, books, CDs and other lovely stuff, then I think you’d be better off at Amazon or one of the other big high street players.


But, if you are looking for handmade items that are sold by the people who have actually made them, then Folksy is your first port of call.


To help you, you can look in the Gift Guides, or Folksy’s Favourite Finds or just use the old fashioned search categories!


My online shop is on Folksy, and I’m trying to raise the profile of Folksy. If everyone who reads this blog bookmarks the site and then next time you are looking for a card, a gift or want to buy something lovely for yourself, why not go to Folksy.




And if you find something gorgeous to buy, you can also have the knowledge that someone somewhere is doing a little dance and values your sale!


Happy shopping! Xxx


Here’s my shop – why not start there!


https://folksy.com/shops/HeidiMeier











By Heidi Meier, Oct 9 2017 11:44AM

I have submitted three of my textile artworks to be displayed and available for sale in the very popular annual East Hanningfield Art Exhibition.


The exhibition runs from Saturday 28th to Sunday 29 October, and will display work from between 70 - 90 local artists.


If you are in Essex, do call in and have the chance to buy some great art! Address is East Hanningfield village hall, off The Tye, East Hanningfield, Essex CM3 8AE



By Heidi Meier, Oct 3 2017 10:32AM

Sewing bootcamp


Here’s an insight into the sort of thing that takes place during one of my new Sewing Bootcamps, where we get the opportunity to take time out to improve or plan new textile artworks.




This artwork is called ‘Reflections’, and it is one of a couple of designs I created for a two session workshop last year, designed to give students experience in trying different layering techniques and experimenting with threads and fabric to create shadows and reflections in water.


There are so many things I love about this design: the fish, the tree and its reflection, the water lilies and the layering of the sheer fabrics, but there are also things I’m not happy about, so, what do I need to do to improve it and turn into something I truly love?


A remake was needed, and here’s the journey of how the Sewing Bootcamp process developed this into something new.


Firstly, it’s important to look at what works in the picture. I love the effect created with the reflections and I wanted to keep the fish as an important part of the composition. The tree in the background is also a really nice focal point that I wanted to keep.

So what could be improved?


1) The reflection isn’t entirely accurate on the lakeside. Okay, it’s not a photograph and I am happy to use artistic licence where I choose, but in this case, there were certain elements in the composition and perspective which were making the picture unbalanced and therefore had to be addressed. So I decided I would begin by adding more foliage and reducing the amount of grassland, so that the waterside reflection was more realistic.

I have found that the best way to plan changes in a picture is to cut out some rough sketches of the things you plan to introduce, so that you can immediately see whether your hoped for improvements work out as planned. So here’s my new row of foliage.


You can see the amount of grassland that is exposed is now reduced and the new foliage adds more interest to this area. I don’t need to worry about making changes to the reflection, in fact, my changes will improve the reflection because it corrects the perspective.


2) I needed also a focal point within the middle of the artwork, as currently there was none. This lack of detail made the gap between the distant waterlilies and the foreground waterlilies too disjointed.



So what about a boat? I drew a rough sketch and cut it out – here you’ll see just how useful it is to cut out shapes when deciding on what will work best. Far more efficient than having to redraw the whole picture time and time again.



I thought my first boat was too small, and also decided I wanted the fishing figure facing inwards. The second attempt felt much better.

Now there was a nice diagonal line in my picture (background tree, boat), balancing out the composition with the fish in the foreground nicely. I should add you don’t need to perfect each element at this stage – that comes later when the actual sewing begins. So for now, my rough sketch is fine.


3) My final niggle related to the foreground. I wanted to frame the foreground and what better than reeds or some other vegetation.




I first considered using bulrushes against a grassy edge, but then decided they would be too out of scale with the fish.


So I decided mid size grasses would be better, with a long row of grass in the bottom left corner, interjected by a nice group of three shorter tufts breaking up a longer straight line (remembering the rule of three in good compositions)


The tall grasses on the bottom left would also continue the diagonal from the background tree, to mid ground boat, if I moved the boat a little nearer to the centre.



And so here it is, the new composition, something I am much happier with. I'll add the boat's reflection in thread and I’ll probably also add a couple more waterlilies to better link the foreground lilies with the mid ground lilies.


Now I just have to work out how to create these various effects and get sewing!


Will update you with progress in due course!!

...........................................................................................


Sewing Bootcamp is a two hour workshop run by Heidi Meier.


No formal sewing tuition is given but the idea is to bring along work which you are struggling to complete or work which you have fallen out of love with, to decide what action is needed to revitalize it.


Students get advice from Heidi as well as input from others in the group, and then we can work how best the action required can be progressed.


Some sewing might be undertaken as students have access to my two machines, but the idea is this is more about sharing ideas of how to improvement work, and sharing techniques which could be useful.


Sewing Bootcamp is just £15 per session – message Heidi for details of when the next Sewing Bootcamp is being run.








By Heidi Meier, Sep 25 2017 01:10PM

Heidi has just announced the following workshop sessions - places fill up fast so register your interest or book your space today!


17 and 24 January 2018 - Little Birds


29 January 2018 - Sewing bootcamp


23 February 2018 - Beach Huts


13 and 20 March 2018 - Reflections


18 April 2018 - Florals


18 May 2018 - Big Birds


1 June 2018 - Reflections


19 November 2018 - Textile Christmas cards


For more information visit the Workshops page.

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