Friday, June 7, 2019

Creating " Pearl "

Greetings dear friends & readers

About 4 years ago now my friend Gail closed down her Gift Shop - I had worked part time in this store for 18 years  but left about 7 years ago to focus on my Craft Cottage.
After Gail closed the doors The Mr & I went with our large enclosed trailer & took several loads of left over stock 
back to Gails house.
This torso/mannequin was amongst the stock, in fact there were two of them - it had been for sale for $160 -
 $80 in her half price sale

No one had bought them so I asked Gail what she wanted for this one & she said $20 !  I promptly paid her for it & now Wish I had bought the other as well.
Home it came & - in typical "Julie fashion" - sat in the corner of my bedroom gathering dust bunnies for 4 years !!

I had a rather vague idea of what I wanted to do with it but nothing specific.

One afternoon in late summer I dragged it out onto my deck area & began to paint it with some leftover acrylic wall paint that I found - Cottage Cream
It took several coats to cover the fabric body & the dark wood base but eventually I was happy with it

Inside it sat - in a corner of my lounge - for a further two months!!

Last weekend was a long weekend here in New Zealand being Queen's Birthday Weekend.
I dragged it down to a light sunny spot by my french doors & began to decorate it with cream crochet doilies, of which I have rather a few 😉

I had this deep cream fringing which I glued to the lower part & then just carried on - making it up as I went along - mod podging on doileys & vintage laces.
It was fun but I needed to walk away from it often,  then go back & view it through fresh eyes

Slowly over the course of the weekend I built up the doiley coverage

Until I decided I was happy with it .  .  .  .  then I stood back & decided "she" needed a belt around her waist 
& a corsage at her neck 

I found this fabric flower for the corsage & embellished it with some milliners netting 
For the belt I used a wide cream cotton lace & then fashioned a calico "flower" which I embellished with pearls & a lace frill + more milliners netting.

I decided to add a long string of Pearls around her neck ... this is when I decided to name her Pearl 💗

Lastly I lightly sanded/distressed the woodwork & then glued a row of mother-of-pearl buttons around her neck

The back view

The front view ... I gave her two good coats of mod podge when finished which has sealed all the fabric nicely 
& will make her "wipeable" should I need to clean her 😉

I have taken her outside to my deck area to try to get a clearer photo on this dull grey winters day.
I really, really LoVe Pearl 💕 & am so pleased I finally got to bring her to life

I also managed to complete some more upcycles for my local St John's Op Shop over the long weekend
A wooden coat hook with gold hooks - I didn't even unscrew the hooks, just chalk painted over them ... the colour 
is Arctic, a pretty pale duck egg colour

This wooden camphor box got the "Arctic treatment" also 

You can see in the left hand photo how the marker pen colours bled through my paintwork despite 3 coats
The interior of the box was such a mess - someone had stored felt pens/vivid markers inside it at some stage.
I painted the sides & planned to line the base & inside lid with some cotton fabric. 
Unfortunately the vivid markers bled through the paint - even 3 coats didn't hide it, so I glued some pretty scrapbooking papers onto the sides, which complimented my lining fabric.

This plain wooden tray was my first attempt at using the stencil I purchased from Paint Me Vintage in this Post
 I rather love how this tray turned out & gave it a good wax afterwards to make it wipeable

And two more gold mirrors - one completed here & one still in the process - the colour "Old Linen"

I could not believe my luck last week when I won an Auction on Trademe for these gorgeous vintage 
embroidered tea towels.

I just adored them & was even more thrilled when the parcel arrived in the post & they were even more special !

I am unsure as yet what I will do with them but I am absolutely certain they will Not be used to wipe dirty dishes !!!

Thanks so much for staying with me through this rather long post dear friends,
I am battling both a head cold & a tummy bug at present so I am off to join this little furry friend & tuck up for this wintery afternoon

Take care dear readers - be kind to yourselves & to each other
With much love & friendship to you all,
Julie & the furry ones x0x0x0


  1. Pearl is just beautiful, Julie. I am always amazed at the wonderful things you make. I just love the embroidered tea towels. Lucky you. I wouldn't use them on dishes either! xxx

  2. Pearl, dear Pearl, you are so beautiful!!! Totally worth waiting 4 years for your creation date! Er....did you notice those tea towels have cats on them........Make sure the kitties don't see them........I am sure they will claim they are related and need them for comfort in their banana box! Ha... Enjoy your snuggle time. It's pouring here.

  3. So sorry you are unwell Julie.
    Stay warm and cosy.
    That was such an interesting process you did taking us through the making of pearl.
    Just loved those tea towels,I am quite envious. Reminded me of a birthday gift my mother gave me when I turned 12. A set of 7 panties with the day of the week embroidered within a heart. I felt so grown up and special wearing them!
    Don’t work too hard for awhile and while in bed treat yourself. I am working my way through The Onedin Line on my iPad and just love the costumes and story lines. Have The original Forsyth Saga lined up next with Kenneth More and New Zealander Ngree Dawn Porter.
    Kisses to your Puddy cats xxxx.

  4. What a wonderful transformation! Four years waiting was worth it. I guess if you have DO to go to that requires pearls, I'm sure pearl herself will come to your aid.

  5. Pearl is so beautiful Julie, well worth the time to dress her up. You are doing some wonderful things with the op shop goodies. Those towels are really cute, no definitely no dishes for them! I hope you are feeling better soon Julie, keep warm and rest.

  6. You did a fabulous job on Pearl Julie, well done. love your up cycles to, you don't notice the details on those camphor boxes until they are painted, and the tea towels are just gorgeous. Miss pippi has the right idea, nice cozy spot. Have a great week Julie, we have Queens birthday this weekend. Stay warm. Chris xoxoxo

  7. WHAT! NO! Banana boxes...! HeHe! :O).

    The torso/mannequin takes me back..when l first
    came back to this country in 73, l bought my
    then wife, (only had one)..wife that is..! :).
    As like yourself Julie she quit amazing as a
    seamstress..many of the cloths, l still wear,
    were made by her..and..the torso/mannequin,
    she still has and uses!
    And..what you've made and put onto Pearl is
    amazing..l do love lacy thing, and the pearls
    really sets it off..Lovely!
    Reminds me of that song by Elkie Brooks from
    1977..Pearls a singer...! :).

    And...Your before and after work are amazing to..
    I assume the camphor box was to small for a pussy~cat,
    HeHe! Bless! get on..just gone seven over here, pouring
    with rain, still the gardens need it..l'll walk into
    town later, l've got an umbrella, pink of course, no
    need to ask, though, l don't like getting it wet....!
    Take care Julie..And take care of Pearl...!!! :o).
    ☕🍰☕🍰☕ ☕🍰☕🍰☕ ☕🍰☕🍰☕ ☕🍰☕🍰☕ ☕🍰☕🍰☕

  8. Oh my, where do I start!! Your Pearl is oozing gorgeousness, with all those pretty embellishments, Julie. You performed magic on her with the doilies, flowers, pearl and that little wisp of tulle. As for those embroidered tea towels, how darling are these. Most definitely keep these pretties away from your husband when he wipes up the dishes. =) I wonder what magic you will conjure up with these....they must be seen somewhere. Love the frame and the sweet box too. That is no good you are feeling under the weather. Quite right to curl up with your feline friend. Hope you are better soon, lovely lady♥ A most gorgeous post overspilling with delight.

  9. Pearl is just fabulous, you have such an eye for detail and colour. x

  10. You are one very talented craftswoman Julie!

    I love all of what you shared today, but Pearl would have to be my all time favourite. You have done a truly wonderful job with her!

    Hope you feel better soon, there seems to be lots of bugs going around this winter. I am hoping not to catch any...

    Enjoy your snuggles with your furry friend,


  11. I love , love ,love all your creations. How fun. I hope someday to be able to do things like this. I love to upcycle. But right now it is earn money for paying off the house. I am on a treadmill and it is so tiring, but I just keep telling myself it will be over soon.. Kep plugging. In the mean time I can enjoy what you do my friend.

  12. The dress form is looking gorgeous!

    1. Thanks so much Krishna ... I am so pleased she is finally finished! Wishing you a lovely weekend Krishna. xx

  13. That Pearl looks like she might start dancing at any minute, and won't that fringe look pretty when she sways? I am left speechless with the way you have a vision for things most mere mortals cannot comprehend. You work such magic!

  14. Such lovely ideas, a new coat of paint such brings everything to life and your finishing touches are just superb. x

    1. Thanks so much - I totally agree with you. A good freshen up can often transform things. xx

  15. Pearl is just perfect!! I love what you did with her - what fun pulling out all your bits and pieces to adorn her with (and you sure must have a few bits and pieces stashed away!) Your makeovers looks so good too, but it is Pearl who steals the show on this post! Hope you're feeling better by now, it seems to be a nasty time of the year.

  16. loved Pearl & wish i had a mannequin, though i would use mine to try on my finished woollies :))
    those tea towels are gorgeous! full of lovely kitties! i tend to make a bee line for anything cats these days too or old world-ish
    lovely post
    thanx for sharing

  17. Julie it's all so beautiful and so well done. Love them all. Hope you are keeping warm on these awful grey wet foggy days. Can see you and Miss Pippy and Blackie sitting by your fire.


  18. شركة تنظيف منازل بالخبر

    شركة تنظيف منازل بالخبر شركة المثالية هي افضل شركة تنظيف بالخبر يمكنكم التواصل معها للحصول علي افضل خدمات تنظيف المنازل والشقق والفلل والبيوت والمجالس والكنب والسجاد والموكيت والمفروشات بجودة عالية ومواصفات قياسية حيث تعد شركة تنظيف منازل بالخبر اولي الشركات التي التي تخصصت في مجالل التنظيف بالخبر ولديها خبرة كبيرة وعمالة ماهرة وادوات تنظيف حديثة وطاقم عمالة مدرب علي اعلي مستوى فلا تترددوا في الاتصال بشركة المثالية للتنظيف بالخبر وسوف تحصلون علي افضل الخدمات المنزلية من نظافة ومكافحة حشرات بارخص الاسعار


  19. شركة تنظيف منازل بالجبيل افضل شركة خدمات منزلية بالجبيل نظافة شاملة مع التعقيم والتلميع وابادة الحشرات شركة تنظيف بالجبيل شركة المثالية هي افضل شركة نظافة بالجبيل والمنطقة الشرقية تقدم لعملائها افضل جودة وارخص الاسعار بالاضافة الي تقديم الخدمات من خلال عمالة مدربة وذات خبرة كبيرة بمجالات التنظيف ومكافحة الحشرات , فلا تتردد في الاتصال بشركة تنظيف بالجبيل للحصول علي كل ما هو مميز ولضمان الحصول علي منزل امن نظيف راقي خالي من المواد الضارة والميكروبات

    شركة تنظيف منازل بالجبيل
    شركة تنظيف بالجبيل

  20. Oh my goodness, your mannequin is simple gorgeous and those painted trays, boxes and frames! :)


Hello, & thank you for taking the time to comment on my posts - I read and appreciate each and every one of your comments :-)
I always prefer to reply to your comments by email unless you are a no-reply-blogger in which case I will reply to your comments in this section here. Thanks so much for stopping by to read & comment on my blog x0x