Monday, 8 February 2016

Being an artist and how to suvive on a small budget

Hope you are having a wonderful Monday, its been a slow start today after much furniture moving and arguing teenagers yesterday, I have started reading overcoming under earning book and it's really eye opening stuff, I would recommend you get it if you have 'money baggage' from childhood or have self doubting beliefs. Walking dogs, post office run, sewing sofa throws and making art is on my list for today, lets hope the rain stays away and the lovely sunshine comes out to play

Overcoming Underearning: A Five-Step Plan to a Richer Life

Catch up on last week

Last week it was lovely to have friends over and not be squashed, I pinch myself each day and am so grateful we have a bigger kitchen and dining room now that can easily accommodate guests. We have carried on doing jobs in the new house, yesterday was curtain making and putting furniture together, if I think about everything that needs doing, it gets overwhelming so trying to take each day as it comes.

I also did a new piece of art which has astounded me, it was inspired by my friend Laura's gorgeous photo of her with an elephant in Thailand (at a rescue sanctuary). Each piece of art I do I fall a little more in love.

I also learnt something new last week, which to a lot of you will seem like nothing, but it's been a big step for me, forgive me that I am so behind the times haha, but I went to the art shop and had a lovely chat with the man there about printing straight from canvas and mixed media paintings. He showed me what can be done, and wow! I was impressed, the printing machines they have are awesome, so I can now offer these as prints, brilliant quality, just like the real thing. If you are interested get in touch.

That means I can share so much more of my work without having to part with the original each time.

The teens have been getting on each others nerves a lot, they have had a week off college and have cabin fever, I try to remember what I was like with my sister as a teen, but only remember being wonderful haha. I am sure if my mum was alive she would tell a different story.

Money wobbles and 9p burgers

We have also been having a wobble around money (hence reading that ^ book), being self employed is sometimes hard, especially when you move into a bigger home (yeah I'm daft I didn't think bigger home = bigger bills) I posted an update about what I was doing on fb and a lady commented she wished she had my life, I smiled to myself because as I typed that update I was sat in gloves, freezing my ass off because we couldn't afford to put the heating on. Don't get me wrong, I am very blessed and love that I have the freedom to choose how to spend my time, but until I make it into the big time, there is a pay off. I think things like money and sex are not really talked about enough, it's OK
 to talk about these things, it's actually good because then you can connect with others who also may feel they can't speak of it.

I was actually worried, if I told the truth about the behind the scenes (freezing etc) of Dotty Delightful, somehow it would ruin my image and then people wouldn't want to buy my art because I have shattered the dream of who they think I am, but I feel I want to share the truth of my life because a lot of people are going through the same things. I read earlier in the week a cook book I borrowed from the library by Jack Monroe, I got it because I had heard about her before and her budget ( I mean real budget, not Jamie Olivers £22 leg of lamb budget) recipes, it's a great book, I carried on then reading her blog ( I tend to obsess and read everything when I find something good), that led me to other blogs about this grey area of people who are not on their arses completely, like homeless people or the daily mails image of someone of benefits, they have jobs, they are doing something passionately and working a lot but still struggling to pay the electric bill, or have dropped down from their normal luxury range of food to the basics range, it was pretty eye opening really.

Find the cook book here:
A Girl Called Jack: 100 delicious budget recipes

We tried the 9p - yes you read it right, 9p veggie burgers, I added some chilli flakes to mine and we loved them, although the younger one wouldn't even try them because they had kidney beans in! Always been a fussy eater - in fact a fussy everything haha.

A little tip which I have taken for granted before, is to bulk cook to save gas and time and I put the washing machine on an eco wash for the first time ever, apparently that saves water.

Asda have come up with a good idea to trail, unfortunately they are not available in the top 3 poorest places in UK, including my very own town Blackpool. The exclusive wonky veg boxes are packed with peculiar potatoes, crooked carrots and curved cucumbers which are all in season, as well as knobbly peppers, cabbages, onions, leeks and parsnips. They’re just £3.50 each.

I think it's a good idea to tackle the waste caused by the supermarkets being too picky and guessing that customers want perfect veg all the time, it will help farmers too, did you see Hugh's war on waste programme, that was heartbreaking for the farmers. I actually went to the veg stall in the market (it's just round the corner now) I haven't been in there for years, I was so surprised how cheap it was compared to Sainsburys where I normally shop. Of course it isn't organic and I wouldn't buy the garlic as it was from China but the occasional veg that's not part of the dirty dozen has saved me money. Plus I realised (der me) that I am supporting a small family business.

I could waffle on all day about this kind of thing, but I have art to create and the sun has come out so I am off to the post office to post a print before the rain comes back.

Love Dotty xx

Tuesday, 2 February 2016

LOVEly cards - first studio make

First makes from the new studio are so cute, teeny, tiny valentines cards, perfect for popping into your wallet or purse!. I painted on textured handmade paper, which I love and then folded and decorated them, I love them loads.  Each one measures 15cm x 5.5cm when laid flat.

                                                                         The front

                                                                      The middle

                                                                         The back

                         This one is my favorite, the purple paint has tiny flecks of glitter in it.

                                                            Lovely for friends too

I really enjoyed creating something new in my studio and kept looking round thinking, wow, this is actually real, this is where I get to work! so blessed. What have you been making lately?

Love Dotty xx

Sunday, 31 January 2016

New studio makeover!

I'm back!! 

Moving house was an epic journey, we finished moving the last bit of furniture at 1.30am! the removal van was 3 hours late, we was totally shattered, its only just starting to lift a week later!

Anyway we have managed to get the living room straight, I just need to hang curtains I finished today up, the kitchen is almost sorted but most importantly.......

I want to share my studio/craftroom at our new home, I am so, in awe. I am so grateful, for so many years I have wanted and desired a room of my own to work from, I have in the past, used the dining room table or on my knee in the living room and have had to clear everything away (sometimes in the middle of a flow) to serve dinner etc. I have asked the universe for a wonderful room full of girly essence to create in for 7 years. Today one of my biggest dreams came true, I got to paint in my very own space. I feel so very lucky and thankful each time I walk in. The magic that will be created in here will be awesome, I know it! 

 I still have some more unpacking to do and Mr Delightful is using part of it as his temporary office, just until his office room is all decorated and ready, so after that I have a pine dresser to put in and fill with magic potions. I also have a painting table, perfect for workshops and messy playing, to pop in the middle of the room. 

Dreams do come true, you just got to believe and look for the signs and make steps towards your dreams.

Love Dotty xx

Wednesday, 13 January 2016

How I made mixed media art in one evening

Plan for it, learn new things, keep growing, thats all youve ever needed to do, that will take you to your goals - Leonie Dawson.

With that in mind, I was watching some Youtube videos and mixed media and altered art and was so inspire to make my own piece. So I did! then I made this video all about it, I kinda go off topic about moving house and internalising guilt that makes you ill but its all good ;)

Check me out ;)

Always learning something new and playing around with new techniques, I tried making some mixed media artwork, this was my first attempt. I am in total love and really enjoyed feeling free, the creative process just flowed from me.

I was so in love, I stayed up and made another one!

Ohh I can see me becoming addicted to these! someone on my facebook page has asked me to do a workshop on them, so when I have moved and got the studio set up, thats what I shall do - awesome!

Love Dotty xx

Tuesday, 12 January 2016

Start the day with gratitude

Start the day well 


Every morning before I open my eyes I say thank you that I am alive, I thank the bed for being cosy and giving me a good nights sleep (I rarely have a good nights sleep because of the dogs waking us up - but I pretend ;) I thank Mr Delightful for loving me and I am grateful that I am blessed enough to have a warm partner to snuggle up to (I remember when I was single how I craved to be held in bed). 
I thank the universe that its going to be a wonderful day, full of opportunities and love (today the words mysterious occurrence came to mind) I do this everyday without fail, then I recite my affirmations. 

Today though I didn't stop there, I felt every part of my body with my hands and thanked each part for the wonderful work they do, I tailored it to each part and mentally felt connected to each part and sent each part love (yes even the wobbly tummy - because I am thankful I have had 3 babies), I finished with my heart. I thanked my heart for pumping life blood around my body, for helping me feel all the love and hurts, for being my centre, for keeping me alive.
 I felt most connected to my hands, I thanked them for all the tasks they do, for helping my implement my creativity to share with the world. For giving me the ability to feel, have you ever stopped and thought about how amazing your hands are?.
Without my hands I wouldn't be able to share my beautiful art with the world. I wouldn't be able to hold loved ones and caress their faces,  I wouldn't be able to feel how soft my dogs fur is, I wouldn't be able to gently pick a tiny flower. 


Find the positives

Even in the midst of a seemingly hopeless situation, there is always something to be grateful for. You just have to find it. Sometimes the universe takes us on our journey, forces us almost down a path which we resist, something happens, for example you lose your job or your landlord sells up and you have to move, what could seem like a disaster (what about money, where will we live) could be the kick up your backside to send you onto more amazing things. We stagnate sometimes and it's easy to settle for something because its familiar but imagine what you could find or achieve if you step into the unknown.
I know from the bottom of my amazing heart that the more I am grateful, the more wonderful things happen.  I know that when I counteract a negative thought (yes I still have them) with a positive thought, my happiness improves. I know when I am truly thankful for the food I am eating, it tastes so much better. When I consciously pour a drink and silently thank the plant for providing the leaves or beans, I thank the workers for growing and picking the leaves or beans and the packagers and distributors for getting them to the store, that drink tastes so much better. 
Sending love and gratitude is the key to having an amazing life.

I am grateful for you, my gorgeous readers, knowing you are there makes me happy inside.

Love Dotty xx

Monday, 11 January 2016

Do you feel good about yourself naked?

I am a big follower of all things positive and try to see the best in situations, always a glass half full kinda girl, you know, I appreciate the sun, the birds singing, the crisp sheets on a freshly made bed, I am thankful for my wonderful life but the thing that doesn’t come quite so easy is when I am naked, looking at myself in the mirror.


Forgive yourself

There is a lot of forgiveness I need to do, a lot of inner soul work, its hard, its painful but I know it needs to be done. We have changed our foods, our toiletries, we live as eco as we can, we work on lots of other aspects of our lives and now its time to work on ourselves.

Thin, fat, tall, short, any shape or size we all have hang ups, I have been reading a Louise Hay book You can heal your life, so far its a great read and has made me question so many things, it has made me realise the hang ups I have stem back to learned ideas that control me without me even realising.
So this made me go back and think about why I feel the need to cover my tummy that is flabby and full of stretch marks, should I not embrace those marks and think how amazing it is my body has grown 3 healthy boys?


Yes really I should, I need to change my thoughts, this can’t just happen though can it? by changing the negatives to positives, is it really that easy?
We according to Louise Hay who’s strategies and ideas have worked for millions of people says that it is ” Believe it or not, we choose our thoughts".

We may habitually think the same thought over and over so it does not seem we are choosing the thought. But we did make the original choice. We can refuse to think certain thoughts. Look how often you have refused to think a positive thought about yourself. Well you can also refuse to think a negative thought about yourself.”

Baby steps.

This makes sense to me, I think baby steps are needed with truly loving yourself,
Years ago I really didn’t have much self-esteem after a violent and mentally abusive relationship, I believed I was pretty rotten and fat, that no one would ever love me. It took a lot of time and kindness to myself, plus the advances of several men to make me feel better, I did this slowly, every time I passed a mirror I would smile at myself, then eventually when I was comfortable with that and it came easy to me, I would then add a compliment in my head to go with the smile like ” you are beautiful”. I sort of tricked myself at first into believing it and then my confidence grew. I had a 2 year period of being single and in this time solely focussed on myself, I painted, I sang, I read books, played music, lit candles, I did all the things I would do if I had a date coming round but I did them for me. I dated myself.

True love

I loved myself, then I met the man of my dreams, my soul mate, my love. I think we couldn’t have met any earlier because that work on myself needed doing. It is ongoing, I still love myself in many ways but as I have put weight on these past few years, I think from feeling content and secure in my relationship and enjoying food so much I have a negativity about my body again. I am working on losing the extra weight gradually, through better choices and doing more so I can feel happy fully with myself again when looking at my naked body in the mirror.

Love Dotty xx

Saturday, 9 January 2016

Creative ways this week

What have I been up to?

 It's been a busy week for me, trying to pack for the new house move on 23rd January, keeping up with lovely orders (so grateful every time someone orders from me) decorating the new house, luckily we have keys so can pop round when we like to crack on. Mr Delightful has been working his arse off sanding floors, they look amazing.

I have been making these lovely wooden heart hangers, a lady suggested they would make good coasters too, which is a great suggestion, I originally made them in pink and purple (see photo below) but a lady ordered these in blue/green. I used an app for instagram to add the light beams to the original photos, I love it!

At night when I want to be a bit more mindful, I have been colouring in, adult colouring books have become the bestseller of 2015 and it doesn't seem to be slowing down. I think they are a great idea especially if you feel you are not very creative or artistic, its a lovely way to produce something wonderful, plus it brings the stress levels down and that's sure to be a good thing.

Being weird

I finished this canvas too, I realised that to conventional people, I'm really weird, I have always felt a bit odd, like I didn't fit in, but I have really embraced my 'weirdness' in 2015, I have tried many new things including sound healing, putting my menstruation blood on my plants (my chillies have doubled in size) opening my 3rd eye with crystals, going on shamanic journeys, dying clothes with elderberries, stopping wearing any kind of deodorant (I use clay on my pits to detox them and every morning give them a wash) because I don't eat meat they don't smell like they used to, and many other wonderful things. My friend doesn't like it that we 'different' ones are called weird because we are the ones getting closer to nature and how we naturally originated. I don't mind because to me weird = amazing!

More of the hearts I painted, I am going to hang these in our new home, I also sell them on Etsy and take commissions. At the top of this picture is a letter from the Circle of stars. The Lifeletter acted as a gateway to connect the ever expanding circle of earthstars who hold vital knowledge, resources, lessons, skills, recipes, healing, books, art, poetry, insight, support and most importantly love.The last edition is sent out January 2016.

I have also enjoyed doing some watercolour portraits and affirmations for some gorgeous ladies, this is one I did for myself, I am going to frame it and put it in my studio to read everyday before I start work.

Lastly this week I made a 'hope' necklace, I hand stamped a mandala onto a sliver of wood and added beads and a metal 'hope' charm to make a necklace. It's so earthy and reminds me of a pixie girl, always believing good things are about to happen.

Hope you have had a lovely week, I am so grateful to all my beautiful readers and thank you all each day for being so supportive.

Love Dotty xx