Monday 19 October 2009

Introducing... The Blue Sylph

Hello craft-lovers!

I'm Natalie (aka The Blue Sylph)! I live in a lovely 125-year-old Victorian redbrick house overlooking a leafy park, near Dublin city centre, with my lovely husband. I'm originally from Bandon, Co. Cork, but I spent 8 years in college in Dublin, doing 3 degrees, studying graphic design and modelmaking, because I'm addicted to learning new skills, and trying out new techniques and materials.

Currently I work as a product designer for a gift company, designing all kinds of souvenirs. In my spare time, if I'm not helping my hubbie fix up the house, I'm busy being creative! I love pottering around the house and poking around my vast collection of fabric & adornments, beads, and other weird and wonderful materials. That's when my I start to get ideas about what to make next! You wouldn't believe the collection of stuff I have built up over the years... But now I'm busy making lovely things out of it for other people to enjoy :)

The Blue Sylph is my creative self; the part of me that addicted to making things, that loves to stay up all night trying to finish whatever new pieces I'm working on! My favourite colour is blue.. I used to be obsessed with it, and many people still remember the blue streaks I had in my hair for 6 years, the bright blue trousers, and actually 80% of my wardrobe.

When I'm making things, I'm not colour biased! I love working with fabrics of all different colours to create my flower hair clips / brooch pins. Most of my flowers are made from scraps of fabric. My mother is a real hoarder, and I've inherited that too, so many of my fabric bits came from her (when she had a rare clear out one day!!). Some of the flowers are made from my sister's old debs dress, and some fabric from my own debs dress too... I'm a big fan of recycling!

My husband and I have a professional badge-making machine. We love making custom lots of badges for our friends, for parties & events, clubs and companies. I also make one-off badges using of interesting pictures I find in magazines and brochure, and pocket mirrors with fabric backs, and magnets. I'll be offering some Crafty Ireland badges for sale to Crafty Ireland Team members at a discount price soon! They'd be perfect to give away with any orders and get some extra promotion for the team :)

I also make encaustic wax cards and framed pictures of landscapes. I learned how to paint with encaustic wax a long time ago at a craft supplies fair, and now I find it's quite addictive. To create a hot wax painting I melt beeswax with added coloured pigments onto an iron and then paint with it by applying the melted wax paste/liquid to a special coated card surface. No two wax paintings are exactly alike, and the result is excitingly unpredictable. You can find my cards for sale on Etsy and also Daintree Paper shop on Camden Street, Dublin 2.

One of the modelmaking projects that I've put on the long finger is my illustrations for a children's book, which is a Victorian fairytale. The illustrations will be mainly photos of miniatures (dolls house size models) that I have made. Below is a little preview! I hope to finish the book one day and publish it. The coal bucket is an old make-up bottle lid, and the candlesticks are stacks of beads... I love recycling bits and pieces into miniature things!

I regularly share a stall with my crafting friends Sophia & Maeve at the Crafty Market in the Dublin Food Co-op Building on Newmarket Square, Dublin 8, where I sell my flowers, badges, pocket mirrors, magnets and wax cards. If you see me there next time (sometimes with my handmade puppet Rufus), do say hello! You might see me doing some Tribal Bellydancing too, modelling some of my flowers!


  1. wow! lovely post, very colourful and so are you! sounds like you live a very interesting life! thanks for sharing!

  2. I love your flowers and the childrens book idea..... now you just another century to make more of those amazing models! I will keep your flowers in mind for future blog posts on my new blog Dandelion Daydreamer ;)

  3. Jeebus! Those victorian model sets are amazing. So beautifully put together. I love all the little details like the pictures and tree.

  4. I bought one of those machines too (it was a maternity leave whim) and the fabric mirrors are especially good fun to make (even with children helping). I find Japanese fabrics work really well as they are lightweight and colourful.

    Your flowers are great!

  5. wow - I thought I crammed alot in until I read your post! You are definitely living and breathing creativity!great post:)

  6. gorgeous goodies galore at ♥

    Thanks for sharing Natalie!!! Tx ;)*

  7. Absoultly fab, I love the great detail wow,,,

  8. bought some at your stall in the crafty market and i love them, thank you xx