I Have Become Comfortably Numb!

I hope you understand that the body of this blog was written before the events in London and it is humorous in tone, therefore I have inserted my thoughts on those events  above it.

Here we are again, back in the middle of a senseless act of terrorism. This time on the streets of the city that I worked in for many years and still like to visit. I had to contact my husband who frequently works near by to seek reassurance that he and his colleagues were safe.

I have no words that will make any sense of the murder of both civilians and one brave police officer that literally stood in the path of a mad man.

What can we do? nothing except carry on and refuse to let those that are filled with hate change our minds on anything.

We must support our police officers and those of the ambulance and fire service who have to walk into scenes such as those.

We must continue to demonstrate that only love wins.

Morning my little pains au chocolat! it has been a bit of a week here at WDS towers, I have had two visits to  the medical profession in the last two weeks and they were equally challenging! Visit one confirmed that the numbness that I have been experiencing is as a result of damage in my neck and has limited treatment options…….

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Visit two confirmed a laundry list of diagnoses also with- yes you’ve guessed it – limited treatment options….

So whats a girl to do? I tell you what girls do – we go and run the world thats what! or if you are me you did this…….

I ate a considerable amount of chocolate……

I designed and made this…..

I have a craft fair booked with the amazing Paper Daisy Events who do marvellous publicity for their artists , so I went and looked at my entry……

I walked these morons…….

They really are morons Milo won’t climb the stairs at my mums and uses the stair lift!

( check out my Facebook page for the video)

And I did all the grown up things like taxing the car and networking and just flipping got on with it because thats what girls do!

Kisses

Karen

xxx

I’m Excited!!

Happy New Year, Bonne Annee, Buon Ano Nuevo, Frohes Neues Jahr, and last but not least Anni Beatum! can you tell which way I voted in June? anyway I’m a bit early, the New Year will start tomorrow and this girl is excited.

Why? because 2016 was kind of pants for the most part, various family members have been ill as I have I,  more times than I care to mention! Also for me personally the big decisions that were made went the wrong way, what had seemed inconcievable – a UK no longer in Europe and that man as President became a reality, lets hope that the people at the sharp end can make all that work. Lets not even list the massively talented, clever and influential people that passed this year…


In the midst of all this craziness, good things happened, all the family members are better or well on their way and lots of good things happened to While Darcey Sleeps, and I made some changes……….

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I got my piercing!!!

I have also taken time out over the holidays to do some personal projects, for the first time   I have successfully knitted some lace…….


And a very easy hat…….


And now I’m knitting a flamingo…….


Professionally there will be some changes in the New Year, I will still be making cute but in an effort to differentiate from all the other talented people there will be more of a luxe edge, more sparkle, more glitter and maybe less traditional subject matter!

There will be lots of painting, and lots of practicing, my business took off very quickly and didn’t leave a lot of time to try new things, so that will be a priority.

There will be a few more giveaways so keep your eyes peeled, the first one is SOON!!

All that is left is to wish you the very happiest of New years and thanks for being a visitor to While Darcey Sleeps!

Made with Repix (http://repix.it)
Our CEO Darcey and Head Of Public Relations Milo 

Kisses

Karen xxx

Happy Birthday To While Darcey Sleeps!

Morning! Grab a piece of cake and a glass of sparkle because we are celebrating!

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This little blog is 2 years old! So in the words of Craig David lets “re re wind” and have a look at how far that unicorn has flown!

The 10th of December 2014 was the first entry on this blog and the first anniversary of me suffering a panic attack and developing anxiety and panic disorder.  This major upset had left me feeling like this…….

But then I went to therapy and a wonderful lady restored me basically to factory settings, so what to do with myself now? Too sick to return to work for HM Government it was up to me to find an occupation that fitted around my disabilities. That’s how While Darcey Sleeps was born, an umbrella name for this blog and my painting/craft business. It was so called because I could only work while this madam was asleep!


After a suggestion from family I started painting and did a few test run dog portraits for friends of my daughters…….

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This has become the backbone of the business, and for me a dream come true, to paint and get paid for it feels incredible.

For me the equal pleasure is to write this blog every week and not confine our discussion to  crafts, we have talked about everything, from colour…….

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To make up…….

Made with Repix (http://repix.it)

Fashion (especially hand bags!)………

Made with Repix (http://repix.it)

To gardening…….

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We have had a good time…………

 

Made with Repix (http://repix.it)

We have laughed…….

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And we have cried……

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Through it all, this has been the best place to hang out, I hope you have found it useful or thought provoking or just enjoyed the pictures.

My unicorn will be stretching her wings this year, making more, talking more and generally taking it to the next level, know this for sure, this sparkly door will be open to anyone, 2017 is going to need all the love we can give it and all the support we can give each other.

So here’s to us, and another year of spangly, glittery, emotional, funny experiences!

Kisses

Karen

 

 

This Week I’ve Mainly Been …….

Good morning my little cupcakes! If I wrote a piece that fitted the above title it would contain one word….Painting! I’m in my usual mad panic before Lindfield Arts Festival, here’s what I’ve done recently….

This last picture still has some work to do and ideally I would like to do another one, probably a horse but ideally a unicorn!

So what do you do in your spare time when you craft for a living? You do more craft obviously! Here’s a couple of projects I have on the boil currently. Let’s start by talking about one of my heroines -Twinkie Chan……


This is the first book I had by Twinkie and I love it! Full of food related items, I’m sure  I will need this cupcake scarf for dog walking!

It was a no brainier to get her second book….


I will be starting this taco pencil case when the painting frenzy slows.

This next project is what I’m doing this week when I’m not painting…….


Needlepoint is so relaxing and requires very little mental input, don’t ask me where I got this or what it’s called, it’s been sitting unloved in a bag for at least a couple of years!

What do you do in your downtime? I know there’s a lot of creative people that follow this blog!

Have a a superb week,

Kisses 

Karen xx

Shiney, Happy Photos!

Uggghhh! No sooner had flow arrived..it went! Shoulder arthritis, multiple sprains and a migraine packed it’s bags for it. I have managed to draw out a new type of portrait…….


Eventually it will be Darcey with a floral crown, I also have fairy puppies floating round my head. However one pencil drawing does not a blog post make, so I was thinking about all the pictures I take and delete, and what makes me keep some of them for so long, here is my top 10 that didn’t get deleted.

Number 1…..


The combined loveliness of my Darcey and my husband Neil.

Number 2……

Me at the Alexander McQueen exhibit at the Victoria and Albert museum, so good I saw it twice and cried twice at the loss of a genius.

Number 3…. 


The picture that made me buy a hysterical, self opinionated and completely precious toy poodle called Milo.

Number 4…


My first piece of business post, I was disproportionately excited.

Number 5…..


Your colours for AW 2016, for those old enough to remember do they remind you of the seventies?

Number 6…..


Because however hard I try, I just can’t seem to grow up!

Number 7…….


I took this picture to illustrate this years colour of the year but I’ve kept it because it is the most perfect colour.

Number 8…..


To me these are actual Angels, these are people that with the help of a local theatre group screened the families of the victims of the Orlando shooting from the evil that is the Westboro baptist church, who picket the funerals of LGBT people ( amongst others) this is humanity at it absolute best.

Number 9……..

Bluebell s- I admit I am obsessed but they sum up British woodland in a picture.

Number 10……


I usually ignore the endless motivational memes that pop up on Facebook but I love this one and I try to be supernova like as often as possible.

So have you got a photo on your phone or tablet that you will never delete? I’d love to see it!

Kisses

Karen 

Etsy? You Betsy!!

So, after I quit the kvetching last week, I had a good hard think about what I could do to keep my business going while my arthritis is so bad….Drumroll please…..I’ve opened an Etsy Shop!!!

I will be stocking it as and when I have stuff, in the future that will include art works and cards with print of my art on them. In the mean time I have some pieces that were destined for craft fairs. Here’s a sample….

Ive got some Spring/ Easter things……..

Made with Repix (http://repix.it)
I’ve got these bathing beauties and their beach hut, perfect for setting a beach theme ……

Made with Repix (http://repix.it)

There are some shabby chic hearts ,some Liberty corsage brooches and a tattoo inspired keyring……..

Made with Repix (http://repix.it)

How about these teddies and their bunny friend, fully jointed with glass eyes, they are not intended as toys but make a lovely decor piece for a childs room.

Made with Repix (http://repix.it)

Last but not least, some Christmas items which will obviously be reduced……

Made with Repix (http://repix.it)

I will be adding the Etsy button on here as soon as we are fully stocked, hopefully by Monday 21st March, in the meantime heres the link: http://www.etsy.com/shop/WhileDarceySleeps

Finally, just for fun here’s one of the pictures of my dogs from their recent photo shoot…..

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Whoever sends in the funniest comment for the photo will win a surprise from the shop, closing date is 31.3.16 so get typing!

Have a cracking week

Kisses

Karen

 

 

What A Year That Was!

It is one year, 2 days since I started this blog and it truly has been the most amazing year!

When I started I was absolutely convinced that the only person who would read it was my mum!  But that very first blog was read by several people and got my first follower (thanks Mrs P!).

It was also the year that I started to paint again, first with these two, painted for my daughters friends mums!…….

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I started work officially in March and offered a painting as a prize in a charity auction, and things took off from there commissions have flowed thick and fast……..

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I have also crafted until my fingers have nearly fallen off, I will have done three craft fairs by the time you read this, here I am at Seddlescombe Vintage Happening……….

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This was the first time I had sold things I had designed myself, like these hearts…….

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So, in a year when my physical health has declined it is the sheer joy of doing what I love most, and getting paid for it, that has held my head together.

December 10th 2012 was my first panic attack and three years later I am self employed artist! from not being able to walk the few feet to the bin to this seems like a miracle, but like all miracles its hard work, support from all sorts of people and the will to get better that finds me here…I couldn’t be more grateful.

Finally, thanks again to all of you that drop by to this little but very precious space,you will never know how much you mean to me.

Extra big kisses

 

Karen

 

 

 

 

Picture This……

I run my life on technology, shopping, communicating and working. The most important thing I do is take pictures, when I started this blog I was going to take pictures “properly” on a camera, this has never happened as the pictures I take on my gadgets are of such good quality……..

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But not only that they are immediately accessible, gone are the days of drawers of photos ( was that just me ?), you can access all those memories at the press of a button.

So join me for a wander through my favourite pictures.

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This is Darcey aged just 4 days, I have millions grabbed form her breeders website.

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My gorgeous child on holiday at the stunning Lorton House in Dorset, my goodness it was cold!

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That same child and my much missed Millie cat, this picture was edited in the app Phototoaster.

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I didn’t take this picture, my dad did- it’s my mum and I look at it anytime I feel down. Bless her, the nutter!

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Santa’s on bikes, one more reason to love London!

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The hysterical nonsense that is Milo!

Finally, my love, more handsome than ever…..image

He is wearing a medal as it was my mums Olympic themed birthday!

So let’s celebrate technology and progress at least until I’m replaced by a robot!

kisses

Karen xx

 

A Day In The Life Of ? Me!

This blog is frequently read in France and therefore I would like to extend my deepest sympathies to everyone touched by the events of last night xX

I think I have the best job in the world, painting and making pretty things and it would be reasonable to think that I float around all day in a painting smock, but in reality I have to be quite organised so here is my day!

First task of the day is walk the dogs, this is a physical struggle for me but I rely on it to keep my anxiety at bay, and when you have these woods on your doorstep it’s easy to get moving…..

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Poor Milo has had his “snip” and has to stay home….

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Then it’s time for breakfast, up until now this has not been healthy, but I am trying my best to eat better in an effort to reduce my pain levels. So this morning I had a banana and almond butter shake and some chocolate tea…..

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Its time to do some work! While the dogs sleep I start some painting, i gather all my equipment, paints and iPad………

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I can only work for about an hour before stiffness sets in but that’s enough time to get this far……..

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After a rest it’s housework, and then lunch……

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It hasnt been this healthy for ages, but this Mexican bowl of quinoa, guacamole, cashew cream and tomatoes it was yum!

Its then time for my second work session and the afternoon is for craft and stock for craft fairs, this afternoon was a glittering session for my Fimo Christmas decorations……

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When the dogs wake up its back to house work, cooking and playing with these two….

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Do you love how proud Milo (on the right) looks?

So how does your day go?

kisses

karen xx

Art For Arts Sake ( And Some Money!)

It is has been an exciting week at While Darcey Sleeps HQ! I have sold my first painting! Mine is a new business and I have done a few “freebies” to generate interest, a few weeks ago I decided to run a special offer on Facebook which meant that one person could get a picture for £10. This is the picture of the lovely Sprocket….

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The owner loved it so much he paid me £20! But he could have paid me 50p the joy of someone liking my art so much that they will part with money is hard to explain. So, now I’m officially an artist I thought you might like to see a little of the process.

First, I receive the pictures usually via email, these poppets are my next commission …….

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I use heavy weight cartridge paper and I like it to be A3 as that seems to me to be the right size for a painting. So first I sketch, I have a range of pencils …..

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I don’t measure or use a grid pattern, I start with what seems like the key part of the picture, in this case it was the white dog….

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Once all the drawing is done it’s time for colour, at the moment I’m using water soluble pencils….

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I try try and concentrate in sections but in reality hop from place to place….

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When I started this blog I did a blog writing course and one of the exercises was establishing what made your creativity flow, for me it’s having the telly on while I draw! I find it stops my brain thinking about shopping,housework,what’s for dinner you know the stuff! And the programme has to be something that holds my attention:- Homeland, Fortitude, Hostages and the Blacklist are some past and present favourites. Once my non creative mind is quiet then my creative mind can flow.

I have finished the picture but can’t show you until the birthday boy receives it!

So what gets your creativity flowing? Do you have any special processes? and any telly recommendations are gratefully received!

kisses

Karen xx