A Quiet Moment.

Working alone for most of the day can be great for production.  9.15 in the workshop and I’m fully prepped (night before), fingers at the ready and the machines are co-operating and I press ‘play’ on the DVD. I work fast. I’m completely absorbed in what I’m doing and it’s only my growling stomach that reminds me that I need a break.  These golden bubbles of time are very satisfying and here is an example of what this time looks like.

Dragonfly brooches.

I’ve made these brooches for sometime and reserched their shape from pictures and drawings, never having actually studied them in real life.  However, a trip this year to France offered me a great opportunity to watch and photograph them.

Still and quiet.  A magical moment for me.

This particular one was happy to be photgraphed and here he is.


Above. This shot was pure fluke. No idea how I took this.

Dragonfly brooches are fiddly and time consuming to make and  require a lot of stitch work on their wings. However, this effort is well worth it.

Here are a few photos of the process (in a nut shell)

a. The template is designed and the various components i.e. wings & body cut of of fabric.


b. These are then bonded to a stiffened cotton and the stitch work begins using freehand machine embroidery, various cottons and a lot of patience (a full dictionary of swear words is also essential). This is the most time consuming stage and one where if I’m not fully focused can end badly, often involving my fore finger and a fast moving needle! (Blood isn’t an attractive colour on a dragonfly wing).


c. Sequins stitched on and ready to be cut out.

d. Once cut out they are then bonded to felt and left overnight to dry.Brooch bars are then stitched on and finally into their boxes and sent on their way.

 On a good day I can make 20 brooches but after that I’m desperate to get out of the workshop for a change of scene and a smell of fresh air.

It’s easy to see why dragonflies are a bit special and despite the brooches being a chore to make, the end result is worth it. 

Sometimes I struggle to say goodbye.

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8 Responses to A Quiet Moment.

  1. tialys says:

    Love the photographs (especially the arty farty one you captured by mistake!) and love the brooches too. I hope people appreciate all the hard work that goes into them.

  2. Thanks, I was dead impressed with my ‘arty farty’ photo too! I could almost pass myself off as a ‘professional’. Thanks for taking the time to respond, Cathy x

  3. Dotty Red says:

    speachless, just beautiful

  4. Mojca says:

    Great photos, congratulatios! And I totally looove your dragonfly brooches – I keep mine with me at all times! (he lives on a purse…)
    Lovely to read your blog, one doesn’t really imagine how much work goes into a pretty little brooch!

  5. Seriously lovely as ever – of course I’d love to see them in flight on a lampshade but then I would wouldn’t I. Polly x

  6. Houdini says:

    WOW – a post 😉 Yippee!

    You know already how much I love these dragonflies!

    As I’m typing this, I’m looking up to your ‘blue tit brooch’ which never made the journey to it’s proposed new owner…instead it still resides with me in the kitchen where I intend for it to stay for a very long time! 😉

    You mentioned some ‘seconds’ keyrings when I saw you last. Would you please let me know how much you’d want for them on FB and what designs they are?

    Hope you’re both well.

    Many thanks – Al xx

    • Cheeky! You put me under pressure…I had no choice!
      Regarding the ‘seconds’ keyrings, I think I have cut them all up to use on my street pictures.
      What did you have in mind? Of course I can offer you ‘mates rates’.
      I will have a dig about and if I find any, you can just have them….yes….for free!

      I know I have a few dodgey VW’s and perhaps a toadstool one. Anyway, will let you know and report back next week.

      I have an event on tomorrow and have lots of prep to do.

      Tatty bye for now,


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