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Paintings and PR........

I know, I know, once again I have FAILED in keeping up with my Blog posts. This isn't to say that nothing has been happening in Baroque&Roll land........

Firstly I'd like to show you my new Flamingo painting.

There is still some finishing to do on the top left hand corner. Its looking pretty sweet for now though! I have several flamingo paintings I'd like to complete. They will be used for the dining chair designs and shall feature in 'The Collection'. With a series of different flamingo designs, I'd like to create a Dining Room Chair Set. This would accompany a dining table to match. In a grand setting this would flamingo fantastic!!!

There are various other projects I am working on at the moment. One of which is this table. 

I have been working in conjunction with a new fashion and homewares boutique opening November 14th in Monpellier, Cheltenham. This table has the same skull design I have used on the dining chair design, which has been commissioned by the owner of the shop after seeing the chair. There is a final coat of Farrow&Ball's 'Railings' oil eggshell paint to complete, and then 2 layers of 'hard as nails' varnish to protect the artwork. I suffered with a touch of artists block for this piece, but, after commitment and determination I am delighted with the results-phew!

I've saved the best piece of news till last! 

A journalist from the local paper, The Gloucestershire Echo, got in touch after seeing my work. Turns out, they wanted to do a feature on Baroque&Roll and myself in the 'Weekend' supplement of the paper which is an addition in Saturdays issue. A telephone interview took place with Sally, who was so so lovely. The week following that, a photographer came to the studio to shoot some of my recent pieces. 
The following Saturday's issue featured a double page spread on Baroque&Roll-its FABULOUS!!! 
Its a great starting PR piece, with hopefully many more to come......

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'The Collection'.....

MORNING!! Its Friday and I'm blogging-told you I'd keep up with it!

Its been another busy week. I've had chair frame in the garage crying out for some Baroque&Roll magic. For a while now I've had the idea of producing pieces featuring vintage images of telephones, typewriters and other such things. I know these seem like strange subject matters, but I just love the look of them!
So, I got to painting, and have completed the telephone painting

I now have to choose some fabulous fabric to upholster the chair and cushion with! Answers on a postcard please!

Thursday last week, I had a veeeeeeeery interesting meeting with a good friend of mine, and PR genius, Fran Pearce. We brainstormed the hell outta it and are now in the throws of producing a gorgeous Press Pack to send out to all those lovely journalists, publications, and fellow Bloggers. A photoshoot has been organised for a few weeks time featuring beautiful models draping themselves all over my fabulous furniture-I'm literally bouncing with excitement about this! Photos to come (obvs)!

I am introducing a new feature of the business, and it comes in the form of 'THE COLLECTION'
This features a selection of my artworks. Each piece will have an edition of 20 produced. Once the 20th has gone, thats the LOT! Each will be made to order and totally hand painted by myself, so, although the image is repeated, every piece will be unique.

An example of this is the Skull image shown below......this is 2/20

Although the image is the same, I'm going to alter the chair frame colour and 
upholstery material according to the commission. 

I have 2 brand new pieces to complete next week, and will bring you exciting news of a boutique shop opening at the end of October who are going to be selling LOTS of my work......
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I can barely believe it......2 posts in 2 days! Blimey, how times are changing.

The reason for my impromptu writing is, I've had a burst of inspiration. After reading from cover to cover the October issues of LivingEtc and ELLE Decoration the top trend colour of this season is Mustard Yellow, and I absolutely LOVE it.

The new arm chair from John Lewis is a classic example

I feel the need to use this colour a LOT!!

The theme runs across fashion too.....

Saw this and it made me giggle

I couldn't forget to show the original jar of mustard-where this gorgeous colour 
comes from  

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It's been a while!

Well, what can I say, I've been so busy that I've completely neglected my lovely little Blog! Well, from now on, every Friday will be an update on what's been happening here at Baroque&Roll.

Firstly though, I must update you on what has happened in the last month or so.....

After successfully selling several pieces of my Baroque&Roll portfolio, I have been in a position to purchase new pieces of furniture which I have transformed into gorgeous works of art.
I went on a bit of a buying spree to tell the truth, and picked up 3 very different items.

The first was an old school (era 1970's, I think), cabinet with an integrated Bush radio. The original cabinet was designed with several compartments to store vinyls. There is also a section in the cabinet to put a record player. I wasn't expecting the radio to still work, but to my surprise, it does!

After the tragic death of Amy Winehouse, I thought it would be a fitting tribute to use a painting design of the singer/songwriter that I have had in my 'to do' pile for years. I have also wanted to use the vibrant turquoise colour for a long time and think it works really well in this style. Not only is there the artwork on the exterior of the piece, but the lyrics to one of Amy's most well known songs, 'Rehab' are painted on the internal doors.

The second piece I have had the pleasure of creating is a stunning Georgian style side cabinet with a bow fronted profile. To this piece I wanted to do something floral so found an image of an Iris in full bloom. This has been positioned centrally and has real impact due to the detailing of the piece. It is certainly one of my favourite pieces to date. The cabinet is painted in a Farrow&Ball's Cinder Rose which is a sumptuous pale pink. This colour has been continued over the whole piece including the drawer and door internals.

The third piece I have completed is a coffee table with glass top. It took me a while to decide what to do for the artwork in the end, but, after making the decision to go for a close up of a tigers face, I was VERY pleased. And, the results speak for themselves. The frame of the table has been painted in Farrow&Ball's 'Down Pipe', a rich grey with a hint of green.....

The table had Ball and Claw feet which I just love-they are  so beautifully crafted

The fourth and final piece I have completed recently has been a dining room chair featuring a peacock feather for the artwork. I painted the original artwork some time ago now and I am so pleased I have now been able to use it. The frame has been covered with silver leaf. The silver leaf has a naturally cracked effect which I think looks great, and adds a real texture to the piece. The upholstery is in a navy blue Chenille which adds another dimension of depth.

I feel like I'm really progressing with work now and each and every piece I am producing, seems to just get better and better. My painting technique has come on leaps and bounds since I first started to paint in this style and I am totally at ease and comfort with it......although, having said that, I still get nervous before starting a new artwork-I suppose it's just because I want them to be as good as the last. 

There are several more pieces in the pipeline which I am really excited about, including a telephone chair, a wardrobe or drinks cabinet featuring a vintage burlesque dancer, and something to do with Alice in Wonderland. I saw a wonderful quote from Alice in Wonderland recently, that simply says:

'if I had a world of my own, everything would be nonsense'

I'm planning to use this in another piece. Typography is definitely something I am interested in using in my pieces so watch this space. I came across this photo in Blog by Kim Piotrowski, it just made me smile.....

I can just imagine a 1960's G-Plan side cabinet with something like this on-could be used
as children's toy storage....mmmm, I think I've just thought of my next piece 


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McQueen Mugshot

I started this piece about 4 months ago and it has been hanging on my studio wall staring at me since then.
After spending so much time designing my website, and emailing suppliers, and sending out newsletters, I felt the urge to paint! So, I sat down and continued to work on this piece until it was finished. It has turned out a beauty, and I can genuinely say, is one of my new favourites.
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Big Steve = Happy Chappy

Well, the cigar cabinet for my step dad Steve went down a treat! He was made up, and I think my step bro Jared would like one for his 30th now!

It was a wonderful weekend of family and food. Mum and Steve put on an incredible spread as always-an almond soup, lobster, the biggest prawns, followed by tuna and cannellini bean salad. Then came my desserts-I had created an afternoon tea affair which consisted of handmade chocolate coffee cups filled with espresso mousse, mini pavlovas with Chantilly cream and hazelnut praline, white chocolate and raspberry cheesecakes, Blueberry frangipane tarts and finally, black forest gateaux cupcakes! Woof, it was good. We didnt even get round to having cheese and biscuits which is very unusual for our clan. Anyway, I digress from Baroque&Roll........

This week has started off with an email from Notonthehighstreet. I submitted my work to them at the end of last week. The reply explained that they loved my work and would love me to feature me on their website. I now just need a few (well, £575) pennies and then I can get my work on there. After speaking to my mum, I think it would really benefit the company if I could get my work on there. I have also been proactive in getting my existing work onto Ebay. Its not how I shall sell my work in future, however for now, I need to get them sold so I can invest that money back into the business in order to grow. I have put decent reserves on all the pieces so I'm hoping there is somebody out there who will buy them ALL!
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Your cigar is safe with me....

I wake up to another grey day in June, my heart sinks a little, then I suddenly remember I have a brand new piece to Blog about, and so the smile on my face is resumed!

This piece is rather special to me. Its been made for my Step Dad, for his 60th birthday. The cabinet was hand build by my great grandfather, and had been kept by my Mum for years. It was found buried among bits and bobs in the garden shed-it had been unused or untouched for some time. 

I set to work in restoring the cabinet. After a lot of TLC, the wood was looking great. The glass windows were set behind sections of wood, which I had to remove in order to take the glass out and give them a good clean. To my surprise, when I took out these wood panels, written on the back of them was 

'These hands were fitted May 24th 1939 by J E Torr'

This was the hand writing of my great grandfather. The unit had been constructed by him only a few years before he died. What a discovery. In order to show these off I have replaced the glass in the cabinet and then turned the wood panels around to show off this discovery. When My grandma sees it, she'll be over the moon. 
Between me and Mum, we decided that the cabinet would become a cigar cabinet as my step dad love a good cigar!

I got thinking and came up with a design-a personalised cigar label which wraps around the entire unit. 

I chose to use classic red, deep blue and gold leaf trim. The interior is in a rich navy blue which ties in well with the rest of the colour scheme. Steves surname is Sasanow and as you can see from the picture of the cabinet below, the writing says
'Cigar Seleccion de Habana SENOR SASANOW'
I think this is a nice touch.

I'm really pleased with the final piece, and just hope that Steve likes it too. My boyfriend, Rich, has bought a selection of cigars for Steve to smoke and we're just trying to figure out how we display them in the unit........any suggestions greatly received.

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Its all kicked off....

hello my lovelies! Yep, I'm officially BAD at this blogging lark. I do have the small excuse of MY WEBSITE GOING LIVE-yes yes yes. If you can't tell, this was a pretty momentus thing to happen for me as it has been a loooooong time coming! The picture below is the Home page-to see the rest, go to :


As I said, this has been an incredibly long journey for me and a test of my design skills. As a Photoshop amateur, I certaintly was a learning curve. At times I wanted to chuck the computer out of the window, but a majority of the time I thoroughly enjoyed designing the website. 

A few issues arose with the build of the site, although these were resolved as soon as I got in touch with Dee at www.rootscreative.co.uk. He was absolutely fantastic and was seriously patient with me. My good friend Benny boy put me in touch with Dee, so I'd like to give him a big up-check out his site www.bkcreative.co.uk.

So, so, so.....moving on. Things have been busy. Since the website has gone live I have been working on pieces for my the Open Studios Exhibition which has been taking place over the last week. Last Saturday saw the opening of both mine, and my mums exhibitions in Cheltenham. Mum works with screen printing and enamelling. The exhibition took place at Turtle Gallery on Suffolk Road in Cheltenham. People came, wine was drunk, and pieces were sold-overall, a roaring success!

That evening saw the opening of my exhibition. In was in conjunction with a fab artist called Fran Leach (as I mentioned in my previous post). It was a busy evening and I had lots of promising interest in my work. In fact, this week has seen even more interest. Above are the pieces I exhibited.

Please, please, PLEASE go and check out the website for all the other design goodies at Baroque&Roll. Not only is there furniture to look at, but paintings, murals and lots of other beautiful things. 

Thanks for all your continuing support
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Take 2!

I've been slak-it's taken me over a week to post again, but I promise it will be much more often from now on!

I have however, been taking lots of lovely photos to add to the blog. Just random bits from the last few weeks that have caught my eye.

Firstly, I wanted to show you how lucky I am to do what I do. In this glorious weather we've been having, I've made myself an
outside office. Here I have been able to work on my MacBook whilst basking in the April sunshine.

Wednesday last week was the day I went to see my new friend Fran. Through the upholsterers I use, I have been lucky enough to meet a wonderful artist. Fran has had an amazing life and lived all over the world. We sat for hours chatting about our lives and how we've reached to where we are. The photo here shows her amazing studio. The studio sits at the top of a Cheltenham town house which means the light in the studio is fabulous-any artist would be lucky to have this. The purpose of my visit, was to discuss the Open House Studios exhibition which I am getting involved in.
After seeing my pieces of furniture in the window of the upholsterers, she asked me if I would be interested in taking part and I of course said I would delighted to. We will both be exhibiting in this wonderful studio for a week starting 4th June 11. Its very exciting and some great exposure to get me started.

On Thursday I visited my Dad in Birmingham. I was lucky enough to have a guided tour of his unbelievably great garden. Not only that, but I have a preview of Dad's new work-nautical style clocks. Im not doing the pieces justice in my explanation as they are truly gorgeous and can't wait to see the final products-I will post pics as soon as I can. We went for a boozy lunch and had a good old father-daughter catch up! After lunch we went back to Dad's house and I got to have a chat with his girlfriend, Sarah. Sarah is Head of Textile Design and Surface Pattern at Stoke University and is a fantastic person to know for some seriously good contacts. I now have another handful of people in the industry to get in touch with who could just put me on the 'interiors' map!

 Fridsaw the coming of the Royal Wedding of Will to Kate. I never realised the enormity of this day and the media coverage it would generate. I stayed home and worked whilst watching the day unfold. Im not a Royalist by any stretch of the imagination, but I must say I was pretty emotional throughout the ceremony. Weddings tend to do that to me. The Suffolks put on The Royal T street party which I wandered down to for a cup of coffee and to have a nosey at the celebrations.

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and we're off....

Well, certaintly a week of progress! After much deliberation I have changed my website builder.
It is now in the trusted hands of Ben @ BKCREATIVE and he's doing a fantastic job. Already I have a completed Homepage (I only handed over the final design yesterday).

I've also been onto my upholsterer. I have a new chair frame painted in the brightest canary yellow EVER!
I've painted on canvas two love birds on a charcoal grey background. The fabric for the chair will be a rich woven wool in charcoal grey to echo the colour of the background. The texture of the wool will give a sense of real luxury to the piece.