Creativity Corner Creative Projects

light as a feather

February 5, 2012

After visiting the david hockney retrospective i came away inspired and fully motivated to create something. One thing is clear, colour rocks and so does david hockney! For those able to visit this amazing exhibition i hope you will try and go, you won’t regret it!

Here is a little project i thought you might like and maybe even try and make yourself. It is simple and doesn’t need many materials or skills. It’s fun, inexpensive and makes for a great gift when invited for dinner or when in need of a birthday present. Alternatively, why not spoil yourself?

All you need is a bic pen, some hand dyed feathers (I buy them at the knitting and stitching show at alexandra palace) and a few different mt tapes. Play around with different feather colours and sizes. There is no rule. See what inspires you. My colour inspiration today came from the david hockney paintings.

david hockney, taken from my ‘just nature’ book, more felled trees on woodgate, 2008

As i didn’t have more bic pens at home i decided to use pencils instead. You can use and sharpen the pencil until it needs exchanging. It’s simple to lift off the feathers held together by the tape and place it on another pen or pencil.

david hockney, taken from my ‘just nature’ book, early november tunnel, 2006

There is something rather satisfying about taking an ordinary everyday object and transforming it into something more extraordinary. I also like the length and weight of the bic pen and pencil once the feathers have been attached. It gives it a different feel, better ergonomics? I think so, but you decide.

You can make a few and give them instead of a bouquet of flowers?

Why not get the bic pens in red, blue, green and black? You could have a different feather colour scheme for each or keep it all the same. Everything goes and there are no limitations. Try a monochrome one or one made out of entirely the same colour. You might be inspired by an interior scheme you have seen or something in a magazine that caught your eye.

Finally, you can keep them in a little vase or any holder you have lying around ready for the next time you desperately need something to write with. Barclays pens, eat your heart out.

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  • Reply annie February 5, 2012 at 1:57 pm

    Tina I’m so in awe of your artistic abilities. I never do anything arty or crafty at all. What a simple idea. I love those feathers, they’re do glamorous!

    • Reply tina February 5, 2012 at 2:03 pm

      Thanks Annie. Really simple, that’s what makes this fun and for everyone, even the craft challenged.

  • Reply Theresa February 5, 2012 at 8:47 pm

    What a great craft idea. If only your tutorial were around when I had the kids’ camp/Native American inspired birthday party last summer. I could have made these pens as favors or the kids could have made them as a fun craft project. No matter, filing away for future reference.

    • Reply tina February 5, 2012 at 9:28 pm

      Thanks, yes, would be fun for kids to do. I suppose they could do it with coloured pencils.

  • Reply Erin February 6, 2012 at 12:30 pm

    I recently decided to stop taking bank pens as well, so this is a neat little craft project to make things more interesting! I’m addicted to writing utensils and am very discerning in what I use. If a pen skips when I write with it, it goes in the trash. If it doesn’t feel right in my hand, I put it in the communal supply cabinet in my office. I love feathers, and your pens turned out great! I’d probably never think to attach them to pens, rather make a headband or something else equally as tacky!

    • Reply tina February 6, 2012 at 2:27 pm

      Erin, I share your addiction to writing utensils and am equally discerning in what I use. I have a whole collection and love finding obscure ones. My pens range from really expensive to really cheap ones but they all have to be designed well, have the right ink flow, be comfortable to hold etc. I once bought a very expensive limited edition fountain pen only to realise that it felt too heavy and so have never used it.

      I quite like to use my feathered pen and pencils. They are quirky and make me smile. Also they look good on my desk. I bet you would agree.

      Challenge: if you email me your address I will make one for you and send it to you by post. Deal? Specify bic pen (colour of ink) or pencil.

  • Reply Erin February 6, 2012 at 2:35 pm

    Holy cow, that’s too generous! You don’t have to do that, Tina! I don’t have anything feather-y to send you in return, you know. If you’re SURE you want to waste post money on it, I’ll email you. But really, that’s too nice a gesture!! xox

    • Reply tina February 6, 2012 at 2:42 pm

      No trouble… just to add to your collection. I recommend bic for you but you choose. It might add pazzazz to the office desk:) or co-workers will declare you mad for sure!

      BTW, Annie and Theresa. If you want one, happy to send featherly love to my blogging pals:)

  • Reply Catherine Bedson February 6, 2012 at 10:29 pm

    Hi Tina, the coloured feathers are gorgeous, how could you not feel inspired and happy with one of these fun pens on your desk..great project. By the way I’m well and yes Heston is very popular in Oz..I don’t think I’ll ever cook any of his recipes (far to scary) but am very inspired by the pics. Catherine

    • Reply tina February 6, 2012 at 10:37 pm

      Thanks Catherine. Glad you like them.

      Jamie Oliver is huge in Germany. I forget that these guys are celebrities worlwide. Always think of them as British. Forget how powerful their marketing machine is… maybe one day you’ll attempt a HB recipe afterall:)

  • Reply Toni February 7, 2012 at 10:11 am

    so that’s what you were up to! Loving those feathers!

    • Reply tina February 7, 2012 at 1:20 pm

      @Toni Yep, was meant to go to the cinema but it was snowing, so feathers seemed an appropriate substitute.

      @Lauren Another picky one:) yes, looking at them is part of the fun for me. When I write with it there is a bit of a glam feeling, especially knowing it’s a bic pen! You know like when you wear an expensive label dress with asos accessories. Rather funky!

  • Reply Lauren February 7, 2012 at 11:47 am

    I used to work for an office supply company, so I am VERY picky about my pens! These are so beautiful! I love how quirky they are, and I imagine a bouquet of them would look really lovely in a mug by the phone or computer.

    So, so envious of that Hockney exhibit. Would have loved to seen it.

  • Reply Chi @ Carousel February 8, 2012 at 10:39 am

    You are so very talented, Tina! 🙂

    This is one of those why-didn’t-I-think-of-that ideas. Such beautiful results with so little effort. I love that they’re made with two of my favourite things: feathers and washi tape.

    My daughter would absolutely adore them, too – either as stationery or as tickle devices! D

    • Reply tina February 8, 2012 at 1:04 pm

      Thanks Chi. Oh, I like the tickle device idea. I thought of using as a dusting device on computer keyboard etc, but think tickle device is favourite!

  • Reply Holly February 8, 2012 at 10:38 pm

    Wonderful idea! It’s a perfect way to add some spice to life – great! I feel you are full to the brim with creative ideas 🙂 Xx.

    • Reply tina February 8, 2012 at 10:51 pm

      Thank you darling. I was just so full of inspiration after seeing the DH exhibition that I wanted to do something with immediate effect.

      I am determined to make some and give away. Maybe take them as presents for our trip to Berlin. So would like you to join x

  • Reply organising my arts & crafts stash » colourliving colourliving August 1, 2013 at 12:05 pm

    […] girl can’t have too many feathers. There is so much you can do with them. I like making these pens with my feathers. I buy my feathers from la droguerie or from slanchogled in chalk […]

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