Upcycled and Inspired

The upcycled skirt, inspired by a primula

I finally finished the skirt I showed in progress in last week’s post. I changed the decoration slightly but went with the black Broderie Anglais trim.

I wore it yesterday on a visit with a friend to the Fitzwilliam Museum, it’s a while since my last visit and every time I go back I’m reminded of how much I love it there.


It was a beautiful sunny day yesterday, so perfect for the  Spring  clothes I wore, first time this year that I haven’t worn a winter coat! It was warm and the grass had just been cut, Henry Moore’s sculpture (Hill Arches) is just visible to the right of the right hand photograph.

The galleries containing the Egyptian collection are my favourites. It’s these that we were there to look at.

I love the ancient Egyptian colour palette , especially the faience, with it’s beautiful blue lustre. This together with the copper alloys that had oxidised over time, combines to produces the effects that inspire me and that I love.


Image result for Ancient Egyptian faience


The necklace above is from the Fitchburg Art Museum, Fichburg, Massachusetts, USA. I’ve included it to show the detail and colour of a faience necklace from the 26th – 30th Dynasty (about 2350 – 2680 years ago).

I took the  photograph of the display below at the Fitzwilliam yesterday.

It’s hard to believe that this beautiful jewellery is thousands of years old


After spending time looking at the Egyptian artefacts and following this with those from Ancient Greece (a few examples are shown in the photo’s above), we headed to the cafe, where I had some very tasty mushroom and tarragon soup, whilst I wouldn’t normally mention such a small detail, it was wonderful, it tasted like a bowlful of summer and smelt divine.

We had a good natter and caught up with each other, browsed the gift shop, then wandered upstairs to have a quick look at an exhibition of British studio pottery, before each of us headed home.

Once back, I made a necklace, inspired by what I had seen:


I used copper, which I oxidised using a hard boiled egg, chopped finely and placed in a bag over night with the necklace, placed close to but not touching the egg.

I had read about this technique when searching online for ways to oxidise copper that weren’t toxic but I didn’t expect it to work so well and so quickly.

The small bowl I photographed it in, on the left, I made at school. These are obviously colours I’ve always been drawn to.

Dressed for a day at the museum!

Hoping you enjoy the rest of the week.


10 Comments Add yours

  1. Jodie says:

    Your skirt turned out magnificent, Sally!! And what a wonderful outing to showcase it!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Jodie, it’s great, finally, to be able to stop wearing winter clothes. xxx


  2. Ann says:

    You really did a brilliant job upcycling that skirt. The strips of pink at the “pockets” ties it all together! A perfect outfit for a museum visit on a Spring day. I’m loving the necklace you made, and what a brilliant, chemical free way to oxidise copper. I hope you’re having the same fantastic weather we are having here right now! xxx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Ann.
      I’m glad you’re having good weather, it’s great here today too, high 20’s, bliss 🙂 xxx


  3. Vix says:

    That skirt looks even lovelier now!
    What a coincidence that you went to look at Egyptian jewellery and I went out in my Egyptian Revival necklace today. I’ve got a desk calendar with a different artwork each day and today’s was a 14th century BC scarab necklace from Egypt and the first song Ii heard on 6music this morning was by The Pharaohs – very bizarre indeed!!
    Love your necklace and loving this weather! xxx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m loving the Egyptian theme! The colours are great aren’t they.
      Hope you’re having the same heat as us today, it’s so lovely to be wearing Sumner clothes and sandals xxx


  4. What a fabulous makeover your skirt has had. How lovely to see such a vibrant bolt of colour after just so much dismal grey. It will be lovely for the summer. That is a very beautiful building. I love all the soft, muted colours of the necklaces along with the strong blues and greens. It always makes me wonder just how did they come up with such complex processes? Or even earlier with discovering smelting ores into metals?
    Your necklace is lovely and that is a really weird method to oxidise copper. I will ask at work what the chemistry could be as I am intrigued. Hope that the beautiful weather continues and that you get out and about to enjoy it. Xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Today’s weather is even better isn’t it, it looks like it ll be cooler tomorrow, so I’m making the most of it.
      The Fitzwilliam is a beautiful building isn’t it, it looks quite imposing from the front.
      I love the egg oxidation, the sulphur in the egg oxidises the copper to a bluish black copper sulphide, it happened really quickly – there must be a lot of sulphur in egg!
      Have a lovely day in the sun xxx


  5. Thank you for the tip about how to oxidize copper with out that toxic smelly gel that I used. I didn’t bother to do the research and could kick myself but I will try it the egg thing next time.

    As far as your final interpretation of the skirt-great inspiration using the curved pink bands on the fitted parts. You pulled the total look together

    With the inclusion of the art history this was a perfect post from me. Did you know our Kansas City Nelson Atkins Museum has a Henry Moore sculpture garden that has about 60 of his sculptures.

    And about the donkey thing; When i first bought my three Shetlands, we also brought home a miniature donkey, which my friend convinced me I needed, because yes, they are cute. But, the jerk was attacking my sheep behind my back and I had to have the vet out. When I finally figured out what was going on, we took the donkey back to my friend. He did the same thing at the second owner and finally found a home with a regular sized horse. So there is my donkey story.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I love the shape and size of Henry Moore sculptures, he lived close to here in Hertfordshire, the sculpture outside the Fitz is on loan from the Henry Moore foundation, based on his estate. How great to gave a garden with 60 of his works in Kansas. I imagine that the landscapes there are a perfect backdrop for them.
      That donkey was badass, literally! I always imagine them to be stoic and long suffering, even if they are stubborn. We had a mad rabbit once, she attacked the guinea pigs we had and had to be rehomed. She was one scary ball of fur! xxx

      Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s