Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Festive Holly: a Challenge

My Blogging Business Artisans team sets forth a new Challenge every month.  The purpose is to encourage us to explore our creativity, to stretch our imaginations.  Perhaps we are re-working something we've done in the past or still do.  Perhaps we're making something entirely new.
LeAnn of Pasque Flower Creations gave us this Challenge for the month of October: 

"This month, I challenge you to create a holiday-themed item. It could be a new listing for your etsy shop, a holiday decoration for your home, a costume or special accessory for a holiday gathering, or a gift you intend to give to a friend or loved one."

source (more information in LINKS below)

Holly is so festive and pretty!  Its colors of dark glossy green and scarlet brighten gray, dreary days.  Many varieties of holly are evergreen, with waxy green leaves sporting sharp edges.  The origin of the word "holly" is probably a word meaning "prickly."  (from Germanic Hulin to Old English Holegn, and more)

Hollies are dioecious, with male and female reproductive structures found on separate plants.  Only females produce the bright red berries, although both types of plants produce white flowers in the Spring.
The berries are poisonous to humans, but the leaves are used by some as remedies for maladies such as dizziness.

For my Challenge piece, I decided to paint silk with emerald green holly leaves and firey red berries.  The silk was painted by hand with dye.  When dyeing and painting fabric there are several different methods I employ.  Painting on silk is tricky and one must be careful to keep the dye within bounds.  After painting, the dye must be cured.  The silk is then washed and dried.  This silk is now a scrunchie and will be found in my shop soon.

BBA's list of monthly Challenges
Linky Party for the October Challenge (See what others' have done!)    

Karen's Whimsy --5 free holly images from her collection of antique postcards
etymology of holly of "holly"

last 2 photos by me © 2013  all rights reserved


  1. That is incredibly cute! I love holly - used to to draw the berries and sprigs on handmade Christmas cards!

  2. How sweet! I'm a fan of holly, too. I was at the store the other day and noticed all of the Christmas-scented candles had been put out, including holly. :-)

  3. Beautifully done! I love the hand painted holly. Holly is such a beautiful plant. I planted 5 in my yard but only have 2 left. Hopefully those survive in the long run.

  4. How beautiful! I love holly. We used to have a HUGE holly tree outside our house when I was growing up and seeing holly now always brings back good memories.

  5. What a great idea! It's beautiful!

  6. Lovely! What fun to read all about holly, too. Thanks!

  7. I had no idea there were male and female holly plants!

  8. Nice job. I like trying to draw holly, it can be "prickly" to draw and make it look right. Love the scarf.

  9. Holly is so pretty ~ as is your scarf! Lovely!
    xo Catherine


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