Thursday, March 27, 2008

A fun project.....

I love silhouettes! A few years ago, I found these two reproduction Georgian silhouettes in a little shop in The Cotswolds. They were not cheap to purchase then but have become very expensive. I keep looking at them on eBay but they all go up too high. I felt like these two are so lonely and needed to get some more.


While in Brugge, I bought a beautiful black frame. I started thinking that a silhouette would look so lovely in it. So for a fun project, I copied this image of what is reputed to be a silhouette of Jane Austen onto thick, textured paper. I then tea dyed the image being sure to do the staining twice so it would become very splotched. I am so happy with the results. This made having more silhouettes an attainable thing.

I will be shopping for more of these ornate black frames for more silhouette portraits.


For my guest room, I wanted to put a silhouette in a pretty frame I received at the Christmas gift swap with my quilt group ladies. I know which silhouette I would use for here...Charlotte Bronte. For this one, I kept the paper white as it works well in this frame and in the room itself.


While looking into some images to copy, I started reading sites about the history of silhouettes. It was very interesting to find out that the name comes from Etienne de Silhouette (1706-67), French Minister of Finance under Louis XV. He created shadowed portraits as a hobby. Later, they were named after him.

20 comments:

Nancy said...

Well, yours look just as good, if not better, than the ones you bought. I love Jane Austin, so she can hang in my bedroom and can she be joined by Andrea?????
Probably not.
Love you, Mom

Ragged Roses said...

Hello Heidi, these are really beautiful. Don;t they have wonderful profiles! My daughters had a go at making some a few months ago, except there's were really bright and full of glitter!!! Yours suit their frames perfectly.
Kimx

Carolien said...

The silhouettes are nice and the frames are really beautiful!

Have a nice day & hugs, Carolien

Mary said...

I just love the ones you've created Heidi - and agree with Mom they are even prettier than the purchased ones, especially with the tea stained background! Love the frames, and thanks for the history lesson about silhouettes.

In my next post you'll see what I found at Homegoods yesterday - not a version of your 'Byron's lady' but something beautiful which I had to bring home!!

Hope the sun is shining and you are warming up by now!

by the way - I'm shocked that Mandie has left NC - now I can't take her out to lunch as planned! I wish them all good luck in their new home though.

Kristen said...

Heidi, they are very beautiful! What a wonderful to get an elegant addition to your home! I remember that there were silhouettes of Mandie and I when we were small from Disneyland I believe. I don't know what ever came of them but it is amazing the likeness of a silhouette to your actual face! :) Very nice!

Linda said...

Heidi,

I also adore silhouettes. I have a few here - I'll have to put them on my blog soon.

Linda in VA

Lynda said...

Good idea, Heidi! These came out beautifully!
xo,
Lynda

Nancy said...

Aren't silhouettes beautiful? I love them too Heidi, but I don't own any. You did a wonderful job on the Jane Austen silhouette!

Regina said...

Hello Heidi
I love your frames and your silhouettes.Just beautiful!

I wish you a wonderful weekend,
Hugs Regina

Elizabethd said...

Absolutely beautiful Heidi, and what a good idea to tea dye the paper.
I remember being in Paris one year, and all the pavement artists were offering to do quick silhouettes of people. Some were very clever!

THE TATTERED NEST said...

I love these! a friend of mine who owns a bed and breakfast has one of her guest rooms done in silhouette's and decorated in black and cream, it is my favorite room...

Pondside said...

The silhouettes are very elegant! I love the idea of fashioning your own - especially the tea-dyed version. I also collect frames - but with nothing particularly in mind - I just know that something will turn up, or that I'll stitch something that will suit!

Wild Rose said...

Hello Heidi

They really are quite charming ~ I can just picture Georgian ladies painting silhouettes as their subjects sat behind a screen. What a wonderful idea to create your own.

Enjoy your weekend

Marie x

Penny @ Lavender Hill Studio said...

Heidi, I love your silhouettes. What a wonderful job you have done. They look amazing in the black frames...
Hugs,
Penny

diane said...

What a neat idea, your Jane Austin came out so well. I love Charlotte Bronte, though. She looks so elegant.

Rhondi said...

Hi Heidi
I'm back home from my trip and had a wonderful time. I'll be posting about it over the next couple of days. Those silhouettes are lovely and how clever you are to figure out how to make them yourself! I like them better than the originals and the price is right too!
Hope you are well.
Rhondi xo

Betty said...

Hi Heidi,
You did a fantastic job on the silhouettes....very professional looking.

My favorite silhouettes are the ones of my grandchildren...

Thanks for dropping in to 'visit' with me and commenting on the Victorian birdcage....Betty

Andylynne said...

What beautiful pictures, and so creative. What fun you must have had. I love the frames, but especially the second one. That is so beautiful, what a satisfying way to add to your collection. I had a silhouette done as a child, and I'm an Andrea, hmmm I think it just wouldn't be in the same class. I tried Nancy AKA Mom. :)

angelasweby said...

Heidi,
When my sister and I were teenagers we both fell in love with silhouettes and began making them ourselves.,It's so satisfying and such fun. We did several characters from Jane Austen's novel. I just wish I knew where they are - long gone, I suspect. My mother was a great one for throwing things out. Yours really are pretty. I look forward to seeing more.
Hugs, Angela

Fete et Fleur said...

What a wonderful idea! The silhouettes you created are beautiful!

Nancy