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I have been working my way through the wealth of inspiration I found since returning from our 3 week adventure around some of the islands of the Outer Hebrides.

There was so much colour, texture and mood to capture.

I did try to work on site but found either the rain or the cramped cab conditions in the camper van a real challenge.

So most of my work has been done from photographs and sketchy sketches back home in the studio where conditions can be controlled!

I loved the colour palette of the Uist islands the best from all the islands we visited (I did a little write up of that in a previous post somewhere) – peaty brown, pink and burgundy – yum.

The beaches are legendary and with good reason too.

Lots of cloud and sky with beautiful delicate hues and fluffly clouds. Sometimes the weather changes very quickly and so stormy indigo blue clouds can roll in very quickly.

All of which makes this watercolour painter very happy.

Claire_Leggett_Bright Bazaar book

I have been cheering myself up on this wet, windy, grey week with a lovely colourful book I found.


Claire_Leggett_Bright Bazaar book image1

Will Taylor writes the Bright Bazaar blog and has the most cheerful Instagram feed I subscribe to.


Claire_Leggett_Bright Bazaar book colour palettes

He’s one of those people who takes beautiful travel photos that transport you to somewhere inspiring and in this book he’s grouped them to use as jumping off points for home decor colour schemes.


Bright Bazaar book montage

I have been stalking this book at TK Max for sometime and was giddy to find it cut price last week and it does not disappoint.


I love a book full of colour inspiration for pattern and design; one that you can flick through and think ‘ooh I love that photo’ and on deeper consideration realise that it’s the colours that appeal.

claire leggett surface pattern design table top

I used this little snapshot on the left for a colour palette to apply to a little painted leaf pattern I was playing at.

claire leggett surface pattern design

Hope you’ve managed to find a little cheer this week amongst the winter weather x



Some pink, some yellow, tulips in sight, paint and sunshine.


It’s a recipe for a happy hour or two.


“Almost all creativity involves purposeful play.” ~ Abraham Maslow


That’s where I’m at.

Just playing with some colours today from a back copy of Easy Living magazine home of

Have great weekend 🙂

May 17th

Here’s some more ‘a painting-a-day’ through May.

May 18th

I’m still really enjoying the push to paint something fast and free in my sketchbook everyday.

May 19th 

It reminds me what sketchbooks are for…playing!

May 20th

And it doesn’t matter what comes of it but I do like some of this spontaneous work and I am using up heaps of dried up paint from past palettes and it’s causing me to stumble across colour-combo’s I wouldn’t have otherwise.

May 21st

It’s all good and the sun is shining too – happy days.

May 22nd

Head over to Dana’s and Anne’s to see their May painting-a-day.

Thank you all for the encouraging comments about the teacup paintings. I so enjoyed coming home from a rather hard day at work to find you were liking what I’d been doing – it picked me right up. Thank you.

I can’t believe that Module 1 of The Art and Business of Surface Pattern Design is ending this week. It has been so much fun and I’ve learnt huge amounts and remembered huge amounts from earlier training. We had a technical workshop on how to use the colour picker tool in Photo Shop and how to make colour palates from images.

I am always tearing out sheets from magazines simply because I like the colours and now I’ve found how to use them more constructively because it’s amazing what colours the computer identify’s from places within an image which the naked eye doesn’t register. Anyway I am totally hooked with making these and could do it all day, every day. Now there’s an idea!

I have this holiday thing to do with old doors and windows. I have so many photo’s of windows, shutters, pretty window sill’s and gorgeous painted exteriors from all our holiday destinations, that you’d think I was going to wallpaper the house with them all.

There are many reasons why I love my family but one of them has got to be the way they tolerate me walking 5 minutes behind snapping at odd angles or calling a halt on a car journey so I can leap out and capture something I’ve just seen.

I guess houses capture something of real domestic life in some way. Hard to imagine a Greek visitor to the UK would snap a picture of our road but that’s culture for you.

I like the colours, the paint, the aging, the superficial look of a place, but most of all I think I take these pictures as I am asking myself “Would I live here?’, ‘Could I live here?’ and that’s what travel is all about, that stretch of the imagination for the possibilities of new horizon’s.

Last up tomorrow is a bit of the island’s crochet.

colour board

…looking for colour combinations in magazines…

leaf stencil

…cutting a stencil out and hoping to get it right first time…

colour tests

…experimenting with mixing fabric ink’s together and seeing how it dries on this red silk.

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