Nu4u Fashion and Home Décor workshops, and our distinctive products combine reused and rearranged second hand goods into handmade, new, one off pieces to wear or to decorate your home.
Creating a Select and Blend range of fashion and jewellery accessories which are interchangeable, multi-functional and follow no rules, the Nu4u experience awakens and enhances your imagination for absolute personal expression! This philosophy is also reflected in Home Décor, ready-made fashion accessories available through the NuShop.
Jo’s Educational History
- Graduate Diploma of Education (Resource Teaching), Queensland University of Technology
- Bachelor of Arts, Griffith University
- Graduate Diploma in Teaching, Mount Gravatt College of Advanced Education (joint programme with Griffith University)
As an educator of teachers, Principals, parents and students, with a particular passion for inclusive practices focusing on students with disabilities, I have developed a creative, empathic and holistic approach to learning.
Jo’s Creative Journey
I launched my creative journey in the 1970’s as a self-taught seamstress:
- Designing and sewing my own clothing
Throughout this decade I went on to explore the following:
- Batik – a method (originally used in Java, Indonesia) of producing coloured designs on textiles by dyeing them, having first applied wax to the parts to be left undyed
- Painting – oils and watercolours; and
During the 1980’s my interests peaked in these creative outlets:
- Patchwork – I was commissioned by interior designers to create patchwork quilts and cushions.
- Applique – ornamental needlework in which pieces of fabric are sewn or stuck onto a larger piece to form a picture or pattern. I was commissioned to produce one off, personal outfits with the applique reflecting the wearer’s personality, hobbies, and culture. This was a natural progression from my earlier sewing.
- 1900’s Art Deco Painting – taught myself the popular style of creating pictures using butterfly wings and acrylic paint behind glass. I was fascinated with how a piece of jewellery or a picture could be created using unusual and unexpected materials. I sold these privately and through galleries.
- Furniture Restoration / Reclamation – I love early Australian wooden furniture; especially pieces made from silky oak, but often found them too expensive. Solution? Buy the odd broken, painted or damaged piece in a 2nd hand shop and restore it. I taught myself how to use an electric belt and orbital sander, how to manually strip paint and how to lovingly oil a piece to reclaim its former glory. My dining table and chairs, a kitchen hutch, TV stand and several coffee tables still “live” in my home to this day.
- Illuminated lettering – my mother and I joined forces and spent mother-daughter time exploring the art of illuminated lettering. To this day, I love using gouache (a method of painting using opaque pigments ground in water and thickened with a glue-like substance), which is my favourite paint.
Throughout the 1990’s my creative pursuits included:
- Jewellery making – starting with basic drop earrings using beads.
- Painted furniture – a natural progression from the furniture restoration was the exploration into painting furniture. I used a range of water based acrylic paints and immersed myself in exploring styles, painted effects and painting flora on a range of chairs and tables. Two of the chairs I painted along with a set of bedside tables are still with me.
In the first decade of the 2000’s it was:
- Interior painting – I explored the challenges delivered through the use of different painted effects on various walls throughout my home. My poor husband often didn’t know what he was coming home to at the end of a day when I was on holidays!
2010 – Present
- Mosaics – I have attended a number of mosaic workshops and find that I especially love using mirrors to cut up.
- Shoe making – I have done several workshops learning how to make basic leather sandals. Though I love my sandals and thoroughly enjoyed learning how to paint leather, I’ve also discovered this is not a preferred medium or craft. I suspect this is due to my love of nature, our planet and all living things.
- Weaving – though I started with weaving baskets, I have evolved this technique, using the same principals, to create 2D wall art and jewellery.
- String making – I love string making and use a range of materials to make string ranging from strips of cloth from a man’s tie to banana fibre. I find I use my handmade string for so many of my different projects: ranging from my jewellery to joining parts of a project together.
- Wire work – I like working wire and beads together to create 3D pieces or including wire work in my jewellery. I especially love using recycled electrical copper wire.
- Whittling and woodcarving – these are my two most recent adventures starting in 2016. I’m not sure where I’ll go with these 2 yet!
- Table lamps – also a self-taught creative outlet, I produce these from recycled glass and crystalware. Being familiar with the features of tiles and glass through my mosaic work stood me in good stead and gave me the confidence to experiment and explore working with glass and crystalware. My lamps are a popular seller and the longer I work with glass, the more my own distinctive style is emerging and evolving.
- Calligraphy – another natural progression from an earlier creative exploration – Illuminate lettering, the discipline of calligraphy helps me refocus when I become too scatty and too distracted by too many different ideas going on in my head. My most recent calligraphy being the logo design for Nu4U. 🙂
Being a lover of all things natural, creative and expressive, I’m highly motivated to share my learnings, loves, skills and techniques with you too. I invite you to explore the many FREE tips, instruction sheets and videos via the NuSkool Page and face-to-face during one of my upcoming Workshops.
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