Thursday, 23 December 2010

Thrifty Tags

Hi are you all set for Christmas? Me? I'm still wrapping but apart from that I seem to be on top of things - at last!

To assist with the wrapping I made use of these fab little free, yes FREE tags that came with my Boden catalogue well I just had to use them.

I peeled them off the backing as they are sticky labels and stuck them on some card to make them a bit more substantial and punched a hole and that's it label ready to go.

Next dilema what to do with one of those credit card type vouchers? How do you give one of those and actually make it look like a present? Make a box, decorate and add a decoration and label (yes,one of those free labels.)
A bit more tattered floral overload - they make great bottle decorations too.
I wouldn't want you to think I'm a cheapskate I did make the effort to make some tags too. I just love the reindeer stamp from Whiff Of Joy and the stamp I used as the background is from PaperArtsy. And if you're thinking why is she telling me about the stamps now it's far too late for Christmas I bought some of mine in April! It still didn't stop the last minute crafting though. I hope I may have given you a few last minute ideas.

And finally all that remains is to wish all of you a
Merry Christmas

Sunday, 12 December 2010

Don't Panic!

I don't know about you but I'm still in the throes of christmas card making. The novelty has definitely worn off and panic is starting to set in. I knew I should have made them all in July when I was feeling enthusiastic but it just didn't seem right somehow. It feels so much nicer to be christmas creating in the run up to Christmas but seriously where do you get the time it just seems to run away.

Anyway time to show a couple of cards I have managed to get finished and delivered.

I have bought most of my shopping but unless I pull my finger out and buy some paper they aren't going to get wrapped so that's next on the list...........I'm still thinking of making some Boxing Day chutney (it will be new year by the time I get around to it) and I have a Strictly Come Dancing final night party to organise. Why did I think goody bags would be a good idea? Tradition has it we play Strictly bingo so I have a glitterball trophy to make too. Oh the things we do to ourselves!

At least Fergus is in a Chrismassy mood.......

Friday, 3 December 2010

The Great British Weather

If you are in the UK then you probably have a view something like this in varying degrees of snowfall.
I don't think anywhere has been unaffected and whilst it looks pretty it's caused a fair amount of disruption. Yesterday I'd planned a craft sale prior to the opening of my Etsy shop..........well as the saying goes 'all the best laid plans and all that'. Needless to say I was disappointed at having to cancel it but I'm hoping to reschedule. Here are a few of the Christmas stockings I made.

Don't you just love the cute 'Stanley' Cath Kidston fabric. I saw it when I visited Brighton last week and had to buy some. The other one hasn't photographed very well but it's made from some lovely irish linen with a cotton spotty lining.

This one has a more rustic feel with raw edges and made from some wool fabric I found which I wrote about in a previous post. I hand stitched the felt reindeer onto the stocking and felted some wools balls to use for the holly with felt leaves.

Have you checked out the Inspired Ideas online magazine yet I made this yo-yo christmas tree inspired by it

The original used a wooden cotton reel as a base but I treasure mine too much to use one (really must get over that!) so I used  small metal bucket instead with more of the red spotty fabric for the yo-yos. For the tree topper I die cut some snowflakes and I also interspersed my yo-yos with some green pony beads. To weight the bucket I filled it with some air drying clay which was perfect to mount the tree in as the yo-yos are threaded onto a painted bamboo skewer.  
Keep warm and Happy Crafting

Monday, 22 November 2010

More buttons, more gnomes and a winner


The gnome production is chugging along in preparation for (I'll whisper it) *Christmas*. I saw a sign the other day saying 'only 36 shopping days until Christmas'. Well that was enough to send me into a panic. Here is the teeny tomte, he measures just 9 inches from his boots to the tip of his outstretched hat.

I've also made some more Christmassy buttons, yep there's no stopping me now I'm on a roll.
The ones in the middle have tiny holly leaves stamped and coloured on them.

I was very excited last week to receive the Moo minicards cards I ordered. I uploaded images of journal pages and cards I've made. You might even spot the paper dahlia wall decoration I made. I was pleased with how they turned out and should anyone actually buy anything from me they will be going into the packages that I send. They make great labels too.
And before I forget completely the winner of my button giveaway is Kirsti Your chosen Cath Kidston buttons will soon be on their way to you and I'll pop one of my button flowers in too, you can use them on layouts or cards or even to decorate a gift.
Bye for now - Happy crafting

Thursday, 18 November 2010

Swedish Jultomar

Meet my Swedish Jultomar otherwise known as a Yuletide Gnome.
 I just love knitting these gnomes (pattern by Alan Dart) they have such character.
He has a bit of weight in that plump behind so that he perches perfectly.
I'm liking the hat so much that I'm considering upsizing it for adult wear :-)
If the popularity of last years Teeny Tomte (mini gnomes) is anthing to go by he is going to be one popular little fella. I have one of those knitted but I have yet to make him up so when I do I'll show you the comparision in size.

Don't forget that if you would like to win a set of my papercrafted buttons enter my giveaway and leave me a comment here by midnight Saturday 20th

Monday, 15 November 2010

The Button Effect

I love making these buttons and once I'd started the ideas just kept coming. What to make them out of ? What to use them for? I'm a big fan of fabric designers such as Orla Kiely, Cath Kidston and Amy Butler so it seemed the natural thing to create some papercrafting embellishments using some well loved prints.
Cath Kidston
Amy Butler

Orla Kiely

I've made these to sell in my soon to be open Etsy shop but I thought I'd give you a chance to own a set for free. Just leave me a comment by midnight Saturday 20th November telling me which is your favourite  and I'll announce a winner next Monday.

Happy Crafting

Friday, 12 November 2010

Christmas is coming

Now don't worry I'm not going to go on and on about Christmas for weeks to come although I know some of you just love Christmas. I always think I've got plenty of time to prepare and somehow time just slips away but I can tick something off the list today as I've made my Christmas pudding. However if my Nan is looking down on me she won't be a bit impressed as she would have prepared hers way before now and in fact she always had a steady stock that would mature in time for a family get together at Christmas and for some reason we always had one at Easter too. I have plans to make chutney like I did last year.......I'll just add it to the list.

After being inspired by an article in Craft Stamper this month I tried my hand at making some buttons. I've made some before with fimo so I had all the equipment that was needed but this time I tried using some air drying clay. I have to say it was great to work with and I produced some in the form of leaves, footballs and plain old round ones. Some I added a bit of texture to with stamping. I like the dove it's the perfect size.
I found my tiny holly cutter and made some leaves which I painted a shimmery green and also made some paper buttons. Take some circles punched from cardstock glued together in layers and sandwich between some  patterned paper. Then punch holes in the middle. Some I gave a bit of vintage grungy look with inked edges and some I gave a crackled distress finish to.
I liked the holly leaves so much I thought I'd make some without the holes to make some cards with. What do you think?
How is your Christmas crafting coming along are you any better planned than me? Happy crafting.

Friday, 5 November 2010

Something Old, Something New

This week I've enjoyed a couple of little shopping fixes and boy did I find some bargains.

First the something old. Where I live there are quite a few charity shops and recently you may have seen that some charities are refitting their shops and becoming more mainstream. To be honest I prefer the good old rummage type shop much more of a chance of coming away with a bargain. Don't get me wrong I'm not trying to do charities out of their much needed fund raising it's just sometimes it's hard not to get too excited when you spot something at a bargain price. 

Take these doilies........10p each. I also picked up some lovely wool fabric, a length of wide cotton lace trimming and a thimble rack. Look out for some projects featuring these soon. I can feel the inspiration already.

The detail on this one is amazing. Just how do you get those interlocking circles? I did come a bit of a cropper though after washing them all in readiness for creating they were put in my not so tidy craft room where they got splashed with blue ink from my printer. It was having a funny five minutes and I requested help from the fixer who now has two blue inky fingers. He wasn't impressed and the printer still isn't working.

Do you think I got them too cheap and this is payback?

Now for something new..........
I visited TK Maxx  where I picked up this little lot for just over £12. An all essential to do list pad and clipboard. I'll definitely be making use of that! A Making Memories blank calendar, a  book called Knitting Pretty, two sets of American Crafts stamps and a magenta jersey and satin top. I normally visit TK Maxx by myself as I like a good look around without the pressure of someone else getting bored and as you can see it's normally time well worth spending.

Have you picked up any bargains lately? Happy hunting

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

It had to happen some time

Yes, another month down and I'm still hanging in there with the 365 Challenge.....
This month I made a bit of a boo boo it had to happen. I managed to mount each little square 8 across on the page and as you know there are only 7 days in a week!! Ooooooops No real harm done though it just means I couldn't have the days of the week listed on my page as I normally do.

This month had a bit of leafy theme going on with a bit of stamping which wasn't that successful due to the bulk of the previous pages and some leftover leafy scrapbook paper. The distress inked background is rusty hinge.

The book I'm using for this project is beginning to fall apart it may well be tied up with string by the end of year.

......onto November

Sunday, 31 October 2010

Back to fabric and wool

After last weeks brief relationship with paper this week I'm back to creating with fabric and wool. 

After spotting some interesting looking wool I knitted up a cosy neckwarmer........
...........then I spied some more wool that took my fancy. Seriously chunky and such a lovely green, in fact the label calls it meadow green.

I wanted to try one in wool too so I chose a ball of Rowan 100% merino wool in a delicate shade of grey. It's not as wide as the green one but just as cosy knitted in moss stitch.

If you've visited any of the fashion websites recently such as net-a-porter or my wardrobe you might have spotted that snood type scarves are making a comeback. Don't worry they have definitely moved on since the days of Nik Kershaw! But seriously who can afford to pay nearly £100 for a scarf? Not me that's for sure. Once I have a collection together I plan on putting them in my online shop or if I ever get my act together in my yet to open etsy shop. Note to self: Sort it Out!!!
 And finally a sweet little wrist purse decorated with some felted wool die cut flowers. Yes, yet more uses for my tattered floral die - money well spent.
I have just realised that I have more to share of my crafty week but I've forgotten to take photos and as the clocks have gone back - IT'S DARK. Boo!

Sunday, 24 October 2010

Scrapping of Sorts

After an enforced lack of blogging due to no internet connection I'm happy now to be back in full working order. Tip: reconsider if you currently have Norton security it does it's job so well that it blocks connecting to the internet. It appears I'm not the only person to have suffered in this way. 

Ok serious bit over onto the scrapping.........all but in miniature

A much loved colleague is retiring this week and the office is going to be a whole lot quieter without him. He is someone who has supported my crafty endeavours and I know that he will appreciate something created for him.

He has been finishing jobs and clearing paperwork and when I spied him recycling his business cards I knew that I should retrieve them. After a bit of ferreting about in the recycling bin I found them and kept them safe but not quite knowing what to do with them.......That was until I saw a brilliant tutorial by Kirsty Neale on how to make a minibook from business cards. I've altered it a bit to fit in with how I wanted it to end up as I still wanted the business cards visible in places.
Then I had a tricky moment when the ribbon left to fasten around the cover wasn't quite long enough to tie properly. What to do? My non crafty husband came to the rescue with the suggestion of 'why don't you use some velcro?' Genius, I had some sticky velcro dots just waiting for such an occasion. You know, one of those 'they will come in handy purchases for some future project if only I can remember where I put them!'.
So there we have it a minibook made from business cards with it's very own box........

Tuesday, 12 October 2010

Autumn Love

Last weekend I had a messy, creative kind of day with a couple of friends and in amongst the distress ink and chocolate chip cookies we made these
We used some offcuts of mountboard as a base and inked them with distress inks, added a bit of stamping and used the Tim Holtz dies to cut out either flowers or leaves. My friend Karolyn now wants to make one for each season although Sarah took hers in a whole different direction with a floral theme.

Our crafting then took a Christmassy turn with the creation of some Christmas wreaths.
.....and if that has got you in a Christmassy creative mood then you should definitely consider signing up for the 12 Days Workshop at The Copy and Paste Project I signed up last year and spent many a happy hour creating. There are 12 main tutorials to create handmade gifts plus lots of extras and there is no need to go out and buy lots of new supplies you probably have just what you need right there in your stash pile.

Here are a few things I made......

This bookmark card I made for a friend's birthday because remember............ a handmade gift isn't just for Christmas......

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

Skulls and Angels

When I first discovered Urban Threads this is one of the first designs I stitched. All those tiny beads which I decided to use to make up the skull took a while but I like the effect they give. I made it into a cushion for my hairdresser. Luckily she liked it or else I could have ended up with a wonky haircut. The envelope style back is made from red spot fabric. If you'd like to make your own there are lots of professions to choose from the designs ready to download.

And remember the angel wings well here is the angel they now belong to.

She is from the Tilda's Christmas Ideas book. I really enjoyed making her and you can be sure you'll be seeing more ideas from this book.  
Whilst I've enjoyed this phase of sewing I really miss scrapbooking but there are only so many hours in the day but I'll be back to a bit of papercrafting soon as I've got to make some Autumn tags for the monthly swap on UKS.

Sunday, 3 October 2010

September 365 Challenge

I'm a little late I'm afraid but better late than never eh!  September has an inky feel to it, brushed corduroy background with a script stamp from The Artistic Stamper over the top.
The end of September definitely felt like Autumn was on it's way. I don't know about you but we have been inundated with spiders, they are everywhere and the garden is full of their webs.

The grapes are ripening nicely and it will soon be time to try and make some drinkable wine. Any tips gratefully received.
Moustache? No, they're angel wings all to be revealed soon.

If you like art journaling or you want to learn more visit Sian at From High in the Sky for Octobers pass the book. Leave her a comment and you could be the lucky person who gives the book 'Creative Wildfire' a home for the month. If you're not sure what pass the book is all about find out here

Friday, 1 October 2010

A little bit of patchwork......

.....and a new beginning but before I tell you about that I'll share a little more about the patchwork. As you know I've been doing a bit of sewing recently and I spotted the perfect project for using up a few scraps. I have to say of the small piece of Amy Butler fabric I bought I've used every last scrap. This is what I made.....

......a patchwork pincushion.

I plan to do a bit more patchwork and have been looking through a book called 'The Impatient Patchworker' for inspiration - perfect. The thought of making a whole throw fills me with dread but completing small projects like the pincushion give me a real sense of satisfaction. Perhaps that's why I never actually finished these.....

I started them years ago and probably the idea was to make them into cushion covers but I never quite got there. My vintage fabric recycling started way back then too. The patchwork pattern is called cathedral windows, maybe I should get around to finishing them it seems a shame after all that work for them not to serve any purpose.

Now onto the new beginning...........

Let me introduce you to the doll I created for the art doll swap I'm involved with on UKS. It must have been fate that I signed up to the swap as I'd just bought this book from a second hand book shop. I won't see her again til May as she is going off on her travels meeting people who will add to her along the way. Every month I'll be posted someone else doll to work on too until finally we will all receive our own doll complete.

I know you were probably expecting September for the calendar 365 challenge and it will be here just a little late.....oops