Thursday, 31 May 2012

Review: Sew Magazine Issue 36 (June 2012)

Sooo, this is the first sewing magazine I have bought.  I'd seen it advertised with a 'Mad' Men' feature, and as I love the vintage look, I just had to go buy it.  So, off I toddled to WH Smith on my lunch break last week (I'd already tried Tesco, with no success) and treat myself to a copy.  It cost £5.99 and came with a free Simplicity Lisette pattern, with patterns for a shift dress, lightweight blouse and a-line skirt.

The first feature in the magazine explains the patterns and gives ideas of fabrics to use.  I like the dress and the skirt, as styled in the magazine, especially the skirt in the floral fabric featured, so I may give these a go once I have finished off my other dress.  I'll admit I'm not too keen on the blouse, but that is just because it isn't my style - it would probably suit my older sister though.  The only real downfall with this pattern is that it only goes up to a size 14, so a little altering of the patter will be required for my top half.

The magazine has some lovely features.  As this is the first time that I have bought this particular magazine, I do not know which are the regular features, so instead I'll start with my favourites.

'Sew SOS' (which I'm guessing is a regular feature) has a lovely girl's summer dress, which is featured in Sewing Made Simple by Tessa Evelegh.  There is also a reader offer for this book to receive £7 off the publisher's price and free postage and packaging.  This feature also has a little 'how to' on gathering.  I still think that it looks easier to do it by hand, rather than with the sewing machine.

Another children's dress is featured in 'Vintage Chiffon Dress', which is a true princess dress, although when I asked my youngest niece if she would like me to make her one, she declined.  Although, it turns out that she just didn't like the colour (a sea-green/blue/turquoisey colour).  Apparently, pink will do just nicely - bossy little madam!  Anyway, this pattern was taken from Fiona Bell's Vintage Style For Kids, which can also be purchased by readers with free p&p and money off.

The Mad Men feature is not what I expected, but does have some great tips, info on where to get vintage patterns and a feature on women who make their living from all things retro, including details of how to become involved in a book that one of these women, Claire Garside, is writing.  There is also a mini-feature on corsetry, including course details for a City & Guilds Level 2 Certificate in Corsetry, which I now want to do, but unfortunately it is in Nottingham, and I'm not!

There is also a feature on millinery, including a hat made from drinking straws - trust me, it looks better than it sounds.  This feature has pieces on top-milliners, William Chambers, Jane Taylor and Gina Foster.  It also has tips and info on millinery courses, including one in York.  Yay!  My local art and design college used to run an evening millinery course and I think I may look into this a bit more - I mean, who doesn't want to know how to make a hat from straws?!

Following on from this, 'Patriotic Accessories' shows you how to make a jubilee-inspired fascinator, corsage and brooch.

I also like Lisa Steed Davey's little travel kit - perfect for me, who currently stores a needle and thread in her purse!  And I also love the applique baby vests, which I would love to make, but I don't know any babies at the moment - loads are being born in the near future though.  I love the bird and house pattern, which can be adapted to any colour, or even the pattern could be adapted - it's the idea that I really love.

Last, but not least, is my favourite part of any magazine - the giveaways, which in this issue include:
  • a Janome Memorycraft 5900 sewing machine
  • book, Pretty Nostalgic Home
  • tickets for the Festival of Quilts show in August
  • union jack bunting.
Other features and projects of note in this magazine include how to copy Black Eyed Peas' Fergie's style, what's new in the stitching world, a spotlight on top of the range machines (none of which I can afford), a column by Anthea Turner, and a bright jubilee-inspired cushion and biscuit tin.  I feel pretty let down that the biscuits in this tin are also fabric creations - what's wrong with a proper biscuit eh?  They do look good though.

There are also features on brit pop styling, satin-stitched luggage tags and an embroidered table set (coasters, mats etc.) based on Pimms.  Some vague, long ago memory makes me think that my great-grandma had some things similar to these, but that is not necessarily a bad thing.

There is an olympic torch tapestry cushion and some very expensive fabrics, together with a quilting column by Sissix's Angela Southey and advice and tips on how to take your quilting further.

My boss, Maureen liked the western-inspired embroidered cowboy book bag, and I like the article by Mary Jane Baxter recommending her crafty reads.  I have actually read one of these, The Secret Life of Dresses, by Erin McKean, and I would recommend it to anyone.  It was a borrowed copy, but I may have to buy my own so I can read it again.

Finally, the back of the magazine contains all the templates you will need to make the projects in the magazine, together with 5 jubilee-inspired cross-stitch motifs.

All in all, I have really enjoyed Sew Magazine and will be buying it again next month.  I may even treat myself to a subscription.

In the meantime . . .

Happy Crafting.


New Sew Magazine is out now!

Wednesday, 30 May 2012

My Crafting Wish List

Soooo, the more I get into crafting, the more I realise I need more things - tools, materials etc.  I've been having a think about it over the last week or so and these are things I want, I mean need, the most.  I'm sure I'll change my mind and add to my wish list as I see more things and learn more crafts.  The main problem I envisage is that my birthday isn't until December, so its not like I can ask for contributions as birthday presents as people with more conveniently timed birthdays can.  Instead, I will have to save up and buy these things myself.  So, I need to get earning more pennies. 

Anyway, back to the list:

1. A Working Sewing Machine

A working sewing machine would be AMAZING.  It would make my life so much easier.  It takes about twenty times longer to sew by hand and if I had a working sewing machine I wouldn't have to bother my Grandma all the time to borrow hers when I want to make larger things I can't sew by hand, such as dresses and tablecloths. 

I do have a sewing machine, which was given to me, it just doesn't work.  I think it needs a new belt, or it could just be that it has got too old and is giving up.  However, I am struggling to get hold of the local sewing machine repair man.  I must have phoned him nearly every day for the last three weeks, but there is no answer and he never calls me back.  So, I'm slowly coming to the conclusion that a new machine may be the way forward.  I have been looking around and this Bernina 830 (, featured in this month's Sew Magazine, would do nicely.  However, I do not have a spare £6,400, so I will settle for a more modest one, like this Singer 7463 (

2. Die-Cutting Machine

Again, another thing that would make my life so much easier and my crafting so much quicker.  I figure that it would also be dual purpose, as it cuts through fabric and paper/card.

For those of you who don't know what a die-cutter is, it is a machine that cuts shapes for you.  You sandwich your card/paper or fabric between a cutting die and a cutting plate, run the sandwich through the machine and the shapes will be cut for you.  It certainly saves time and faffiness compared to using scissors.  It also usually gives a better finish.
These aren't particularly expensive, but its not often I have spare cash.  I'm also not particularly fussy which die-cutter I have, as most dies are interchangeable between the brands.  The most popular (and maybe prettiest) seems to be the Sissix Big Shot (  I would not, however, turn away a ProvoCraft Cuttlebug ( or a Spellbinders Grand Calibur (

3. Silhouette Cameo

Similar to a die-cutter is the Silhouette Cameo (  This is not something I really need, but it would be nice to say I have one.  I kind of decided I needed one after reading a feature on them in Lets Make Cards magazine (  They are a bit expensive though at £250 - £300.

The Silhouette Cameo is basically an electronic die-cutter.  It hooks up to your PC and you choose the shape you wish to cut from the included software and size it.  You then feed your card through the machine and it cuts out your shape for you.

The benefits of this over a normal die-cutter is the ability to size your
 shape and that it can take larger pieces of card.

4. Adjustable Tailor's Dummy

Again, this is something I don't strictly speaking need, but I would really, really like one, as it would make making my own dresses much, much easier.

As it is, help is generally needed for fitting clothes I make for myself to ensure that darts/lengths etc. are correct, because if I have to mark these myself they usually end up wrong, as I have to change from my usual body shape (bending/stretching) to mark the fabric.  An adjustable dummy like this one would solve the problem:  I could set the dummy to my shape, size and (lack of) height, and fit all my clothing makes to that, knowing that it would then be right. 

They are certainly not cheap, but cheaper than I thought, and I think would prove invaluable.

So, that's my wishlist for now.  Should anyone wish to buy me any of these, or the manufacturers send me any for free (favourable reviews will be written), then please feel free . . .

In the meantime . . .

Happy crafting.


Monday, 28 May 2012

Review: Crafts Beautiful Issue 242 (July 2012)

Soooo, my copy of the new issue of Crafts Beautiful came a day early last week . . . Eeeeek! . . . excitement-a-go-go.

This issue's freebie was a Shabby Chic Collection CD, which includes papers, tags, toppers, boxes, inserts and more . . . There are some lovely papers on this CD, but my small criticism is that my laptop (as it is a teeny tiny netbook) doesn't have a disc drive, so it's a bit of a faff to get the papers etc from the disc.  I had to get my fiance to download the files onto his laptop (with disc drive) and then transfer them to my netbook.  I've not actually used any of the papers yet, but I've had no cause to - it has been a very busy week doing everything but designing cards.

Anyway, back to the magazine . . . .

The cover advertises projects inside for a cute baby cardigan (which my sister wants to knit for the twins when they arrive), a pretty patchwork cushion (which I want to make), teabag folding (which I may attempt), some cute boxes decorated with doilies, and a few cards, of which my favourite is the 'Love Grows' card, which features a trowel - usual when described, but looks really good.

The magazine has all the usual features: letters page (not featuring me this month - I never did get my prize); how to use your free gift - I like the haberdashery inspired card; reader challenge results (I didn't enter in the end, I ran out of time); net savvy; crafty SOS, with storage solutions and a card by Joanna Sheen; Dawn Bibby's column and giveaways/competitions for:
  • olympknits
  • book How To Build A Robot (With Your Dad) by Aubrey Smith
  • a Sissix Big Shot die-cutting machine
  • union jack duck tape
  • Cakes, Cookies and Crafts baking goodies
  • tickets to the Knitting & Stitching Show
  • Uniform Memories paper bundles
  • a Jan Constantine cushion set
  • Berisford's Best of British ribbon bundles
  • Sarah Hurley Britannia CD
  • Ivy Press books
  • a Crafts Beautiful subscription.
I've already attempted one project from the magazine - Fairy Footsteps - with my own twist, naturally.  This card was for my grandma, from my nieces.  I wanted to make this pretty much straight away, but, again, the templates are only available online . . . Oh how I wish the templates were in the magazine again.  Anyway, this card is supposedly an 'intermediate' but I found it quite simple to make, and that was after my Pimms o'clock.

Other cards I like in the magazine include the 'Summer Loving' cards, which are lovely bright colours and utilise chalkboard paper for an unusual twist. 

A simple, but effective, card is the 'Lovely Lollies' card from the cut out and keep section.  It looks really simple to make, using a basic lolly shape, and would use up all those magnum sticks I have saved in my cutlery drawer.

I also like the quilled seaside themed cards in 'Bobbing Along', although I know that I don't have the patience for quilling.

'Let Your Love Grow' features some garden-inspired colourful cards, perfect for summer.  This includes the 'Let Your Love Grow' card I was trying to describe earlier.  This project uses bright patterns and bright, shaped buttons to make cards, seed packets and even little watering can decorations.

As for other non-card projects I like and want to attempt in this issue, there are loads . . .

My favourite, I think, has to be 'Flying Colours', which features colourful acetate butterflies (which I am going to have to make for my Grandma) and glass painting.  There is a lovely vase design that I want to try.  The best thing about these projects is that they can be adapted to any colour scheme, not just the red, orange and yellow in the magazine.  It is definitely a new craft I would like to try, if I ever find time.

I also like the cushion cover in 'Comfort from a Cupcake', which uses Cath Kidston-esque fabrics and cross stitch, so you could really show off your range of skills.  Again, this is another project that could be easily adapted, not only to other colours, but shapes and motifs also.

I am also once again wishing I could crochet, so I could make the cute storage cupcakes in 'So Sweet Storage.'

My sister wants me to make her an embroidered book cover a la 'Easy Peasy Embroidery', which I like too.  I also see a business opportunity here closer to Christmas - I'm thinking I could make these to cover diaries.

I also like 'Doily Days' which shows you how to accessorise table decorations to amazing effect with doilies, including favour boxes, votives and place cards.  It also gives instructions on how to dye doilies to your chosen colour if you can only find white ones - a great money saver.  If I had been getting married in summer, I would most definitely be trying out this idea - the decorations look perfect for a summer wedding.

Finally, I like 'Fold and Flutter' which shows you how to make origami butterflies, and I love them!  I even had the office making them on our lunch break on Friday.

Other features include a sweet toddler cardie in 'Sunshine Smiles'.  I'd like to make this, but I can't knit and I have no babies to make it for.  'Mother Nature' shows you how to involve your kids in flower pressing and what you can make them into.  'Stencil Style' has a cool robot design with which to make cards and pictures.

Corinne Bradd shows you how to do Iris Folding in card school, and Tracey Daykin-Jones has some great well done and end of term designs, which my sister thought they were great.  Cut-out and Keep features ice-cream inspired cards, and Niki Rowland has some cute tea party designs for cards, invitation and even cake boxes.  Then Claritystamp founder, Barbara Gray (along with some of her design team) has some London-inspired cards for you.  Using Claritystamps of course.

'Look Back With A Smile' shows you how to make a lovely photo album and 'Touch of Romance' brings some Parisian chic to a keepsake set, including a pocket watch! 

The baking section is also vintage-inspired with a tea party cake set and an interview with queen of vintage, Angel Adoree.  Ellen Kharade gives you some beach-inspired ideas for gift boxes, cards and jewellery in 'She Sells Seashells' (my most hated tongue twister because I have a bit of a lisp).  The beach theme is continued in 'Quilling With Claire'.  Amanda Walker teaches you how to make some gorgeous beaded accessories in 'Bead Bonanza'.  Finally, 'The Cat's Whiskers' has some accessory ideas for your cat, including a collar and a bowl.

This issue also has a feature on craft clubs, an article I was particularly interested in as I am currently setting up my own craft club - Fairy Elephants Sunday Brunches.  There is also an interview with stylist Selina Lake, with some gorgeous inspiration-filled pictures of her work.

Last but not least, there is a kids craft section with some great ideas to keep their little hands occupied.  I particularly liked this section as I was looking through it with my 4-year old mini-me (my niece) and it got us talking about crafty things.  She was telling me what she liked and what she wanted me to make (although I did tell her that her mother would have to make up the cake tea-set, as she is the professional cake-maker, not me).  She was also asking me how things were made and how she thought they were made.  It was good to get her looking at things and thinking about how they were made and she seemed genuinely interested when I was telling her how things are done.  She looked through the rest of the magazine too and we had a proper little discussion about it all, which was really nice.  Of course, it helps that I could cuddles in the process.  My other niece is already quite crafty and I like that it seems this one will be too.   I also think that it is important to get kids involved from a young age, so I hope this section will be a regular feature.

All in all, I have loved this issue of Crafts Beautiful.  In fact, it could be my favourite so far.  All I need now is the time to craft . . .

Happy Crafting.



Sunday, 27 May 2012

Engagement Extravaganza

Sooo, it would seem that along with a wedding season, we are developing a bit of an engagement season:  I have made three engagement cards in the last two weeks and another one not long before that.
The first one was for my longest-standing friend who got engaged (for the second time to the same guy) a couple of months ago.,  I was reading some Jane Austen at the time, as you can probably tell by the card.  However, the fact that I am reading Terry Pratchett at the moment, thank god, does not seem to be influencing my cards too much.   An engagement card with wizards, dwarves, death and a suitcase with hundreds of tiny little legs would probably not be appropriate.

Anyway, back to the card . . . This one was made as I was just starting out making cards again.  I loved the romantic picture, which I simply backed with some gold paper, which I’d cut using some wiggly scissors.  I used some purple hearts paper as a background, sticking it to the card blank with some spray glue.  Repeat warning on spray glue – it gets everywhere – use with caution and cover the whole room, and yourself, in old newspaper first.

Then, a couple of weeks ago, my cousin got engaged.  It all sounded very romantic and proper (in Rome, down on one knee), not like my engagement (drunken stupor, haribo ring).  Anyway, I had two cards to make for his – one from me, and one from my sister.  For the card from me, I went with an entwined hearts and rinks theme, with this rings made from some coloured wire wrapped around a marker pen.  For the card from my sister, I chose to do shadow hears, using coloured and newsprint –style paper.

The final card was for my step-mum’s niece.  I’m not sure how this proposal went, but I’m sure it was better than drunk and with a haribo ring.  The card I made here was also based on the entwined hearts, but no rings on this one.  Instead, I used other detailing, such as ribbon and heart-shaped buttons. 

So, there we are . . . it would seem that this is now the time of year to get engaged, as well as married.  Although, as usual, in this circumstances I am defying convention . . . I got engaged in winter, and I’m getting married in winter!  Ugg boots anyone . . . ?
Happy Crafting.

Thursday, 24 May 2012

Tilly & The Buttons

Sooooo, as I missed my bus this morning (couldn't find my keys to ley me out of the house), I thought I would have a gander on the web, and I came across this blog, which I think you would all like:



Monday, 21 May 2012

Dressy Designs (Not Quite Finished Yet)

Sooooo, I had been hoping that I would finally get my dress finished yesterday, being the first day both me and my Grandma had been free since I started the dress.  However, the day did not go to plan . . . .

First of all, I got up late!  I was awake at my usual crack of dawn time, but then went back to sleep.  I’d not intended to do this.  My plan had been to get up and do a bit of housework and maybe make a few things, before going down to my Grandma’s at about 10.  It was nearly 11o’clock when I finally woke up again and got myself sorted, leaving my fiancĂ© in bed (lazy get) while I raced down to my Grandma’s.

Finally got to my Grandma’s about half past 11, where she was noseying out to the window at an unknown car parking on her street.  Neighbourhood watch is not required on my Grandma’s street – she knows EVERYTHING that is going on.  Anyway, once she’d established which house the occupants of the unknown car were going to, we made a start on completing my dress.  I never realised how much work there was to it!

We sewed on the interfacings using the machine, managing to put one on the wrong way round from lack of concentration – too busy gossiping.  We also made the darts that we already knew were needed.  Then my Grandma made me sew a small hem around every available edge.  She says this is to stop the edges fraying later on.  But then she also admitted that you don’t actually need to do this.  I think she was just enjoying the peace and quiet of being in the spare room with me and my Gramps disappearing outside to sit in the garden.

Once all this was done, we tacked the dress together and it was ready for me to try on.  I still think I look like Annie in it because it still looks like a few rags sewn together.  But once we had it all arranged to look like the shape it is actually going to be, its looks quite nice.  On a skinny model it would probably look amazing, but on me, I will settle for quite nice.  There are soooo many alterations that need to be made to it though, because I don’t have a conventional body shape. 

For those of you that don’t know me personally, I am 5’4” with 26” legs, which means the rest of my height (or lack thereof) is made up in my body, which means I have to wear three inch heels minimum just to look in proportion on the height front.  I don’t know which of my parent’s fault this is, because my dad is really tall, and my mum, although shorter than me has quite long legs for her height – in fact they are longer than mine.  Then, once you get past the height thing, we have to deal with my actual body shape, which has previously been described as an upside down butternut squash.  Flattering description, I know.  I’m far from skinny – being a size 14/16, depending which shop I’m in and whether I am buying tops or bottoms.  I am most certainly top heavy, but all my shape is in my bazoomas!  This, I know, is the fault of my Grandma.  After that, I am as straight as a ruler – no hips, no bottom, no waist!  Also, the fault of my Grandma!  Then, I have the chunkiest legs on earth.  This would be ok if they were fat – at least I could exercise to get rid of said fat, but they are all muscle from dancing, so the more exercise I do, the chunkier they get.  Even when I was a relatively skinny size 10,  I still had to shop at Evans for my knee-high boots.  My sisters both have lovely proportionate body shapes – It’s just me that got the dodgy genes.

Anyway, back to the dress . . .

It actually fits lovely on my top.  My Grandma had been worried that we had cut it too small on the back and that it wouldn’t fit, but once I stood up straight, it was fine.  Note to self – must work on my posture.

But, as always, anything I buy to fit the top, is huge on the bottom!  So, a fair few alterations are needed there.  We are putting some darts in along the waist line to make it sit nicer (and make me look skinnier (yay!), and the actual skirt needs to be cut slimmer, as it seems huge at the moment.  In all probability, with  a net skirt a la the fifties underneath, it would be a lovely shape, but that is not my intention with this dress, so we are going to make it a bit slimmer on the skirt.

I was unsure in the neckline when we were cutting out the fabric, but when I tried it on, I actually really liked the neckline.  It is very flattering to my shape, and similar to some other dresses that I have.  It just goes to show, what I always say, that you never can tell until you try something on.  I do this to everyone and annoy them – I always make them try on something they would not normally consider, and usually it looks great on them, and at least 50% of the time, it is what they end up buying.  My Grandma and sister did this to me with my wedding dress.  I deliberately took them shopping with me and just let them pick dresses for me to try on (very few of which I would have picked out myself).  I knew that I would end up with one that they chose, and I have.  And very pretty it is too.  You can see pictures after the wedding.

Anyway, by the time we had got to this stage with my dress, it was nearly 4 o’clock, so we decided that we would finish it another day.  So, I think the plan is to do this over the Bank Holiday weekend, which is the next time our otherwise hectic diaries tally to have a free day together.  Alterations need to be made, zip put in, and the dress properly sewn together instead of just tacked.  I’m so excited . . .

I already have the material I want for my next dress – I just need to find a pattern, although if I like this dress enough, I may just use the same pattern with a few shape alterations or additions to the dress. 

As always, I will keep you updated.

In the meantime . . .

Happy Crafting.


Sunday, 20 May 2012

Things I Have Made This Week

Soooo, its been a busy old week for bespoke orders, but I can't complain.

The first order was from my step-mum, whose niece has just got engaged, so ANOTHER engagement card was needed.  I know its wedding season, but I didn't realise there was an engagement season too.  She liked the idea of the entwined hearts on the card I had made for my cousin a couple of weeks ago, so that was to be the basis of the card.  Other than that, I had free reign to do as I pleased. 

I cut the hearts from some paper I had in my princess paper pack (at least I am getting some use out of it - even if it was gazumped by Hannah Montana for its original intended use).  The paper had birds and the word 'Love' written on it, and I think it is quite a romantic pattern.  I then stitched the edges of the hearts to add some detailing, but also because I wanted to see what it would look like.  I also attached some loops made from sheer organza ribbon to the hearts.

I chose a background paper from the princess paper pack, as I knew it would compliment.  I then attached a strip of think white satin ribbon to the right hand side of the card and attached three heart shaped buttons towards the top.  I attached the entwined hearts slightly to the left of centre and finished the card with a silver 'congratulations'.

My step-mum seemed pleased with the card (I hope).  Her comment was that 'they won't have another card like it.'  I'm choosing to beleive that this is a good thing.

Anyway, then on Tuesday, I got to work and got orders for four more cards.  The first of these was a 50th birthday card for Debby's auntie, with the instructions (and I'm paraphrasing here) 'she likes walking and latin music.'  I decided to go with the latin music theme and for some reason had a desire to go with a black and lime green colour scheme and this is the result:

I decided on a gatefold card, similar to my recent Hannah Montana card (please see previous post), with a silhouette of latin dancers.  I found the picture on the internet an dtraced it, then transferring it to black card.  I then coloured it in with a silver metallic marker and attached it to the card so that it was overlapping the card opening.  I then drew musical notes around the border in silver pen and to finishe, attached a green patterned chipboard '50' to the top right-hand corner. 

Two of the other cards I had orders for were very similar - a variation on my cupcake cards in pink themes, with lace and the sentiments 'special friend' and 'fabulous friend'.  These were quite simple to make as I already has some cupcakes embossed and coloured in, so they just needed cutting out and sticking to the card.  For the background, I used some papers I had got with a recent issue of Cardmaking and Papercraft.  I also used some of these papers to border the sentiments and the cupcakes.  I put a further border of lace ribbon around the cupcakes.  I finished these cards with a ribbon bow on one and some diamante gems on the other.

My final card from this batch of orders was a 70th borthday card for Carly's mum.  She wanted it to be vintage and feature a Mabel Lucy Attwell print.  Carly found a print and emailed it to me as an example.  As I couldn't find a better print, I decided to use that one. 

I cut out the print and backed it with some green flower paper from a Boofle paper pack.  From the same paper pack, I used some patchwork paper to cover the card and make a background.  I attached the print to the right-hand side of the card and cut a '70' from gold card, attaching this next to the print.

I then backed a sentiment with blue checked paper and attached this to the top left-hand corner of the card.  As a finishing touch, I tied a bow in some blue gingham ribbon and attached this to the top right-hand corner of the print.  I then attached a pink flower gem to the knot.  Et voila!  Card finished. 

The final order I completed this week was a short notice personalied new baby boy card.  To make this, I covered a card blank with blue gingham paper.  I then embossed a sentiment at the centre top of the card.  I printed the baby's details (name, date of birth, time, weight) in blue and bordered this with some sticky-backed ribbon (sticking my fingers together in the process).  I then attached this to the botrtom right-hand corner of the card and attached a paper teddy to the upper left-hand side of the card with two silver balloons, drawing a string from the balloons to the teddy.

To finish the card, I tied a small heart-shaped button to a large blue button, and tied some thread to a small blue button.  I attached these to a length of white satin ribbon and attached this to the bottom left-hand side of the card.

Other than sticking my fingers together on numerous occassions, I enjoyed making this card, as it involved a few different techniques. 

In between all this, I have been making things for my upcoming craft fairs, such as ladybirds, bees, butterflies, and I have started a new baby blanket (although only one this time).

I now have orders for three more cards - a 70's rainbow 40th birthday card (this should be interesting), which I intend to make Monday night, and two cards based on the birthday card I made recently for my grandma.  Thank god I have already made the cards for the 4 birthdays I have this week.

Happy Crafting.


Thursday, 17 May 2012

Craft Fairs A-Go-Go

Sooooo, I have my first craft fair booking . . . on Saturday, 16th June in Bramley, Leeds.
I'm very excited by this, but now panicking about how I'm going to make enough stock to sell.  I currently have 28 cards and 0 fabric creations made up.  This is NOT going to be enough.  So, a few busy weeks ahead for me.  I think I am thanking God (and all other deities) for the long jubilee bank holiday weekend before then, so that I have a bit of time to get things made.  Unfortunately, all my other weekdns before the craft fair are booked up.  This coming weekend I am working all day Saturday, and then on Sunday I have a date with my Grandma to (finally) finish off the dress that I was making.  (Blog post with the results of that to follow).  Then the following weekend I have a trip to North Yorkshire for my auntie's 50th birthday shindig.  Luckily, I have already made her card, so that's one less thing to worry about.

Now I just need to have a think about what will sell well.  This is all part of my master plan to give up working at the pub on a Saturday, so I would really like to make some decent pennies from this craft fair.  I'm not expecting too much though, as it is my first.

If you have any ideas about what will sell, please comment below.  I need all the help I can get on this one I think.  I've made up some wedding cards - it is wedding season after all.  I have also been making some ladybirds, bees and butterflies to sell as craft materials, as these are easy to make in my lunchbreaks at work.

I am also thinking I will make up some pin cushions and needle cases, as these have been popular amongst my friends and family. 

Now, I just need to think what else.

Then, hopefully, I have another craft fair on 8th July at St Gemmas, so I will need to carry on with all my making, especially as this is the day after I get back from my holidays!  But, I am currently in no position to turn down craft fair bookings!  I will just have to make sure everything is made before I go on my holiday.  So, apologies in advance if my blog posts are few and far between over the next couple
of months . . . I am just a very busy bee.  I will try my best to keep you updated on my makes and rants as often as I can.

In the meantime . . .

Happy Crafting.


Fairy Elephants Sunday Brunches

Soooo, I am pleased to announce the launch of Fairy Elephants Sunday Brunch Workshops.

At these workshops, you will be taught various craft techniques, including needlecraft, papercraft, card making, how to make your own soft furnishings etc.

Lunch, baking and (soft) drinks will be included, together with all the materials and tools you will need.  There will be a good chance for a gossip.  You will also get to take home whatever you have made that day.

The first workshop will take place in Leeds on 15th July 2012 from 10.30am to 1.30pm, and you will be making your own version of the 'house' pin cushion pictured, to use on future projects of your own or at the Fairy Elephants Sunday Brunches.

Price is £15, or £10 if you book before 31st May.

For more information or to book your place, please email or call 07834 237645.

Plans for future workshops include patchworking, cardmaking, quilting and various papercrafts.

I look forward to seeing some of you there.

In the meantime . . .

Happy Crafting.



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