Tuesday, 30 March 2010

Teddy Bears Picnic

I finished these late last month and they will be appearing in one of my shops. Possibly Folksy. I want to extend them so that there are more friends. Sophie suggested that I make sets of clothes for them, but I am not sure about that. Sophie has also put an order in for one specially for here, she has even stated the colours and types of clothes. She does not mess around when it comes to crafting and shopping! I am blessed with a child who is even easy to shop for school shoes with. How lucky am I?
Anyway, I am wandering off the point here.

I made Sophie a little white felt teddy bear when she was about three, she still has it, and it has lasted really well. I love my felt and being able to create something fun and cute such as this adds to it and makes them so fun to make.

I managed to find these lovely little heart buttons at the range and this lacey flower just finished it all off. I am thinking of perhaps some teddy bears in different colours may be on the cards next. I need some more light brown felt too as these take up quite a bit to make each one. I shall also think up of some other clothes styles too.

I also have another set of new felt friends but I shall post about them later in the week. Last official day at school tomorrow for the Easter Hols, I am, however, going in Thursday morning for a GCSE course work catch up workshop and then it is some much needed down time as I have hardly had a voice since last Thursday and I am starting to get a bit fed up with it, not to mention the problems that causes at work. Some crafting must feature in the break and a chance to read a book too. I would like to complete the one that I started before Christmas.

What plans do you have?


Monday, 29 March 2010

Pink Candy

This fun spiral scarf is now in my Etsy shop. I made myself a shades of blue version and it is ideal for brisk spring mornings and can be worn indoors, and if last summer is anything to go by I may well be wearing this in August too. I have started a light weight cream version as these scarves are ideal for accessorising as I like to wear scarves with jumpers, t-shirts etc but wanted something alternative to cotton fabric etc.

For UK customers I will also remove the postage and packaging for you.


Saturday, 27 March 2010

Sunny Saturday.....

The sun is out today and my daffodils are in various stages of blooming. It has been a very long week at work which ended in me having a bad head cold which has also resulted in me losing my voice. It has not gotten any better today either. I have been advised not to do any work this weekend but not marking any work will not go down too well on Monday will it? So that is not likely to happen. I need to pack and send off my spring swap which is 5 days late getting in the post due to feel so bad in the evenings this week. It is ready so that is my quest today. I have also been busy with my Folksy shop which is always nice and gave me a much needed boost this week. iI you want any Easter items then purchase by Sunday evening then they can go in the post and still get to you by Easter Sunday. UK residents that is. I completed a special order for one customer and hopefully she should have got them today or Monday at the latest. I hope that they go down well. I also have my ATC's to finally finish and send off to my little group. I am not sure how this will work out or if it will be very successful or not. If it falls a bit flat then I shall organise my own ATC swap with a fun theme instead.
I have been doing fairly well with the Opam Challenge this month although it has all come to a bit of a stand still over the past two weeks. I need to take some photos this weekend to show you all the items.
My handmade cards have really taken off at work which has been a pleasure to do and snatching the odd bit of time here and there has helped to keep me sane this month too. Etsy is proving to be a bit of a disappointment and the exchange rate is not helping so I am thinking of gradually emptying it and opening a blog shop instead and adding Paypal buttons. The amount of money going out in listing and renewing is not coming back in at all. Plenty of hits, hearts etc but not much else. I shall see how it goes over the next few weeks. I have another mini craft fayre at the beginning of May to sort out and I am going to change the stock that I take this time having completed the last one. I am going to have a bargain box to try and de-stash some things too.

My little knitting club has now got two new members, one being a young lad, and the red hat above has been completed by one of the Year 7 girls. If you remember I made a cream lacey cloche hat, well she took a copy of the pattern home and started it. Then finished it at the club session on Tuesday. It really needed chunky wool but she used what she had and is very pleased with it. We now need to think of some summery knitting projects. Any ideas anyone?


Thursday, 25 March 2010

March Opam

Been quite busy this month with my 20 minutes of sewing and Opam challenge 2010. I have just completed a special order for chick egg cosies and a large batch of cards for the coffee shop. I also had another Folksy order for Easter cosies.

A total of 7 chicks and one egg shaped cosy. 18 cards, too many to photograph really. I have not been too good again this week, lost my voice which is a little tricky when you are a teacher! Got to go in tomorrow as I have a triple lesson with Year 11 and my throat, neck and ears are quite painful. Since Christmas I seem to have caught just about anything going. Our TA has said that she will come and assist in the afternoon if needed as by this afternoon today my voice had gone completely and when the bell went to go home none of the students moved because they could not hear me when I said to go. Very odd day.
My tutor group won the spring term merit prize this week and we have to decide whether to go to the cinema or go bowling (school is paying) which do you think?
Off to bed back tomorrow with a post on making another use of a tea towel. Not revolutionary but fun all the same (and easy to do too).
Take care all

Friday, 19 March 2010

Sunflowers - Seed Sketch Book

I have been somewhat absent from this blog during the week and things have been very hectic. I am so tired that I had to come home from my little sewing group on Wednesday as I really could not keep my eyes open!! I have been trying to snatch a few minutes here and there to get on with my seed sketch book. I mentioned last time that I decided to move on to a different theme and I have always liked sunflowers so......

We have been growing sunflowers in the school garden last summer and in the Autumn term I was asked to do a little project to design seed packets for the sun flower seeds with some students. Once we had finished there were some seeds left over so I decided to follow this line. Above I have taken the shape of one of the petals from the sun flower picture and then used that shape to create some repeat patterns. The colours came from a range of pictures plus books. I put a water colour wash on the background paper as before.

I then found a scrap of textured wall paper which I think was left over from my City and Guilds course and painted that using colours and shapes.

Above is a dried sunflower head left over the sunflowers grown at school and was no longer needed. I think the way that the seeds are nestled in close to one another. I wondered how they stayed in position so securely, so I pulled some of the seeds out for my sketch book and had a look.

From the picture you can see that each seed has its own little 'honeycomb' slot which it sits in perfectly. Once the seeds have fallen out what is left behind makes a lovely pattern as well!

I find that if I decorate the background of a few pages and leave them to dry then I will go back and have an idea to draw. It is taking ages but at least I am getting somewhere. I have decorated another couple of pages and I am waiting for them to dry.

Then I will need to be inspired..............

Have a good weekend. Sophie has a ballet exam tomorrow, cannot believe that it has been two years since the last one. Where has the time gone.


Sunday, 14 March 2010

Egg-tastic Fun

Remember these from last year?
Blog update: First batch of new cosies have now been listed at Folksy.
Well, I have been making some more these for the last few weeks, on and off, and I am listing them in my Folksy shop. Some are already there and I have taken pictures of some new ones today. I shall try and list these when I am watching Larkrise to Candleford tonight.

In my Folksy shop you can see last years versions if you click on the sold section. I do like making to order and if you see a colour scheme that you like or if you would like to place a special order, then now is the time to do it. If you live overseas you will need to give at least a week for these to get to you. So, the sooner the better. I will send these abroad even though that facility is not on my Folksy shop at the moment. It will take two seconds to swap it for you and make it a special order for an individual. Email me any questions if it is easier.

Here are two of the new designs to wet your appetite.

I have another Easter offering which is ideal for sending if a chocolate egg is off limits or not practical to send. More on that tomorrow as I need to go and do some marking. Pop back later to Folksy for cosy listings.

Take care


Friday, 12 March 2010

Holly Hobby Nostalgia

When I was a little girl I did not play with dolls very much, I had a couple which I liked to try and make clothes for. However, there was one rag doll that I did love a lot and it went most places including bedtime and that was my Holly Hobbie Doll. Remember them?

I am pretty sure that I managed to get her friend Amy too who had a brown and creamy dress but the memory is not certain. I got on to subject of toys and dolls with Sophie and she asked me what my toys were like and I mentioned Holly Hobbie, so I tried to explain what she looked like. In the end I said, "she looked a bit like you!" Sophie has the same colour hair, roundish face and a cute sprinkling of freckles going over her nose.
This intrigued her even more so we went and googled Holly Hobbie and I was amazed at what was on there.
We then had a look on Ebay and Amazon to see what else we could find and then finally Etsy.

I did put a bid on a Doll from the USA but was unlucky. Then I found these patterns on Etsy. I thought about for a day or two and then decided to go for it. After I have finished an order of cards for a coffee shop and listed some Easter items, then I shall have a go at making my own Holly Hobbie Doll and quilt and re-live a little childhood nostalgia. I will need to do a little research and see if I can make her dress as close to the original style as I can. I am pretty sure it was a blue patchwork style, a bit like The little house on the Praire. By the way, do you also remember Strawberry Shortcake and Victoria Plum characters as well?

What was your favourite toy as a child?

Enjoy the rest of the weekend.


Tuesday, 9 March 2010

"Kelp" Skinny Scarf

As many of you know I have been spending much of the past 6 months or more trying to improve my knitting. My lacey knitted cloche hat was quite a surprise to me and I have bought some wool to make another. So whilst on a bit of a roll I decided to try something else. The above is a sample of a scarf pattern that I found and using circular needles I followed the instructions and ended up with a spiral style skinny scarf. I used black because I had plenty of it and I wanted to experiment with the style and shape.

I decided not to stop there. Some pink candy wool was jumping up and down in my wool basket saying "knit with me! Knit with me!" So I could not ignore it, could I?

It was my husband who came up with the name "Kelp" (that would be boat, sea, water, fish background I suppose) and I think that it suits it.

I have since made two more which I shall photograph and post and I have plans to adapt the pattern a bit further to change the shape more.

These will be listed on my Folksy shop. They would be suitable for wearing for a good few months yet and I have made a blue version which I have worn to work. I have begun yet another as I want to adapt the shape further and play around with other colour combinations and thicknesses of wool.
Sophie, bless her, has her eye on having one as well. Guess what the colour is likely to be.
Back tomorrow, I need my beauty sleep.
PS Do take a quick look the last post, it will either make you laugh or make you groan!

Monday, 8 March 2010

Packaging gone silly!!!!!

The above parcel arrived for my dear hubby week before last.
Seems quite interesting and a basic normal cardboard box.

Opened the box and took out the stuffing etc to find the little black box at the bottom! What do you think it is?

This little black cube is a relay to operate the indicators on a peugeot car!!
A very important gizmo to make your car legal, but reeeaallyyy! DID THE BOX HAVE TO BE THAT BIG!
So much for reducing packaging to help the environment. Also, if the government brings a rubbish tax into effect and this happens again, then we will be sending the item back and they can dispose of the daft packaging instead of us.
Mad or what?
It did make us laugh and I had a tough time explaining why the box was so big to a seven year old who has been encouraged to not be wasteful. Hmmmm!
Hope your week has started off well.
PS Craft Fayre was small but good. Much better than the one I attended two years ago and I have signed up for another in May and July.

Sunday, 7 March 2010

Sketch Book - Another Peek 2

With the next pages of the sketchbook I took the shape of the seed pod from the [revious page and looked at a single section of it. I put a watercolour wash on the back ground of the page first. Then using a black fineliner pen I then produced a line drawing of the seed pod section. i also thought about how I could interpret that shale, maybe embroidery or applique?

I then took that shape and used some basic textile repeat pattern principles, I thought about how that shape could be arranged on the page to give further shapes and designs. Again labelling how the design could a produced on fabric, frnach knots, applique and seed stitch to mention just a few. The drawing on the right turned out well, not done any drawing like this for ages, not since I completed my City and Guilds course. i decided to leave it at this for the minute, but I will come back to these pages again.

I then moved on to sunflowers. The above pages were to just get the ball rolling. Some magazine pictures of sunflowers and their seeds. Then a bright picture on the right which I think came from an old paper folder which came from a stationers years ago!

I actually have a dried out sunflower head left over from designing and making some seed packets at school. So my next stage will be to take some photographs and take this next idea a little further.


Thursday, 4 March 2010

Sketch book update- A peek inside 1

The photo was taken at The Gardens of Heligon, Cornwall
You may remember that with my Embroiderers Guild Group I am trying to build up a sketch book on the theme of SEEDS. We all have the same theme and I will be honest in that it is not a theme which gets me keen to do it. It started January 2009 and the book sat still for ages then I started a section on this blog where some pages had been attempted.

The top picture shows some catkin photos which another raised picture on top to give a 3D appearance.

Tried a different version with other pictures and then traced off a section of the photograph.

I used this traced off section to create a pattern using pencils, water colour paints and a black fineliner pen.

I decided to move on to another picture and a new idea. So I used some pictures from a lovely flower grown by my In-Laws. The background is screwed up tissue paper glued down with PVA. Once that has dried I ran a paint brush over it with a darker blue water colour paint. On top if this I attached the pictures using pritt stick.

I then took the shapes from the pictures above to create further shapes and patterns which I shall show you tomorrow.

Thankfully at long last I have the motivation and ideas to get on with this and complete it soon as it was meant to have been done this January just gone......oppps.

Take care


Tuesday, 2 March 2010

OPAM 2010 March finishes so far..........

I like to put my OPAM finishes in a separate post for ease of archiving and so that they stand out. So even though it is only 2nd March I have had a good couppleof days to complete the following.

Sophie and I got these when we visited Craft4crafters in Exeter. We made them up on Monday evening and Sophie was really pleased to wear to school on her coat on today. Her friends really like it and you could see her bursting with pride.
Mine was really simple but i liked the thickness and the colours go with my new coat that I bought with some birthday money just after Christmas.

Then, of course, my spring flower pincushion. many thanks for the comments about this on the last post. I have already ct out a smaller version to make another one, hopefully for Saturday.
Whether the rest of march is as production will remain to be seen, but a good start at least.
Take care

Monday, 1 March 2010

Craft Fayre Craziness

Here is one of several cutting piles that needs to be stitched together by Saturday. it has been about two years since I last did one of these. This time it is better advertised, better venue, better hours and i liked the lady who I dealt with booking my stand!

I have several items that I have been developing over the past few months and will be listed after the fayre if they have not sold (being a bit optimistic here). So my online shops will be closed from Friday 5th March to Monday 7th March. if you want anything for Mother's Day then please do click the buy button as it will all be going to the fayre and with a bit of luck some of it will not be coming back again.

A part of me will be sorry if this goes. It has been waiting to be made up for ages and at the weekend I got it finished. it is also my first OPAM 2010 finish for March.

A fun and pretty pincushion to sit on your sewing table.

MMMMmmmm, I think I might have a go at another one.....

Take care


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