I am sorry but I can no longer send out any templates, poems etc. that I may have previously offered in the past, the files were lost when my last computer crashed and I have chosen not to remake any of them them.

Sunday, 21 December 2014

Gingerbread Inchie Pendant Trays

These gingerbread pendants just need to be threaded with a narrow piece of red ribbon, and perhaps a bead and they will be ready to hang on the tree
They measure one inch square, with a background made up of a white glitter and snow patterned papers.
The puffy, slightly metallic, gingerbread man stickers came from Hobbycraft last year, this year sadly their Christmas stickers have been pants  ….. in fact I just haven’t bought any from them!
Once the gingerbread men were in position I flooded the pendant with Anita’s 3D, clear, glossy dimensional finish, which, when set,  the gingerbread man stand everso slightly proud, but with a seamless finish, giving an almost enamelled effect.
I am hoping that next year someone pulls their fingers out sticker wise, however I think I am going to start looking farther a field for my supplies in the coming year, most probably to China ….. you may have to wait an extra week or two for them to arrive, but you just can’t compare choice and prices ….. and I get to work with something different, that perhaps other people may not have.

Saturday, 20 December 2014

Christmas Tree Place Settings

This isn’t my idea, it was Martha Stewart’s, but I’ve always loved it, so thought I would give it a try this year as I have a wonderful “real” silver Christmas tree in my garden
Mini Christmas tree place settingsMy father in law has cut me lots and lots of little branch slices for tags and other festive ideas that might pop in my head over the next few months.  I simply drilled a hole in the middle with my modellers drill and then just stuck in the end of a Christmas tree branch that I had sprayed with glue and sprinkled liberally with translucent micro glitter
mini christmas tree Christmas place settingI was then tempted to over egg the pudding by adding sequins and beads, but then controlled myself, less should be more …..
mini christmas tree decoration. place setting…… and these, I thought, had the “cute” factor ….. I shouldn’t turn them into brash and gaudy for my festive table …… that’s not my style …… LOL!!!!
Mini Christmas Tree Place setting using real fir branchesSo in the end I just added a tasteful wooden star (stuck on with a glue gun)
Obviously Christmas is a little away ahead still ….. but I am curious to see how long these little trees keep their needles so that I can work out how far in advance of a special meal I could make them.

Friday, 19 December 2014

The PE Lady’s Christmas Booties

So ……. just how cute are these booties?  How could I resist?
Knitted by our beloved PE Lady, I had to have them for Iris’s first Christmas.  Sorry,  I don’t have the pattern, I just wanted to show them to you.
2015, I suspect, will be the year when I finally pick up my knitting needles again. There was once a time in my life, when Tom and Lucy,were small, that I was never without any knitting …… in fact Lucy was always known at playgroup as the little girl with the lovely jumpers!!! So, with many beautiful wools and patterns in the shops now, and knitting being an on trend sort of hobby, I think that between the Equally Lovely Granny Denise and I, Iris will be able to take on Lucy’s mantle and become the next little girl with the lovely jumpers and cardigans!!

Thursday, 18 December 2014

“The Boyz” Christmas Card 2014

This card measures 6ins x 6ins and was a nightmare to get right!!!
Firstly this wasn’t the picture I intended to use, I had a lovely picture of “The Boyz” being snow angels, but the reproduction just wasn’t right as I had compressed it, to put on their blog, doh!
So, then I had to “arrange” a Hello Magazine photo shoot” with them, but as I was doing it in November, I didn’t have a festive back drop to use and them just sat sitting on my stairs just looked deathly dull, even with the help of a piece of Poundshop tinsel!
And so reluctantly, as it isn’t an activity I particularly enjoy, I decided to cut away the boring bits using the Paint programme on my computer, which gave me a blank canvas to work on ……download……. and allow me to superimpose the monkeys onto a new,  more festive backgroundXmas Card for Xmas Day BlogI can’t believe it came out so well and that you can’t see the join!  But putting a card together using the picture was the nightmare. There were too many colours, on plain, white card blank it looked like something was missing but on a patterned card it looked far too busy! Agh!!! After over two hours and only a bin full of rejects to show for my toils, I was still tearing my hair out and resorted to looking at card layouts, which helped, in a round about way.But, after a little more frustration, a card finally emerged …… with a card blank cut from this A4 pad of glossy, green card (above) I got from a market for £3 a couple of years ago, and the picture mat and layered on more of the green card then silver, plus i.5 ins strips of silver down the side and a sentiment made using The Dukes old Dymo tape maker. Phew!!!
It’s very different from The Boyz past Christmas cards. It’s contemporay and I think it works …. but lesson learned, at the first sign of any snow I need to get those Monkeys out there, in their Christmas jumpers and take as many pictures as I can …. and just keep them until I need them next Christmas, as I now know it’s much easier to work with/on white!!!!

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Snowman Soup

I wasn’t sure if I would put together any packs of Snowman Soup this year, but the success of my Halloween Brew made me think, why not!
snowman soup packagingThe design for the packet insert is almost the same as the one I made in 2010  using digi kit, which sadly now seems to have been retired. The font I used is 2peas Typo.
All I have done is print of the design and then mat and layer it on some PaperCellar snow design card to fit my cello bags, that I found in Home Bargains for a bargain 89p for 50 bags.
In the bags I have put a packet of hot chocolate, a candy cane and a marshmallow Christmas pole.  I used to make my own little packets of mini marshmallows to sprinkle on the top of the hot chocolate, but I think using pre-packed marshmallows is more hygienic, leaving the recipient to either dip or break up the marshmallow as they choose. However at the last minute I decided to add a mini gingerbread man from a pack from M & S (99p for 12),  which I sealed in a small cello bag with my vacuum sealer and a couple of starlight mints, again left over from other projects …. but all with a couple of months on the sell by/use by dates

Tuesday, 16 December 2014

My Second Tutorial For Wayfair– Clay Tree Ornaments and Gift Tags.

Today, if you would like to click over to Wayfair ….. my second tutorial is now live in their festive “Inspiration” section!!!

This project was the first time I had ever worked with air dry clay, so another steep learning curve, where I decided it best to keep things simple ………….

Picture1…… and chose to work (from all the zillions things available from Wayfair) with a set of Cake Boss heart cutters and fondant imprint mats to make heart tree ornaments and Christmas gift tags.

WebThink my staging was OK on this too.  As I said before, it was such a thrill to be asked and kept me thinking outside the box!

Monday, 15 December 2014

Gingerbread Man Christmas Wreath

NO …… I didn’t make this, I wish I had, but my sewing is totally pants. It was made by The Lovely Donna in my office ….. I gave her some die cut felt gingerbread men and she just flew with the idea!!!
I am soooooo jealous, I want it so badly!!! Perhaps, even badly enough to want to start sewing!!!!!
Incidentally, the “naked” wreath came from Poundland …… I feel another shopping trip is imminent ….. they are well worth stocking up on for 2015 projects …..and not just for Christmas!

Sunday, 14 December 2014

Gingerbread Men Bottle Caps

I am not sure if these work 100%, I think they just need a little more tweeking.
I need to use more vibrant colours to make up the background, use a finer permanent pen on the faces and perhaps use a touch of clear varnish or less Anita’s 3D clear glossy finish, as the gingerbread men seem to be made from an mdf which might be coloured and I think some of that colour has bleed just a little …..
However, from a distance they look pretty OK …… I think having to go so close to get a decent picture  just goes to show up all the tiny imperfections on something that is already very, very small!

Saturday, 13 December 2014

Penguin Bottle Cap Christmas Tree Decoration & Penguin Tray Pendant

I am still experimenting with bottle caps v pendant tray tree decorations.  I have to admit that for the shabby, rough, handmade look the bottle caps win every time …… however, since the wearing of Christmas jumpers is limited at work to a half hour window of choice on the Christmas dinner rota …… I  intend to wear a few pieces of festive jewellery as a subtle gesture of protest in the run up to the end of term!  So for that, the festive pendant has its place!
I was rootling about in the boxes of bits I have on my craft room shelves and found these penguins left over from the good old days when Christmas stickers were really inspiring (and cute), and since penguins are very “in” this year, I had to use them.
I simply made backgrounds of sky and glittery snow using scraps of paper , and stuck them into the bottom of the bottle cap and pendant tray. Next came the penguin, followed by a good dousing of Anita’s 3D clear gloss finish, with the penguin liberally covered, but still standing slightly proud.
However, when they were set they lacked something, so I tentively added tiny hologram stars ….which really did add the festive sparkle they were lacking!
It’s too late now, but I am determined that when Christmas is over and I give my craft room the really good sort out it needs,  I am going to sort out a box of tiny things that either fit in a bottle cap or 1in pendant tray to make more of the same …… building up a collection of bits and pieces to sell, as I am determined to find a couple of craft fayres  next year, something I have never done and to chance my luck, and if I want my stalls to be swarming (????), I think I need to be selling stuff that no one else will have.

Friday, 12 December 2014

Santa’s Belt, Christmas Matchbox, Favour Tree Decoration

This is another idea I had for using my Stampin’Up matchbox die to make a tree decoration to use up the mega box of small Lindtt teddies I got.I have had the silver, plastic buckles forever, and wasn’t originally sure if the proportions would work, but I think they are OK.
To make the belt I just cut a black matchbox lid using the die and then trimmed it so it could be threaded through the buckle and then wrapped it round the middle of the matchbox, securing it with double sided tape.  A small, black button and a scrap of white, self adhesive, border finish the box, making it ready to hang on the tree.

Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Wayfair UK And My Christmas Wreath Tutorial

You may remember a little while ago me telling you that I had been approached by Wayfair UK to produce a “crafty” tutorial using some of their products.......
Wayfair DIY Christmas Wreath Table CentrepieceAs I said then, I was a little apprehensive at first, explaining that my usual “stamping ground” for finding bits and pieces for upcyling projects were mainly charity or Poundshops, but in the end I was eventually cajoled into producing a little something……….
Putting the instructions together for the tutorials wasn’t too hard, it was just like a blog post but by numbers, however I really struggled with the photos, not only having to match them up to a strict template, but also in the staging, something I have never done before.  When I blog a project it’s a matter of getting up as close as I can on a plain background, no fuss, no frills, no background, but as you’ll see, if you pop over to the "Inspiration" section of Wayfair's website I really had to dress things up!  So a lot of lessons learned and next time I am staying in London with Marc, I need to get his partner Iain to take me in hand and show me just how to stage like an expert!!!
downloadAnyway ........  it was a very new venture and a steep learning curve, but it was also such a great thrill to be spotted and asked ...... and there's another tutorial to come on 16th December!

Penguin Bottle Caps

I am sooooooo into bottle caps and pendant trays at the moment, these are not quite finished yet, they need a jump ring and thread with a bead on to complete them, but you’ll get the gist.
I am now constantly on the look out for small, dimensional  embellishments that will fit into a bottle cap, and these skating Jolees penguins are a perfect fit …….
…….. bringing back very happy memories of my wonderful trip to Michaels in Las Vegas, which is where I bought them.

Tuesday, 9 December 2014

Jewelled Snowman Christmas Card

This card measures 6ins x 6ins.
Jewelled snowman cardOh my goodness, what was I thinking (above)? I was trying to do something a little different from my normal less is more style, in an effort to use up some of the bits and pieces, like the snowman and corner peel offs that I’ve had for ages but never used, but somewhere along the line something went very hideously wrong ……
jewelled snowman Christmas Cardjewelled snowflake christmas card
……  it was the addition of the Poundland, self adhesive strips of clear gems!!!  Too much, far too much!
Much better gingham christmas cardI just couldn’t live with it, so I carefully removed the central panel and cut a 6ins x 6ins grey gingham card blank to stick it on to……
Grey gingham jewelled snowman christmas cardPhew, much better, a still a little fussy for me perhaps, but much, much better!!!!

Monday, 8 December 2014

Let’s A Do The Conga–New Year Card

This card measures 6ins x 6ins and is made using a hand cut, white linen effect blank.
Those pesky Paperchase robin stickers (£1) are at it again, this time doing the conga!
I just couldn’t resist it!

Sunday, 7 December 2014

Magic Reindeer Food – Free Tag Download

I have never made Magic Reindeer Food before, but, as I have seen it sneaking its way into the shops this year, so I thought I would have a go ….. trying to make it as simple and as economical as I could.
I decided that I would use some very old brown envelopes for the packaging, I have had them forever, but they had lost all their stick, but they were strong and would cost me nothing.
I then turned the said envelopes into bagalopes, there are lots of tutorials on the net on how to make them,  the one I have linked to is really easy to follow.:-  I didn’t do any fancy measuring, I just used my Coppernob score board, using the same line to score all the way round the envelope, after cutting off the flap and defuncked sticky stuff and cutting the edge with pinking shears.
For the food, I used mixture of “All Season” bird food (I kilo bag from Poundland), mixed with a few Jane Asher sugar stars and edible glitter also from Poundland (2 for £1), bagging it up in cello bags.
Then, I went back to the making some tags, which I decided to use “create” using Paint to “draw” a reindeer face, minus eyes and nose. I copied and pasted the design onto a tag, along with a poem that I also found on the net, but altered everso slightly to suit my needs.Magic Reindeer Food Tag 2014.From there, I made a PDF sheet of 10 tags on Dropbox that you are welcome to download and use
And now, you can see why I chose to miss out the nose and eyes, I knew googly eyes would give the reindeer character, as has his nose, which is a punched circle with a little white gel pen highlighting (like on the antlers).  A scattering of small hologram stars and a few doodled dots here and there complete the tags. By leaving the tags relatively plain you can create lots of different reindeer characters and add other embellishments without too much hassle.
With my original packing I used a green ribbon, but although I have miles of it (leftover from Tom and The Lovely Laura’s Rainbow Wedding), it did seem a tad extravagant, so decided to exchange it for a doubled up length of green gardening string ….. which somehow made it more rustic, natural reindeery feel , if you know what I mean.
The tag also lacked a little something, so I mat and layered it onto scraps of red card, which not only made it stronger, but made the tag “pop”
Anyway, if you do download and use the basic tag, please, please, please send me photos of what you do with them, then I can write another post where we can all share our ideas if not for this but future Christmas’s.

Saturday, 6 December 2014

Christmas Tree Bottle Caps

A festive experiment today, that I think needs fine tuning for Christmas 2015, which is why, at this stage, I haven’t added any jump rings or beaded thread to hang them.
My intention was to put very simple and unadorned Fimo Christmas trees into the bottle caps,
…….. but then, I got taken over by the bling monster …..
…… who forced me to cover them with tiny Poundshop nail jewels and stars!!!
I think there is room for both designs, but the Christmas trees need to be just a fraction wider to fill the cap more, as it looks little lonely and isolated, and perhaps a few flat stars in the background ……
……. but, I do have a year to get it right for next Christmas!!!  OMG, did I really say “next Christmas”?????? I think I am finally losing the plot!!!