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.

Friday, 27 March 2015

This Week………. Birthday Matchboxes

This week I have been mainly making birthday matchboxes using the Tim Holtz matchbox die cuts Marc sent me a while back with Paperchase stickers and Craftwork Card birthday sentiments.
They are a bit of a market research/experiment to see how they go in the staffroom at work ….. something a bit different from a card …..
If they go well, it will probably encourage me to make more for the craft markets/fayre  I can hopefully find and frequent in Evesham in the coming months.

Monday, 23 March 2015

Tom and Laura’s First Wedding Anniversary Card

This card measures 5ins x 5ins and is made using a hand cut white linen effect card blank.
Iris CardWell, with Iris arriving just weeks before Tom and The Lovely Laura’s first wedding anniversary, it was a no brainer as to what I would put on their card!
Iris Anniversary CardThe buttons date back to the days of Alan and Barry on Create and Craft, when they used to sell huge bags of mixed buttons (wish you could still get them, I had so many cards using them)

Friday, 20 March 2015

Printed Fimo House Embellishments

As you know I am not the best or most patient of stampers, but instead of stamping onto card, I wondered if I could stamp on Fimo to make my own embellishments.
So I found out some Stampin’Up house stamps that I must have had for at least 5 years and never even opened …..
…… and used a black Stazon ink pad to stamp them onto freshly rolled out white fimo……..
……. which I then cut out with a craft blade …. the roofs and house are separate stamps, but the fimo stuck together easily to create a complete house.
The houses “cooked” a dream, if not a little pongy, which was probably the ink cooking and if the colour of the fimo changed that was due to my leaving them a little too long in the oven …. but it didn’t hurt the finished effect!!!
Now, all I need is a project to use them on ….. I am think either a new home tag or card, or both or perhaps a New Home Matchbox!

Monday, 16 March 2015

Ikea Pencil Coasters

I know I am terrible, but I just cannot resist taking the odd handful (or two) of those small pencils they have everywhere in Ikea! But what on earth do I do with them when I get them home? There are only so many pencils you can write/draw with!!!
So I challenged myself, and came up with these coasters!!!
I am under no illusions that they will very last long, they are just a bit of fun.  I simply glued them together using a cement type glue, perhaps if I did them again I would use E6000, which I think would make them stronger.
I suppose a couple of coats of varnish would also strengthen them and make them more wipable …….
……. and they can be used either side up either showing the plain or printed side.
I am now thinking, that they might also look quite good stuck round a desk pencil pot (dare I return to Ikea?) ….. however a set of short Poundshop coloured pencils could look equally as good ……. hmmmmmm

Just found out someone has already had that idea!!

Friday, 13 March 2015

Collier Campbell / Ikea Storage Drawers

This set of Ikea drawers was fixed to a wall in the garage, the Duke had used it to keep his fishing bits and pieces in it, but it was now empty and it seemed such a shame not to be used, so I decided to rescue it with the help of a gentleman with a drill!
I needed somewhere to put all my tealights and small candles and this was an obvious choice.
I decided that I would cover it with Collier Campbell Flower Patch wrapping paper as I wanted something really bright for my newly decorated utility room.
I outlined the edges in red Promarker pen and then simply covered the front of each drawer with the paper.
Collier Campbell wrapping paper. Cover Ikea wooden drawers….. followed by layer after layer of quick drying clear varnish, goodness knows how many!!!
IKea wooden storage drawers.Collier Campbell wrapping paperEt volia ….. sitting underneath one of my mirrors!

Monday, 9 March 2015

Sorry You’re Leaving Card

This card is A5 in size made using a hand cut blank in white linen effect card.
I made this card for the Head of Maths at school who left at Christmas.  I used graph paper with red and silver card to mat and layer, and then went mad with  some of the thousands of self adhesive numbers and letters I have collected over the years, and then filled in the smaller gaps with doodled Maths symbols.
I think I really need to make more cards in this style in the coming year perhaps on a more general theme. I have sooooooooo many letters, and they need using up …. the combination of wording might take a little thinking about …… e’e. a’s and y’s always seem to get used first and I never have enough y’s ……

Friday, 6 March 2015

The PE Lady’s Easter Chicks

The PE Lady has been knitting her Easter Chicks again which each conceal a Cabury’s cream egg.  The colours make them soooooooooo sweet!  I just can’t pick a favourite!
All of these are destined for Marc, as he has a BIG thing for knitted novelties, ….. I am not sure I could let them go if I was him!

Monday, 2 March 2015

Easter Bunny Bags

As I said the other day,  I am not planning to make a great deal for Easter, but I think my “penny bags” are always appreciated at work as I am careful what I put in them and they are good value for money!
I kept the tags very, very simple, using a blue gingham and pale green card, yellow ribbon (left over from Tom and the Lovely Laura’s wedding), and punched sunshines.
I also finally managed to use up all the wooden Paperchase bunny’s I got at a much reduced price either last year or the year before, so they owe me nothing and another bit of my stash bites the dust!!!!

Saturday, 28 February 2015

Heads Up For Easter

I am not doing a lot for Easter, but I will be making some Easter Bunny Penny Bags for work …….. and so naturally my eagle eye has been out looking for some small, good quality, value for money Easter themed sweeties to pop in them, along with lollies, marshmallows and other bits and pieces…….  and this is what I found in Tesco

Tesco Easter Chocolate Coins……. chocolate coins …… 10 coins per net ……

Tesco Easter Bunnies…… and chocolate bunnies ……. 15 bunnies per net.  And yes, I was sad and I stood in middle of Tesco trying to count them!!!! They also have nets of small, foil wrapped eggs.  Anyway they are on special offer 2 nets for £1.50, which I reckon don’t work out that bad.

Friday, 27 February 2015

Happy Birthday Lindsay

I don’t often do requests, but this is a little something for Lindsay Denville
Monkey Birthday card[9]…… for when she pops by today! Happy Birthday Lindsay!!!

Thursday, 26 February 2015

Valentines Favour Bags

I didn’t really do anything for Valentines Day, but I did pop this little jumble of bags into the pigeon holes of some of my friends at work on the last day of term as a fairing gift.
I used a narrow cello bag and put in small packets of Love Hearts, some foil wrapped chocolate hearts that I found in Bargains UK (99p), some chocolate coins and a felt heart ……..
……. fastened together with a red bulldog clip which is always a useful thing to have in your desk!

Monday, 23 February 2015

A Special Thank You Card

This card measure 5ins x 5ins and is made using a Kraft Card blank
Making this card felt very different from me, it’s a sort collage, something I enjoy, but don’t do a lot of on cards.  The background is made from cork sheet that gives it a different, rough texture to which I have  added a mixture of Tim Holtz paper embellishments, K & Co layered poppies, antique silver and dragon fly brads, clear self adhesive pebbles, and red twine, but I think it all goes together OK (????)
The reason for making this card was a very small thank you in comparison to Lizzie, a follower of more years than I care to remember, who sent me a most beautiful parcel containing a collection of wonderful bits, completely out of the blue. 
Inside the parcel were three beautifully wrapped packages full of lovely, lovely things.
What can I say?
Each package just got more wonderful …….
…… and I was totally, overwhelmed by Lizzie’s kindness, thought and generosity.  I love everything ….. I think the most inspiring were the Tim Holtz bottles, as I have a HUGE thing for little bottles, which are already screaming Christmas very loudly at me  ……….
Thank you soooooooo much Lizzie, as I said “Thank You” just doesn’t express my feelings, half as much as what it really meant to me!

Friday, 20 February 2015

A New Source For Pretzel Bags

A while ago I think I mentioned that I couldn’t find my usual source of pretzel bags on eBay, the ones I used for Elizabeth Shaw mints ……
…….. Well, I have now found a brilliant eBay shop, thanks to one of my lovely, lovely followers, so really, I cannot take any credit for the finding …. however, I have lost the original e-mail which included the link, so I cannot thank that person by name in this post ….. but THANK YOU SO MUCH on behalf of myself and others who might use the link.
I ordered packs of 50 2” x 8” (£1.85)  and 2”x 7” (£1.80) with free P & P.  They are excellent quality, arrived within days and are perfect for what I need them for! 
The cello bags come in 17 sizes, so well worth a look.  I could now do with ordering some 3” x 4” bags which are a brilliant size for packaging wish bracelets etc. or 
This is just a personal “heads up”, I have had no communication with Yolli other than my order, I just liked what I found!!!

Tuesday, 17 February 2015

Counting The Days

Not that I am counting …… but, when it got to 100 days before I finally quit my office for good, I just couldn’t help myself!So,  the blue days are High Days, Feast Days, Days of Holy Obligation and weekends and so don’t count …… and the white ones are the ones I actually have to work, which I colour in as soon as my bum hits the seat, when I get in, in the morning ……!!!

Monday, 16 February 2015

Hand Painted Mug – Porcelain Painter Pen

Well I say hand painted ….. which suggests that I used a paint brush, but really  I used a black Marabu Porcelain Painter pen, but the title sounds much more posh, skilled and artistic doesn’t it?????!!!!
When I saw the mug in discountUK, with it’s classy back inside, I just had to have it (well, I bought two, but the other one will probably appear later on in another guise) and for 99p, it had to be done.
My source of inspiration was a bowl I bought in a charity shop when Marc stayed with me in the summer, which I think was also 99p.It was like the mug was made for a similar design. Once “painted” the mug had to be baked in the oven for 30 minutes at 160F and should now be dishwasher proof and ready for me to take to work for my coffee!

Friday, 13 February 2015

Exciting Times !!!!

Looks like “Mum’s Monkey” is being picked up in a few high places, but it comes to something when the invitations go to Monkey, Darrell and Nigel and not me!!!!!!!   ……. Anyway, this is what they found in their mail box when they got home from work last night …….
“Dear Mum’s Monkey,
I hope you’re well.
We’d like to invite you to a very exclusive screening on Tuesday 24th February to launch the brand new series of Caitlin & Caz Moran’s RAISED BY WOLVES.
However, this is no ordinary press screening… a very special coach trip is also involved! Not only will you be accompanied by the writers and creators, Caitlin & Caz Moran, but also joining us will be the two brilliant actresses who play their teenage alter egos; Helen Monks & Alexa Davies.
The trip will begin at Wolverhampton Train Station at ****, we’ll board the coach with our very own Wulfrunians Caitlin & Caz, who will curate a unique tour of the city where they grew up – accompanied by some substantial refreshments. Forget local churches, and points of interest, this will be an no holds barred take on their hometown.
Once the tour has ended, the coach will take us on to Wolverhampton Cineworld where we’ll offer a first look preview of the first two episodes followed by a Q&A with the four ladies.
The invite for the screening is below - we really hope you can join us.”
Raised by WolvesHow exciting is that?  Well,  it goes without saying that “we” shall all be going, but I think it was the promise of “substantial” coach refreshments that probably swayed it ……!!!!!

Tuesday, 10 February 2015

Taking Crafting A Bit Too Far …….

It’s been a bit bitter in Wolverhampton just lately and I finally decided to succumbed and rummage through my drawers to find a pair of gloves to wear  …… only to find,  as I put them on at the bus stop that ……….
……this was obviously a pair that I had cut a couple of fingers off when I had run out of snowmen’s hats for snowman chocolate bars, and had then absentmindedly rolled them back up and put away again !!
download (1)Still, I hope you noticed how straight and even my cuts were!!!
What am I like???????

Monday, 9 February 2015


xxxx Lizzie, what can I say?  I received your parcel on Saturday and am totally, totally overwhelmed ……. I just don’t know what to say …. but THANK YOU SO MUCH.  So many treasures ….. I loved everything and believe me everything has been very lovingly stroked and adored, especially the Tim Holtz pieces, you are so kind, too kind!!

I don’t have your e-mail, but a proper “thank you” is on it’s way, I just wanted to let you know it had arrived …… and I am very, very touched xxxxxx

Baby Welcome Card

This card measures 5ins x 5ins and is made using a hand cut, white linen effect card blank.
This is the card I made my Granddaughter Iris when she was born. Iris arrived a little sooner than I’d expected, and as I didn’t want to make a card in advance until I knew Tom and The Lovely Laura’s baby was safe it was made in the couple of hours before Lucy and I left for Worcester to meet Iris for the very first time. 
All I knew was that I wanted the card to be fresh, simple and unfussy. The self adhesive birds came from a pack I got from Michael’s in Las Vegas, that were just waiting to be used for such a wonderful occasion. 

Monday, 2 February 2015

Simple Premo! Sculpey Clay Necklace

The idea for this simple necklace is not mine, it was inspired by a tutorial I found on Pinterest. Sometimes I want to play, but feel a little lost, especially as I only started using oven bake clay seriously in the run up to Christmas. so having something to follow helps me over the initial hesitant stage and then I can develop and run with the idea if I am happy with the initial results.
sculpey bead necklaceI used some of the Premo! Sculpey clay that Marc gave me a while back and thought I might also add a couple of metal beads from a deconstructed charity shop find, found when Marc was with me in the summer.
Admittedly,  I made the beads really, really quickly, so they vary and the finish is far from perfect, but if I was being arty farty I would say that they were …… erm …. organic!!!!!!!
I also think I may have baked them for a little too long as the colours darkened quite considerably …… but I was only experimenting!!!
All I did then was to thread the hardened beads onto a length of leather cord.  I did try a metal bead  between each separate colour, but it didn’t look right, so I settled for just one at each end.
I could tidy up this idea a lot …… if I wanted to make another necklace.  However, the beads might reappear once I have worn it a few times, in a new guise somewhere along the line, perhaps as part of hanging decoration ….. hmmmmmmmm!

Thursday, 29 January 2015

Sorry, Only One Fiddle Fart Post Per Week ………

Sorry, for yet another change to my blog schedule …. for the next few months at least, I think there will only be one Fiddle Fart post per week, on a Monday ….. I am having a bit of a mojo malfunction …… but with all good reason, as my mind has been on other things!
images (3)I said a week or so ago that I had handed in my notice at work …….. but what I didn’t say was that at Christmas I suggested to Tom and the Lovely Laura that perhaps they might consider my helping to look after Iris a bit when the said Lovely Laura goes back to work in June. Well, to be honest there wasn’t much debate, and none of it was in the slightest bit heated!!!!!  So, from mid June I will be splitting my week, spending three days in Evesham and four days in Wolverhampton, but with the long term view that eventually I will move to Evesham permanently within the next eighteen months/two years!
downloadBut, before I start the drama of selling and buying houses, I hope that during my days/evenings spent in Evesham I can gradually start to make new friends and build up a social life, so that when I “really” move, it will feel like I am already settled, if that makes sense?
images (1)So as you can see, my mind has been rather occupied and I am afraid not a lot of crafting has been done, Chez Greysquirrel ……. but I still think I want to keep things ticking over blog wise  ….. it’s been too much part of my life to give up completely, and I can see how it might take on new angles …. Tom says he already has visions of coming home every night and finding Iris covered in paint, Decopatch or some sort of dressing up affair  …. perhaps I could go down the “Crafting with Iris” line!!!!!!!
KT05-Evesham-Abbey……. I still plan to craft at the weekend when I am at home in W-ton, but when I am in Evesham it could be a way of  taking my crafting back to real basics as I won’t be surrounded by my mountain of materials and tools.  Initially I plan to take a supply of white card, mirror card, and a few embellishments, and basic tools with me and see where that leads me ……. perhaps planning projects ahead for the evenings at the weekend or exploring the delights of Evesham for inspiration and a source of new materials.
images (4)I hope that Evesham, being a “touristy” sort of a place, could provide a source outlets for me to perhaps expand and sell more of what I make, which is something I know I don’t do enough of, maybe playgroups, gift shops, craft markets etc.  
images (2)So there you go ….. a lot to think about, but hopefully if I take things very slowly it will prove to be the right move and the start of a whole new life!