Thursday, 11 May 2017

Take Three Thursday

Linking up with Patio Postcards for a photography meme.  The idea is to take 3 photographs that are linked in some way.  Here's 3 I took on my dog walk yesterday up to Highdown Hill.  I love walking along paths through trees in the Spring with the dappled sunlight and bright fresh greens

Tuesday, 2 May 2017

Making cards with 'One Page Wonder'

Have you seen this method of cardmaking?  You take one sheet of double sided paper and cut it up as per a template, and use the pieces to make lots of cards.  Here it is on Pinterest.

We tried it at our Christmas crop with a 6 x 6 paper, and each made 4 cards, which we then gave to each other.  This template gave sketches for placement of the pieces of paper.  You can then add your own embellishments and sentiments.

We really enjoyed that, so we decided to big things up a bit and go for a 12 x 12 sheet of paper, and we used this template.

 I used a sheet from a stack of papers from Studio Calico, called Sundrifter.  This sheet is Pocahontas.   It has feathers on one side and is pink with polka dots on the other.  You can see that I favoured the feather side!   I loved the look of the cards where the papers had been matted, so found a pack of coloured papers that I had bought from the Range, which as it happened looked beautiful with this paper!  I made 16 cards this time.

 I borrowed a feather die, and cut several feathers from the plain papers.  Some have a 'Happy Birthday' sentiment, some I left plain so I can use them for another occasion.

I love how they turned out!  I haven't made any cards for a long time, so now I have a nice pile to choose from when I need one.  I think I will do this at Christmas - just got to find a nice double sided Christmas paper.

Sunday, 16 April 2017

New Camera, New Inspiration!

Two posts in a week!  Can you believe it!!
I am back to report that I have a new camera, and I am all inspired to take more photos again!  My old Nikon SLR is over 10 years old now, (and it was an old model when we bought it!), and is so heavy to lug around over my shoulder.   I wanted a lighter camera that was a bit better than a 'point and shoot'. My new phone has a fairly decent camera for that.  So we went into Jessops, and had a really lovely assistant who spent ages with us looking at the small mirrorless cameras.  I chose the Panasonic LX100, as it has a decent size sensor, and lots of dials and buttons for manual adjustment.  It looks a bit retro in the silver too!

It has its first outing up to London on my birthday on a really sunny Sunday in March.  We  were headed for lunch in the Shard!  Here's some photos:

The Shard is the tallest building in London.  We were headed for the 32nd floor for the restaurant, about half way up.

We were so lucky with the weather!  Bright, sunny and clear.  Here's a view towards the financial district with the 'walkie talkie' and the 'gherkin', other iconic buildings.

Looking to the East, with Tower Bridge in the foreground, and Canary Wharf in the background.

That is St Paul's Cathedral in the centre of the photo.

We had a lovely lunch, lovely food, well presented and brilliant service.   I thoroughly recommend the restaurant.  It was so lovely to spend the day with my family on a day out!

From left ro right, Danny (Lucy's boyfriend), Lucy, Nicholas and Maurice.

Finally, here's me and Maurice by Tower Bridge.  

So now I am all inspired again, can you suggest photo memes or challenges that I can join in and post on  my blog?

Friday, 14 April 2017

Decorating China with Transfer Papers

My crafty friends Burnice and Tash bought me a china decorating workshop for my birthday!  You will know that we like a workshop.  This one was run by Elaine at Made and Making in Ditchling, East Sussex.

WE had the choice of a plate, a small tray or tiles.  Tash and Burnice chose the plates, I chose the tray.  We were able to choose from lots of pretty transfer papers.  You cut out the shapes you want, then soak the paper in water and the transfer slips off the backing and sticks to the china.  Easy!

Here I am tracing off the beach hut shape.  I chose 5 different patterned papers and then cut them up and rearranged them on the tray.

Here's a picture of Burnice playing with the placement of her papers

Burnice and Tash hard at work!  You can see that the workshop is really cute!  Lots of lovely things hanging around for inspiration.

Here are my beach huts ready to place on the tray

The final products (well not quite, they have to be fired now).  Aren't these plates cute with their washing lines?  Tash did the clothes and Burnice did the quilts.

We had a great day, and are all keen to go back and do a Christmas plate later in the year!

Tuesday, 22 November 2016

A pier on a lampshade

My friend Tash and I went to a machine embroidery course a couple of weekends ago.  Burnice was supposed to come too, but unfortunately she had a fall and broke her shoulder so can’t sew at the moment.  We went to Lara Sparks Embroidery just a few miles from me.  Lara makes lampshades and cushions with her distinctive coastal, meadow and homely scenes.  We had seen her at a craft fair back in the Spring and decided to spend the money we would usually have spent at Sandown Quilt Show on the course.


Lara’s workshop is in her lovely home and is filled with lampshades, pictures and cushions that she has made and shelves overflowing with fabric!  After a bit of practise we were encouraged to decide on whether we wanted to make a lampshade or cushion, and to look at her stencils to decide what scene we would like to embroider.

I chose the pier scene.  First I drew round the stencil onto my linen to get the basics of the pier, then began to embroider!  It is such fun!  It doesn’t matter if you go a bit wobbly – in fact, it looks better if you do!  I  did each section of the pier at a time, embroidering the shape of the buildings, and then the understructure and legs of the pier.  Next, I chose some fabric to make the domes of the buildings.  They were fused on to the linen and then embroidered to make the lines of the roofs and to keep them on!  Lara is a fantastic teacher, keeping a watchful eye on us at all times!  She drew the big wheel and roller coaster for me, which I then embroidered.  Final touches were the blue lines of the sea and a few seagulls.

Tash chose to do a lampshade with foxgloves and bluebells, and she did more applique that me.  There were 2 other students there, one of whom made a lampshade with grasses, and the other made a cushion with flowers and seed heads.  Lara was really keen that we had a finished product to take home so spent extra time with us showing us how to make up our lampshades and cushion.

Here is Tash’s lampshade being tested with a lamp.


And here’s mine, in pride of place on the sideboard in my hall. I am so thrilled with it!  I think it is the best thing I have ever made!  I absolutely love it, and have to keep looking at it!!


Tash and I can’t wait to go back for another go!  We are looking forward to when Burnice can sew again to take her.

Sunday, 13 November 2016

Silk Screen Printing

A few weeks ago, I went with my crafty friends Burnice and Tash to a silk screen printing course in Brighton.


The course was held in a shop called MADE – Make, Art, Drink, Eat.  At street level it is a very nice cafe and gallery, but go downstairs to the basement and there you will find classrooms for all sorts of art and crafts!

Have you ever done silk screen printing?  I hadn’t and had no idea what it entailed! 

First we drew our design on paper, being careful not to make it too small or draw a shape within a shape, such as an ‘O’.

Next we cut out the design with a scalpel.  Here’s mine.  It is supposed to be grasses and seed heads, but I think I took her advice not to make it too small too literally and made the cut out bits too big!  I think it looks like fireworks now.


Then came the fun bit!  Place the fabric down on plenty of paper, then the stencil, then the silk screen.  Pour some paint on at the top of the screen, and draw it down over the screen with a window wiper.  Great fun!

Here’s Burnice doing her pink heart.


And mine as I lifted up the screen and stencil.


Tash did a chicken.


We decorated a tea towel and a linen bag.


Tuesday, 25 October 2016

My (not so) new Craft Room

I’ve been meaning to show you my new craft room all year!  We decorated and bought the furniture back in the Spring, and I even took photos back then.  Anyway, without further ado, here it is.

It’s nearly 2 years since our son moved out to live in his own flat, so of course I purloined his room as my craft room!  It is so nice not to have the dining room cluttered.  It is easy to clear up now if someone is coming for dinner.  Here’s what the dining room used to look like, with craft stuff piled up in all 4 corners of the room:

I still sew on the dining room table, but most of my craft stuff is now upstairs, either in my craft room or on the big Ikea unit on the landing.
We decorated the spare room , after having some plastering done on the chimney breast wall. We painted the walls white, and bought white furniture from Ikea.
Here’s my work desk, joined on to 2 4x2 Kallax units.  I am not sure that I really have them organised the best for scrapbooking, but it is nice having everything within reach!  The first column of cubbies house my Etsy shop patterns and other goods for sale.  The curtains are from Next.
 Going around the room, this is the chimney breast wall with a small wardrobe from Ikea which houses my out of season dresses and my dressmaking fabric stash.  The table is our old kitchen table, with cardboard drawers which hold cardstock and paper scraps.  Underneath the table are the vintage patterns I have yet to upload to my Etsy shop.

The gorgeous picture on the wall is from an Etsy shop.  My daughter bought it for me for Christmas.  (Sorry I can’t find the link to the actual shop now)

In the corner recess I have shelves for books and sewing patterns, and my chrome trolley.  You will laugh, when I tell you that when I bought this trolley, this was all the scrapbook stash I had, and intended to have for the future!

Further round (so behind me when I sit at my desk, are the plastic drawers from the dining room, and shelves above.  I sorted my large collection of old (I hesitate to call them vintage!) buttons into colours for display on the top shelf.  I intended this worktop to be where I used my cricut machine and bind-it-all etc, but I really haven’t used them since I moved up here.

I hope you’ve enjoyed a tour around my room!  I love sitting up there doing my scrapbooking.  I will be back soon to show what I have been scrapbooking lately.

Sorry about the formatting, live writer and blogger are really not playing ball this morning!