Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Trying new techniques and good intentions...

I am such a bad blogger! The good intentions are always there but life seems to get in the way, I think I will just accept that I am not one of these wonder women I admire so much who manage to juggle a zillion things at once, and blog as and when I can, there...that feels better :-)

I have been having a very crafty time otherwise, which I must admit is preferable to sitting at the PC, so much of selling online involves the old promote, promote, promote dedication that learning new crafts and skills goes to the bottom of the list of things to do sometimes.
I've carried on experimenting with cards and new painting and embossing techniques. Here are a few examples: 
I also love the large fancy tags that are so popular now and have been making and selling quite a few of these. I would like some more stamps and some more grunge board to be able to expand all the ideas I have so must just learn a bit of patience...very difficult when you want to get on and create something isn't it?

I hope you like what I've been up to, many more bits to show you, I have been very busy on the jewellery front too, so will enjoy sharing that with you, hopefully a little sooner than 3 months time lol!!

I've intentionally not attached a shop link to the photo's as this blog is purely a chat about crafts, if anyone would like a browse the link to my Folksy shop is on the front page, many thanks for dropping by xxx

Monday, 15 August 2011

Glass and Willow...

Hi all, where did those few days go?! 

I was musing today, I do that a lot, about various crafts and skills that I admire, and crafts that I really admire but know that I wouldn't be able to do in a million years!

I suppose top of the list is glass, I absolutely love glass, I have a special interest ever since we visited Paris years ago and spent all our holiday money on a piece of art glass we found in a gallery there. When it comes to brands Kosta Boda has to be one of the most well known, although now they are a multi million pound empire, they have some fantastic designers producing limited collection art glass, I though these were fabulous:
Ludvig Lofgren    'At The beach'
Ernst Billgren 'Birds in a Nest'
Kjell Engman
Sometimes I look at hugely talented crafts people and wonder what I'm doing in my little corner of the craft world crafting away in my Hobbit like den, however there have to be superstars in all walks of life for us to aspire to, although I don't aspire to be a designer for Kosta Boda, I can nevertheless gain inspiration from the beautiful works of art they produce.

You could say from the sublime to the ridiculous I  would love to learn to weave using Somerset willow, this is my area geographically so not far for me to go on a day course, so it's definitely on the list of achievable crafts to learn. My partner was born and brought up in the Somerset Levels, a wetland area in central Somerset where willow has been cut and used since man first settled in the area, I'm from North Somerset so it seems right that I should learn this ancient skill. You may have seen or heard of The Willow Man, a statue in celebration of willow by Serena de la Hey, it's situated near Bridgwater, Somerset
As far as products go, I know the shops are full of very pretty basket ware which is very popular now, especially in bathrooms and for storage of all types. However as with a lot of things, it's mostly imported, UK grown and crafted basket ware is fantastic, and has a smell all of its own, not one of preservative or whatever these cheaper baskets smell of - I personally would rather have one hand crafted Somerset basket than 4 from China. No, I'm not working on behalf of the Somerset Willow Trade, I'm just temporarily on my support local crafts people soapbox! ;-)
Somerset Levels, home of Willow growing for centuries

I remember having written this that I've blogged about willow a year or so ago, however it's worth repeating I think. I'm very interested in traditional crafts as I'm sure a lot of you are. If you would like to read more, here is a link to The Heritage Crafts Association.

Thank you for putting up with my ramblings, a bit random this week... from Kosta Boda to Willow weaving down the road but hey, life's like that isn't it?, you start off on one path and veer off onto another :-)   Di x

Friday, 12 August 2011

So Excited...

I have been in a state of heady excitement ever since my mother and I spent the afternoon going through a very aged and gorgeous leather suitcase jam packed with old family photographs. the case belongs to my Mothers brother who lives in Kenya and is sadly unlikely to return to this country due to ill health so he has given this suitcase to Mum, as she has been storing it for the past 40 years for him.

It is an absolute treasure trove of finds, of which I'll share a few here and more when I've had chance to scan them. They are all family, these are Great Great Grandmother and Great Great Aunts, they all look very posh, I believe the family was wealthy back then but something went wrong by the time it came to me! Here are a few of them, aren't they lovely ladies?

I'm wondering if I could use them in my crafts without offending them, that sounds ridiculous I know but they look like such 'ladies' I'm sure they would look down their noses at 'trade' and the thought of them being on the front of a card would probably have them spinning!

Anyone have any ideas what use I can make of these gorgeous photographs, we will obviously make a lovely album from them, maybe that should be enough and I should honour what I imagine their thoughts on the matter would have been!

Hope you enjoyed them, I'll have to post some more soon, including ones of the servants, now that would have been me!

Thanks for reading, bye for now

Wednesday, 10 August 2011

Vintage Cards and Distressing...

Well, best intentions and all that, I meant to blog at least once a week but don't know where the last month or so has gone. I'll try a new resolution to blog more often and see how we go :-)

I have been busy mostly with Card making and Jewellery using semi precious gemstones. I've decided these to use whenever possible becuase I love the feel and the 'naturalness' if there is such a word, of them.

Right... cards, I treated myself to some new Tim Holtz inks and stamps, and have been having an experimental time. These are a few of the cards I came up with using mostly Ranger products, and no, I'm not on comission but don't mind saying if I find a product is good!

These were the first ones I did with the new 'stuff'. I love vintage and these came close to what I was trying to achieve. The pictures I already had on some old sheets, and the backing papers, which I stamped over a bit and used distress inks on the edges. I cut out all the shapes on the trusty Cricut and again used distess inks and Perfect Pearls on both to highlight. the photo's don't show it but using the Pearls on the acual picture gave a really nice aged look.
These are the two I did yesterday:

I love the Vintage travel theme, I think I was born in the wrong era, I would loved to have got all dressed up and set off with my entourage for Egypt or somewhere exotic. Knowing me I'd have been carrying the cases though! Again, on these I used distress inks, Tim Holtz stamps and Perfect Pearls to get the effects I wanted. they may be a bit 'too busy' for some but sometimes I don't know when to stop. Anyway I was happy with the final effect but will enjoy continuing to experiment!

I also made a few sets of gift tags just because the fancy took me. I used some older stamps I have this time, as well as some of the fancy stamps from Tim Holtz Christmas set (last years), again I used distress inks and lots of Perfect pearls to get some shimmer, loving the shimmer! I also used Glossy Accents for texture and alcohol inks to highlight.

 The actual tags again I cut out on the Cricut, I also used the paper distresser to rough up the edges a little. Thanks for dropping in - I'd love to hear your comments if you have time to leave one, even if it's just to say hi! Will be back again soon, I won't be leaving it so long next time! x

Tuesday, 28 June 2011

It's so good to be back

Hi all,

After such a long time not blogging it feels good to be back and getting back to normality, well as normal as I ever get. I finally managed to get the trusty sewing machine out a couple of weeks ago, it didn't mind the rest as she started first time ;-) She is a brother machine I bought in 1985 for a lot of money then and I don't have the heart to replace her, anyway a trip to a fabric store saw me with some gorgeous new fabrics and time to play. I hadn't realised how much I missed sewing until I got back to it, these are some of the items that I made last week and have lots of ideas for this week too.
Also managed to get my Folksy shop back up and running, Facebook and Twitter came next - where did I find the time?! I shall have to keep a checklist of what to do, I don't know how you all do it? Which does anyone prefer, I like FB for looking and keeping up with everyone's lovely new stuff, Twitter is much more interactive although I'm still pretty novice at it, I'm also a bit a a forumaholic for all my interests - blimey however did we manage before the internet!?  What's your favourite? Great to be back, I'll be off now to find new blogs to follow and see what you've all been up to. xxx

Friday, 21 January 2011

Time Flies!

Well, where did that time go?! I am still not back to crafting awaiting a shoulder op which is very frustrating as I want to get on with things. However I'm keeping myself busy getting inspiration for new things to make and wondering how I can justify a new sewing machine when I'm not even using one! I was reading Pants and Paper's blog today and see she has a great giveaway, here's the link if you want to enter, I just love that little dog brooch.
Pants & Paper Giveaway . Talking of dogs, there's no time to be moping here with our little Kray Twins up to mischief all the time. As a change to a crafting photo, here's Dex and Louis meeting a Giant Schnazer, they can't quite work out why he's so big!

Monday, 29 November 2010

Christmas Wreaths

Well, some spare time today saw me making some Christmas Wreaths so thought I'd share with you. They are so simple to make with some festive ribbon and a little imagination. These are for my niece who has a gorgeous flat and plans a very traditional themed Christmas so I hope these fit in. More planned later this week so watch this space!

I've also been making some pretty coaster sets courtesy of Martha Stewart. I've been making them all Summer out of pretty vintage cottons and now have made some with some great Moda Christmas fabics. I thought you might like the tutorial to make a great little Christmas gift.

Have lots more planned in the next week or so, the weather looks like it's goning to be good for Crafting!