Friday, 30 April 2010

Folksy Friday - Holiday Items!

Wow, I can't believe it's Folksy Friday again, where I get to browse through some of the so talented Folksters shop and select some items to show you. This week I've chosen items with Holidays in mind, as it's that time of year. Just looking through these items made me forget it is actually raining outside at the moment! Anyway these are my choices for this week:

First I chose 'Bodkin & Bead's' pretty travel wallet, perfect to keep all your important pieces of paper together. Next this summery bag from 'Penny Fancy Bags', followed by this clever perfume stick by 'Artisan Curiosities', what a clever idea! I love this passport holder by 'Beautiful Things', and the Foot Thong by 'Gimme That Thing' screams summer holidays to me. Finally I thought this lovely shrug by 'Pigeon Stitch' is the perfect item to wear on a hot summer evening somewhere exotic. I hope you enjoy looking, click on any of the photo's to visit the Crafter's shop. Have a lovely Friday!

Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Sunny Days and Photo's

Hi all, what fantastic sunshine today! I hope you are all enjoying the same. I have been out and about with my camera recently and would like to share a few summer photo's I've taken. I'm always on the look out for subjects I can possibly use for cards, and have had some success with my own photo's as card toppers. I am no David Bailey by any means but as a complete ameteur armed with my trusty Canon Sureshot I enjoy it. I use The Gimp photo editor which is a free download, Personally I find it more User Friendly than Photoshop which used to crash my PC regularly...I'm sure Disciples of Photoshop will want to shoot me down in flames but The Gimp suits me well. I usually just crop whatever section of the photo I require and then adjust the lighting and use the 'unsharp' mask if a bit more definition is needed. There are lots of filters to play around with if you like, and you can create some very 'arty' effects if that is your taste. For these photo's I was just trying to capture a feeling of Summer and with some I may have succeeded, I'd love your I say I am a complete novice so I know these are not Professional standard! I'll see what I can come up with on the card front using some of these...couldn't you just eat this Devon Cream Tea right now by the way!!!

Sunday, 25 April 2010

Medieval Crafts and Guilds

I love history, especially Medieval and have been reading all about the Medieval Crafts Guilds. The word “guild” is from the Saxon “gilden” meaning "to pay" and refers to the subscription paid to the Guilds by their members. Association to a Guild gave you a higher social status too, members included: Candlemakers, Apothecaries, Cobblers, Bakers, Tanners, Cloth Makers, Painters and more. No one could practice their craft without belonging to their appropriate Craft Guild, and strict rules of membership had to be followed.
(Medieval cloth)
It was hard to become a Guild member in the first place, with three stages to go through: 'Apprenticeship' which lasted between 5-9 years, 'Journeyman' - a paid craftsperson who would during this period create his Masterpiece to present to the Craft Guild as evidence of his skill. Eventually a craftsman aimed to be a 'Master' when he could then set up his own shop and train his own apprentices. What would you be if we were suddenly transported back? I'd love to hear your comments...
Medieval Societies and Medieval Fairs are very popular in this country as well as the rest of the world, and are held all over the country during the summer months. The picture below will take you to the Time Travel Britain site which has more information. Meanwhile back to 21st Century crafting and I have cushions to make...speak soon x

Thursday, 22 April 2010

It's Folksy Friday!

This week I've chosen the garden as my inspiration for Folksy Friday. A click on the photo will take you to the particular Crafter's shop on Folksy. There are some great ideas for gifts here:

Featured today are 'Gimme That Thing's' plant labels, Insect House by 'The Birds and the Bees', 'Diggi's' hand turned Garden Dibber, 'Firwel Craft's' wonderful Hare, JML Pottery's Bird Feeder and finally Kate Broughton's fun Seed Card. Enjoy rummaging around their shops!

The 'Rose' Range

Hi all, what a beautiful day again, we just need it to last for the weekend. I'm going to a tulip festival at Dyrham Park, a National Trust propery just outside of Bath so we need the sun!
The only problem is this lovely weather has got the weeds growing like mad in the garden, I know a weed is only a plant in the wrong place but it's dandelion city here. I'm planning a gardening themed Folksy Friday tomorrow to get me in the mood to get out there and do some.
I have been a busy, busy bee sewing this week and completed a trio of items in the 'Rose' range. A cushion, a fabric heart and a dressing table tidy. I've already sold 4 items so have been to my favourite fabric shop today to stock up. Oh the goodies in there, I was like a kid in a sweet, I was like me in a sweet shop! See you tomorrow for Folksy Friday!!!

Tuesday, 20 April 2010

I won!

I had to post and say a big big thank you to Zoe at The Jewel Box who ran a blog giveaway which I was luck enough to win! Today I received the prettiest necklace, see photo below, the photo doesn't do it full justice as it is so delicate and the colours are lovely. Of course this means I shall need a whole new outfir ot match it! If you click on the photo this will take you to The Jewel Box blog, thanks again Zoe.

Sunday, 18 April 2010

The Heritage Crafts Association

Hi all, I hope you've been enjoying a beautiful sunny Sunday! I came in when it got a bit warm for me and started reading about The Heritage Crafts Association, having been pointed in their direction via The Craft Forum. The Heritage Crafts Association is a campaign to raise the profile of traditional skills and support those in danger of being lost. They say:

'There are crafts that form part of our cultural heritage which are in real danger of dying out. The skills and techniques required are known by only a few, in some cases only one, as craftspeople become older and retire from their work, and there is no-one coming into the craft to take their place.
The Heritage Crafts Association firmly believes in the importance of these crafts as a fundamental part of our living heritage.'

I have added a button to take you to their site which is located just below the friends box on the right, under case studies there are some fascinating cases including British clog maker Jeremy Atkinson, if you have a blog or FB page please consider promoting this worthwhile cause by including a button on you blog!

The above photo should take you to the Case Studies page if you fancy an interesting read. Have a great evening all, Di x

Friday, 16 April 2010

Folksy Friday!

Hooray - it's Folksy Friday!! This is my chance to have a good old rummage around the fantastic range of Folksy shops for my picks of the week. As I've spent most evenings this week sewing and patchworking I decided to use this theme. I was amazed at the range of patchwork items for sale on Folksy. I chose Quliting Demon's patchwork purse set as I thought what a brilliant idea as a gift for a crafty person! Lynwood Crafts brooch was just so pretty and very current, Bubs Bear's patchwork teddy is just adorable and Love from Debs cushion covers are so delicate and took a lot of work. Handmade from the Heart's pretty box is another superb present idea and finally Diomo Glass's patchwork lightshade, just so funky and great colours to match any room. Click on any picture to visit the Craftperson's shop, enjoy!! Di x

quilting demon  Lynwood Crafts
Bubs Bears love from beth
handmade from the heart Diomo Glass

Wednesday, 14 April 2010

Local Independant Craft shops

Hello all, had a lovely time today rummaging around my local fabric/craft shop. The range of fabrics was fantastic - they also sell 101 things everyone needs from jewellery findings to googly eyes! This is a small independent and luckily is well supported as they could struggle having bigger craft chains in Bristol - support your local shops I say!! I remember buying material in there to make my school summer dresses so it has some history too. I could have spent a fortune, as it was I bought a fat square of pretty blue fabric, some buttons and some lace! I came straight home and made another heart for the collection, I had to use the bits I'd bought and this was the result:

This heart is also fragranced and has a lovely fresh citrus scent.
I must give up on the hearts now - I have lots of other items in mind to make - watch this space! Have a good day tomorrow all and hope the sun shines for you! Di x 

Tuesday, 13 April 2010

Beautiful Beer

Hi all, hope the week is being kind to you. I got back from beautiful Beer yesterday, what a fabulous place! It was so unspoiled and traditional - no arcades, no tacky shops, just quaint streets with real crafty shops with lots of hand made gifts on offer. The weather was just brilliant for us, we were so lucky and spent most of our time around the beach:
It's a pebble beach which was pretty painful on the feet, however this was more than made up for by the fantastic ice cream on sale! The water was unbelievably clear although freezing of course so we weren't tempted to swim but managed a paddle! I took some nice macro photo's of the pebbles which I'm hoping to make into some cards if I can come up with the right idea for them:

I could have sat all day sorting through the stones, I did manage to find one pebble with a hole which of course is lucky but it was far too big to bring home, plus of course it is now illegal to take beach pebbles...beware the Pebble Police will be after you should you try!
Back to some crafting tomorrow, enjoy the rest of the week everyone! Di x

Thursday, 8 April 2010

Sweet Hearts

Hi all, hope you're all enjoying the sunshine as we are - it's glorious! I'm off to Beer in Devon until Tuesday so fingers crossed the weather stays like this.
I hope some of you managed a little go at Macrame! I asked the Folksters about it and a lot had done it in the past but it seems to be making a comeback, especially this summer in the form of belts and accessories - maybe I'll be ahead of the trend for once.
I made this sweet heart on Sunday and sent one out in the post the next day so hope they will prove popular. I found a box of 'Love Beads' which I had left over from the seventies believe it or not, so have sewn some of them onto it! I've a few more sewing projects to get underway so I'll start in earnest when I get back next week.
Hope the weekend is a fab one for all of you, I love the sea so will hopefully come back inspired to make lots. Di x

Monday, 5 April 2010

Macrame video

I am a Numpty - I completely forgot to add this video link to a You Tube tutorial on Macrame - this shows the first basic square knot, and how simple it is, give it a know you want to!


Hi all, I hope a good Easter has been had by all and lots of chocolate eaten! We had a mini Craft Club meeting on Saturday where I taught the others the basics of Macrame. Everyone picked it up, we are now deciding what projects to attempt - I'm all for 'bring back the 70's macrame covered wine bottles and plant holders'!!! We'll probably go for something a little more current like beaded bracelets but watch this space!
Following on from last weeks heart theme this is the lilac heart I made today and put onto Folksy. I made lots for friends and family instead of Easter eggs and they seemed to be well received so hope you like. Hearts are a big theme at the the moment in all sorts of home decorations, I remember making these back in the 70's dare I say, then it was all bright oranges and browns though!!! Enjoy the rest of your day, time for more Easter eggs for me - they do go off you know ;-)  Di x

Friday, 2 April 2010

Folksy Friday - Hearts

Hi all, hope you're enjoing Good Friday despite the awful weather! Well here goes, hopefully my Folksy Friday will work - having spent the week making fabric hearts I've stuck with the Hearts theme, all from favourite shops I have saved, I think all these items are lovely and I'd be over the moon with any of them as a pressie! Hope you enjoy! Dix