Wednesday, 17 January 2018

October, November & December in Pictures

Time to catch up with what I got up to in the final quarter of 2017!

In October...

... I ummed and ahhhed about what colour to use for the quilting thread and binding for my scrappy quilt. I started this project in my teens, finished the quilt top a few years ago and have now promised to (finally) turn it into a quilt as a gift for my mum. But what colour(s) should I use to finish it?? I still can't decide.


... I had a studio clear out, listing a whole bunch of craft supplies and other bits and bobs over on Instagram. I quite enjoy these sales, they remind me of the days when I used to sell craft supplies in my shop and the sometimes-tediuous but often quite soothing process of photographing, measuring, weighing, listing, packing and posting.

https://www.instagram.com/lauralupinsells/

... I took a quick trip to Burnham-on-Sea, walked along the esplanade, ate some delicious chips, and fell in love with a wall (isn't it a fabulous wall?).

http://bugsandfishes.blogspot.co.uk/2017/10/a-quick-trip-to-burnham-on-sea.html

... I blogged about the dolls clothes I've inherited which were handmade by my grandmother, and October's kitty-themed addition to the A Year of Wreaths tutorial series.  

http://bugsandfishes.blogspot.co.uk/2017/10/handmade-dolls-clothes-clothes.html
http://bugsandfishes.blogspot.co.uk/2017/10/a-year-of-wreaths-october-cosy-cat-felt.html

... and I won a fabulous stationery bundle from Roger La Borde!

https://www.instagram.com/rogerlaborde/

In November...

... My first two faux leather craft projects were published on The Village Haberdashery's blog: tutorials for making a star headband and a mini notebook.


... I unpicked a section of my mini squares blanket (that sticky-outy dark red block just didn't look right!) which took ages but was totally worth it.


... I stitched a custom order of snow globe ornaments, which then proceeded to get lost in the post for months (argh) but finally turned up (phew!). (If you want to sew your own snow globes, you'll find the free pattern here).

http://bugsandfishes.blogspot.co.uk/2013/12/how-to-felt-snow-globe-ornament.html

... I finally found a use for these paper snowflakes which had been in my craft stash for almost a decade (because they were just too nice to throw away after the Christmas I made them), using them to decorate an Advent "calendar" of small gifts for my parents.


... I gave myself a slightly lopsided DIY haircut (all my haircuts are DIY haircuts, some more lopsided than others!)
 

... and I also started blogging about my trip to Liverpool, shared a tutorial for making a novelty Christmas jumper, and finally started a weekly email newsletter after literally years of thinking that I should probably get round to starting a weekly email newsletter.

Then in December...

... I blogged about my Holly Wreath tutorial and lots of DIY Christmas card ideas, and shared a gorgeous tutorial for making leafy paper snowflakes.

... I wrote about the lovely treats I got from the dotcomgiftshop for being a terrible blogger (it's a long story).

https://www.instagram.com/p/BcwRkwVDpIf/

... I posted an old behing-the-scenes pic which I don't think I'd posted before, of the "making a mess designing things" stage of making this doll.


... I made lots more mess working on a secret project (there's a desk under there somewhere!).


... and I shared the weirdest thing I achieved in 2017: writing a very silly joke about losing a sewing needle which ended up going slightly viral on Tumblr!

http://leonardslee.tumblr.com/post/164930472506

Finally, I ended 2017 working on something very colourful and very relaxing: adding a few more blocks of colour to my ongoing using-up-my-leftover-scrappy-threads cross stitch project.


Quite delightfully, this snap ended up becoming my most popular photo of 2017 (albeit not actually in 2017 itself) as it got shared on January 1st by mega craft blog A Beautiful Mess... which was a very fun and really rather exciting way to start a brand new year.

Here's to another twelve months of colourful, crafty goodness!


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Monday, 15 January 2018

Tutorial: Use Leftover Yarn Ends to Make Colourful Stripey Cards!

If you knit or crochet, you probably end up with lots of scrappy bits of yarn left over at the end of each project. It feels kind of wrong just throwing them away (especially if they're lovely colours)... but what do you do with them?

Today I'm sharing one idea for using them up: making stripey notecards!

 Notecard decorated with yarn stripes

These cards are easy to make and I think they look rather fabulous. The yarn stripes are simple but textured, and you could have lots of fun choosing colour combinations for each card.

You will need:

- Blank card (I chose black, but any colour will do), cut and folded to the size you want (I made an A6 size card, folded from a piece of A5 card)
- Yarn, in assorted colours
- A ruler
- A pencil
- Sewing scissors
- A large, sharp sewing needle
- Optional: a pencil eraser

Handmade card decorated with lines of yarn

To make each card:

1. Select some yarn in a colour palette you like. Each piece should be at least 20cm long.

2. Open up your blank card, and use a ruler and pencil to draw two horizontal lines on the inside of what will become the front of your card. One line an inch (2.5cm) from the top of the card, and the second an inch (2.5cm) from the bottom.

3. Use the ruler to measure the central point of each line, marking it with a small pencil dash. Then mark seven dashes either side of these central points, each 5mm apart. You should now have 15 points marked along each line.

4. Use a large, sharp needle to poke a hole through the card at each one of the points you've marked. Place the card on a pile of scrap paper to protect your workspace as you poke the needle through!

If you want, you can now erase the pencil lines. 

5. Choose your first piece of yarn, and thread the large needle with it. Pass the yarn up through one of the holes at the bottom of the card and then down through the corresponding hole at the top of the card. Leave the yarn ends dangling (they should stay in place due to the small size of the holes), then repeat this step to add all the yarn stripes.

6. Knot the yarn ends together to secure the stripes, and carefully trim any excess yarn. You could add a piece of tape to cover the ends but I quite like how mine look!

Knots on the inside of the card to secure the yarn

And that's it! Your card should now look something like this:

Minimal modern card decorated with leftover yarn

For lots more DIY card ideas and other free crafty projects, visit my tutorial archive.

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Friday, 12 January 2018

A Year of Wreaths: 12 Free Seasonal Wreath Tutorials

Now that my year of wreath tutorials for The Village Haberdashery has come to an end, I thought it would be good to do a quick round-up post with links to all the projects...

DIY Wreaths for Spring, Summer, Autumn & Winter

This is a nice excuse for me to look back at them all, and will be a handy way for you guys to easily find the wreath tutorials you want to make - just bookmark this page!


January: Felt Rainbow Wreath.

Rainbow Welcome Wreath


February: Valentine's Heart Wreath.

Valentine's Heart Wreath


March: Daffodils & Narcissi Wreath.

Felt Daffodils Wreath


April: Felt Flowers Wreath.

Spring Felt Flowers Wreath


May: Felt Foxgloves Wreath.

Felt Foxgloves Wreath


June: Felt Butterflies Wreath.

Felt Butterflies Wreath


July: Felt Pinwheels Wreath.

Summer Felt Pinwheels Wreath


August: OMG Ice Cream Wreath.

Felt Ice Cream Emoji Wreath


September: Embroidered Oak Leaves Wreath.

Embroidered Oak Leaves Autumn Wreath


October: Cosy Cat Wreath.

Cute Felt Cat Wreath


November: Felt Holly Wreath.

Felt Holly Wreath


December: Embroidered Snowflakes Wreath.

Embroidered Snowflake Wreath

Which one's your favourite?

Follow the links to find all the free step by step tutorials and template sheets over on The Village Haberdashery's blog. 

Wednesday, 10 January 2018

Embroidered Snowflakes Wreath Tutorial

Time for the final tutorial in my Year of Wreaths series: a sparkly snowflake wreath!

Yarn Wrapped Wreath with Embroidered Snowflakes

This one's a bit late (sorry!) but snowflakes are definitely for the whole of winter and not just Christmas, right?? I hope you'll agree it was worth the wait because I love how this final project turned out.

The wreath is decorated with navy blue yarn, metallic silver thread, sparkly beads and sequins, and five embroidered snowflakes.

Embroidered Felt Snowflakes

You could also use the snowflake embroidery patterns to make felt snowflake brooches or ornaments, or to add some snowy charm to other sewing projects.

Sparkly Winter Snowflake Wreath

You'll find the free step by step snowflake wreath tutorial and the snowflake embroidery patterns over on The Village Haberdashery's blog.

Click here to buy the snowflake wreath kit, or follow the links in the tutorial to find all the individual supplies you'll need in The Village Haberdashery shop.

Click here to find all 12 wreath tutorials in the series.