Friday, 31 December 2010

Folding Up 2010 & 12 Days of Turkey

 Folding Up the Year!
Sunday 2nd Jan message Will announce the winner of the blog candy later today when I get home..... watch this space!
I thought I'd end the year with the card I recently made for my SonIL's 40th birthday. It's a different take on the larger four fold cards I have posted a short while ago but this one doesn't have the corners cut out, they are just slit, folded back and to close they just interlock..... as you can see in this closed view below. 
Inside views
It is made from an 8x8inch square of  card. All sides folded to the centre, slits cut as shown, then flaps folded inwards. Quite simple but it looks impressively complicated!

I came across this parody of the 12 days of Christmas song in my computer files. It makes me chuckle so what better way to end a year of problems than with a smile. I'm looking forward to changes next year and being positive that we won't have so many negatives in our lives in 2011. 
Happy 2011 to everyone! (and I hope you've finished your turkey!)

On the 1st day of Christmas, my true love said to me
"I'm glad we've bought a turkey and a proper Christmas tree"

On the 2nd day of Christmas, much laughter could be heard
as we tucked into our turkey, a most delicious bird.

On the 3rd day of Christmas, we'd friends in from next door
And the turkey tasted just as good as on the day before.

On the 4th day of Christmas, me Nan came round (she's old)
So we finished up the Christmas pud and had the turkey cold.

On the 5th day of Christmas, outside the snowflakes flurried 
But we were nice and warm inside 'cos we'd had turkey curried.

On the 6th day of Christmas, the turkey spirit died,
The children fought and bickered and we had the turkey fried.

On the 7th day of Christmas my true love gave a wince
As we sat down to our dinner and were given turkey mince.

On the 8th day of Christmas, the dog ran off for shelter
So I served up turkey pancakes and a glass of Alka Seltzer.

On the 9th day of Christmas, poor Dad began to cry.
He said "I couldn't stand the strain of eating turkey pie"

On the 10th day of Christmas, the air was getting blue
As everybody grumbled at eating turkey stew.

On the 11th day of Christmas, the Christmas tree was moulting,
The mince pies were as hard as rock and the turkey quite revolting.

But on the 12th day of Christmas at last Dad smacked his lips...
The guests had gone, the turkey too.... so we all had fish and chips!
Don't forget... still time for followers to enter for my Surprise Blog Candy. Just leave a comment and you'll have a chance! 
Check out all the generous offers from other bloggers  on my side bar too!

Tuesday, 28 December 2010

WOYWW 82 & Blog Candy

Not too much to show on my temporary desk, still decamped to the spare bedroom, but I'm getting back to a little card making and paper crafting instead of all the sewing I've been doing of late, mainly to keep my mind off all that has been happening. I'll have to vacate the room tomorrow as my DD1, her fella and the other two of my lovely grandees( not the little one in Germany who has been ill !!) will be travelling up North to visit from the South Coast for New Year... weather and health permitting as they are all full of colds and coughs!!!
I'm in the middle of making a few general birthday cards to have in stock and I'm using up some spare stamped images. On the right you'll see the covers I made for my little grandees floor cushions. There is yet another HangAbout fabric bucket in a Cath Kidson fabric lurking there......BTW instructions for making them are in yesterday's post.
Hop over to Stamping Ground, the blog of our world famous inspiring leader, Julia, who started all this and you will be able to spy on the work desks of over 100 ardent crafters from all over the globe.
BLOG CANDY Still time to enter!
Don't forget, if you are a follower and add a comment you will be entered for my surprise blog candy and I'd be really extra pleased if you add it to your sidebar. If you like the HangAbout fabric buckets there will be a chance to win one in the blog candy,made by my own little mitts, filled with allsorts of yummy crafty goodies, as a thanks to everyone for a year of blogging, friendship, fun and inspiration.

Last but not least, I must give thanks to everyone who sent such lovely caring messages and prayed for the recovery of my little grandee who has been so ill. I was really touched and it all helped so much. I'm so pleased to tell you that she came out of intensive care on Christmas Eve, which was almost the best gift we could receive. Even better is the news that she went home today. Her lovely parents have gone through so much since the week before Christmas but we are blessed that it has all turned out well at last. Our Christmas plans had to be cancelled but there will be other Christmases and other chances to visit each other but the main thing is that the precious little one is getting well again.

Stay warm and well and have a Very Happy 2011

HangAbouts Instructions

I've had requests for instructions on how to make these handy HangAbouts... (that's what I decided to call them from all the suggested names) Can't recall who came up with it but thank you and I think it is so apt! I'll do my best to explain as simply and clearly as I can.
Here's the finished article.....with a pocket inside this one.
Here's what you will need to make a HangAbout......
Patterned cotton fabric, contrasting or toning cotton lining, medium weight iron on Vylene interlining. Non slip mesh (I get a roll from the £1 shops) Machinable boning, (I paid 40p a metre for mine). Sand or gravel to weight the pad. I bought children's play sand from a supermarket for a couple of pounds for a big bag so this is clean. Beach or builders sand has too much salt in it which will absorb moisture and become damp.
Cut 3 x 15 cm round shapes, 1 from the patterned fabric, 1 from the lining and 1 from the Vylene.
Cut 3 x rectangles 45 cms x 19 cms, 1 from the patterned fabric, 1 from the lining and one from the Vylene
Iron the Vylene to the patterned fabric then sew up the 19 cm side seam. (NB: If you want an inside pocket sew this in before sewing the side seam)
Iron the Vylene round piece to the patterned one then sandwich together with the lining and zig zag stitch round the edge.
Sew the round base into the bottom edge of the bucket as shown in the photo below.
To give support to the top edge sew the boning to the inside top edge using a zig zag stitch as photos below.
Turn down the lining
Sew bottom edge of lining to round base with a zig zag stitch.
Turn bucket to right side out 
To make the non slip pad. 
First make two straps approx 3 cms x 15 cms when finished. Finish off one end of these straps. These will attach the pad to the bucket and can be patterned or plain to suit your colour scheme.
Cut  a 14cm square of patterned fabric, 1 of lining and i of non slip mesh. 
Lay down the lining square, then the mesh, then the two straps lying across the square with the unfinished ends to the edge of the square, then the patterned fabric FACE DOWN. Machine round 3 sides trapping in the ends of the straps .
Turn right side out as in photo below.
The mesh will be on the bottom side.
Make a rough cotton bag to fit inside the pad and part fill with sand, seaming with a small stitch size so sand does not leak out. Insert this into the pad and stitch up the end. 
Attach the pad via the straps with buttons and Voila! Simples! You've made it!
I've made over a dozen in the last few days over Christmas to keep myself busy and it looks like I'll be making more as so many friends want a HangAbout!. There will be one in my Blog Candy so add a comment if you'd like the chance to win one filled with goodies.
Hope I've explained this clearly enough but if there are any queries please shout and I will try to help.
Full details posted Tuesday Dec 21st!

Friday, 24 December 2010

Happy Christmas

Here's wishing you all a Wonderful Happy Christmas.
 Sincere thanks to all my followers and anyone who pops in here and thanks too for all the inspiration I have gained from all the  amazing blogs I have visited over this last year. 
I think I am a rarity as I only made two cards this year so this is a cheat as it is one of my old samples from a challenge I entered a couple of years ago but I just had to post you a card. 
Thanks so much for all your concern and prayers for my lovely little grandee in Germany who is at last out of intensive care. Father Christmas paid her a special visit today in her room in hospital! It is the best Christmas gift in the world for me to know she is at last getting well again.
Just wanted to share again the fab watercolour Doone painted for me of my three grandees as mermaids. I've coloured a metal frame with Alcohol Inks to compliment the colours in the painting and I love it! Thanks again to Doone a talented artist and I'm honoured to own one of her pieces of art, created specially for me.
Don't miss out on my surprise Christmas box of blog candy to be drawn 1.1.11
If you are a follower, just leave a comment mentioning the candy in any post until then for a chance to win and if you add it to your sidebar I'd be so happy!

Tuesday, 21 December 2010

WOYWW81 & Blog Candy

Don't miss the blog candy at the end of this post!
I didn't have a pattern for these handy little hanging fabric bitty buckets so I've been playing around trying to make the perfect example. I think the red tartan one is about right in depth and size. I'd love a quirky name/title for them so if anyone has an idea then give me a shout.( So far we have... Utensilos, Bitty Bins or Tidy Tubs and later additions......Junk Buckets,HangAbouts, Totables, Hang it All, Tidy Totes, JoZartyTubs and ???? any more?) I love the way they grip onto any surface and hang there waiting to be filled. They'll hold the TV zappers, pens, post its and sweeties or your scissors and crafty bits and bobs. Also useful as a mini waste paper bin when trimming in front of TV.
I still have some of the above fabrics left over and I especially love the Clarice Cliff Bizarre panels on the first one above.
I've sorted out quite a few small length of fabrics from my quilting stash to make more of these pots and think I'll add one to the blog candy I'm offering as long as I can send it out without it's weighty filling in the holding pad. I think that everyone with a birthday in the next few weeks will be receiving one..... well that spoils any surprise but I suppose they could all hold a couple of unexpected items inside!
Hidden on the second yellow piece there are bees and bee hives and the orange and yellow one at the end is another Clarice Cliff design!
 Found some more! some unusual ones...Monopoly, snore cure cartoons,Texas, Cocktail party

It's WOYWW 81! 
Do I hear you ask what on earth I'm going on about? Well it's the fateful day we follow Julia's lead and show and tell all that is going on with our workdesks. Messes, chaos, tidy, organised it doesn't matter as long as we allow the world to snoop. Pop over to see over 100 more at the blog of our illustrious creator .... Stamping Ground... it's looking very festive right now!
With doing so much sewing to keep busy, whilst worrying over my lovely little grandee in hospital, my work desk has moved yet again from the dining room to the spare bedroom where I have set up my sewing machines. I haven't touched the desk in my workroom (originally the laundry room) for a couple of weeks and I haven't done much stamping or paper crafting. I seem to be sewing quite a bit. It's much warmer in the main body of the house compared to my work room which only has a small radiator in it.
Blog Candy
I'd like to thank everyone who has commented, peeped in or browsed my blog over the last year, my first full year of blogging, and I'm offering a surprise package of Blog Candy, surprise because I haven't had time to sort it all out !!!
My Christmas gift to everyone! Happy Christmas!
 I've a box full of crafty goodies to share so if you are interested in winning then it is open to all followers. To enter...just leave a comment, add the picky of the gift box below to your sidebar and mention the Blog Candy in a comment to any of my posts before the end of the year, and I'll announce the winner on 1st January.... 1. 1. 11 !!! If there are a lot of entries then I may even stretch to some consolation prizes too.

34567 a magic number for Vicki B

It has been more than a difficult week for us here as my beautiful little grandee in Germany has been very seriously ill in hospital. The bottom fell out of our world when she took ill and these last few days have been so hard but at last there is a tiny spark of a slow recovery so I feel I can share it with you. They should have all be arriving for Christmas this evening so I will really miss them all but it really doesn't matter as long as this precious little one gets well.

I've been trying to keep myself busy and crafting has helped keep me sane whilst waiting for phone calls with news.
I made these two tree decorations for the children of a special friend. The first one, another wacky Angel Queen is for her teenage daughter. 
Rudolph is for her 3 year old son so I added the jingle bells for fun.
I'm planning some blog candy and will post all about it tomorrow but I also decided that when my blog count reached the magic number of 34567 I would give a small gift to the next person who left a comment......and that was Vicky B yesterday. If you email me your details Vicky I will get a little crafty surprise out to you. Everyone else will be in with a chance for Blog Candy if you pop in for tomorrow's post.

Saturday, 18 December 2010

Advent Tags, Hats & Socks

This post has been in my file for a while so thought I'd share it, whilst it's still seasonal, as I'm not capably of doing much just now due to some family problems.
 I still have a few tags to make to complete my Advent  hanging for this year but I'll get them finished in 
time for Christmas... I will, I will, I will!
Many of you won't have seen the two Advent Hangings I made last year for my two DDs families. Twenty four tiny hats, all different, on each branch to fill with goodies for each day. I only started making them mid November 2009 when my daughter in Germany gave me the idea (and the request!) so I made 48 hats in two weeks in time for Dec 1st 2009. I think I saw a few sparks from my knitting needles and I wouldn't go to bed each night until I'd made 2 or 3!
If you look back in my blog to 12th Nov 2009 you can see day to day postings of the hats as I made them and this will give ideas of designs to knit as they are all different. The photos are high resolution as it was my early days of blogging and I did not know then how to compress photos so it helps to see detail!
Whilst in Germany recently I spotted these Advent Hangings below with tiny hand made socks for sale (reduced to) over £50 a set. It sounds a lot of money but it's not much for all the time it takes to make them.
This set was machine made.
Just thought it might give ideas for next year!

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

WOYWW & All Stitched Up

We came back from the South Coast rather hurriedly but cautiously as I was SICK, SICK, SICK all the way home so it rather spoiled things. It was horrible and I was never so glad for poly bags and newspaper. Yes! YUK, I agree ...YUK!!! but you've got to share problems with friends, heh, heh! I think I picked up a virus as no one else was ill and we'd all eaten the same food. Just had my first proper little meal since Saturday and I'm feeling OK again but shattered.
WOYWW or What's On Your Floor Wednesday!!!
I languored part of the day, still feeling sorry for myself but soon got fed up with being idle so I decided to sew some outstanding bits and bobs. Hence my desk was on the floor as I was cutting out fabric. 
Call in on Julia's blog, Stamping Ground to see some real crafty desks and crafty messes as we do this every week.
I think this is the neatest "desk" I've ever shown and it's just as well as my real desk is stacked high with things I've brought home and dumped. Too cold to go out there for a pic especially whilst I feel poorly! Well, that's my excuse, honest!
Here's what I made all in part of a day.... first the caped hood that I copied and cut out from my little grandees one that was shop bought in Germany.  (Wipso asked to see this finished too so there you go!) It's really snug as the cape tucks inside the little one's coat so no draughts in the cold!
Then I moved on to dress this cutie teddy, Snowy, for when my grandee visits for Christmas. It ended up with the full set....including a neckerchief like the children wear in Germany and a little tote bag because tiny little girls love putting things in and out of little bags. Now what can I pop in there? 
I think you are beginning to think I wasn't really very sick but sewing was a real distraction and helped my recovery I can assure you, as I then moved on this evening to tie bows on this bargain rusty heart 
(Yes! cheapskate as ever) I bought it in Rye for just £3 on Saturday! Easy peasy TV watching job!
It wouldn't be difficult to re-create this heart from a wire coat hanger, I'm sure! 
I finished off making a crochet flower so I think I'd be better being sick more often!! Nah!
Check out this fabulous Tim Holtz blog candy from Lin of LB Crafts (Yours Artfully) Link on my side bar!

Sunday, 12 December 2010

Spicy Decoration!

I saw these hangings whilst I was in Germany but they were so expensive that I didn't buy. When I was in another shop I spied the dried orange slices and cinnamon sticks in packets for very little cost, 3 euros total in fact,  so I brought them home and made this whilst watching TV one evening. I added some Star Anise, which I've had in store for ever. They are so easy to make and just strung with fishing line and attached to a wire clothes hanger pulled into a circle then wrapped with some sisal fibres. I added a few drops of spicy Christmas aromatherapy oils and it smells good and looks good too. 

Friday, 10 December 2010

Another 4 Fold Card

I love to make these cards and I think they look special as they give lots of surfaces to decorate. This one I made for a special friend's birthday when I made the previous one. This one is made the same as the tutorial on 26th Nov. and so it needs ribbons to tie it closed.
I can now say Happy birthday to my lovely friend Dot for today!

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

WOYWW and Angelina

This could well be one of the handful of Christmas cards I send ... I've given up thinking about them as I was getting toooooo pressured so I decided once again to give it a miss. Am I a Bah Humbug? Am I a Grinch?....Yes! but I don't care. I find that most people really don't notice they haven't had a card from me as everyone gets so many. Those who do notice are usually friends who then ring up and ask if I'm OK!! I sent this one out to my lovely friend Neet along with a parcel I had for her, due to her missing Saturday's Vicky Stampers party, so popped this card inside. Hope you are feeling better now Neet, we missed you!
It's Angelina stamped with my poinsettia image and painted with alchohol inks.
Yes it really is another WOYWW and only Christmas and Birthdays come round as quick as WOYWWs. Am I crazy?... Yes! Am I mad?... Yes! But so are over a hundred other crazy crafters who bare their souls desks each week so the world can spy on our messy (or occasionally tidy) crafting spaces. Pop on over to see the results and instigator of all this....  Julia at Stamping Ground to spy on the rest.
Here on my desk I am busy trying to finish a card for a special friend's birthday so it gets to her on time. Not showing too much of it incase she peeks before it arrives. My coffee is in one of the Lueneburg Christmas mugs I brought back from the Christmas Market, shame it isn't gluhwein in there! Must get to Lidl to buy some.
I may not get round too many of you this week as I'll be away again with no internet connection... off down to the South Coast to see DD1 and grandees but I'll be staying in Rye not Brighton. It's wonderful that I will have seen them all within the space of a week but it's a shame it was in two different countries and not all together! 

Monday, 6 December 2010

Mad Hatters Party

Last Saturday we had our Christmas get together at Victoria Stampers and even though numbers were really low, due to the weather and various members ill, we had a great day. The original plan was to have make and takes with Neet as tutor but as so few attended everyone thought it best that we should save them for more members to share. We continued with making party hats we had planned, thanks to an idea from Paul, with everyone selecting a theme and we all added something to everyone else's base hat. It resulted in a fantastic crazy set of creations which we all wore to go for our special lunch. Thanks to Paul who battled the weather and coped with a flat battery to bring us some delicious gifts and his contributions towards the hats and the Secret Santa.
This is my Winter Wonderland Hat
Here's Olive's Skulls and Bones! 

Lynne's Victorian Christmas
Jayne's Glam with diamante, bows, feathers and flowers and Mandy's Fairy Creation
Mo's Symphony
Christmas Decorations for Enid
The Rocky Horror Side to Carmel who even wore a pink wig!
The Victoria Pub Restaurant decked out for Christmas
Lynne made yummy cakes for the afternoon.
Thanks to all who made it for a fun day and get well soon to those who were ill, we missed you all.