I am sorry but I can no longer send out any templates, poems etc. that I may have previously offered in the past, the files were lost when my last computer crashed and I have chosen not to remake any of them them.

Saturday, 28 February 2015

Heads Up For Easter

I am not doing a lot for Easter, but I will be making some Easter Bunny Penny Bags for work …….. and so naturally my eagle eye has been out looking for some small, good quality, value for money Easter themed sweeties to pop in them, along with lollies, marshmallows and other bits and pieces…….  and this is what I found in Tesco

Tesco Easter Chocolate Coins……. chocolate coins …… 10 coins per net ……

Tesco Easter Bunnies…… and chocolate bunnies ……. 15 bunnies per net.  And yes, I was sad and I stood in middle of Tesco trying to count them!!!! They also have nets of small, foil wrapped eggs.  Anyway they are on special offer 2 nets for £1.50, which I reckon don’t work out that bad.

Friday, 27 February 2015

Happy Birthday Lindsay

I don’t often do requests, but this is a little something for Lindsay Denville
Monkey Birthday card[9]…… for when she pops by today! Happy Birthday Lindsay!!!

Thursday, 26 February 2015

Valentines Favour Bags

I didn’t really do anything for Valentines Day, but I did pop this little jumble of bags into the pigeon holes of some of my friends at work on the last day of term as a fairing gift.
I used a narrow cello bag and put in small packets of Love Hearts, some foil wrapped chocolate hearts that I found in Bargains UK (99p), some chocolate coins and a felt heart ……..
……. fastened together with a red bulldog clip which is always a useful thing to have in your desk!

Monday, 23 February 2015

A Special Thank You Card

This card measure 5ins x 5ins and is made using a Kraft Card blank
Making this card felt very different from me, it’s a sort collage, something I enjoy, but don’t do a lot of on cards.  The background is made from cork sheet that gives it a different, rough texture to which I have  added a mixture of Tim Holtz paper embellishments, K & Co layered poppies, antique silver and dragon fly brads, clear self adhesive pebbles, and red twine, but I think it all goes together OK (????)
The reason for making this card was a very small thank you in comparison to Lizzie, a follower of more years than I care to remember, who sent me a most beautiful parcel containing a collection of wonderful bits, completely out of the blue. 
Inside the parcel were three beautifully wrapped packages full of lovely, lovely things.
What can I say?
Each package just got more wonderful …….
…… and I was totally, overwhelmed by Lizzie’s kindness, thought and generosity.  I love everything ….. I think the most inspiring were the Tim Holtz bottles, as I have a HUGE thing for little bottles, which are already screaming Christmas very loudly at me  ……….
Thank you soooooooo much Lizzie, as I said “Thank You” just doesn’t express my feelings, half as much as what it really meant to me!

Friday, 20 February 2015

A New Source For Pretzel Bags

A while ago I think I mentioned that I couldn’t find my usual source of pretzel bags on eBay, the ones I used for Elizabeth Shaw mints ……
…….. Well, I have now found a brilliant eBay shop, thanks to one of my lovely, lovely followers, so really, I cannot take any credit for the finding …. however, I have lost the original e-mail which included the link, so I cannot thank that person by name in this post ….. but THANK YOU SO MUCH on behalf of myself and others who might use the link.
I ordered packs of 50 2” x 8” (£1.85)  and 2”x 7” (£1.80) with free P & P.  They are excellent quality, arrived within days and are perfect for what I need them for! 
The cello bags come in 17 sizes, so well worth a look.  I could now do with ordering some 3” x 4” bags which are a brilliant size for packaging wish bracelets etc. or 
This is just a personal “heads up”, I have had no communication with Yolli other than my order, I just liked what I found!!!

Tuesday, 17 February 2015

Counting The Days

Not that I am counting …… but, when it got to 100 days before I finally quit my office for good, I just couldn’t help myself!So,  the blue days are High Days, Feast Days, Days of Holy Obligation and weekends and so don’t count …… and the white ones are the ones I actually have to work, which I colour in as soon as my bum hits the seat, when I get in, in the morning ……!!!

Monday, 16 February 2015

Hand Painted Mug – Porcelain Painter Pen

Well I say hand painted ….. which suggests that I used a paint brush, but really  I used a black Marabu Porcelain Painter pen, but the title sounds much more posh, skilled and artistic doesn’t it?????!!!!
When I saw the mug in discountUK, with it’s classy back inside, I just had to have it (well, I bought two, but the other one will probably appear later on in another guise) and for 99p, it had to be done.
My source of inspiration was a bowl I bought in a charity shop when Marc stayed with me in the summer, which I think was also 99p.It was like the mug was made for a similar design. Once “painted” the mug had to be baked in the oven for 30 minutes at 160F and should now be dishwasher proof and ready for me to take to work for my coffee!

Friday, 13 February 2015

Exciting Times !!!!

Looks like “Mum’s Monkey” is being picked up in a few high places, but it comes to something when the invitations go to Monkey, Darrell and Nigel and not me!!!!!!!   ……. Anyway, this is what they found in their mail box when they got home from work last night …….
“Dear Mum’s Monkey,
I hope you’re well.
We’d like to invite you to a very exclusive screening on Tuesday 24th February to launch the brand new series of Caitlin & Caz Moran’s RAISED BY WOLVES.
However, this is no ordinary press screening… a very special coach trip is also involved! Not only will you be accompanied by the writers and creators, Caitlin & Caz Moran, but also joining us will be the two brilliant actresses who play their teenage alter egos; Helen Monks & Alexa Davies.
The trip will begin at Wolverhampton Train Station at ****, we’ll board the coach with our very own Wulfrunians Caitlin & Caz, who will curate a unique tour of the city where they grew up – accompanied by some substantial refreshments. Forget local churches, and points of interest, this will be an no holds barred take on their hometown.
Once the tour has ended, the coach will take us on to Wolverhampton Cineworld where we’ll offer a first look preview of the first two episodes followed by a Q&A with the four ladies.
The invite for the screening is below - we really hope you can join us.”
Raised by WolvesHow exciting is that?  Well,  it goes without saying that “we” shall all be going, but I think it was the promise of “substantial” coach refreshments that probably swayed it ……!!!!!

Tuesday, 10 February 2015

Taking Crafting A Bit Too Far …….

It’s been a bit bitter in Wolverhampton just lately and I finally decided to succumbed and rummage through my drawers to find a pair of gloves to wear  …… only to find,  as I put them on at the bus stop that ……….
……this was obviously a pair that I had cut a couple of fingers off when I had run out of snowmen’s hats for snowman chocolate bars, and had then absentmindedly rolled them back up and put away again !!
download (1)Still, I hope you noticed how straight and even my cuts were!!!
What am I like???????

Monday, 9 February 2015


xxxx Lizzie, what can I say?  I received your parcel on Saturday and am totally, totally overwhelmed ……. I just don’t know what to say …. but THANK YOU SO MUCH.  So many treasures ….. I loved everything and believe me everything has been very lovingly stroked and adored, especially the Tim Holtz pieces, you are so kind, too kind!!

I don’t have your e-mail, but a proper “thank you” is on it’s way, I just wanted to let you know it had arrived …… and I am very, very touched xxxxxx

Baby Welcome Card

This card measures 5ins x 5ins and is made using a hand cut, white linen effect card blank.
This is the card I made my Granddaughter Iris when she was born. Iris arrived a little sooner than I’d expected, and as I didn’t want to make a card in advance until I knew Tom and The Lovely Laura’s baby was safe it was made in the couple of hours before Lucy and I left for Worcester to meet Iris for the very first time. 
All I knew was that I wanted the card to be fresh, simple and unfussy. The self adhesive birds came from a pack I got from Michael’s in Las Vegas, that were just waiting to be used for such a wonderful occasion. 

Monday, 2 February 2015

Simple Premo! Sculpey Clay Necklace

The idea for this simple necklace is not mine, it was inspired by a tutorial I found on Pinterest. Sometimes I want to play, but feel a little lost, especially as I only started using oven bake clay seriously in the run up to Christmas. so having something to follow helps me over the initial hesitant stage and then I can develop and run with the idea if I am happy with the initial results.
sculpey bead necklaceI used some of the Premo! Sculpey clay that Marc gave me a while back and thought I might also add a couple of metal beads from a deconstructed charity shop find, found when Marc was with me in the summer.
Admittedly,  I made the beads really, really quickly, so they vary and the finish is far from perfect, but if I was being arty farty I would say that they were …… erm …. organic!!!!!!!
I also think I may have baked them for a little too long as the colours darkened quite considerably …… but I was only experimenting!!!
All I did then was to thread the hardened beads onto a length of leather cord.  I did try a metal bead  between each separate colour, but it didn’t look right, so I settled for just one at each end.
I could tidy up this idea a lot …… if I wanted to make another necklace.  However, the beads might reappear once I have worn it a few times, in a new guise somewhere along the line, perhaps as part of hanging decoration ….. hmmmmmmmm!

Thursday, 29 January 2015

Sorry, Only One Fiddle Fart Post Per Week ………

Sorry, for yet another change to my blog schedule …. for the next few months at least, I think there will only be one Fiddle Fart post per week, on a Monday ….. I am having a bit of a mojo malfunction …… but with all good reason, as my mind has been on other things!
images (3)I said a week or so ago that I had handed in my notice at work …….. but what I didn’t say was that at Christmas I suggested to Tom and the Lovely Laura that perhaps they might consider my helping to look after Iris a bit when the said Lovely Laura goes back to work in June. Well, to be honest there wasn’t much debate, and none of it was in the slightest bit heated!!!!!  So, from mid June I will be splitting my week, spending three days in Evesham and four days in Wolverhampton, but with the long term view that eventually I will move to Evesham permanently within the next eighteen months/two years!
downloadBut, before I start the drama of selling and buying houses, I hope that during my days/evenings spent in Evesham I can gradually start to make new friends and build up a social life, so that when I “really” move, it will feel like I am already settled, if that makes sense?
images (1)So as you can see, my mind has been rather occupied and I am afraid not a lot of crafting has been done, Chez Greysquirrel ……. but I still think I want to keep things ticking over blog wise  ….. it’s been too much part of my life to give up completely, and I can see how it might take on new angles …. Tom says he already has visions of coming home every night and finding Iris covered in paint, Decopatch or some sort of dressing up affair  …. perhaps I could go down the “Crafting with Iris” line!!!!!!!
KT05-Evesham-Abbey……. I still plan to craft at the weekend when I am at home in W-ton, but when I am in Evesham it could be a way of  taking my crafting back to real basics as I won’t be surrounded by my mountain of materials and tools.  Initially I plan to take a supply of white card, mirror card, and a few embellishments, and basic tools with me and see where that leads me ……. perhaps planning projects ahead for the evenings at the weekend or exploring the delights of Evesham for inspiration and a source of new materials.
images (4)I hope that Evesham, being a “touristy” sort of a place, could provide a source outlets for me to perhaps expand and sell more of what I make, which is something I know I don’t do enough of, maybe playgroups, gift shops, craft markets etc.  
images (2)So there you go ….. a lot to think about, but hopefully if I take things very slowly it will prove to be the right move and the start of a whole new life!

Tuesday, 27 January 2015

Lucy’s Birthday Card 2014

This card is A5 in size.
We were on holiday in Greece for Lucy’s 30th Birthday and this is the card I made for her, which I squirrelled away in my suitcase. Nothing fancy and very, very simple, but setting the mood and holiday theme. Believe me, Lucy wouldn’t  have thanked me if I had plastered 30 all over it!
The letters are self adhesive and from my huge collection of alphabets   …. and the embellishments, well sometimes you just can’t beat a pack of 3D stickers (UK Discounts 2 for £1) to make a very quick but effective card!

Sunday, 25 January 2015

Leaving Card

This card is A5 in size and is made using a hand cut, white linen effect blank
It’s another year …… and as with last year I am really going to make a concerted effort to use up a lot of the stuff that I have had for far too long, and needs to be used up, like these assorted self adhesive letters and the paper flowers that came from the days when Lakeland used to have a craft department!
There’s a whole lot of mat and layering going on here on silver mirror card
…… plus a liberal smattering of faux stitching.

Friday, 23 January 2015

Twig Christmas Tree

This is the “Christmas Tree” I put together on the spur of the moment for my “festive” landing.
The branches used to belong to a small, shaped box tree that we had at the front of the house which seemed to die very slowly, no matter what we did to it, and to be honest in the end I just left it abandoned in its pot for months at the bottom of the garden until I had a final tidy up in the autumn, but something made me keep what was left of the, by then bleached branches, all be it in the garage shoved into a piece of oasis.
But about a week before Christmas, I saw some packs of twelve small gold/silver vintage style baubles, reduced from £12 to £2.80 in House of Fraser, and  I got to thinking about the branches again, deciding to spray them with an off white coloured paint and while the paint was still wet, sprinkled it all over with diamond dust micro glitter.
When dry, I arranged them as best as I could into a Christmas tree shape, putting them back into the oasis, placed in an off white pot, with ornamental blue glass chippings (Ikea) sprinkled over the oasis to hid it.
It took two packs of the vintage baubles and a box of twenty tiny, clear baubles I got in a HobbyCraft sale a few years back to cover it, before adding a string of Poundshop battery operated LED lights ….. which I realised I should have put on before the baubles!!!! The lights look blue in the picture, but they are actually white.
IMG_0009 (2)If I say so myself,  it did look very pretty, delicate and ethereal sitting on my landing windowsill ….. and has now been put away very carefully to come out for next year as well. 

Wednesday, 21 January 2015

New Year’s Favour Using Tim Holtz Matchbox Die

New Years Eve is an occasion that I as a crafter I feel I neglect greatly, all those parties and celebrations are such an opportunity to get all creative yet I do very little for it …… so in 2015 I am hoping to try and come up with a few more ideas, to even up the score for other occasions.
For this idea I used one of the die cut Tim Holtz matchboxes Marc sent me …..
….. and made a false bottom for it, using some of the New Year rub-ons Marc and I found in Home Bargains in the summer, which I think only cost us 29p, and embellished it with a bit of doodling and star confetti.
I then threaded some alphabet beads to spell ‘Happy New Year’, to go in the box, hiding the end of the cord under the false bottom, which I also lifted slightly using three layers of foam tape.
I decorated the matchbox sleeve with scraps of star patterned paper and an assortment of stars, and that’s it really. 
This idea could be adapted for so many other occasions, using the beads to say all manner of things.  I can’t wait for Marc’s visit, as I know we will be bouncing other ideas, left right and centre ……. I already have one for someone who had just passed their driving test!
I know I keep harping on about matchboxes and I think they are going to feature quite a lot in the coming months  because they just inspire me so much and you know how much I love tiny things, but if you don’t have a die, there are plenty of templates available for free on the internet,
They are also pretty easy to create using a score board ………  or you can buy blank ones from various craft suppliers, like Baker Ross

Monday, 19 January 2015

An Office Get Well Card

This card is A5 in size using a handcut white linen effect blank.
This card was brilliant for using all the random letters I have in my box of alphabets letters.
I originally matted all the words on a contrasting colour ……..
…… but it didn’t just didn’t look right, but adding the purple background made it pop!