Friday, 29 December 2017

Blast From The Past - New Years Smiley Face Favour Bags

I like to make something to “bring the New Year in” on the first day back at work after the Christmas break  …….
….. and as soon as I saw these Thorntons Smiles on a 3 for 2 offer I knew they would be perfect.
So I bagged up nine to a pretzel bag, three of each flavour, I wasn’t being mean, I just didn’t want to be overly generous, as, no doubt, everyone will be on a diet!!!!
I made the tags using punching a large scalloped circle in gold mirror card, and putting a printed calendar tags that I have had for years and really need using up, on one one side and a handwritten New Years message on the other.
Finally, I attached the tag, and a matching ribbon to the bags and trimmed off the excess on the bag. with pinking shears.
The calendar tags are brilliant as you can highlight the date on them.
I tried to look for more pretzel bags on e-bay as I only have a few left, in the past I have only been able to find them from one seller and unfortunately on this occasion couldn’t find them, which means that I am going to have to try out some bookmark bags instead, they are a little wider 65mm as opposed to 50mm, but perhaps they might be a little more versatile, we shall see.

Thursday, 28 December 2017

Blast From The Past - Lottery New Year Favours!

As you know,  I like to make little favours for the first day back at work after a major holiday ….  and seeing nets of chocolate coins reduced to 25p with a use before date of August 2013 … well I just couldn’t resist, and came up with this idea…..
Chocolate Money Favours.I created the sheet of sentiments in Publisher, using  “High Tide”  font free  from
chocolate money favourI cut the sentiments out and backed them onto the back of a lottery ticket,  trimming the edges to fit the narrow cello bags I used (9cm wide)
Lottery Ticket Favor FavourI put three coins in each bag,  which then I sealed with my Elitech bag sealer.
Chocolate Money Favour.I made another sheet of “Happy New Years” which I punched out,  to stick on the front of each packet
Favour Chocolate Money FavourEt voila, all that was left to do was pop them in everyone’s sling or pigeon hole on the first day of term.
It's an idea that could be altered to suit other events .....and I shall put my mind to doing a couple more versions of the wording and then offer them as a free download, so watch this space ......

Wednesday, 27 December 2017

Blast From The Past - New Year Favour

As you know I like to start and end each school term with a small fairing gift that I pop into colleagues pigeon holes ready for the first/last day.
New Year Favor 2
Well, I decided to go very small this term, as no doubt half the people I will give one to will have started a new diet ….. so one teeny, weeny Ferrero Rocher won’t hurt will it?
New Year Favor
And, as I feel all crafted out after Christmas, I have used some pre-made, cut and scored wedding favour boxes (from Hobbycraft) that  I’ve had for years, all I’ve had to do is to make them up.  A bit of faux stitching, handwriting and a tiny gift bow on the top and that’s it,  done and dusted!

Tuesday, 26 December 2017

Blast From The Past - New Years Eve Crafty Gifts - Midnight Feast Box

Picture 377
I was thinking about New Year and First Footing and came up with this really daft idea for a New Years Eve favour - as my sister would say “You have too much time on your hands!”
Picture 383
It opens up to reveal a Midnight Feast – in this case two shortbread biscuits, because I always think of Scotland at New Year, but you could put anything you like in with a New Year/Midnight Feast idea Picture 384
The box is made using my Sizzix Bigz Shaker Box Die (No. 655134) in a dark blue cardboard. I have doodled on it using a white gel pen and highlighted the date on the scalloped calendar tab which is from Sarah’s Cards.
Picture 385
As I said this is a daft idea but I thought it might set other peoples imaginations off……, you could adapt it for a sleepover party for example.

Monday, 25 December 2017


Well, I’m in Wolverhampton over the holiday, staying with Lucy, my daughter and spending time with the in-laws, and on Saturday we decided to spend the day in Bridgnorth to blow away the cobwebs, enjoy the scenery and just mooch a bit ……..
Once again I came back still thinking what a lovely, lovely place it would be to live, and if I ever had to move again Bridgnorth would be on my list. As a family it’s a place filled with so many happy memories of days and weekends away, camping, fishing and where The Duke did so much work, the Winding House Tearooms (below) next to the cliff railway being one of his particular favourites.
It was a place we never tired of and after yesterdays trip, after two years or so, it is still reassuringly familiar and unchanged in our hearts.
The market was on and I admit I have so missed a good old market rummage, in particular Bridgnorth’s  with it’s mixture of second hand/car boot type stalls,  along with the other usual stalls selling food, clothing, plants, tools, etc..
It was on one second-hand stall in particular I had my two most brilliant finds, this Arthur Wood lustre vase for just £1 ……  which I think will be perfect in my new look bedroom (more of that in a later post) – I looked it up on e-bay and there are a few around with an asking price of around £24ish each.
On the same stall I found this small Royal Doulton Minden dish, which as you know is something I collect but still use on a daily basis, for another £1, I have never paid a price as low for a piece before …… I was thrilled, as you can imagine.
Then we moved into the High Street for some lunch and a look round the Charity Shops.  Now, I had a backpack on my list of things I need for my trip to New York to celebrate my 60th and this vintage Fiorelli was perfect, they are bags I have always liked but couldn't really afford, but this cost me just £7.50 and is much better quality than I would have paid for something new.  It’s in perfect condition despite it having some age to it, I think it could possibly be from the late 80’s?
So all in all it was a brilliant day ……. made all the more brilliant when Lu and I booked our next Greek Odyssey to Crete the following morning on Christmas Eve ……… so far it’s beginning to look like the Christmas that just keeps giving!
Wishing you all a very happy Christmas with love xxxxxx

Sunday, 24 December 2017

A Blast From The Past - Sweetie Test Tubes From Christmas 2009

I can't claim that this is my own idea. I found lots of test tube favors when Googling and thought I would have a go at making one myself.
I bought the test tubes off e-bay, but when they arrived I was disappointed because the top was hollow, but, after much head scratching and rifling about in my drawers, I found some extra large gems that fit over the hole perfectly..... a bit of a fiddle fart, but it did the trick.

Thirteen jelly beans (the posh ones - 100's of different flavours) fit in each tube. The ones in this tube are in Christmas colours, but because of the huge variety of beans it's easy to do different combinations, like black, orange and green for Halloween, yellow,orange and green for Easter, all you need then is a co-ordinating ribbon and tag. I've used a Papermania metal rimmed tag (the ones that come in a box of assorted shapes and sizes)
I am now on the look out for corks that would fit into the top of the tube for a different look and also larger tubes that could fit bigger sweets ....... I'm never satisfied!

Saturday, 23 December 2017

Blast From The Past - Christmas Cookie Cutter Gift From Christmas 2009

This idea has been going around for quite a while and I thought it would be nice to have a go at doing my own version .
Star cookie cutter
There are lots of variations on the poem I have used which can be found easily on various crafting websites and forums.
Heart cookie Cutter
I have typed and printed the verse, cutting it out in a tag shape, adding faux stitching round the edges and tiny silver stars.
The red ribbon is fastened through the tag and I have glued the ends together, rather than tie them for a neater finish.
cookie cutter close up
The idea could be varied for birthdays and other occasions, with different shaped cutters.

Friday, 22 December 2017

Blast From The Past - First Footing - New Years Eve Crafty Gifts

I am still thinking about New Years Eve and First Footing, and have had another one of my ideas, but what the heck .....
First Footing 1
It’s traditional for a first footer to carry a lump of coal ……... well I have substituted coal for liquorice! But you could easily swop liqourice for coconut macaroons or nutty cluster!
First Footing 2
I got the footprint stickers from the US ages ago, I must have had about 20 packets but I have used them on so many projects, I shall be looking to order some more in the New Year as I only have a few left, I just hope I can find them again.  I think they are from Stickapotomus.
First Footing 3
I thought using the white/silver glitter card on the topper would represent a good frosty New Years Eve path!

Thursday, 21 December 2017

Blast From The Past - Candy Cane Mouse From Christmas 2010

Candy Cane Mouse 1
Google “candy cane mouse” in images and you'll get lots and lots of results, this is my version.
candy Cane Mouse 2
I initially downloaded a template from this site:- (Thank you Dawn), but when I started making it I decided to change the colours, ears and face a little bit.
Candy Cane Mouse 3
I’ve added large googly eyes and faux sticking, hoping to get a soft patchwork toy sort of effect. The ears are stuck on using a sticky foam pad for extra dimension.
Back view of Candy Cane Mouse
This is my protype, the tape looks awful! It will be replaced by a thin strip of foam pad under the cane, that won't be seen.  I was just in too much of a hurry to get the mouse photographed.  So my apologies for the shonky and very unprofessional finish!!!

Wednesday, 20 December 2017

Four Guest Crafters

Four guest crafters today with the cards I have been lucky enough to receive from them this year ………
From Diane a die cut and stamped Santa’s hat card, a very simple but very effective card and an idea I might be able to play with next year, so watch this space?!!!!
A wintery penguin from Christine.  I have bought a few stamps this Christmas, as yet, dare I say, still in their unopened packets. I love the idea of stamping, as I have said many many times before, but I just get so frustrated with the results, I just never seem to be able to get a good print first time, second time or for that matter tenth time round.  Christine has perfected the art ……I love everything about this card.  Thank you Christine.
The next card comes from Maisie who has been crafting since, I think, before she could walk or talk and I have been lucky enough to be at the receiving end of many of her beautiful creations.  I love the background paper, not sure where it’s from, but it’s very cute …… and the wooden laser cute “Jingle Bells” is an embellishment I could always find a use for.  Thank you so much Maisie, good luck for when you move up to Senior school later in the year and just make sure you keep on crafting!
And last but not least a card from Mrs A/ValeryAnne.  I think the background was already  printed but then Mrs A has added two tiny die cut Christmas trees tied with red and white butchers twine, soooooooo effective and looks a million dollars.
My own cards this year have been disappointingly and totally  P A N T S despite making an early start in the year.  I shall take all of these, along with Marc’s card for inspiration, and boy do I need that in 2018!!!!

Tuesday, 19 December 2017

Christmas Finds 2018

Not a lot of considered purchases to report shopping wise this year, sad to say that one of the few things that I miss about Wolverhampton is the larger versions of a  poundshop for those odd little treasures. I am heading there in the next few days so I am keeping my fingers crossed that I find something above and beyond!
All the Worcester Poundland had to offer were these reindeer …… I just thought they looked a little Scandanavian in style, I also liked the metallic finish that is a bit different from all the glittery stags of the past few years. When  I found them there weren’t very many but I still stood and deliberated for far too long as to whether I should by two of each colour as I like things to be equal or symmetrical  ……. in the end I just went for the four, thinking that £6 (???????? you what?) was too much to spend on six items that were for all intents and purposes the same and reindeer overkill!  I was naturally wrong and as per usual when I returned a couple of weeks later they were no longer there!  How many times do I need to learn this lesson?
IMG_6009And the only two other things to tempt me, were a couple of  rolls of loo paper and a Poundland mug, well,  the mug was just made for me! The loo roll was probably the most expensive loo roll I have ever bought sheet for sheet, it was not an very ample supply for £1 ……. however a perfect present to add to the family tut sack on Boxing Day and one for Marc as befitting his bathroom at the Worcester country pile!!!!

Monday, 18 December 2017

The Monkey’s 2018 Christmas Card

Every year I try to come up with a new Christmas card for The Monkeys that captures their character and sense of fun to send to their biggest fans and commentors …… and this is what I have come up with this year ……… the photos developed by Aldi for just 5p each plus P & P – bargain!
The theme, a puzzle to guess the seasonal phrase  …… “Baa Humbug”, an idea I have used before …… last year I think it was “Jingle Bells”  It takes all my brain power to firstly think of a phrase that can then be expressed with a series of weird and wonderful props to convey the message!
Once the card was mat and layered on red and silver and then faux stitched round the edges, I added an assortment of silver stars to break up the white background.
And finally, all the fake fur on The Boyz outfits was filled in with an ample dusting of translucent micro fine glitter.  Another hopefully much anticipated card done, and already I am thinking of a phrase for next year ……. unless we have some snow and then it will be back to snowy poses akimbo!

Sunday, 17 December 2017

A Blast From The Past A Few Ideas For Christmas Sweetie Bags From Christmas 2010

Magic Fairy Drops Sweet Candy Favor Bags
Rudolph's Got A Cold Blue Sweetie Candy Noses
Blue Noses Sweetie Candy favor bag Christmas
Picture 111
Rudolph's Noses Christmas Candy Favor Bag
Rudolph's Chocolate Treats Favour Candy Bag
 Santa's Penny Mix Special Christmas Candy bag Favor
There is a link to the 3 x 5inc cello bags I have used in the sidebar. They cost £1.99 for 50 plus £1.00 P & P.  I like to put about 50 to 60 grams of good quality sweets in each bag and this size is idea.  I use dies from Nestabilities Label Set 8 for my toppers. Most of the stickers are from various Poundshops, except for the wooden reindeer ones, which are from HobbyCraft, that I have altered a little to fit the blue nose theme.