Tuesday, 28 March 2023

Small, Wooden Christmas Tree Decorations

I think you might be seeing quite a few variations of these Christmas tree decorations over the coming months ………..


……. because I got a little carried away when these wooden blanks were in The Works Christmas sale………..


I’d seen them in my local shop when a pack of 16 (small and large) was £2, but I’d ermed and ahhed, but when they were reduced to £1 a bag, what’s a crafter to do? I think in the end I bought 4 or five packs?!.  It was their 6mm thickness that really swayed me, as they can easily stand alone, making them simple to glue upright and then incorporate into scenes etc., this gives them an awful lot of potential, if only I could put my mind to it.


However, I am easing myself into Christmas (aghhhhhh) slowly, there are no great shakes with this idea.  I took ten of the larger trees, which stand 6cms tall by 4.5cms at their widest and tried to put a tiny screw eye hook in the top, I managed it, perhaps more to the side than in the middle, but the wood proved really hard to screw into.


I then coloured the trees on both sides with  green and brown Sharpie pens, followed by a couple of coats of quick dry, clear, gloss varnish to seal in the colour to prevent any rubbing off if/when stored in the future.


All that was left to do then was decorate the trees (again on both sides) with small snowflake confetti with a tiny, gold, flat dome in the middle and clusters of three dots here and there to help fill in the gaps, using a white nail pen.


All that was left to do after that was add a silver hanging thread, as I said, nothing to them at all.

I am thinking that with having so many of the trees, in time, in all their different guises, that they will probably make up the bulk of the RAK Christmas fairings it has become traditional for Iris and Bertie to leave along the school run in December ……. I just need the inspiration…….. happy days!

Monday, 27 March 2023

The Works - Easter Decorated Crates

My apologies, I know I ask this every year, but why do I always find Easter such a struggle to craft for? Perhaps it’s the colours or being seemingly limited to bunnies, chicks and eggs, but nothing I do ever seems to gel, despite poring over Pinterest from February onwards for inspiration. I guess I’m just not a spring person!


Even these decorated crates for Iris and Bertie are seem awfully lack lustre to me, but there again I know they will be loved and filled with all manner of treasure, Bertie’s, probably with teabags and Iris pens!


The wooden crates came from The Works last autumn …….


………. when they were reduced from £2 to £1 each for a couple of weeks, so I stocked up.  They still sell them, but they’ve now gone back up to their original price.


All the wooden embellishments, which have been collected over the years have mostly come from The Works, with the exception of the rabbits.


I suppose, all told, this idea was an excellent way of using up a few more of the Easter stragglers still left my seasonal take-away boxes.


The leaves were coloured using a green Sharpie pen, before everything was simply stuck on the sides of the crates using E-7000 glue. This was followed by adding a few clusters of three dots here and there with a black biro (to prevent any ink bleeding into the wood) to help fill in some of the empty space.


The bunnies came from Home Bargains and cost 99p each, as did the carrots which were 79p, I believe for a pack of 6 or 8(?).  The carrots, which have a hanging loop, are a bargain, especially when you see what they are charging for similar packs in other shops and online. I particularly like the paper “leafage” on them much better that the really plastic-y stems I have seen on other carrots elsewhere.  Needless to say I bought a couple of packs which I think I will scatter here and there and hang on my small, charity shop, illuminated table twig tree nearer the day.


I then put a few chocolate bits and pieces in the crates. Iris and Bertie like chocolate but in small doses, unlike their Nanny, who can never have too much! Bertie still has a stock of his Christmas chocolate in his bedroom, which he has, on occassion, carefully wrapped in a dried out wet wipe and a mountain of Sellotape, that boy loves a tape dispenser, to present to me when he feels the occassion is right!  What is he like?  You just got to love him!  Happy, happy days!

Monday, 20 March 2023

Small Heart Shaped Jewelled Wreaths

Just one post this week, sorry, it's been a busy few weeks ........ coupled with a very severe dose of crafters block.  Hopefully a long weekend by the sea, in Weymouth, will inspire me for when I get back! 

Two small, jewelled wreaths given to two very special ladies on Mother’s Day.


The small MDF wreaths came as part of a pair bought online from https://www.everycraftsabargain.co.uk/MDF-Heart-Wreath and for just £1.50 they were a steal.


To start I painted both sides of the wreaths with a white emulsion paint, before all the fiddle fart ensued ……….


Most of the jewels came from elasticated bracelets bought from https://www.ebay.co.uk/usr/mypensionfund66, and then broken up, along with the odd charity shop find.  The small, assorted plastic roses came from China.  I used E-7000 to glue them for a really secure and solid fix.


I put the bigger jewelled pieces on first and then built up the layers with the more flowery pieces with a few leaves scattered here and there. I then waited a couple of days for everything to set before filling in any gaps. Even looking at these pictures now I can still see a couple of places I’ve missed.


I used a staple gun to put two staples in the back of the wreaths through which I threaded a double strand of gold wire which I twisted and knotted to make a rough sort of hanger. My apologies, I’m really pants at this, they aren't all that tidy but they are strong, which they need to be as each wreath is quite heavy.


I wasn’t expecting it, but these took a lot longer and were far more fiddlier to do than the larger ones I have made, probably the size?  I also think, perhaps, the proportions of the jewellery bits suit the large hearts better?


….. but despite all that they still turned out pretty OK. Next wreath please…..

Tuesday, 14 March 2023

Guest Crafter Iris And Bertie - Mother’s Day Presents

The dynamic duo have been crafting again, with Mother’s Day very much on their minds.


Marc gave me a box of wooden embroidery hoops from when he bought almost all the contents of an old lady’s craft room before Christmas.  I just put some white, cotton fabric in it, supplied the fabric pens and let Iris fly.


I have to admit it brings a tear to my every time I look at the pictures, it really did all come straight from her little heart.


The bead edging was all her own idea too, I’d forgotten to take any embellishments with me on the day, she disappeared and bought back her bead box and a necklace she said she didn’t wear, she then proceeded to break it up, pinching some of her Dad’s PVA glue and finished the hoop off perfectly. Iris loved making this so much I think she now has plans to make a few more as her end of year “Thank You” gifts for all her classroom staff, bless her.


This is Bertie’s present.  When we had our last sleepover he got it in his head that he would like some clay to “make things with”. We were all set to nip up to The Works when I thought of the small packs of Hobbycraft air drying clay I had squirrelled away. I wasn’t sure about using it, as it did have a contingency rather like chewing gum, however I did open a pack on the off chance and it seemed to have matured, being less sticky and the little man was well chuffed with it.


He rolled the clay into a ball and then flattened it slightly, before, from the box of cutters offered him, cutting a very fat house shape using a cutter he filled right to the very top. He then decided to emboss the front with a heart shaped cutter and riskily, because he wasn’t keen on the idea of letting things dry over night. coloured it in with a red Sharpie pen. He then used the rest of the clay to make a base to stand the house on.


He also wanted to decorate the front of the base, so I found some Fimo nail art flowers and a diamond dot pen to help pick them up and place them.  Oh boy, does Bertie love a tool!


Adding the “moon and back” pendant was just one of those spooky happenstances, goodness only knows how/why it was in the cookie cutter box, but it seems it was meant to be ………. and he was going with it!


Again, another tear jerker, now stashed away like Iris’s “somewhere safe” in their bedrooms until the big day ……. I know I am biased, but they really are lovely children.

Monday, 13 March 2023

Charles lll Coronation Brooch/Badge Favours

Sorry, only two posts this week, I’m really short of finished projects to post at the moment.

So I’m not sure how involved I’m going to be in the Coronation, other than being glued to the tele all day and I’m not sure either what Iris and Bertie’s school will be doing, but “just in case” I thought I would make some souvenir badges for all the staff plus the children in the class I listen to read.


I ordered the assorted, wooden, laser cut crowns from China a while ago with this idea in mind. It was much cheaper to order 50 in bulk over there, than in the UK and as I ordered well in advance it didn’t matter how long they took to arrive.


I sprayed one side of the crowns with gold paint and then sprinkled them immediately with ultra fine, gold glitter so that it would stick to the drying paint.


When everything was dry I added small, clear flat back gems for extra coronation bling using E-7000 for a really secure fix ……….


…….. before adding various sized brooch backs, according to the width of the crowns using the same glue. I didn’t want to risk any coming off.


I made the backing cards using my ancient copy of Publisher 2003, cutting them out when printed and then putting two punch holes roughly in the middle for the brooch pin to go through.


To keep the cards clean and fresh looking until the big day I sealed them in narrow cellobags using my again ancient, but invaluable vacuum sealer.


Et voila ………

……. another very simple project done and dusted.

Wednesday, 8 March 2023

Easter Themed Charity Shop Treasures ……….

I am not going too overboard with my Easter decorations this year as Iris and Bertie will be away ……….. but then again, it doesn’t stop me making a considered purchase when I stumble upon the odd little tranklement to help titivate my seasonal shelves ……


…….. like this little trinket tray for £1.


There’s no markings on it, but the blue finish reminds me of something I have also seen in brown, if that makes sense?


Then there’s these guys, again no markings but by the way their faces are painted I think there may be a bit of age to them.


At £1.99 I’m wasn’t going to leave them behind.


And finally, out of the 3 for 99p bucket, so only 33p, this frog eggcup (???) to which I’ve added a little air dry clay to plant a plastic succulent …….. I am very tempted to find him a little crown to perch on his head, who hasn’t had to kiss the odd frog!  Happy days!