Monday, 31 December 2018

Felt Star Christmas Decoration

I thought I'd quickly get one last post in this year!  This is a new tradition I have started... to make a Christmas tree decoration every year.  I thought I'd start this year, as it's our first year as a married couple and our first year in our new house.  It seemed a good time to start!

Cute and easy felt star Christmas decoration for your tree.

I had been thinking of doing it, but didn't get round to it until the afternoon of Christmas Eve.  Because I'd left it so late, I just wanted something that I could whip up pretty quickly.

Therefore I went for a simple star.  I cut two star shapes out of aqua felt, using a plastic star template I had hanging around my craft room.

Cute and easy felt star Christmas decoration for your tree.

I sewed them together using blanket stitch and 4 strands of white embroidery thread.  (I think it was 4 strands anyway, I've already gone a little vague!)

I lightly stuffed the star just before finishing the blanket stitch, and then sewed a button on both sides through the middle, to add a bit of interest and emphasise the padded look.

Cute and easy felt star Christmas decoration for your tree.

Before sewing together, I embroidered the year on the back - which I plan to do with every decoration I make each year.  I also sewed the hanging loop of ribbon to the inside of the back piece, before sewing together.

It was up on the tree after dark on Christmas Eve...

Cute and easy felt star Christmas decoration for your tree.
Front

Cute and easy felt star Christmas decoration for your tree.
Back

I'm glad I managed to start this tradition in the nick of time.  I hope to do something a bit more elaborate next year... although the baby is due in May, so I have no idea how much time or motivation I'll have for crafting!  The tradition might start and end this year!



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Saturday, 15 December 2018

Origami Paper Baubles

Well, it's been a while!  Things have been very busy here...

A few days after my last post, we got a happy positive result on a pregnancy test - I am now nearly 20 weeks pregnant!  Very exciting!

We also moved house in the second half of October, which kept us busy packing up the old house and trying to get sorted here in the new house.  We still have a way to go!

As well as that, I went through a 30 day collective consultation at work throughout November, but am relieved to report that I managed to keep my job.  Not everyone was as lucky, unfortunately, so it's been a strange time at work.

With all that going on, I have not achieved much in the way of crafting.  However, while unpacking my craft room last weekend, I found some origami paper and was instantly inspired to abandon my unpacking and create some paper baubles I'd seen on Pinterest!

Make these cute origami paper baubles!

You can find the pin here.  I prefer the baubles from the pin - the paper is gorgeous!  But I was just using what I had, and it was fun anyway!

I started with a blue one...

Make these cute origami paper baubles!

Then had to try a couple more colours...

Make these cute origami paper baubles!

You use two squares of paper - one for the top, one for the bottom.  They're actually not really origami, as you have to make a couple of cuts, and you stick the two halves together.  I'm sure it has another name, but I don't know what it is!

Make these cute origami paper baubles!

I then dug out some Christmassy scrap-booking/card-making paper squares I had.  These two were the result...

Make these cute origami paper baubles!

I love that paper on the right!!  It was my favourite when I used it in card-making years ago, and this bauble has finished the last couple of sheets.  I just love that funky spin on the traditional Christmas colours.

The Christmas paper was thicker than my origami paper, which I think gave a better finish, as it got less crumpled during the very fiddly part of sticking the two halves together.  The folding is easy - it's that sticking which is a tricky little blighter!  Although, the folds in corners are a bit neater on the thinner paper as doing a tight fold on thicker paper is more tricky.  All in all, though, I think they look pretty good!  What do you think?

Hopefully I won't leave it so long before my next post - I need to get busy creating... I've got a couple of things near to completion... and I'll have to fit some baby makes in!



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Sunday, 2 September 2018

YouTube Video / Podcast 3

I've recorded another podcast!  Here are the notes about the things I chatted about.

You can find the video embedded below...



Or click here to view on YouTube.

Mentions

My completed stripy crochet blanket.  See the blog post here.



This yarn below by Dandelion and Dogwood with which I've knitted the Rosewater Shawl by Janina Kallio (still awaiting blocking):



I'm following the Winwick Mum Sockalong to make my socks.  Yarn is Stylecraft Head Over Heels 3103 Eiger.



Bunny Sock blockers are from the Knitting Shed.  First seen on Jooles - Sew Sweet Violet - blog/podcast.

Projects bags from Sam - Betsy Makes and Debbie - The Crimson Rabbit (plus yarn from Sam too.)

Animal Friends of Pica Pau (affiliate link) given to me by Matt of A Boy and Bunting.

I think that was everything!  I hope you enjoy the video!



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Thursday, 23 August 2018

Stripy Crochet Blanket

Hello!  Sorry it's been a while - the time is flying lately and I feel like I'm not staying on top of things.  However, I am here at last to show the stripy crochet blanket that I have finally finished!!  This has been in the making for nearly 5 years!


Beautiful cute and easy stripy crochet blanket.


This is made from King Cole Cottonsoft DK, which is such a lovely soft yarn to work with, with a 5mm hook (instead of the 4mm recommended, as I have tight tension).

The colours are:

White (710)
Sky (714)
Mint (715)
Saxe (718)
Jade (781)

I used 3 balls of each, so 15 balls 100g balls in total.

Beautiful cute and easy stripy crochet blanket.

It's a pretty big blanket, as you can see from it draped over (and covering!) my armchair.  It's quite difficult to get a good picture of, but I've tried some different shots to give an idea...

Beautiful cute and easy stripy crochet blanket.

The stripes of colour are in three different thicknesses - 2 row stripes, 4 row stripes, and 6 row stripes.  It is made entirely from treble(UK)/double(US) crochet.  Each colour is used evenly throughout the blanket, in an apparently random way.  It's not random, of course - it was very carefully planned out!  I'm clearly too uptight for the random method!  ;)

Beautiful cute and easy stripy crochet blanket.

It's big and soft and great to snuggle under!

Beautiful cute and easy stripy crochet blanket.

I can't believe I've finally finished it, after all this time!  You can actually see it in my first podcast (my YouTube channel is here) but it wasn't quite finished then.  I am planning to record another video in the next week or so, and will be sure to show it off then!

Beautiful cute and easy stripy crochet blanket.


If you're interested, my colour order and stripe plan is below:

Beautiful cute and easy stripy crochet blanket.


Check out my completed crochet items here.



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Tuesday, 31 July 2018

Heart Embroidery - A Beautiful Gift

My dear friend, Anna, gave me this beautiful cross-stitch heart picture as a wedding gift when I got married back in May.


Heart cross-stitch - wedding gift

It is always so special to receive a handmade gift.  As a maker, myself, I appreciate the work which goes into something handmade, and it always means so much to me.  (I had been secretly hoping for a treasure made by Anna - I was not disappointed!!!)


Heart cross-stitch - wedding gift

I thought I'd share it here, as it's so pretty and clever.  She picked turquoise colours - as I love them!


Heart cross-stitch - wedding gift

Thank you so much Anna - I will treasure it!


Heart cross-stitch - wedding gift




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Sunday, 15 July 2018

YouTube Video / Podcast Two

Yes, I've recorded another one!  I talk about cross stitch, crochet and knitting... with a little bit of chat.

You can find it embedded below...


Or you can view on YouTube here.

Mentions
This yarn below by Dandelion and Dogwood with which I'm knitting the Rosewater Shawl by Janina Kallio:


My African Flower cushion - find out more here.


Extreme knitting - find out more here.


I hope you enjoy it!



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Sunday, 1 July 2018

YouTube Video / Podcast One

Well... I've been thinking of doing this for a while - and today I just went ahead and did it!  I've recorded a video for YouTube!  I have a new Dinki Dots channel... and I plan to do podcasts every now and then.  (Actually, I always thought podcasts were audio only - not video - but in the crafting world everyone seems to call the craft videos podcasts... so I've gone with it...)

It is not the most flattering video - I think I need to position my laptop (with webcam) higher, so that I'm not looking down.  Also the lighting didn't make me look great - a darkened room would probably do the trick in that area!  ;)  I was quite nervous as well - it was a weird experience!  Hopefully I'll get used to it and will be more relaxed in future.  It is certainly not the most polished of videos - but it's a start!  If I waited for perfection, I'd never upload anything!  I can improve in time, I hope.

It's just a short video - about 10 minutes - although it's taking forever to upload.  As I type this, there are still 2 hours to go of upload time.  Rob says it's because our broadband is rubbish.  So, it's lucky I didn't film any longer!

When it's uploaded (and when I figure out how) I will embed the video below:


Or you can view over on YouTube here.

Mentions:
Debbie of The Crimson Rabbit (shop)
Anna of Nrelva blog
Sam of Betsy Makes (shop)
Lucy of Attic24


Hopefully it's not too unbearable to watch!  It's a bit scary putting it out there!


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Monday, 18 June 2018

Wedding Signs, Sweetie Bag Labels and a Decorative Tree

Isn't that a catchy title?!  This is the last of my wedding craft related posts - phew!  I've grouped the outstanding bits into this post, and then we'll hear no more about it!

*I've linked to the products I used - if they've got an asterix then they are an affiliate link.  If not, then they're not.  You don't pay anything more for using an affiliate link - I would just get a few pennies if you did buy anything.  (I think I would, anyway - I wouldn't really know as I've never earned anything so far, in the very very rare times I've tried using an affiliate link!  But that's fine by me - I'm just a hobby blogger!)

I made a couple of signs for the wedding.  One to go with the guest book...

Wedding Guest Book Sign

I printed on the same hammered card I used for all the rest of my wedding crafting (hard to see the texture in the photo, but it made it look a little fancier!) and put it in a box frame with a gold bow.

Wedding Guest Book Sign

The gold bow picked up the gold on the guest book and the pens.  I made crepe paper peonies to go with them as a bit of extra decoration.

Links to items:
Pen 1 *


The other sign was for the sweet table...

Wedding Sweet Table Sign

This was the same style box frame as the other one.  I just had these at home - bought from Homebase years ago.  I printed on the hammered card again and used an aqua bow this time - that matched all the place names and menus.  The colour scheme of the wedding was aqua with touches of pink and a bit of gold.

Wedding Sweet Table Sign and Paper Sweet Bags with Cute Labels

I made labels for the sweetie bags.  I ordered the bags from Amazon - links below - and designed my own labels that I printed off and stuck on.


Wedding Sweet Table Sign and Paper Sweet Bags with Cute Labels

And finally, I decorated a white decorative tree with aqua, pink and gold bows that I made from ribbon.  I firstly wrapped it in tiny wire fairy lights, that I already had from a couple of Christmases ago.

Wedding Sweet Table Sign and Paper Sweet Bags with Cute Labels

This went on the sweet table too.

Aqua Ribbon (I think it's this one - I bought it in store)
The pink and gold ribbon was also from Hobbycraft, but I'm not sure which ones.

Here was the sweet table on the day...

Wedding Sweet Table Sign and Paper Sweet Bags with Cute Labels
Photo by LJ Photographics

I don't think the lights on the tree were switched on yet - as they were only put on when the evening guests arrived and the sweet table was made available to all!

Links to:
Sweet Jars * (they were plastic)
Sweet Tongs - I bought them from ebay, but the seller appears to have been removed from ebay!  There are plenty on Amazon, though - like these * which look the same as the ones I bought.

And I do believe that is it on the Wedding crafting front!



Check out more of my wedding crafting here. 


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Saturday, 9 June 2018

DIY Wedding Place Names and Menus

Are you bored of posts related to wedding crafting yet?!  Sorry if you are - I have been working on a long-standing crochet blanket project... so there will be other crafting to show you!

However, before my wedding is old news, I wanted to document the things I made for it.  I thought it might give ideas for anyone planning a wedding - as well as something I can look back on in future years!

Click to find out how to make gorgeous DIY wedding place names and menus!

I made all the place names for my wedding - 98 of them!  (Well, actually 100 as two guests couldn't make it and I found out in the nick of time to replace them with two others!)

I used this card* (*affiliate link) which is a lovely lightly hammered card.  It's hard to see the texture in my pictures, but it looked great in real life.  I was worried whether it would go through the printer ok - but I had no problems at all.  The print on the card was also nice and crisp and black - a better finish than on normal paper, I found.

Click to find out how to make gorgeous DIY wedding place names and menus!

I liked the idea of going for something a little different to the usual place names I'd seen - which were mostly landscape rather than portrait (wider rather than taller).

I also wanted to put everyone's menu choices on the back.  I know when I attend anything I usually forget what I ordered, so it's nice to have a reminder!  It also helped the catering staff when handing out the food.

Click to find out how to make gorgeous DIY wedding place names and menus!

The way I made these was to use Word to create a table with five columns - each column made one place name.

Click to find out how to make gorgeous DIY wedding place names and menus!

Each column was 5.2cm wide and each row (there were two rows) was 7.25 cm high.  (You might need to reduce the margins to fit that on the page - and make sure the last column hasn't been cut smaller if it doesn't fit on the page.)

I presented the names in the same way for all guests - with the script font for their first names and the other font for their surnames.  For Rob and me, the script was on the bottom - for 'Bride' and 'Groom'.

For the menu choices, I added a text box and formatted it so that the text was upside down.  This meant that once printed and folded, the menu choices were the right way up.

I altered the table lines to a pale grey, so that I could see them when I printed them out - but when cut you wouldn't be able to really tell that there were any lines there.

Once one page was ready, I copied the table onto as many pages as I needed and amended the names and menu choices - that took a while!!  I'd do it in stages, a few a day!

I cut them all out with a guillotine, then folded along the middle line.  Make sure you don't cut across the middle line - as then you're cutting the place names in half - yes, I did that once!!  Very annoying!

Once cut out and folded, it was "just" a matter of tying a length of aqua organza ribbon around the front of each place name.  I cut my ribbon to 32 cm lengths, snipped out a 'V' on each end, then tied a bow around the top front of each place name.  The bows drove me mad!!!  Trying to get them even and looking good was quite tricky!  If you don't mind wasting ribbon you could cut longer lengths, tie your bow, then snip off the ends to make the legs of the bow the same length.  I thought doing that for so many place names, I would end up wasting way too much ribbon, so I did it the hard way!

Here are ours on the big day!

Click to find out how to make gorgeous DIY wedding place names and menus!
Photo by LJ Photographics

The menu choices on the place names were abbreviations of the full description, so I created a menu for each table with all the options.

Click to find out how to make gorgeous DIY wedding place names and menus!

I made 11 of these - one for each table.  I used the same hammered card, and this time made a table in Word with three columns, each 9.05cm wide.  There was only one row, and it was the height of the page.  I used the same font as the place names to type up the menu, copied it onto each column, and printed the page out as many times as I needed.

I cut them out with the guillotine, tied (yet more!) bows and stuck them to the bottom with glue dots.

A couple of shots from the day...

Click to find out how to make gorgeous DIY wedding place names and menus!
Photo by LJ Photographics

Click to find out how to make gorgeous DIY wedding place names and menus!
Photo by LJ Photographics

What do you think?  Would you consider making your own place names and menus for your wedding?



Check out more of my wedding crafting here. 


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Thursday, 7 June 2018

DIY Crate Wedding Table Plan

We are now back from a wonderful honeymoon in Mauritius!  So... here is another wedding craft post for you!

I made my own Table Plan for the wedding, using a crate we received from my sister-in-law (who was my bridesmaid) as a hamper full of goodies when we got engaged.


How to make your own vintage crate wedding table plan - cute and easy!

I turned it on it's side and decorated the top with crepe paper peonies.  I made others for the wedding too, and you can find out all about how I made them and what I used here.

Once the flowers were in place, I wrapped two lengths of gold ribbon around the crate, tying them tightly at the back.

Now... the slight rough edges of the box, along with the glittery texture of the ribbon, meant that the ribbon didn't slip or move at all - it gripped well.  If you were using a more silky slippy ribbon, you would probably want to use some hot glue, glue dots, or something similar to make your ribbon stay in place.

I printed each table's number and guests onto hammered white card, and cut them out.  To fasten them to the ribbon, I used a glue dot at the top of the card and pressed it to the back of the ribbon, positioning the cards evenly across the length.  I then added the mini pegs, which gave a bit of extra fastening security, as well as looking pretty!


How to make your own vintage crate wedding table plan - cute and easy!

I hot-glue-gunned pink and aqua bows to the table plan, for some extra decoration.

Then to finish off I used a beautiful frame which I already had at home - it is a Matthew Williamson one, from Debenhams.  For inside that frame I used the hammered card again and printed our names, the date of the wedding and the top table list.

It was all quite simple, but I was pleased with how it looked.


How to make your own vintage crate wedding table plan - cute and easy!


How to make your own vintage crate wedding table plan - cute and easy!


Check out more of my wedding crafting here. 


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Saturday, 19 May 2018

Mint to Be - Wedding Tic Tac Label

I am now a married woman!!!  Who'd've thought it?!  Our wedding day was yesterday and it all went wonderfully!  I'm too exhausted to do much other than get everything packed and ready for the honeymoon (and that's only because we have to!) but I'd already written this wedding craft blog post, so thought I'd publish it today... here goes... (Incidentally neither of us actually ate a single Tic Tac throughout the day!  I'm putting mine in my hand-luggage bag, though, so it might get used yet!)

As a little bit of fun, I made a few pretty Tic Tac labels for the wedding.

I bought a pack of four boxes of Tic Tacs, and removed the labels from them.  That was a bit tricky as they were quite sticky - I heated them with a hairdryer to help the process along!

I then created a quick label design which I printed onto label paper.  The labels on the paper were bigger than I needed, but I just cut my label designs out once printed.  In case you are interested, the label I created was 2.9cm x 9.45cm.

On one side, I put...

Cute mint to be tic tac labels for wedding gifts or favours

On the other side...


Cute mint to be tic tac labels for wedding gifts or favours

The 'Mint to be' idea was something I'd spotted all over Pinterest, and thought it was quite cute.  Some people use this idea for favours, but we didn't have favours - instead opting for a sweet table.  I made these because I decided to put a box of Tic Tacs in the handbags of my bridesmaid and me - to keep us minty fresh throughout the day!  I then got struck with the creative urge to have a bit of fun with them... as if I didn't have enough to do!


Cute mint to be tic tac labels for wedding gifts or favours

I made four because there were four boxes in the pack - the other two I gave to my parents.  They weren't manly enough for Rob to take one!  ;)


Cute mint to be tic tac labels for wedding gifts or favours

I thought it was a nice thing to have in my bridesmaid's bag, alongside a little pocket mirror that I bought from a seller on Etsy.


Cute mint to be tic tac labels for wedding gifts or favours

The mirror was from here.



Check out more of my wedding crafting here. 


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