Welcome to my little corner of the blogosphere to share the ups and downs of starting a craft business, with plenty of tips, mishaps and the odd glass of wine!

Thursday, 24 May 2012

The Fascinating World of Fascinators

For those of you who follow me on Facebook or Twitter you'll probably be aware that I decided to spend my birthday money on a Fascinator workshop, which finally arrived (seemed like forever, though in reality was less than a month after my birthday!) on Monday this week. My tutor was a lovely lady named Lenette Isko, who began making couture hats and fascinators 6 years ago when she was faced with the prospect of 4 weddings in one summer!

My day with Lenette started at 10am, at her home in Longhope, Forest of Dean (so a nice easy 10 minute drive from my house!) and immediately I felt at ease in her company and knew I was going to really enjoy my day.

Lenette showed me a huge range of fascinators that she had made and after working out which ones I preferred  we got to work on the basics of rolling. Rolling means to roll the edges of the sinamay (the material fascinators are most often made from) rather like rolling a cigarette or a joint - I knew all that practice when I was younger would come in handy ;-)

Having decided that I didn't actually want to make my fascinator with the rolled flower petals, I'm very glad that she showed me how to because my 1st commission (later that same day!) was from a friend who is going to the same wedding I am this Saturday and who needed a fascinator fast, so I put my new-found skill to the test and have made her a black and pale blue effort:

I'm really quite proud of this as it was without any help, but I am totally in love with the one I made at the workshop... it's exactly the kind of thing I've recently seen other people wearing and that I've, quite frankly, lusted after! (I know, I'm odd!!) so here is my lovely creation (which obviously I made with quite a lot of help on the day!):

My one is made from the same material, but the two round base layers are stitched together with a bais trim on each layer and then the thick loops are made from a long piece of bias with the edges ironed in (this stuff sticks to itself - so clever!) and the thinner loops are made from a piece of bias with wire sewn into it, to keep it in place, then all artfully arranged (ahem, more luck than judgement!) and sewn together. Et voila!

Sorry for the rather long post... I'll spare you the details of Seren's headband (my 3 year old) until next week (after the wedding) and once I've got stuff to say about things other than hair embellishments!

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

So much to do... so little time!

Well, I have managed to get a couple of things finished this week... but that's just left me with even more that needs doing!

First up, the Cuddly London Bus - FINISHED & in my Etsy shop- Hurrah! Patrick loved it (sadly no pic of him cuddling it as I keep forgetting to take one!):

The other thing that I've had sitting in my work in progress box for weeks is a bunch of Snowls (so called because when I asked Seren what she thought the first one was, she replied 'Itsnowl' which came out as 'Its a Snowl'!) which are now finished & also listed in my Etsy shop:

My next thing is something I've done, but can't talk about yet! (I know, what a tease!) It's a tutorial for part of my Union Jack Swap... but until I know that my lovely swap partner has received it, then I can't show you! So you'll just have to wait (but I promise it won't be long!)

Aaaaand finally, I've been contacted by the first customer I had on Etsy (who coincidentally was also my first customer who I didn't know, which made him very special! He bought some Christmas items last year (stockings and tree decs) and he's super organised and is already thinking about this Christmas and what he might send over the pond, so I'm working on a new item for him this afternoon!

Phew... after all that I think I need to go and get a cuppa and some chocolate (shush - don't tell my weight watchers leader!!)

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

The Log Cabin: Giveaway!

Wow - firstly, thank you to Emma (from The Log Cabin) for being my very first follower!! Am chuffed :-)

In going to have a nosey at Emma's blog I noticed that she's having a giveaway - I've entered.... the goodies look lovely & she's a very talented lady, so I wanted to share it here

The Log Cabin: Giveaway!

Good Luck and if you're the winner and you found Emma through my blog, I'd love to hear back from you when you get your prize!

London Bus – 3D and Cuddly!

My 21 month old son, Patrick is currently obsessed with Buses – from our kitchen windowsill he can be entertained for (what feels like) hours waiting for the next bus to go past, and then hollers at whoever is nearest that he’s seen a bus. This can be very entertaining (and noisy!) and it’s just as well that Gloucestershire County Council have just laid on a new bus route through our village!

We're actually heading up to London this weekend to stay with family, so a trip on a real London Bus is definitely in order, but in the meantime I decided that I would make him his own bus to play with. Given that he’s also very into cuddly toys (we have a collection that have to go to bed with him every night!) I am attempting to make it a 3D cuddly bus! I’m not quite finished with it yet, but here’s a couple of work in progress shots. 

If it works well, I’ll list it in the shop should anyone require one for their little motoring enthusiasts!

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