......Master of none, as my mum used to say. And that just about sums me up right now.
I apologise to friends whom I haven´t visited recently. There are several reasons. 1) I don´t ´do´halloween, and nearly every blog I see has had a halloween card on it recently so I don´t open them. (It´s a personal thing and no offense intended). 2). I have lost my Bloglovin´feed right now and have been too busy to reset it. I managed to mess up my brand new computer with a lot of unwanted downloads, and my long-suffering hubby had to sort it out, but a lot of my bookmarks disappeared on the way. So I have missed some posts, but next week I should be back on track. 3) And finally, I have been very busy making lots of bits and pieces, at the last minute as usual, for a craft table at a coffee morning for my church, which was today. It was at a friends house, and she gets quite a crowd there, so I was keen to have something to show them.
This might be a rather long post, but I´ve added lots of photos so I hope you won´t be bored. So here are the sort of things I made.Christmas decorations:
The top two are large glass baubles that a friend brought back from UK for me. The images are cut from vinyl and adhered to a clear plastic circle of acetate, which is then curled up and pushed inside the bauble where it, hopefully springs open and stays in place. I find that if I cut the circle to fit exactly and leave a small tag on it to go in the neck, this works quite well. A little snow is added on each side of the image and the cap is replaced and glued on. Then they just need a hanging loop and a bow.
The bottom row are smaller plastic baubles which open into two halves. I poured acrylic medium inside them and drained it out again, and then added glitter and mica powder until they were covered. I left them to dry overnight and then sealed them back together. I cut the word Rejoice, and some snowflakes, from metallic vinyl and stuck these on the outside, and again added a hanging loop and a bow. Because they are small, the surface is very curved and it is difficult to make the lettering lay completely flat, but with a bit of patience it is possible! I made these in a variety of colours and they looked really pretty.
To cut the vinyl I first make the design on the computer and adjust it to the exact size I want. Then I divide it up into the different colours, and place little pieces of the vinyl where I want them to cut. Because the mat has a grid on it, which I can reproduce on the computer screen, I am able to place the vinyl in just the right place. So the mat starts off looking like the top of this picture, and if I am lucky, after it is cut, and the unwanted pieces are weeded out, I end up with the lower picture. Well I was nearly lucky. The more observant of you will have noticed that I lost the first ´O´ from the black lettering, so that had to be cut again, and the silver piece moved while the tiny stars were cutting, so that had to be scrapped and redone. But on the whole that was quite good.Lace decorations:
I crocheted these just because I saw the pattern on the internet and wanted to give them a go.
A friend had given me some fine cotton and I wanted her to know that I had used some of it. I chose the ivory one for the bells. They were not too difficult but very fiddly for my fingers! When they were made I dipped them in liquid starch, and pulled them over a ping-pong ball wrapped in cling film and left them hanging freely overnight to dry. Then I sewed a bell to the chain I had made inside them, and added some gold glitter glue around them and a bow at the top. For speed, to add all the bows I dug out my hot glue gun which I hadn´t used since I came out here. I needed more glue sticks, and when I went to buy them, I could only buy a kilo bag, so I have enough glue sticks now to last a lifetime! The angel was a very last minute affair as I only finished her at midnight last night. So I dipped her in the starch and shaped her skirt, and while she was still very wet I added silver glitter glue, and hung her up to dry. Fortunately, this morning she was dry enough to add to my bag.
This is not my idea at all. I saw it on Pinterest and traced it back to source. There was a link to the music paper and the central image as free downloads, and a video tutorial, so I copied it because I thought it was a lovely idea, and a bit different from the usual. Again I used the hot glue gun to assemble it, and a few burnt fingers and lots of glue strings reminded me why I had hidden the gun away. But it is fast and efficient, so I must practice being more careful with it! I did add some glitter to the little girl´s fur trim, and a big double bow at the top because even vintage decorations need a bit of bling for me.
Apart from decorations I knitted these which I showed on my other blog a couple of weeks back. Each one covers a Ferrero Rocher chocolate. I later made the rest of the set so all the box of chocolates were covered, and they sold well. I would make these again. They are so cute.
Then I had a few more knitted and crocheted items such as this little patchwork puppy, and the crocheted basket containing pot pourri. Again this was a pattern I wanted to try. It is called crocodile stitch, and I think it is ratherattractive.
Here are some more things made with vinyl, cut on my silhouette Cameo.
The top two are large gold plates that I bought in a charity shop, and the lower pair are very small glass candle plates. Again it was fun designing them and sizing them just right. It doesn´t help that I am now used to working in centimetres, but the machine is American so the grid on the mat is in inches! So I have to have my sensible hat on when I am doing this. I was pleased with the plates and they all sold.
The Spanish do not decorate in the same way as we do for Christmas, but they do like their candles. At this time of year there are shelves and shelves of them in the todo shops. I bought a few plain white ones in non-flamable plastic sleeves, and I decorated them. This was another idea I saw on the internet, and it used a special craft film that I had to send to America for. It is very thin, on a paper backing, and it is ink-jet printable. So I used Photoshop and some digi scrapbook collections, to design covers that would fit around my candles. Here is one of them.
Once printed they had to sit overnight to dry completely. Then you peel off the backing, being careful not to stretch the film, spray adhesive all over the item to be covered, and lay the film ink side down onto the glue. This one was rather pale once it was on the candle, so I did some more with much darker designs. Then I added some shiny ribbon top and bottom, and used glitter glue to highlight the images. As the candles burn down they will glow through the design and should look quite pretty. I do like to have a go at new techniques and materials even if I only do them once!
Calendars: Also using Photoshop and a selection of photos that I have taken around the area over the passed year or two, I designed the pages for a calendar. I used a purchased calendar kit, because it saves the tiresome bit of aligning the dates etc as it is done for you. In the kit there were also additional elements that I matched to some of my photos. If there wasn´t a suitable one, I found something from a different kit. Here is one of the pages as an example. I used a zutter bind-it-all to put it together. I only made three (plus the first two that needed some tweaking, so I kept one for my own use and sent the other to my sister Jean), because they are fairly expensive to print and I didn´t want to waste them. But folk liked them, especially because they has Spanish places on them. Usually we can only buy them from UK with English scenes on. I sold the three I took and got orders to make seven more.
From Kate´s Kitchen:
Of course, no craft table of mine would be complete without a range of jams and pickles, and at this time of year, mincepies. So one end of my table was food and the other was all the rest. I only had a little space but I managed, and I took 125€ which is very good for a little coffee morning, so it was worth it.
Well done to anyone who is still with me. I´ll be back soon with some cards I managed to put together along with this motley selection, but I promise it will be a much shorted post.
Making these gave me the opportunity to use up lots of scraps of vinyl, paper, felt, ribbon and wool, so I shall link up over at the Snippets Playground, as I haven´t had time to play for a while.