The Purr-fect Craft?

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As well as a lover of awful puns I love stripey socks and my cat, Harley. There are also odd occasions when I love a good clean out and this craft managed to bring all of these things together – how clawsome! (ger-oan!)

One Caterday (even I winced at that one) I sat and sorted out the mountain of odd socks that myself and Mr L seem to amass, I swear there are socks in that pile I don’t ever remember either of us wearing! (It’s a meowystery – too far? Too far) In the pile were four stripey monster socks.

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Which I have loved since I bought them for Mr L, with the sole intention of stealing them and wearing them myself. (The original cat burglar – I know, not even trying now!)

I couldn’t throw them out and knew that Harley loved them as well as she always chased our feet when we were wearing them and so I thought I could turn them into cat toys.

The process was pretty simple.

  1. I cut each of them in half, discarding the bottom half of the sock (which I may have plans for!)
  2. I then used extra strong thread and did a running stitch round the bottom half of the sock (turning it inside out first). I then pulled that tight and secured it with several stitches. 2017-10-07 12.29.01.jpg
  3. I then stitched in a small bell (bought at Christmas time, because we knew we would have a use for them someday!) and turned the sock right way out. 2017-10-07 12.28.47
  4. I then layered stuffing and cat nip in much the same way as you would a lasagna!2017-10-07 12.32.29
  5. Finally I did another running stitch and gather at the top of the sock (Just below the rib part of the sock.) Again to secure it I did several stitches to secure it. Because I liked the idea of the monster having a beanie style hat I pulled down the rib.
  6. And then I gave  it to Harley, fully expecting in the way of fickle cats that she would walk on by and I would need to be fully purr-suasive (last one, promise) to get her to even look at them but no! She has played with them and even snuggled up to one during Fireworks Night.
  7. 2017-10-31 21.46.481-2-3 Awww,

 

Lxxx

Saw it on Pinterest, Tried it in real life part 1.

Pinterest, a crafter’s best and worst friend. A best friend because it will offer you advice, give you inspiration and will be there when you are bored. The worst? The Pinevny of seeing a beautiful craft/living room/recipe and wondering if you will ever get round to making it. 

There are, however, occasions when you DO get round to trying that Pin out and this will be the first in an occasional series looking at what happens when we do try a Pinterest craft out. 

We came across this awesome craft from: http://homemademodernblog.com/2015/03/denim-pocket-organizers-trend-alert.html 

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love demin and knew this pocket idea would be the perfect way to get slightly more organised in my wee home office. 

The denim we used was from a favourite pair of Mr Lane’s and they had awesome pockets: a couple of bigger pockets and one that we could use with a smaller embroidery hoop. 

The most important thing is to keep the tension tight at the back of the embroidery hoop so that the pocket sits neatly at the front. 

Here is our version:

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So would definitely say that this was a Pwin! 

Lane xx

Bunting

2017-09-23 11.51.45Recently my auntie came down for a visit from Shetland. It always good to catch up with her, like us she is a craft-aholic and it was a visit full of swapping ideas, admiring crafts and sparking inspiration.

A good way to thank someone who loves crafts is to make them something – they appreciate why you have done it and will also let you go on about how you made it! She (and a group of crafting buddies) are going to start sellingtheir crafts at craft fairs and so we said thanks for visiting by making bunting for her stall!

 

2017-09-23 11.52.15 The name of the group is “Nort Vynd”.

The writing was done on an embrodiery machine – as was the wee flower and the piping was silver bias binding which helps makes the writing pop.

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There is something so tactile about this fabric and the coolness of the lettering really makes the navy stand out.

Now thinking what else we could use bunting for!

Lxx

Wooden Spoon Puppets

To be honest I always thought that the most fun you could have with a wooden spoon was licking cake mixture off them. Who knew the world of fun you can have making wooden spoon puppets! 20170718_073229.jpg

These wooden spoons came from Asda and were a budget-saving 50p each! I know this may sound like a funny thing to rave about but they were lovely to work with, smooth and a lovely shape.

Each spoon used various materials and I used a lot of insprialtion from Pinterest – the crafters one stop shop for ideas!

The Witch – Painted green (with poster paint from Hobbycraft) with electricans’ tape for the body (bought from the pound shop – a whole stack of colours and each tape had enough to do two/three spoons) and foam for the dress and hat. They are easy to make, you simply cut two of the same shape and glue the pieces that meet – this holds them in place.  And pipe cleaner arms (here is question, do people actually use pipe cleaners to clean anymore or any they only used for crafting?)

The Monster – Painted pink and then decorated with googly eyes and pipecleaners. I glued the pipe cleaners in place so that they didn’t move when playing with them.

The Ninja – A personal favourite! Used electricans’ tape for the whole thing. Used the white first for the eyes and then wound the black tape up the handle of the spoon and then lengths of tape for the spoon part. It takes some concentration to make sure that the tape sticks on the bend of the spoon but well worth it!

The Tiger – Painted orange with poster paint and then I used a Sharpie to draw the stripes on.

The Pirate – Was nervous making this one incase i had to walk the plank if I messed up! Again it is mostly made from tape – the dotty fabric was from a pack from the pound shop – sticky on one side so it made it very easy to use. Beard was made with Sharpie.

The Mummy – Bandages wound tightly and stuck on with glue.

The Ghost – Simply painted white (took a few coats!) and then face drawn on with Sharpie.

The Snake – Again electiran’s tape – covered it all in green and then cut and stuck to add detail. Especialy love the tongue which is made out of red foam.

The Lion – Very quick make but rawrsome! Paint spoon yellow and then cut out two manes to stick together – you just have to remember to cut a hole in one of them for the face to show through!

The Dragon – Once made 30 of these for Beavers to make up so making this one up brought back happy memories! Again a simple make of paint and foam – paint the dragon and then cut out foam wings and fire and stick on.

What was even cooler was making wooden spoons with my neice. It was fun to see her ideas transform from in her head to the actual spoons.

May I introduce Princess Fartalotti and Prince Stupido! (and another monster for them to vanquish!) I especially like the beard on the prince as it shows how effective foam can be.

So if I ever visit your house and your wooden spoons disappear you know I will be turning them into something really cool!

Lane xx

 

Mermaid Swimming Bag

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This lovely mermaid bag is for a Christmas present and was a joint project between Givie (maker of bag) and Lane (mermaid drawer and crystal sewing queen!)

The bag itself is upcycled/adapted from a bag used to protect shoes and meant that we didn’t have to make the cord and some of the seams were already made….result! 

We started with a drawing of a mermaid – drawn by Lane. This also allowed us to work out how many beads and crystals we would need for the tail. 

Then using vintage carbon paper (discovered in an old sewing box bought online) we carefully traced out the pattern onto the fabric.

Then using Sharpies we coloured in the body and hair. This is the first time we have used Sharpies on our crafts but were pleased with the results. You just have to be careful about bleeding into the fabric – but found that vertical strokes of the pen helped cut this out.

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Then came the fun part the embellishments using metallic thread and crystals to decorate the mermaid. Once I had got used to the fiddly nature of the crystals (I only swore a few times!) it was actually fun, like a sparkly jigsaw! I used satin stitch for the top of the mermaid tail and cross stitch for the top and fin. Metallic thread is definitely a challenging sew – I always find it snags and bunches unless you are careful but think the end effect was worth it!

Then all that was left was passing it to Givie to finish up the final bag.

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A very enjoyable project – and one that we would both do again! (even with the metallic thread)

Lane x

Lane: Tissue Paper Decoupage

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My name is Lane and I am a decoupage addict – I have decoupaged many different items; picture frames, shop dummy and even the cistern of a toilet. Have glue will decoupage seems to be my motto!

Recently I have been enjoying decoupaging with tissue paper onto glass items. I love the way the texture and depth of colour changes when you layer the paper and this is especially true when I have been using an ombre effect with my jars.

Here is my guide to decoupaging tissue paper glass jars:

Step One: Get ready.

This will work on any glass items but for this one I used glass jars purchased from a supermarket. Charity shops are also a great place to find glass items with the added bonus of the thrill of the hunt!

I use Mod Podge for my decoupage because it is quick and easy and also gives a really good coverage/protection. The final coat of this project was with Mod Podge with glitter because glitter is awesome. #fact.

The tissue paper is just normal tissue paper — just check the colour doesn’t run as that has happened with some tissue paper I got in a pound shop but normally that isn’t an issue.

Step Two: Decoupage!

Rip the tissue paper up. I prefer random shapes and sizes but you can also get an awesome effect by using regular shapes or sizes.

Add the Mod Podge to the jar, place the tissue paper on and then use the brush (with Mod Podge on it) to cover and smooth any bumps. You can also use your fingers to smooth over any bumps and then you get that child-like joy in peeling the glue off your fingers! (or is that just me?)

2017-09-10 11.46.11 Work in progress – with glue not yet dry.

 

Step Three: Keep going!

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It can be helpful to have a few jars on the go so that while the glue is drying on one end of the jar you can be decoupaging another one. You will find that by using different sides of the tissue paper (there is a rough side and a smooth side) you will have different thickness and by layering up the tissue you can also create different textures and shapes.

Don’t over plan it – which as a self-professed control freak is a big thing for me to say! – I have always found that decoupage is an organic craft and the way the shapes land on the jar will determine how the end jar will look.

2017-09-10 17.11.42 Step Four: The Ombre effect.

I am in love with this effect – I think it is an excellent way to add interest and colour and particular works in longer items such as this jar or a vase. Find three matching colours and my best advice is to start with the lightest colour first.

I would also start at the bottom of the ombre effect and work up – so for the white section start 1/3 of the way down the jar and work up to the lid. This way you will ensure that it is neater and you are less likely to go to far with the white ombre. It is also okay to cover the lighter colour with the dark and this gives you the freedom to decide where each piece of tissue paper goes.

Step Five: Final coat

I always put one final coat of Mod Podge over the decoupage. It probably has enough coverage just by you working on it but I think it gives it a nice finish and allows you to check that you have not missed any bits of the jar (which is easier than you think!)

In this project I used Glitter Mod Podge which adds a subtle effect to the jar without the usual annoyance of getting glitter everywhere for days! (which ALWAYS annoys Mr Lane!)

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And that is it! It is a lovely simply craft that is so much fun to do and I think gives results that are always stunning!

Lane xx

PS Keep an eye on our Folksy store for some of these jars!

Givie: Crafting Memories

Hi I’m Givie the mother of this crafting partnership. Knitting and sewing are my forte. (Not a surprise if you’ve read Lane’s post.) My Mum was English who met and fell in love with, in her Mum’s words ‘a bloody foreigner’ or to be more accurate a Scotsman.

I can remember the flurry of actively that followed a parcel from English Gran – you see it would be full of material from the market in Cannock – material that was much nicer and more importantly cheaper than anything Mum could get. Out would come the treadle Singer sewing machine, and the game of shops would begin.  

Shops? I hear you mutter. Well how do you keep four children safe and happy and organised? Particularly when you have 3 dresses of varying age appropriate styles but all in the same fabric and a pair of shorts (thankfully not in the same fabric because we were not the Von Trapp’s) to make? Easy. Shops.

We were all well aware of the rules of the game. All other games were played well away from the shop (the sewing machine) until the shopkeeper (Mum) opened the shop and we could go over and buy and sell until the shop had to close. The opening of the shop, with the hindsight of a mum, was whenever the natives were getting restless and the sewing had to take a back seat to the full-time job of bringing up the family.

The knitting of three matching cardigans for me and my sisters and a jumper for my brother would be done in the evenings. Not surprising that me and my sisters were all taught to knit from an early age. There was a failed attempt to teach my brother but that ended in tears before bedtime; can’t remember if it was Mum or brother who shed them. I started to make clothes for my dolls from the scraps and very quickly progressed to stitching on tiny press studs and hooks and eyes for fastenings. I progressed to making outfits for myself and still remember the pink denim bell-bottoms I embroidered flowers onto all up the side of both legs. Needless to say, when Lane came along she must have had the biggest wardrobe of handmade clothes ever.  

Givie xx