In all honesty i wasn’t really in the Christmas spirit this year and bought my presents completely last minute, not helped by my mum also not being in the christmas spirit, not even having so much as a christmas tree up in her house!
But eventually i managed to feel festive, partially helped by matching christmas jumpers! Nothing quite says ‘Christmas’ like matching festive jumpers!
I received some lovely presents including (and i am so excited I can’t stop staring at it!) a dress makers form from my mum and her boyfriend! It’s adjustable and polkadot and just amazing!
I also got some fabrics, a gift card for a sewing shop and a rotary cutter! I’ve spent a lot of the day draping and pinning the fabrics I have to it. Now all I can think of doing is going back to London and making dresses!
By the way, the bunting on the form above was made by my 12 year old cousin! I gave her my old sewing machine (along with essential sewing supplies!) last year and she is quick becoming a sewing whiz! I’m very impressed and proud!
The day was rather lovely too. The whole family got together at my grandparents, we played card games, drank wine, opened pressies and ate lots of food!
I’m sure tomorrow will be lots of the same!
I hope you too had a very merry Christmas!
Every year, at my mothers house, we make a christmas pudding or cake, as do our neighbours. We’ve always had a tradition of stirring the pudding 3 times and then making a wish before putting it in the oven. Of course, like all magical wishes, you can’t tell anyone what you’re wishing for or else it wont come true!
I used to always look forward to the knock on our front door asking me if I wanted to go and stir next doors pudding. I’d always shout ‘Yes!’ with glee and run to get my shoes. It was definitely one of my favourite christmas traditions which I hope to carry on even though I now live so far away, despite not even really liking christmas puddings.
Have you any fond memories of your families Christmas traditions?
Yesterday I decided to wear this lovely grey, woollen dress from Zara. It’s very plain, but very versatile which I LOVE.
I felt like making my outfit a bit more festive by adding these cute winter tights i probably bought from Primark (lets face it, most of my clothes come from there). I just love the adorable snowflake and heart pattern! I find these adorable ‘pixie’ boots from new look go perfectly with most outfits, I haven’t wore them in a while and so I had to show them a little bit of love 😉
I also added this sparkly belt to add a bit of festive glitz to the outfit. I’m pretty sure that this is, again, from Primark.
To finish it off I continued with the festive theme by adding a festive colour! I went with my bright red Zatchel and red beaded bracelet. I just love this bag, it’s so well made and big enough to carry everything I need.
Over the top I wore the cape that I made myself which again adds a bit of wintery sparkles. I’ve actually been thinking about ways I can improve this cape design and hope to be making many more in the near future! Although I know there are a lot of improvements to be made with this cape I still love it dearly and love to show it off at any possible moment.
For my make up I went for some subtle, but striking, eyes. I used white and silver/grey eye shadow before lining with black eyeliner and then a sparkly eyeliner on top (again adding to the glitz!)
I decided i wanted bold lips and what better than bright red to match my bag! I very rarely wear lipstick but definitely think I should do it more often.
I just left my hair in it’s natural, wavy state (i’m far to lazy to actually do any serious styling) and just pinned back the front to keep it out of my eyes. Despite being so simple my boyfriend kept saying it looked really nice! Sometimes I guess simple is the way forward. 🙂
Do you like to wear bold colours?
Picasso is getting all excited for Christmas and already has his stocking out! Although he’s having a lot more fun inside it rather than hanging it up 😉
Have you got your stocking out yet?
Today I heard of an Etsy teams plight to help their fellow team member. It really does prove how much of a great community Etsy is and really restores a bit of faith in the human race.
Sandra, of Azulado, lost her husband to cancer a few days before Christmas. Now she is struggling to support her 5 year old son whilst making arrangements for her husbands funeral, not an easy task for anyone.
With all the extra costs for the illness and burial of her husband and finding it difficult to get support from her government she is understandably struggling to get herself back on her feet.
This is where her Etsy Team comes in. They have all banded together to organise a huge raffle full of amazing handmade gifts! With 50 chances of winning something beautiful, whilst supporting a family going through hard times, who could say no?
The raffle only costs $5 usd (that’s roughly £3.50) so not exactly breaking the bank, but can hopefully make a lot of difference to one family.
I think this plight has really touched me personally as it is very similar to own my mothers situation when she had me.
A month before I was born my dad died from a heart disease leaving my mum to bring up myself and my older sister on her own. Luckily our family supported her throughout and, in my opinion, myself and my sister have grown up very well (she really did do us proud). I couldn’t ever imagine going through what my mum went through, she is truly an inspiration to me and a fantastic woman.
So please help out another mother going through a difficult time.
All the details can be found here : http://star-of-the-east.blogspot.co.uk/2013/01/the-kindness-of-strangers.html
I know, I know. I’m a terrible blogger. Christmas became a whirlwind of un-organisation and just seemed to appear out of no where for me! The New years arrived and work took over, I didn’t even get to go out and celebrate! But now it’s a new year and a new chance to work hard, improving myself and my business!
I will do a quick Christmas update soon (once all the photo’s are edited) but for now I want to look to the new year and what it has in store!
I have been thinking long and hard about my new years resolution and realised that I needed more then one. There’s so much I want to do this year to really feel like i’ve got the most out of it.
Here’s the list I finally came up with :
Hopefully with these goals I can not only make The Penguin Theory a success (or at least on the way there) but I can also have an exciting, action packed year following the other loves in my life (acting and travelling being among them).
So what are your new years resolutions this year and what are your goals?
Until next time (I promise I will resume normal blogging again now)
Happy New Year!
Yesterday I attended a christmas event at the Moon Under Water Wetherspoons in Enfield.
In all honesty the event wasn’t as big as I was expecting, and I wasn’t expecting it to be a big event at all. There were a grand total of 5 stalls (most of them sporting the cheap, mass produced, generic christmas items) and, although it started at 12, barely any customers arrived until about 2pm.
My boyfriend and his friends came along to help out and keep me company until my sister came along to help. When she did arrive she brought along some awesome decorations for my stall including this amazing penguin tea cosy! Apparently it was her housemates grandmas and they said I could have it! I’m so thankful because it is so adorably amazing!
I was starting to feel a little down about the lack of customers and sales but knew that everyone would be arriving later, when the reindeer arrived. I was so excited about the reindeer that I’d even taken my big DLSR camera with me!
When they did arrive, all of a sudden there were crowds of families with kids and I really hoped I could make at least one sale.
I managed to sell two items in the end (three if you include the one to my sister) but then I know I was catering to the wrong crowd at this event. At least I made back the money on the stall. Plus i gave my business card out to a lovely lady who said she was involved in lots of craft fairs! Hopefully I can find a few more events to set up stall in. 🙂
At the end of the day I’d say it was a success. I managed to cover the cost of the table and had a lovely catch up with my sister who came to help out.
Plus, I got to see the reindeer…Something I may have been just a little too excited about. 😉
‘Till next time!
If you have or know someone with a little girl who loves cute, pretty things then this would be an awesome gift this Christmas!
This adorable skirt is 100% cotton and features two layers of different sized polkadots.
The elastic waistband makes it a very comfy fit and also gives it room for growing children, It measures 23 inches when relaxed and 38 inches when fully stretched. It is 13 inches long.
It is the perfect summer skirt!
But wait, didn’t I say it was perfect for a Christmas present? But that’s in Winter!
Although I do think it is the perfect summer skirt, I also think it would be adorable in winter with a pair of thick white cotton tights.
If you like this skirt but would like adjustments to the waist or length then I do take custom orders. I would take around 2 weeks for me to complete and I can make it to any specifications you would like (longer, more/less layers, different colours, adult sizes etc). Just click the ‘Contact Me’ tab at the top of this page to get in touch and I will see what I can do for you!
The skirt in the Pictures can be found for sale here
Tomorrow is the Day of the WI Finchley Frost Fair!
I’m a little worried to have my crafts sat along side all these artists and definitely wish I had more stock, but I am excited non the less. Just have a 12 -close shift (yes that’s 13+ hours) to get out of the way and then I can get even more excited!
Here are a couple of my new Items you might be able to see there:
A cute, double layered, polkadot skirt for a toddler.
A little boys apron, so he can make mud pies or what ever little boys like to eat.
Hope to see you there!!
Till next time!
I’ve finally listed my first christmas Item on Etsy! This lovely festive stocking
It is fully lined and the outer fabric is made of a green, and a red and gold cotton. The perfect edition to your fireplace!
I even included my own hand-stitched logo on the back!
My mum has already asked if I can do this in blue and gold (the colours she decorates the house in at christmas) for her. If anyone else would like one of these in different colours, or even a different design, please don’t hesitate to ask!
Hopefully I will be creating some more festive Items soon! Maybe another stocking or two 🙂
For now though I’m going to start an exciting project which will create some fabulous gifts for small children!
I will definitely be listing more and more items soon though as I create more stock for the festive season, I’ve also been applying for lots of christmas craft fairs! Fingers crossed at least one of them wants me! 🙂
‘Till next time!
I’ve been busy at my day job and sewing as usual, today in particular has been jam packed (especially for a day off)!
I have a christmas stocking i’m busy sewing but keep getting distracted…I’ve been sewing for days and it definitely should have been finished by now.
We also did the food shop, although it was less for food and more for house hold cleaning products with a few veg thrown in.
I then cut my boyfriends hair!
I was a little worried about how it would turn out…but it seems to be pretty good! I don’t have a before shot unfortunately (it was really quite long!) but here’s the after! :
Maybe I have a new career direction? hehe.
Hopefully will be updating with some exciting new products tomorrow, but I have an extremely long shift so i could very well just collapse and refuse to do anything once i’m home.
‘Till next time!
I’ve started work on a new big project that I want to build a whole range around. I’ve had this idea floating around in my head for ages, since I first started sewing really, and thought it was now time to act on it. It’s actually proved to be more difficult than expected but I think the effort will be worth it!
I went out shopping yesterday for the items I needed and some more material so now all that’s left to do is make it!
I think i’ll finish the christmas stocking i’m making first though, I don’t need any more half finished items at the moment.
I also bought some new work shoes whilst i was out, unfortunately I was in a rush and so just grabbed a pair with my size on. It turns out that someone had put the wrong size on the wrong hanger and so I now have a pair of shoes which don’t fit me and another with a massive hole in the toe. I guess I’ll have to go out again tomorrow when I have a day off.
Will be updating very soon to unveil my new items!
‘Till next time!
As I promised, I have improved on the skirt I made the other day. I found that the waistline was extremely messy as the material had been rather hard to work with. I just cut out a strip of black fabric, folded over the edges and folded it over the top, simple but extremely effective! I absolutely love the result. Makes it look so much neater!
Now i’m working on my next project. I have a few halloween things in mind to make (although I’m not sure If I really have enough fabric in the right colours) and also all those Christmas items still in mind along with a few other projects.
But before that I think i’m going to play my new Sims 3 game I bought with a voucher I got for my birthday. I actually had quite a shock when it arrived yesterday. It had been sent to my mums house, as I’d forgotten to change the delivery address, and she’d nicely sent it on to me by recorded delivery with some other post as well.
We’ve always had a problem with our post, our postman just drops everything off downstairs despite tesco telling him it doesn’t belong there but he really doesn’t care. I went downstairs yesterday to see if there was any post for us and found my package on the floor and torn open. Even the letters inside had been opened and then put back in. We’re wondering if it was someone searching for some form of identity to steal as my new game and all the other post was safe and sound. Luckily for us we found Ash’s passports (they’d been sent off to student finance) safe in tesco.
Both these packages had to be signed for (the sims game recorded delivery and the passports on special) and we’d been in all day, yet no one had even rung our doorbell. Obviously we’re really not very impressed with Royal Mail at the moment.
I told my mum about it and she immediately got on the phone to complain to them, hopefully something will come of it.
But at least nothing was stolen, so now I get to play Sims before carrying on with a bit more sewing 🙂
Till next time!!
When I got home from work today I decided to check on my Etsy.
I saw this brooch come up in my Activity feed and immediately squeeled! It’s just so adorable! I feel like I should buy this and wear it at a Christmas craft fair.
I also found matching stud earrings which were just as cute!
My mum said that I should try and make it myself but to be honest, as much as I do enjoy polymer clay, I think I want to concentrate on my sewing for now. However, I will keep it in mind for the future. 🙂
I’ve finally added a new Item to my shop!
I know I said in my last post that I was working on an apron but I found out that I don’t have the right coloured thread for the top stitching so I decided to make something else instead.
I was looking through all my materials and found some with a Christmas theme left over from gifts i’d made the family last christmas. Etsy has just had a big push on ‘Christmas in July’ and there was lots of advice telling shop owners to get festive items in their shops nice and early, so I figured I may as well get some in my own shop in preparation.
As there wasn’t a lot of material left I decided to make a tie. I made ties for all the men in my family last christmas and they seemed to be a big hit! My grandpa actually got the tie made from the same material as this one and seemed so proud to have it! It made me really happy to see him so excited to wear something i’d made!
I really like this material, it’s festive but sophisticated at the same time. I think it makes a tie that’s perfect for adding a bit of fun, festive cheer and can be worn to any kind of event, whether serious or more relaxed.
I also incorporated the penguin I spoke about in my last post. I’ve sewn it onto the back of the large end and think it works really well!
I’m very proud of this Item and think it is the best tie i’ve made so far (quite likely with the help of my new snazzy machine!) . It’s now for sale in my shop right here. So if you’re wanting to do a bit of early christmas shopping please stop by!
I’m sure i’ll be making more festive Items in the future, the only problem is i’m not sure what kind of items to make, other than Ties and Aprons. I had also thought of making a stocking or two, or some kind of festive gift bag. What do you think I should make with my material? What would you want to buy this Christmas? Please leave suggestions in the comments below or fill in the poll on my facebook page 🙂 It would be very useful.
Ok, so it’s quite late but i have been rather busy.
Just before christmas I decided to buy all this christmassy fabric in the hopes of making my family some gifts.
Cue me being really unorganised and failing to get anything done.
This lead to me working like a crazy woman, my boyfriend even started calling me his ‘little chinese worker’, to get them finished on time.
I had made a couple of Aprons before, but this time I decided to go all out, giving them all a nice lining (even in the pockets). The ties also have a nice lining on them (unfortunately I forgot to take a picture of the finished products before everyone left)
Christmas itself was probably one of my favourite christmases we’ve had, even my mum has been saying the same.
My boyfriend, Ash, had decided to spend it with us instead of his own family (long story) so I was especially happy.
We started the day as normal, opening stocking presents (I’d bought some for Ash so that he didn’t feel left out). I got a cookbook, lots of chocolate, some amazingly pretty beads (i’m just itching to use) along with the usual socks and knickers.
We then took our usual trip to see some extended family members, had a few glasses of alcohol, exchanged a few gifts, before coming back to sort out food and such. I also then disappeared upstairs to carry on making some bags for my aunts to put their presents in (a selection of mustard and soaps). Yes I was so badly organised I was even working on christmas day itself.
Eventually the whole family arrived. Aunts, Uncle, Cousins, Grandparents all descended on us. There were 14 of us in total (3 being littles) and so it was very busy. We had to drag the kitchen table into our living room (good job it’s a big room!) and get all the emergency chairs out, including piano stools.
My grandpa waved his new tie happily when he arrived exclaiming how he was sorry he was no longer wearing it, he was just too warm. Made me very happy to see how much everyone was enjoying the things i’d made for them.
We thought it was going to be far to hectic and noisy for the grandparents, and there would be too many people all getting in the way, but thankfully my xbox kept the children amused upstairs whilst the food was being prepared and everything seemed to run smoothly!
I got some brilliant presents, David Attenborough’s Autobiography (i’ve always been obsessed), A years subscription to a jewellery magazine, a new suitcase (the wheels on mine look like they’ve exploded), clothing and books.
All together, a very successful christmas.
Ash text me the other day saying how his work mates picked on his tie (to be fair it is bright red with reindeers on it…) and then when he mentioned i’d made it they were all shocked and refused to believe him until they saw it didn’t have any tags. (That reminds me…I must get some tags made.) Again it made me so happy to hear how impressed people were with my work! Definitely going to keep this sewing malarky up. Hopefully I will be moving onto clothing soon…or at least some more complicated aprons and lots more ties.
In other news. I will be changing the name of my business. Claire’s Crafty Creations is just too boring and over done. My mum doesn’t agree, but then I doubt she hasn’t searched it in google. Far too many shops pop up. I need something exciting and different, that means something to me. I was thinking of ‘The Penguin Theory’, which you will recognise if you’ve read my earlier posts, I even have permission from the co-founder of the penguin theory. (I say co-founder, but she was the one who really first mentioned it). I would also have a mascot of a penguin called ‘Gru-gru’ named after one of my penguins from the origins of this theory.
When I told my mother all this she didn’t seem to think it was a good idea as it didn’t say what my items were, even mentioning that a lot high street shops don’t tend to either didn’t seem to sway her, I mean ‘Monsoon’ doesn’t shout clothing to me, just lots and lots of rain.
Anyone got any advice or ideas?
In other news, I’VE MOVED! (hence the long silence)
I no longer live in the north but am based down in Essex. I wanted to be closer to London and the Boyfriend needed help with rent so it just seemed like a good idea. Since i’ve got here I’ve sorted out our room about 3 times, applied for every job I could find, handed out as many CVs as possible and sketched more designs for when I bring all my crafty stuff down. (I’m actually going to get the rest of my stuff tomorrow).
I just got news today that I have got myself an interview in a Weatherspoons about 40minutes away (my car is ridiculously economical so petrol shouldn’t be too expensive). It’s for a part time job which is perfect as then I still have plenty of time to sew and go to auditions!
Better start picking out a smart outfit and practice answering questions!
Till next time, stay happy!
So again i’ve been a terrible blogger. I have a lot catch up with!
Anyways, I thought a good way to get back into blogging again would be to search around Folksy for the best christmassy items I can find. Partly to enter an awesome competition, partly to give myself ideas for what to make.
I have tried to look through a lot of different categories to try and get a nice range of things to inspire me.
These are in no particular order of preferance, but here are 18 quirky and fun christmassy things I felt deserved to be on Folksy’s front page! (This took me far longer to do than I care to admit)
1. Decorative Ball
I have always loved this shop (thepicapica), it’s always full of really unusual things and this ‘Decorative Ball’ is no exception. It’s just so intricate and pretty, I would love to have this hanging up no matter what time of year!
2. Penguin Decorations
Not only are these ridiculously cute, but I really love penguins (and the penguin theory!). And as a plus they are all unique as they are cut separately! I can already see different personality in each of these in the picture. You can find these penguins here.
3. Paper Decoration
I love the hint of festive colour in this ‘Eco-Friendly’ paper decoration. The intricate patterns really make this look unique and, in my point of view, a big statement piece. But don’t worry, you don’t need to hammer nails into your wall, they do come with a thread to hang it on, as well as a variety of colours and styles to match your christmas theme.
4. Snowman Kit
When I first saw this Snowman kit I was thinking ‘What is wrong with just using a real carrot and stones?’, but the more I thought about it the better this seemed. I mean the amount of hats and scarfs that have been ruined from being left out until the muddy sludge saturated them beyond repair in my own family alone is pretty high, and having a special outfit set aside for the snowman to be dressed in just seems to make the moment even more special.
5. Snowflake Necklace
Again I’m attracted to the modern look of this snowflake necklace. I think even the little dot of silver adds to the look, and don’t even get me started on the cute ‘WivWuv’ heart at the end letting you know where you got it from, I think I need to figure out how to make those tags for my own shop…
6. Personalised Letter from Santa
If anything will keep the kids believing for a little longer it would be a personalised letter from santa, and, for the kids still fully convinced, what a way to add a little extra magic! I know I would have loved one of these as a kid in amongst my stocking presents, I doubt my mum would have appreciated the glitter though…
7. Rudolf Card
Not only is this handmade/hand-drawn Rudolf Card ridiculously cute, but it’s also recycled for all you environmentally friendly out there! It’s even got a cute story of how she made Rudolf’s nose red. Everything about this just makes me get a little warm feeling inside. I didn’t think that was possible from a christmas card…
8. Noel Glass Bunting
If you’re a fan of glass work and quirky little items, then RedBrickGlass is just perfect for you. They have a range of glass work, including this Noel Bunting. Who knew you could make bunting look so classy? They also do an amazing range of fairy lights which I am dying to buy for my room! Shame I have no money. I really recommend checking them out for unusual glass decorations.
9. Metal Stamped Baubles
Again i’ve gone for the unusual. I think these metal baubles would look amazing glinting in-between the branches of a tree.
10. Christmas Tree Tote Bag
Not only does this Tote Bag come with a Jingly bell, but it can also double up as stocking or a giftbag (as well as being fair trade). I don’t know about you, but, now I think about it, I’d love a festive bag to match my festive outfits.
11. Christmas Tree Wrapping Paper
If you’re anything like me, you will be obsessive about making your presents looking that little bit extra special. I love this christmas tree paper and think it would make my gifts stand out amongst the rest. It is also available in different colours.
12. Reindeer Gift Tags
Once you’ve got your wrapping paper you will need name tags so you don’t forget which is which. How about these cute reindeer ones? Simple, cute, pretty. All you need from a gift tag!
Once you’ve bought
13. Christmas Pudding Apron
Obviously food is a big thing at christmas and any festive cook needs a festive apron to match! This cute apron just seems perfect for the job! Yum indeed!
14. Robin Napkins
Want to add a bit of festive fun to your table? These handprinted linen napkins with a cute little robin are the perfect addition! Matching place mats are also available.
15. Snowfall Soap
Not only is this soap quite stunning to look at but so is its box! The only problem is I think i’d be too scared to even use it…
16. Glass Blown Baubles
Who wouldn’t want these show stoppers hanging on their christmas tree? All I can say is that these look stunning.
17. Christmas Robins
How can you not want something as cute as this robin? I can already see it perching on top of my fireplace.
18. Christmas Rag Wreath
I’ve never really been a fan of the christmas wreath, they just seemed a bit pointless and not very pretty to me, but this one seems to have changed my mind. It’s cute, pretty and reusable! A nice modern twist on the traditional wreath.
Now go do some christmas shopping.
Till next time! Stay Happy!