This is the year penguins will fly.

Posts tagged “diy

Counting Bow Ties!

So i’ve been wanting to expand my menswear for ages and have finally done it with the arrival of Bow ties to my shop! There is only one up so far but i am planning on adding a lot more soon! (along with some other exciting products!)

This bow tie is pretty funky with it’s numerical pattern, perfect for any maths geek or just anyone who likes something a little fun and quirky!

I even pinned a fancy ball gown on Dot (my dress form is now called Dot due to her polka dot pattern) to match the bow tie, and I really really like it! (Just don’t look at the back)

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I wasn’t sure if I liked it more without the waistband or not.

I really am in love with this and can’t wait to make more, you can find it on my Etsy HERE!

I am also working on improving my ties slightly. Not only that, but I am working on some even more exciting menswear! My waistcoat pattern has been improved and I’m even looking into full suits for both men and women.

It’s all hands on deck here at The Penguin Theory! 😀

Claire x

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Expanding my Menswear Range

I find my ties are my best sellers and so have been wanting to expand my menswear line for quite a while. However, as usual, life seems to get in the way and i’ve been so busy with the day job that i haven’t had time for The Penguin Theory. However I am now again unemployed, maybe one day i can get something that’s not just temporary, and so have lots of time to sew! I finally got round to making a pattern for a waistcoat.

I chose some lovely stripy fabric, which i’ve already made a tie out of, and made the pattern myself with a bit of help from my boyfriends wardrobe.

 

I made a few mistakes along the way, figuring out how to put it all together was quite a challenge. It was quite amusing though when i put the waist ties in the lining side instead of outside! Whoops!

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I decided against putting buttons on this particular jacket as the pattern needs a little work to hang properly, but I actually think it looks pretty snazzy as an open waistcoat!

I’ll be dressing Ashley up in it shortly for a photoshoot (i’m sure he’ll demand payment in chocolate as it’s pretty cold outside!) and hopefully i will be editing the pattern and making more as well as having some more womens wear ready soon so keep your eyes peeled!

So much pattern cutting! My hand is hurting.

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Super excited to play with this fabric!

‘Till next time

Claire x


Computer Troubles

I’m sorry for my quietness as of late, I promise I haven’t been lazy (in fact i’ve been more productive than usual) but my laptop decided enough was enough and stopped working completely.

Unfortunately for me it was the hard drive that had gone and I also had some unsaved work on there which I stupidly forgot to back up. 2 videos nearly completed (1 with animations and everything!) and a couple of photoshoots. All gone. But it’s my fault for not making sure I had extra copies of them, I can’t really blame my laptop as it is 5 years old.

I did go to the Apple store. Their customer service was amazing and the guy who saw me was really nice and friendly. But unfortunately it would  cost about £200 for them to fix my laptop, something I just can’t afford at the moment. I probably had a very peculiar look on my face as then he suggested I refit it myself, showing me which to buy, and how to refit it. Instead of spending over £200 i spent £32!

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My new hard drive is very shiny and pretty and I even fit it in myself, which, by the way, is super easy.

So now my laptop is up and running again, soon I’ll have photoshop installed again too and then maybe I can re-make the videos. I’ve now renamed it the FrankenMac as it’s been brought back to life with odd parts!

In the mean time I have been sewing. I’m in the process of using all these old t-shirts i collected whilst working the pub job to make a picnic blanket. Not much more to do!

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In other news : I snuggled with a baby penguin. It was the cutest, softest and smelliest thing ever!

Obviously I was working hard at the same time, actually I find talking to the keepers is the best way to learn about all the animals. It really is the best job ever, I learn something new (and usually amazing) every single day! I seriously don’t want this summer to end.

Claire x

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Cute Penguin Nails Tutorial

Ever wanted to have adorable penguins on your finger tips? Well want no more as I help you paint your own adorable penguins on your nails!

My first penguin tutorial to celebrate this months ‘May There Be Penguins’ celebrations shows you how to turn your nails into your own adorable penguin colony.

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Paint your nails with me right here : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fkFDQW_QxdU

Keep your eye out for more tutorials (with better video quality) later on in the month as I keep on celebrating the wonderful world of penguins!

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Also, join me on facebook for even more penguin fun, games and even competitions!

And don’t forget to enter my latest competition which closes at midnight tonight (gmt). Find it here on my facebook page

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Who will be Crowned the Queen of May?

The Penguins Are Here! For the whole month of May here at The Penguin Theory we are celebrating all things Penguin with our month long event : May there be penguins!

To kick it all off and to celebrate the first of May and the Mayday bank holiday I am giving away this gorgeous, handmade, flower crown to one lucky winner! 

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May day traditionally involves Morris Dancing, May poles and crowning one lady the Queen of May, so I am giving away one gorgeous ‘Queen of May’ flower crown to one lucky winner, but there’s a catch. You can’t enter for yourself. Instead I want you to nominate someone to be crowned ‘Queen of May’.

Comment in the comment section or on my facebook page with the name of your nominee and why you think they should be crowned the ‘Queen of May’! 

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This can be anyone, family or friends, boy or girl, for any reason. Maybe they helped you, maybe they’ve been through a lot and need some pampering, or maybe they’re just an extremely happy person who always brings a smile to your face!

You have until the end of the May Day bank holiday (Monday 5th May, 12pm gmt) to nominate your Queen and I will announce the winner on Tuesday 6th May.

Good Luck!

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365 Project : 3rd March – 9th March

I’ve decided to start updating these posts on Mondays instead of Sundays. It makes a lot more sense as if i’m busy on Sunday (like I was yesterday) I don’t get a chance to edit and upload the photo from that day. But I shall still be posting photo’s from the first monday to the sunday. Hopefully this will make it easier to stay up to date with this project.

On the 3rd I made some delicious brownies! I really must do a recipe for these as they’re divine!

The 4th was shrove tuesday and of course meant that we ate lots and lots of pancakes! Yum!

On the 5th I met up with my sister for the first time in ages. We had some burritos and then went out for a couple of cocktails.

On the 6th we went skating late at night. I took some awesome creepy photo’s with long exposures. You can see more of these here.

On the 7th I took a few pictures of a new item, the gorgeous blue tie in the middle, and then spent the rest of the day editing.

You can find my tie section of my Etsy shop by clicking the image!

The 8th saw me relaxing at home, still doing lots of computer work but taking breaks staring out to the sunshine.

Yesterday I went to Cantelowes Skatepark in Camden with Ash and some friends. I didn’t skate (I don’t have a suitable pool deck) but a good friend from Newtons Shred taught Ash to drop in and I managed to take some great pictures which I will be sharing with you all soon. We finished the day with cider and stew. Perfect!

Back at work next week and so not as much time to frolic, but I will still be making sure I take lots of photographs!

Claire x


Catch Up on the 365 Project.

I know i know, i’m terrible and haven’t updated my 365 project for nearly a month! But it’s ok, i have been taking photos so here’s a little catch up.

Warning – Going to be very picture heavy (if you hadn’t guessed)

February the 10th saw me driving up to the north with the radio blasting and ash putting in ear plugs to avoid hearing my singing.

On the 11th i saw these amazing blue orchids! My mum didn’t think much to them but I thought they were gorgeous! It’s a shame I can’t help but kill plants. 😦 I am definitely not green thumbed.

I went to go see Frank Turner with my sister and some friends on the 12th. On the way there I was reading a book on photography when a stranger asked me if I was into that sort of thing and told me to visit this gallery. I still haven’t got round to it, but the exhibition is still on so maybe i’ll go soon.

On the 13th I finally fixed one of my favourite earrings. It’s been sat on my desk for so long and I only just got round to gluing it back together. Hopefully I wont break it again!

On valentines day I spent most of the day drawing hobbits and dragons. Not bad in my opinion. I didn’t actually do anything with ash, neither of us are particularly bothered by it in all honesty. It’s a silly holiday really (we did make an excuse for some snuggle/movie time though of course).

On the 15th I moved my penguin statue, a christmas present from my mums boyfriend and just totally awesome, to a spot where he could keep an eye on my working.

My hair went crazy big and curly on the 16th as I left it in a big plait over night. It’s a shame that it’s so long and unmanageable at the moment, it just looked like a massive frizz ball! Definitely time for a hair cut.

On the 17th I really enjoyed the contrast between the moody, british sky and these stunning blossoms.

The 18th saw lots of editing work. Nearly a whole day of editing! My eyes definitely needed a rest by the end, but at least I had been very productive. These photo’s are amongst my favourites i’ve ever taken.

On the 19th I found out that I had an interview with London Zoo! I was so excited that I really couldn’t concentrate at work, not the best when working in a kitchen. I burnt myself so many times I lost count and nearly chopped my finger off! Luckily my nail stopped the cut becoming any deeper but it was still pretty nasty.

On the 20th I was starting to feel like I lived in this uniform. Working 60+ hour weeks, 6 days out of 7 most of the time and just constantly tired. I was starting to want just a day to pamper myself, wear make-up and look pretty but I just don’t have the energy even on my days off.

The 21st I was starting to feel positive. I was super excited (and nervous) about this interview and also knew it wasn’t long until Legoland wanted me back, plus i was about to drive up north for a wedding! Life was definitely about to get fun, I just had to stick it out at the pub for a little longer. This mirror is above our bed and was there when we moved in. We’re far too lazy to take it off and I actually kind of like it. It makes me smile.

The 22nd was the wedding of two very close friends! Unfortunately I forgot my camera (silly me) and my phone was dying so I didn’t take many pictures, but I did snap this cute picture of the first dance. The groom had changed into some more comfortable shoes for the party side of the wedding, as had the bride who was now wearing bright pink converse under her dress. Such a lovely day! I’m so happy for them both!

On the 23rd I went back to the south, but before I did I managed a little switcheroo at home, giggling like a naughty school girl the whole time. Mum has never got round to putting up my graduation picture (the woes of a second child!) and so I put mine in my sisters place. I don’t think she’s noticed yet, until she reads this blog post…*evil cackle*

On the 24th i received this sewing pattern I had won! I can’t wait to get stuck in!

On the 25th was my interview with London Zoo! It ran from 9-5 with lots of group exercises, presentations and other things to really get to know if we were right for the job and was such a fun day! It honestly made me want to work there even more, which I didn’t think was possible. I somehow managed to get a selfie with a penguin as well!

After the long interview and then rushing off to work for a close, I wasn’t feeling very awake on the 26th and drank far too much coffee.

On the 27th I got the news that I got the job!! I was so excited and i’m pretty sure I asked the person on the phone ‘Really?!’ several times. I celebrated with a glass (or two) of Merlyn, it’s like Baileys but so much better! I’m still convinced they’re going to ring up and tell me they made a mistake, but It’s quite honestly a dream come true!

On the 28th I started counting down to my start. I wrote it on my calendar and was still bouncing off walls.

On the 1st of March I received a congratulations card from my mum, complete with penguins of course!. How lovely 🙂 And yes, still bouncing off the walls at this stage.

On the 2nd there was a gorgeous rainbow! I could see the whole thing (I haven’t got round to editing those pictures yet though). If only I could find the pot of gold at the end…*sigh*

So that’s me all caught up to this week! I will be posting these weekly as usual from this sunday.

February was most definitely a very exciting month and I’m sure that March will be just as exciting!

Claire x


365 project – Days 27 to 32

On the 27th I finally finished this tie I’d had in mind for far too long and I love it! It’s already available on my etsy here

On the 28th I opened the kitchen for the second time ever and first time on my own (5am starts! Ouch!) but as I was lighting the grill I noticed it looked kinda pretty. Obviously being at work I only had my phone on me, but the picture still came out pretty cool…or should I say hot 😉

On the 29th I was playing with this adorable fabric! I think I have to buy more soon!

On the 30th I dressed up all Chinese style for a photoshoot to celebrate the new year! Ok, so I didn’t actually take these photo’s but I did think of the concept, the styling, modelled and directed the shoot so I think it still counts. You can find the post I wrote here

I did actually take a photo myself on this day (sort of, it was after midnight but I was only just leaving work and hadn’t slept yet so I guess it counts). The weather was super foggy and looked awesome so I just couldn’t resist!

The 31st I had finished the adorable-fabric skirt and it really is cute! I took some bad phone photo’s as my camera’s battery had died and I’d lost the charger! Oops! Lots of photo editing later and you can find the skirt in my shop here

On the first (wow February already!) I had my last day of work for two weeks! Yey for being owed holiday! I also went and bought a new charger as I will be needing my Camera on Sunday! This charger not only charges my old styled DSLR battery (my camera is a very old model) but also AA, AAA (etc.), newer camera batteries, phones and has a car adapter! It’s going to be perfect for holidaying!

Today is Sunday and I’m afraid you’ll have to wait for the photo as I’m probably out and about taking it! I’m  adventuring to the centre of London for the Chinese New Year celebrations and hoping to get a few really good shots! I’ll definitely update with a blog post when i’m back and the photo’s are fully edited so keep your eyes peeled!

What have you been celebrating this week?

Claire xx


Happy Horse Year!

Today begins the chinese new year and this year is the year of the horse!

To celebrate i decided to dress up a little in this gorgeous dress I bought from the pearl market (a crazy bustling market you will either love or hate) in beijing along with a few matching accessories I made.

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Unfortunately the shots are just phone quality as the battery is dead on my camera and I seem to have misplaced my charger. Oops.

I  posed with this cute horse statue I got from Xian (pronounced Shi-an) where the terracotta warriors are found. Perfect with it being the year of the horse! I also have a warrior figure, I just wish I could have bought more!

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For my make up I went bold with red lips and pale face inspire by geishas and a glittery gold eyeshadow with an asian inspired flick of eyeliner.

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I also bought that fan on my trip to China from a little store in the forbidden city.

In my hair I wore these chopsticks along with a cute flower hair bobble I made. These flowers will soon be available in my Etsy shop so keep an eye out or contact me for more details! I don’t know quite where the chop sticks are from, I’m pretty sure my mum and her boyfriend bought them for me on a holiday where they stopped off in hong kong for a flight change over.

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I also wore these chinese style earrings I made. Another pair like these should also be available in my store soon.

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However, whilst you’re waiting for me to list these items (they wont be long I promise! I just need to find my camera charger) I do have plenty of chinese prints available so you too can get into the new year spirit! Just click the image to find it in my shop!

I captured this stunning photograph at the Chinese Opera in Beijing which was certainly an experience. The costumes were completely stunning, the singing not so much.

This is one of my favourite photographs I’ve taken. It was of the old city walls in Xian. I just love the juxtaposition between old and new.

And what trip to China wouldn’t be complete without a picture of the great wall. I just had to get some photo’s of it snaking into the distance!

And here’s another with mountains fading into the background!

I have also some possible plans for celebrating the new year in crafting style, as long as I’m free to go to the events happening this week.

Are you doing anything to get into the New Year spirit?

Claire x

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An Unconventional Valentines – Etsy Treasury

I haven’t done one of these in AGES and I felt it was finally time to get back in the habit of making treasuries. It’s really enjoyable and gives a chance to look at all the weird and wonderful things Etsy sellers have to offer!

I decided to go for a valentines theme, as it is nearly that time of year again, but wanted to give it an unusual twist. Here are a collection of items that are either unusual in themselves or not very conventionally valentines. For all the items you can find them on Etsy by just clicking the image!

Hope you enjoy!

1) Heart Little Breath Pair

I don’t think I need to explain why these are included, they are very unsual. They remind me of something you might find in a Studio Ghibli film, maybe that’s why I like them. They certainly have a charm to them and would be a cute edition to a bookcase or sideboard.

2) Watercolour Love Red Umbrella

This one is included as I feel it has a very sombre feel to it, something not usually associated with valentines day. However I do think that this is a very beautiful print, I especially love the streams of red coming off the umbrella, gives a good sense of the downpour this couple could be caught in.

3) The Heart

This simple, but expressive piece would make a great statement piece in your home, or even a great card (if the seller were to sell cards).  I love the messy approach and think this is a very cool piece.

4) Circuit Board Cufflinks

These cool cufflinks would be great for any computer geek (just like my boyfriend!) or even just someone who likes gadgets (so most guys then). The whole shop is full of these awesome geeky items and is a personal favourite of mine.

5) Personalised Champers Kit

Drinking champagne might be something done quite often on Valentines day, but making your own isn’t! In all honesty i’d probably enjoy the making more than the drinking! It would definitely be a cute thing to do with your loved one, and even if it isn’t ready for the day itself it would give you a good excuse to have another romantic night in.

6) Anatomical Heart in a Jar

This hand blown glass item is the perfect gift for someone who hates the unrealistic heart usually associated with love and valentines. Not only does the bottle look gorgeous but the heart is captivatingly intricate. Definitely a cool piece to display in your home.

7) Valentines Bear

Teddy bears are a very common valentines day gift but they usually hold roses and hearts and other things that make me want to vomit (i’m not the most girly of girls when it comes to these things). This bear is a whole lot cooler, and cuter! Plus it could be the perfect gift for both men and women!

8) Love Letter Cookies

Love letters are very popular for all those lovey-dovey couples out there, but if you want something a little bit different why not make those letters edible! We all know girls love sweet things, and what better than to cover those sweet things with a poem that will probably make her cry! You’d be the best boyfriend ever, until they’re all eaten up at least.

9) ClockWork Heart Tie

This unusual tie is pretty cool and would be a great gift for the man in your life, especially if he likes unusual ties.

10) Little Sculpture holding Heart

This cute sculpture is part of a ‘star series’. These cute and quirky items are really fun to look at and would make a great, inexpensive gift for someone special.

11) Valentines Bike

I found some similar bike sculptures (although not heart themed and probably not by the same person) when I went to amsterdam and bought one each for my mum and her boyfriend. They are super cool and a great gift for any bike maniac.

12) Egg Valentines Card

Bored of the standard valentines greetings card? Well this shop makes ‘cards’ out of real chicken eggs! Your personalised message is put inside your chosen egg and you have to crack the egg open to read it which almost seems a shame as they’re so cute!

13) Longitude and Latitude bracelet

I love the rustic look of this bracelet and it can be personalised to have your own co-ordinates on! Maybe you could have it set to the place you both first met, your home, where you were proposed to, anywhere of real significance to the relationship.

14) Wooden Card

Another unusual card option. These look beautifully made and can double up as the actual gift as they can be kept on display with the mini easel the shop also sells. Just lovely!

15) Heart Shaped Chalkboard Stickers

Ok, bit of a strange choice I know, but i think these stickers could be really cute for creating your own valentines gift. Stick them on jars and fill with love heart sweets, or make a valentines day picnic labelled with them, there are so many possibilities! I think they would be great for a personal touch to your gift and look pretty cool, plus you can always wipe off your message and use them again.

16) Heart Nose Ring

Nothing says ‘Valentines Day’ quite like jewellery, but lets start steering away from the expensive diamond rings, they are far too special for a day where you’re practically forced to be romantic. Instead get something cute like this adorable little nose stud, i kinda wish I had my nose pierced just so I could buy this.

What unconventional things are you planning for this valentines? Or what sort of unusual things have you done in the past? I’d love to hear your stories!