Sunday, 17 December 2017

Flowers, Pearls and Christmas

Cannot believe this it is now almost Christmas, the house is all ready, the freezer is full. One more grocery delivery on the 22nd, then that is it for the festive period. I love Christmas.....

Getting into the creative groove again, have so many new ideas going through my brain giving myself a headache, lol. This week another jewellery piece with Swarovski pearls:

Have got my list of Birthday cards and gifts ready for 2018. Three cards made already and a gift bought for April. Ordered a jukebox die for an idea for DH's card and a couple of t shirts from the McLaren shop, these were on offer and too good to pass up. Not bad not even Christmas and sorting out for 2018 already.

Thinking ahead, I had to cancel one of my events in November as poorly, did not expect a refund but they carried my payment over to the April market. Checked and just before Easter, now thinking of Pixie baskets full of Easter goodies.

Wedding collection planning coming along well and keep thinking of baby showers as well.

Bought myself a really good handmade planner 'The Makers Yearbook'. I don't bother with diaries as always use my iPone but love notebooks, the only problem is they are not structured, saw this on FB and treated myself. Not cheap but it is a fair old size and so well laid out. You also get access to a closed FB group opening in January and some online courses. 

As you know been disillusioned with events this year either sooo expensive or cheap and cheerful. The latter are fine but know will never sell that much at them plus never seems to lead to sales from my website. Think the people visiting the market do not buy so much online but like to look. To take the plunge and pay out big money with possibly a large loss is not in my remit. So hoping this book concentrates me on the business side rather than just creating.

That is all for now folks, taking a break from blogging for a couple of weeks and will see you in the New Year.

Have a wonderful Christmas and hope Santa brings you all the gifts you wanted.

Check out the other blogs at Sum of Their Stories

Sunday, 10 December 2017

New creation

Only another 15 days until Christmas. Are you ready? We have 2 more food deliveries to go then that will be it. What we do not have can do without. I am sure I will have forgotten something. We did the M & S trip to Havant on Tuesday, spent an arm and a leg but got £40 off, mainly due to a voucher from BT broadband for £25, the rest were offers and my Sparks codes. so worth getting a Sparks card. Went to our local garden centre on Wednesday and all decorations have been reduced already. Think things are not so good this year for sales and am sure we have all felt that at events and online.

Well did make something this week a lace heart pendant, stitched on my embroidery machine, added some chain and a Swarovski crystal. The keys are so tiny. The thread is random blues and aqua's.

Got a knock at the door at 7am. Post man with a parcel! Frightened me half to death, checked the security first and there he was with his Santa's hat on, cheerful at that time of the morning, wearing shorts and it was freezing!

Off to plan my next project.

Check out the other blogs at Sum of Their Stories

Have a good week, same place next weekend

Sunday, 3 December 2017

Theatre in a tin and the Christmas tree is up!

Christmas decorations and tree up, cards written and stamped ready to post, parcels wrapped ready for collection on Monday. All our Gifts wrapped and in the sitting room by the tree. Only 22 days to go, so excited. Finishing off the special food shop on Tuesday at M & S then Waitrose can do the rest.

As you may have gathered I love Christmas and whilst has changed since I was a child, still try to make it a magical time for the 3 of us (DH, dog and myself). Sorting films ready to watch.

Treated myself a few backs to a 'Theatre in a Tin', took a while to arrive as came from overseas. Got it made last week but had to wait for the batteries to turn up, note to myself read the description first. All done, lit and so pleased with it. My BIL made me a shop a few years back and have never done anything with the inside, this has got me moving to complete next year.

Also found a wonderful kit for bookbinding. Another craft I have always wanted to learn, ear marked to buy in January and fingers crossed may get a reduced price.

Check out the other blogs at Handmade Monday

Have a wonderful week x

Sunday, 26 November 2017

Last event of the year

Welcome to another week of my crafting life.

Sad midweek when I heard that David Cassidy had passed, he was an idol of mine back in the 70's, then got into Led Zepplin, go figure! Think it must have been the influence of my uni friends.

Loaded the car on Thursday as such a beautiful day. Swept up 8 bags of leaves and have to pop into the farm shop on the way back on Saturday for some more bags. We are surrounded by oak trees, all of which are listed but do love them. To think that they have been growing for hundreds of more years than I have been on this earth. They must have some tales to tell if they could talk.

Been cleaning the house this week, Lee lost patience with the hoover as not a pet one. Have decided to have this one upstairs and ordered a pet one from John Lewis, arrived Thursday and brilliant. The sitting room will have a real blitz next week as our tree and decorations go up on the 30th.

My last event was yesterday, have been doing the Headley Christmas Fair for years and always enjoy. Villagers come in droves, spend and happy to chat. The vicar comes round and talks to stallholders and customers alike.

Carol's and Christmas music playing, silly hats worn by some, decorations and tinsel round the hall. I love it and gets me ready for the big day. Had these adorable Charlie Bears next to my stall.

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Have fun

Sunday, 19 November 2017

A week of doing nothing.....

Another Handmade Monday and now only 36 days until Christmas.

What have I been doing this week? well basically nothing, so shocking! Did order some linen and silk which arrived for my Wedding collection next year. 

Posted a lot of old stock onto Ebay. Got a sale of a bag within 30 minutes. Sadly selling a lot cheaper than I should but want to clear the space for new makes.

Talking about new makes my head is buzzing and have to carry a notebook or phone with me to write or tell Siri to keep a note of ideas. In fact I have overworked Siri this week and think she is getting a bit petulant with me, lol. She will have to get over it.

Bought some amazing embroidery designs, ideal for cards but so special and cannot wait to start them. Am giving myself a break until Christmas starts as still have a lot of wrapping to do, mounts to cut to hold some sheet music for DH and some Game of Thrones trading cards. Vouchers to buy and parcels to post off. Will make a start on the Christmas cards today.

I have a plan for a day then in a blink of an eye find myself in bed and realise did not complete half of what I had planned. Not even sure where the hours went and convinced either I am getting slower or less minutes in each hour.

So many of my crafting friends are struggling at events this year with sale, events which have proved fruitful in years past. Wonder how it will impact on the high street if sales will be down or a mad rush of spend, spend, spend on Christmas Eve. A lot of crafters who do this for a living are having to decide can they continue or some having to take part time work to pay the bills. Very sad and would hate to see the demise of handmade. I do feel though that so many have jumped on the crafting gravy train thinking an easy way to earn a buck. Churn out goods not really up to spec, give up and move on, leaving others to try to pick up the pieces and convince the public that there are some excellent craftsmen and women out there, who genuinely love what they do and are good at it.

Have a good week

Sunday, 12 November 2017

43 Days until Christmas

Bought the wrapping paper this week and have been busy wrapping gifts for F & F. All done and put away until needed.

Updated my website this week, the theme has been carried over to my blog, facebook and twitter page. I have made a decision with regards the business, will carry on until end of 2019, then review. If things have not improved will downsize in a big way. This is a hard decision but getting fed up with lack of sales, I know from talking to other's I am not alone and feel particularly bad for those that have to rely on sales to live. Even friends who do the large shows which have normally been successful for them have struggled to earn a profit, add the rents, travel and possibly an overnight stay, near impossible. On a plus note I feel that the smaller fairs have picked up and maybe the way to go is select events with less stalls but a keener eye on the quality of products on display.

I have toyed with the idea of putting on my own events but organisation shared with at least 5 other crafter's. Have a pop up tea room.  Something to think about for the New Year, only problem is finding 5 crafters near me who can work up the enthusiasm and prepared to commit.

Sunday: Last week's blog post checked and published. Can also show you a card done for an old schoolfriend as by the time this post is up she would have had her Birthday.

Monday: Website planning and vision board for future makes.

Tuesday: Spent the morning at the hospital with DH for his 6 monthly check up and popped into 
M & S on the way back.

Wednesday: Sweeping leaves, so many down and so many more to go

Thursday: More leaves....... Made a change to my website, blog headers etc. Now feel can start 2018 with new vigour.

Friday: Not a lot as am poorly

Saturday: Due at a fair today but had to cancel as still feel so rough and not fair on other stallholder's and visitors to have me coughing and spluttering all over the place. Staying in bed and making DH look after my every need, lol.

Check out the other blogs at Handmade Monday

Have a great week

Sunday, 5 November 2017

Another week and only 50 days until Christmas

Another week in my world, have started to wrap gifts already, early but find it so tiring to do all in one go. My attention spam is that of a gnat when doing something not very keen on. Little and often is the best way to go.

Sunday: Another 2 chef pot holders, sorted out next project. Got everything I need ready for the start.

Monday: Clean the bathrooms and cloakroom.
Sort my stock for the next event into different baskets, want more height which gives me more table room.

Tuesday: Christmas Tree ornaments x 10. Made from wood shapes, covered in a musical score, lace edging and diamantes. Posted to Facebook and sold 5 within 5 minutes, not bad.

Wednesday: Hair cuts early, back for coffee with our departing neighbours.
Treated myself on my Birthday to a book and kit from a dear online friend in the States. We call her the bunny lady as she adopts rabbits. Michelle May (The Raspberry Rabbits): her work is wonderful and been after her book for some time, the kit 'Bird on My Berry Tree' is fantastic and the instructions very clear. Arrived today and that was really quick delivery from NC. Cannot wait to start this project over Christmas, in the meantime reading the book.

Thursday: Picking up leaves in the garden with the mower. Lee did the raking and I buzzed up and down with the cordless, so much less hassle than a corded mower. Came in and within half an hour lawn covered with leaves again!!!!!

Friday: Sewing eye masks and lavender sachets. Selling as a set.

Saturday: Back to the embroidery machine, will have to wait until next week for a show and tell.

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Sunday, 29 October 2017

My Birthday Week

Celebrated my Birthday this week a goal post of '60' eek. Still feel 21 but my body tells me different every day. Getting old is not fun but seems only a few months ago I turned 50. My advice is to experience every day, love what you do and only have people around you that are positive.

Enough of the doldrums, what have I been up to this week:

Sunday: Pottered around and rethought the props for my stall, in particular as I will be having a 4ft stall for March and April need to elevate more stock, just about got it sorted.

Monday: Not a lot, caught up on Victoria and Criminal Minds. Oh did make a New Home card for our new neighbours moving in next week.

Tuesday: Had to tend to DH as he was very poorly, he sees his consultant in a couple of weeks, may get some answers then.

Wednesday: Weather improved and went for 2 lovely dog walks, quite warm at times and pleased only wore a wrap and not a coat.

Thursday: Large sheet of paper and brainstormed collections. Sorted out a new project for Friday

Friday: Mr Waitrose delivery. Chef pot holders

Saturday: My Birthday, had wonderful cards and gifts, lovely lunch and watched the latest Pirates of the Caribbean, bliss.

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Sunday, 22 October 2017

A lot of work but cannot show yet

Another week ever nearer Christmas. Been busy making gifts and cards for F & F, cannot post images yet until early January, which reminds me must take some pic's before posted off.

Succumbed and bought some fabric, I have a plan they will be turned into something girly, pamper and restful, all will be revealed next week.

Stretchy lace

Need to resort my stock and swap some props as not happy with some of the layout at my event, will use the 3 tiered wire baskets for the hair bows as felt they could not be seen properly.

Weather has not been good with the incessant rain then Storm Brian, at least did not get as bad as Ireland.

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Until next week, have fun!

Sunday, 15 October 2017

A week of a bit of this and that, plus first event of the year

Another week in my crafting world. The trees are turning but the colours are fantastic.

Sunday: Check blog and publish, start blog for next week (well this week if you are now reading my exploits)

Monday: Snowmen treat bags in calico

Tuesday: Went to M & S simply food this morning, more goodies bought for Christmas

Wednesday: Trying to sort out the display for the bunting.......

Happy with it now, after doing thought should have got a printed version from Vistaprint, maybe next year

Thursday: A Birthday card for Lee's cousin

Friday: Birthday card for one of Lee's friend's

Plus loaded up the car with all my stock and props for Saturday, had to hunt for the flask as not where it should have been!!!!

Saturday: First event of the year

Photo not that good as can never hold the phone steady. A good event, everyone friendly visitors and stallholders alike, typical of a Hampshire village. Managed my goal of 3 times the rent so a happy bunny. Tomorrow plan to start on some Christmas gifts for friends and family.

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Until next week......