this blog is essentially an online diary of my little creative projects - if you can't fix it, throw some glitter over it and add a lacy edge and everything will be alright.

Monday, 31 December 2012

very little presents: star wars key rings

i'm keenly aware that i am far too old not to get everyone in my family gifts for christmas, that said, i haven't seen much of my extended family at all since i left for uni - unfortunately i missed my uncles and aunts and all my cousins this christmas...but i hope my uncles like these little key rings i made them anyway:

it's the death star and darth vader's tie fighter!! grey felt for the ships, black felt for backing, lots of pva glue to make them a bit more solid, then fabric pen for the details and glitter glue for highlights. they are a bit naff but they should make them smile : )

making fancy dress ears-on-head-bands

i've always loved fancy dress! i had the best fancy dress box growing up and thanks to the many fancy dress opportunities that university provides i still have a pretty impressive fancy dress box now. the first thing i ever made on my sewing machine was a dragon costume for a supernatural party, since then i've been a shower (from psycho's shower scene), a shark for a hawaiian party and alice for an alice in wonderland diner party Of course there have also been daleks and cats and spiders and ghosts and all the usual things.

now that i've got kid siblings i want to pass on the joy of fancy dress (not that they've not discovered it themselves) so my little sister got these jewel encrusted animal ear head bands for christmas:

apologies for the less than brilliant photo - i was in a bit of a rush to travel home for christmas and these were the last thing i made before i left for home. they were super simple to make - you just need cheap head bands (thank you primark), felt, a glue gun, and any pretty gems or glitter that you might embellish things with. draw the shape you want the ears to be on a bit of paper, fold your felt in two, draw, cut out (so you have a shape that's like two ears attached at the base) do this again (so you have a pair), glue gun along the halfway bit of each ear, attach to head band, fold, glue gun reverse sides together, do same for the other ear, make pretty.

in case you were wondering it's meant to be a cat, tiger and mouse!

rose and bee 'stained glass' panel for mummy

one of the goodies my mother asked for for christmas was a stained glass panel for her as i don't actually know how to do proper stained glass (with the cutting the glass and the lead and whatnot) i thought that a little window charm of my own design, done in relief paste and glass paints, would do the trick : ) i think she liked it! here it is in our front room window in hove:

it is very simple i know but i hope it's thought effective...and just pretend that the bee's other two legs are hidden on the other side of it or something. i hadn't used glass paints or relief paste for absolute yonks but it's not that different from drawing a picture and trying to paint within the lines - i drew around my piece of glass onto paper first so i could get the design right, once i was happy with it i just popped the glass back on top of my doodle and used it as a guide for my relief paste : ) easy peasy!

Sunday, 30 December 2012

treasure chests of chocolate coins...and goodies!

a lady i was serving at work told me about her plans to decorate some of our ready-paper-mached treasure chests by painting them gold and filling them with chocolate coins to give to young family members. what a wonderful idea!! i totally copied her - chocolate coins are the best, i have two kid siblings, and already had gold paint, stick on gems and glitter glue. all i needed was the chests and the coins:

i may also have added a tacky and over the top necklace for my sister and a pirate's eye patch for my brother : )

holly golightly eye mask

i do rather love breakfast at tiffany's, and for that matter, anything involving audrey hepburn! i saw this in the sewing project book all sewn up and simply had to get the book! even though it was a bit pricey for me, and even though i knew i wasn't going to follow the instructions to the letter (i rarely do) it was a buy i don't regret. here's the audrey hepburn-esque mask i made my mother:

i used...that's right....FELT! and, even better - actual false eyelashes! also gold star sequins, metallic thread, pretty floral fabric to line the mask and elastic and satin ribbon for the strap on the back. sewn all together by hand : ) i decorated some plain slippers with felt roses to go with it but i think the mask was definitely the feature piece. ooooh i hope she liked it!

getting better at making wallets: faux leather and felt

i have made many wallets by now - they've come in many shapes and sizes, been made out of drinks cartons, duct tape or maps, they never last that long and they never hold quite as much as you need them to...but i quite like them : ) lets hope my boyfriend isn't just being polite when he says he likes them too, here's one i made him for christmas:

basically it's a bit of fake leather cut in the necessary shape of a wallet, a bit of felt cut at the same size, and smaller bits of felt to make up the pockets, with a small bit of self adhesive velcro to keep the coins in the coin bit. all sewn together (felt bits all done with the machine, then hand sew the leather part to that as it's a bit thick for my small sewing machine). it looks more like a wallet than any i've made so far so i'm definitely getting better at this! yay! i hope he likes it...

felt superhero masks

now these AREN'T MY OWN DESIGN though it wasn't obvious who came up with these first as i copied the idea from someone who copied the idea from someone who etc. etc. so apologies for the lack of link. though hopefully you won't need one once you've seen this picture:

they were so easy to make! and so effective : ) my little brother looked very cute in them. incase it's not obvious that one in the top left is meant to be superman.
to make these you will need:
- sheets of felt
- elastic
- something eye-mask shaped to draw around (i used an eye mask)
- a pen
- pva glue
- scrap paper
- scissors
- large eyed needle
to make these:
- draw around your eye mask shaped thing on your scrap paper to make a stencil
- make appropriate alterations to your stencil, depends on which superhero you're doing
- cut out stencil
- draw around said stencil onto felt with pen
- cut out
- add: felt with glue if needed (superman, hulk, iron man) or pen for spiderman
- thread needle with elastic
- put mask and needle-threaded-with-elastic together to make a mask you can wear

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

chipped ice mirror cake

my awesome friend is having a strictly come dancing themed christmas dinner. she said not to go too overboard as it's only me and the boyfriend coming (because everyone else is lame!), so i did this to a christmas pudding:

now, i must say, it looks ace! i was meant to be a mirror ball but it turns out that breaking up a melted sheet of boiled mints into perfect squares (or any kinds of squares) is impossible. i may have made my sheet of mint too thick so i've no clue how we're going to go about eating this, but i feel that the effort will be appreciated : )

to make edible mirror tiles:

you will need - cheep bag of boiled mints, edible silver food spray, and holographic edible glitter (optional)

1. preheat oven to 160 degrees
2. line oven proof dish with tin foil
3. crush mints in a bag with a rolling pin (this is very good for relieving stress)
4. put mint crumbs in foiled thing and put in oven
5. check on it every now and again and take out when it's liquidy
6. sprinkle on the glitter if you managed to find some
7. once it's cooled, removed from foil and spray with silver spray on one side (glittered side)
8. break up carefully with knife (i didn't have safety goggles so wore sunglasses for this bit- you should do something similar)
9. press into or stick onto food you want mirrored
10. figure out how to eat it
11. enjoy!  


Thursday, 13 December 2012

measuring cup candles : )

i'm hoping that my aunts don't read this blog - if you're my aunt, LOOK AWAY NOW!!

anyway, you might have noticed that christmas is coming up, and as such the challenge of getting non offensive gifts for family members you only see at christmas is upon us. surprise surprise i'm making a lot of the things i'm giving this year, and one luck lady (or a lady who will politely pretend that she's lucky in getting these) will get these:

they're quite cute and a little bit kitch and smell of eucalyptus and rosemary. i probably won't be telling my aunt that i picked up the ceramic measuring cups at pound land (what can i say? i was not expecting the first attempt to go so well!), i might have to go back and get myself a set for the kitchen...

making candles

  1. attach wick to bottom of mould/vintage tea cup/jam jar with a bit of clay (or some other non flammable, non toxic small sticky thing)
  2. tie other end of wick to a lolly pop stick and rest on top of the mould with help from blue tack
  3.  melt wax pellets/broken up old candles the way you melt chocolate
  4. pour into mould when liquidy, add smellies at this point
  5. leave to dry
  6. admire

doily snowflakes

....ok, not only did i copy my friends idea about having paper snowflakes on the windows, i also cheated by following instructions as to where to snip my doilies from pinterest! so i feel a bit like a christmas fraud, but at least they look the part:

i went for doilies as i happened to pick some up from work a while back (£1 for 40 mini ones), to my shame i have never really been sure what to do with them, but they're extra thin so great for folding and the lacy edge bit makes them look more snowflakey. the thing to remember when making snowflakes is that they're meant to have 6 sides - something about water  molecules forming hexagons when they freeze (also why water expands when it freezes), this makes all real snowflakes some variation on a hexagon 4 is too few and 8 too many in paper snowflakes anyway.

i am quite tempted to make some out of felt and cover them with sequins for my tiny tree - it's so small you can't really see it for the decorations! : ) 

Monday, 10 December 2012

lonely christmas decoration making

: ( so it turns out that most of my friends aren't all that creative or can't/don't turn up if you create a spiced cider and christmas decoration making's what i made anyway:

the elephant, space ship, 'ho' and bird are all salt dough decorations painted, glitter glued and bejewelled. the stocking is felt with ribbon, glitter glue stripes and a button toe, the candy canes are twisted pipe cleaners, the star bauble is a styrofoam ball painted blue with gold star sequins pinned into it and the two above that are made from sticking bits of christmas paper together : )

so what if my friends don't make things? i do, and that's ace enough for me.

salt dough: 2 parts flour to 1 part salt and 1 part water

Thursday, 6 December 2012

presents for strangers - the giving tree : )

i'm starting to realise that my boyfriend is a far better human being than me - last week he presented me with a gift tag for the giving tree (a christmas charity thing where people give presents to orphans), it was for a 7 year old girl. I put together a goody bag of craft things; felt, glitter, pompoms, buttons, pipe cleaners, ribbon etc. (in case she's like me), he chose a girly robot making kit for kids (in case she has a more techie leaning) and i made these:

it's a japanese hair flower head band and a little handbag to match : ) i have a really crafty work mate who makes the flowers and she showed me how to make them...this was my first attempt and i must say i am rather pleased with it! to make them you need to cut out many circles of your chosen fabric (i drew around an obliging wine glass to make them all the same size), then you fold each one in half twice to get a quarter, sort of pleat the ruff edge together to make the petal shape, sew them all together (i did twelve), glue gun a button or something pretty in the middle and vuala! a flower! then just stick it to a hair thing and make a matching bag. i went with a very pink sugar skull fabric - it's possibly a pit punk for a 7 year old, but it's a very cute and girly punk so i'm sure it'll be fine.

(for the bag i machine sewed two sheets of felt sandwiched between two pieces of the fabric together, cut around the edge with pinking shears, hand sewed the strap and zip on to that, and then cut out a zip-pull, thread it through the zip bit, folded it in half and glued it to its self.)

Wednesday, 5 December 2012

button jewellery for little girls....and grown ups

as one might expect i have what might be referred to as a gargantuan number of buttons, they serve no actual purpose other than to be there, just in case. you never know when you're going to look at a much loved cardie and say, "oh god! that needs bright yellow bee buttons today or it just won't go with my outfit!"

...anyways, i have a little sister who isn't too girly. I think that every little girl needs jewellery, and as christmas is coming up she'll get some from me, but as she's a little girl it'll probably get broken or lost within moments of her opening her JEWELLERY:

there's a necklace, a bracelet, and a ring. all the buttons, findings and string were already waiting in my craft pile (yes it's a pile....i desperately need to tidy my room), so these were essentially free! so she can break or lose them as she sees fit.

i wasn't sure it they were a bit lame, i mean she's not that little, she probably knows more about computers than i do (i really hope she doesn't check my blog or there'll be no surprises, also sorry for the lack of posts - parents check this so i can't post all the awesome stuff i've made them until after christmas). anyway, so i test drove the necklace and became instantly jealous because it's quite ace. so i made a grown up button bracelet and some miss-match earrings to go with it:

i've since given the bracelet away, but at least i get to keep the button earrings : )