Thursday 31 May 2012

Hama bead coasters continued...

Love my hama bead Mario World Coasters! I used these templates. I much prefer the larger ones with the border to my mini test one - here

Wednesday 30 May 2012

Crib Blanket

My friend had a little boy a couple of months and ive finally finished the crib/buggy blanket i wanted to make them!
The fabric is just some cute Michale Miller and Robert Kaufman fabrics i bought on ebay and its backed with super snuggly 'minky' fabric. I put some quilt wadding between the layers to make it nice and thick. Although we are having a mini heat wave here in the UK so maybe a blanket isnt very necessary at the mo!

Tuesday 29 May 2012

Fold-out Pop up card

Extreme Cards and Papercrafting is my kind of blog! I love working with cards, especially anything with a pop up or moving part. I'd never seen a fold out card like this before, where the card opens like a flower, so i had to have a go at making it. I think its fab, but cutting out all those little stars nearly cut off the circulation to my finger tips!
Shame its not anyone's birthday soon is all... maybe i'll save it for Lovely BM later in the year

Monday 28 May 2012

Garlic Herb Butter

I love the blog Annie's Eats. It was the first blog i ever started reading regularly and is probably what inspired me to start my own. Shes makes wonderful food but its her store cupboards staples that i always love so i tried her Compound Heb Butter this week - delicious!
Im going to use it when making paninis in my george forman grill!

Saturday 26 May 2012

Meiosis Papercut

A new addition to my Biology Papercut series. This is the stages of Meiosis (cell division). Mitosis to follow...
See my previous ones here

Friday 25 May 2012

House wrapping paper

I love wrapping presents in brown paper, but i always think it looks a bit drab to everyone else. I try and spice it up with a pretty ribbon or something but then i saw this genius idea from Happy F&B and knew i needed to turn my brown paper boxes into houses!
So i bought some glossy avery labels, designed some basic doors and windows etc and printed them out.
I think its worked brilliantly! I just wish it had been my idea in the first place!

Thursday 24 May 2012

Homemade Giant Confetti

I love giant confetti. No idea why, i just think its so much cooler than the normal little cutesy stuff. Lovely BM and I have a few weddings to go to this year so i thought i'd make myself some. Ideally i wanted circle confetti but the large circle punches are not cheap. I've been circling my local Hobbycraft sale aisle like a shark for months waiting for them to put one in there but no luck. But then last week this giant scalloped square got added (£3.79 thanks very much!) so i snapped that up, it'll make an excellent substitute.
So the rest is pretty simple, punch out lots of squares of coloured tissue paper and put them in some pretty glassine bags. I might stitch along the top of the bags if im going to hand them out to other people, just so they dont go everywhere in people's bags and pockets etc.
Happy confetti-ing! :)

Punch, tissue paper and glassine bag

Confetti (looks like little raviolis!)

Bagged Confetti

Wednesday 23 May 2012

Print my own fabric continued....

So my first attempts at printing fabric are here and here.
The second attempt was successful but had some issues, mainly a dirty roller and an incomplete pattern. I fixed those and this is my new and improved printed fabric :)

Now the third issue was more difficult, how to make the ink permanent... So i thought i would try heat as my first option. I ironed one piece and left one un-ironed to see if there was any improvement in how permanent the ink was.
This is the before (ironed piece is on the right)

This is the after (ironed piece is on the right)

There wasnt really any difference, both inks washed off very easily in just cold water and no soap so definitely not permanent...

So a different solution needs to be found
I've had a look on t'internet and there's 3 options really
1. Use permanent ink - im not a fan of this as its expensive and id be using the ink for my regular printing as well, which would be a waste
2. Use some kind of fixative spray once its printed. Again not a fan of this, it's usually some kind of resin which makes the fabric a bit hard and crunchy. It would be fine for paper but isnt going to work on fabric.
3. Treat the fabric with a fixative solution before printing. There's a few different types of this available but i found a few websites that recommend trying neat (or 50/50 with water) fabric softener. I already have this in my cupboard so im going to give that a try next. If that doesnt work then i might look at some of the commercial fixatives
I'll keep you posted!

Tuesday 22 May 2012

DIY Washi Tape Stamps

I'm still in love with home made stamps and would love washi tape if it wasnt so ridiculously expensive! So, inspired massively by memi the rainbow, i though id make my own. I l-o-v-e them! I think the bunting is my favourite, im going to use it everywhere!

Monday 21 May 2012

Bib or Cape?

I just found out my friend is expecting in November and, even though its ages away, when i saw these bibs at Lemon Squeezy Home, i just could resist making them!
I printed the letters onto some freezer paper and cut them out with a scalpel. I ironed the freezer paper to the bibs and then painted them with fabric paint. Once it was totally dry I peeled off the stencil. The bibs are jersey cotton from John Lewis and are nice and thick so the paint hasnt bled through. FYI towelling bibs dont work as well, the paint bleeds under the uneven fabric. And make sure you use non toxic fabric paint, designed to be washable, new parents dont need anything impractical!

Sunday 20 May 2012

Heart Elbow Patches

I have this little jumper that i love (it actually used to be my sisters!) but the elbows are wearing through so i decided to make some elbow patches for it! When i went to London the other week i went to a leather wholesaler and bought some scraps (think im going to make some little coin purses with it) and this light tan colour was perfect for the patches. I was inspired by these needle felted patches at Honestly WTF. I just cut out the hearts with a rotary cutter, stuck them in place with double sided tape (never uses pins on leather) and then hand sewed them into place with some cream wool. Can wait to wear it!

Saturday 19 May 2012

Friday 18 May 2012

Parcel Tag Stamp

I'm totally in love with making my own stamps from rubbers/erasers. I found this gorgeous tutorial at Sugar and Cloth for this brilliant parcel tag stamp. I love parcel tags anyway so this was double perfect for me! 

Thursday 17 May 2012

Sewing Machine Pin Cushion

I've a bad habit when sewing, for putting any used pins into the creases of my jeans at the knee. Odd i know but its just the nearest place to hand normally. Often though i forget theyre there and put my jeans in the wash with them on or take them off and stab myself when put them back on!! So when i saw this cute little idea for a sewing machine pin cushion i thought that might be just what i need to break my ridiculous habit! I love how it turned out, but we'll have to wait and see if it does it job!

Wednesday 16 May 2012

Pillow Case Boxes

I thought id give these little pillow case boxes a go last weekend and i think it turned out ok. I should have measured my shape a bit better as its totally on the wonk! But its a great idea and super easy to do, give it a go if you have some old pillow cases lying around. I think i might make some (less wonky) ones for the top of my wardrobes.

Tuesday 15 May 2012

Hama (Perler) Beads Mario Star

I've seen loads of Hama (called Perler in the US) bead art based on old school computer games and i love them! Makes me all nostalgic for all the lost weekend and holidays spent completing Super Mario World and the Legend of Zelda!
I used these templates for my little star below. I plan on making a set but i need to wait for a bigger board to be delivered, should really have checked the size of the templates before buying stuff!!

Isnt he cute!!

Update here

Monday 14 May 2012

Tin Can Cakes

I thought these little tin can cakes at Oh Happy Day were so cute i wanted to see if i could make them too.
I used this Chocolate cake recipe by Nigella Lawson (US version here), which i love - not too sweet and really fudgey. So i put the mix into my cans, baked them and happily, all went well!

 I turned them out ok, which I was worried about. I had greased and floured the inside and put greaseproof at the bottom. Im just not sure i like the ridged edge the cans give the cake... need to try and find smooth sided cans.

I cut the uneven top off (yum i love eating the scraps!), cut them in to 3 and then frosted them. I was practising my frosting so i used a few different techniques.
I think theyre pretty cute, some issues need ironing out but theres definitely potential here :)

Sunday 13 May 2012

Print my own fabric

I posted about how to print on fabric before (original idea is from Creativity Exchange) and, because i was a bit skeptical whether it would work, i didnt really think about how to utilise it. I've also been searching for some better neutral (ie not cats or flowers a or cupcakes etc) patterned fabrics recently (can you see where this is going...). I see so many gorgeous fabrics on people's blogs but the majority are from the US so its not really practical to buy them. Ive found a few good online stores, and Ebay is of course an excellent source of most stuff, but i do like touching the fabric before i buy it. Which got me thinking 'is it possible to make my own?'
So I designed a basic flying bird pattern just using the shapes available in Microsoft word to try out. I cut out an A4 sheet of freezer paper, cut my fabric to match and then ironed them together. 

 Then I put the fabric through my inkjet printer.

For a first proper attempt i think it worked well. Theres 3 issues though. Firstly ive no idea why i didnt make my pattern a whole A4 page, i must have been interupted when i was doing it, i also need to remove the margins. Secondly there's some nasty black smudges at the top. My printer is pretty old so im hoping its nothing a good clean of the rollers wont fix. But third, and most crucial, the printer ink isnt waterproof as far as i can tell. I know you can buy waterproof printer ink but its expensive and, as i use my printer for normal printing too i'm not keen on swapping to it. I could potentially buy a separate printer but i'm not keen on spending money on this idea until im more confident with it. So further planning is required to get this to work...

Latest update here

Saturday 12 May 2012

Frosting practise

I love beautifully decorated cakes, im just not very good at it! So i thought id have a go and try and get some basics down. I used this tutorial at Glorious Treats and her American Buttercream recipe. 
So heres my attemp...

Some are better than others but i think my favourites are the rose style one (middle row, left and middle), really easy and very pretty. 

Friday 11 May 2012

Courgette Flower explosion!

The courgette's are coming on nicely! About 25 flowers at the mo :) all male flowers though so this doesnt guarantee lots of courgettes...

Thursday 10 May 2012

Stamped Envelopes - Pretend Envelope Liners

I love bank holiday weekends - i got so much making done! I had a chance to try out these pretend envelope liners, where you just stamp the inside of the envelope instead of adding a liner. The idea is from Oh Happy Day. Just tape off the edges of the envelope you dont want to stamp. I used low tack masking tape, id recommend you try a area first to check it peels off ok and dont leave the tape on too long. Then just start stamping, the more random the better. I used the rubber end of a pencil for my stamp and some little ink pads i got cheap on Ebay. Use a thick good quality envelope though as it'll bleed through thinner paper. 
You could also make an actual liner with this stamp patter too. Kids tracing paper makes a great envelope liner and is relatively cheap. Just cut it to size and stamp away. Use a bit of temporary spray adhesive to keep it in place (the permanent stuff doesnt give you a chance to push the liner in very easily)

Wednesday 9 May 2012

DIY Twist Ties

I love these little diy tie twists over at Organise and Decorate Everything, so i thought id give them a go myself. Its literally garden wire glued between some pretty paper - so simple and really quite attractive. I think i'll make them longer next time though, they were a bit too short to tie round bulky stuff.

Tuesday 8 May 2012

Button card

I attached some buttons to this stylish little man to make a cute little button card. I have thousands of buttons that my gran, mum, sister and i have collected over the years so its nice to use them for something!

Monday 7 May 2012

Ring of fire board game art

This week really is turning into the labour of love week! This is the project ive been making my teeny tiny things for recently. Its a piece of art/board game that ive made for my and lovely BMs friends. Its based around a drinking game we've played too many times to count over the years called ring of fire and it basically spells out the rules of the game, in cute teeny tiny fashion! Its taken me since before i began this blog to create so its been a proper labour of love! I havent given it to them yet (they dont read this blog so i havent given it away!) and i cant wait to see their faces when i do :)

Sunday 6 May 2012

Shrink plastic = tiny things!

Maybe im massively behind the times but ive never used shrinky plastic before (shrinkles, shrinkies, shrinky dinks etc) and arent they funny!! These are some little items i made at the weekend,  the full sized items and then the shrunk items. Teeny tiny things always make me smile so these are right up my street! no idea what im going to do with them though...

Saturday 5 May 2012

Needlepoint Clutch - finished!!

Ta-da!!! Finally my needle point clutch is finished and i love it, its going to be my favourite going out handbag thats for sure :)
Its a pattern by Purl Bee and I first blogged about this in January and then updated you the other week so im really pleased i finally finished it. It was a labour of love but it'll get loads of use out of it so i dont mind all the hours of hard work. Might be laying off the embroidery for a while though!

Friday 4 May 2012

Doilie wrapped flowers

I think i mentioned previously that i was my aunts birthdays recently (2 are within a week of each other) so i bought them some irises as a gift. I hate the plastic wrap that flowers normally come in so i wrapped them in brown paper, tucked in a doilie, and tied them with coloured twine. Im so pleased how they turned out, i think all my flowers will be wrapped like this in the future!

Thursday 3 May 2012

Tea bag biscuits

I totally fell in love with these tea bag biscuits at Sandrakavital so i thought i'd have a go at making my own!
Theyre a lovely shortbread biscuit, dipped in chocolate with a cute little heart tag - whats not to love!
I bagged them up in little glassine bags and tied them with string and gave them to my three aunts as little birthday/thanks you gifts. I think they were very much appreciated!

Tuesday 1 May 2012

Gardening - Home Grown Veg Update

There's been a bit of a leaf/greenery explosion in my make shift greenhouse!! (Before pics here). The courgettes have lots of buds now as well so i cant wait for them to start flowering :)