Sunday, 3 June 2018

New necklaces

HI Folks, its been a while.
I've rounded down my work to sewing and soldering and I've decided to stop selling at craft fairs, no profit, no point.
So I'm focusing everything on shadow box pendants and sewing things like bags, but mainly I'm sewing for myself #yippee.

I have a few necklaces I've made. After what seems like an eternity trying to make boxes for pendants I finally had a breakthrough.
As I may have mentioned I love images from history. I'm glad to say I'm old enough to have heard of Vaudeville and crinolines but young enough to want to learn the dances from The Greatest Showman. If a kids see's somebody wearing a necklace I've made, and they wonder who it is in the image or who painted the painting then Id be very happy.

So, enough of my waffle, here are some necklaces I've made and maybe a few other things to show you.

New jewellery

Clara Bow

Monochrome Frida. I'm making more colourful versions too.

The Lady of Shalott by Waterhouse. I created a new box pendant but upcycled an old necklace to embellish it.

Mermaid necklace featuring a Waterhouse image.

Weeping angel, sadly I don't know the painter.

Waterhouse, The Soul of the Rose. Yes, I think Im obsessed with Waterhouse!

I'm such an idiot accidently adding this twice.

Colourful Frida Kahlo necklace, she sold before I listed it on Folksy!!
I'm working on how to make the shadow box pendants hinged with a door, its tricky but fun.
I hope to make more Frida necklaces dip into the world of Van Gogh too.
I think the metal boxes lend themselves nicely to Gothic accessories so I'l look into images for that theme too.
here are a few things I've mad e for myself or things I've been messing around with.
A wrap round dress for me. it loos odd because I'm a lot bigger than the mannequin its on.
Not sure if this video will work but I like to use moulds, so I've been having fun experimenting. We have had candy skulls which are still popular but I think shrunken heads may be a new thing.

This is a new dress for me.with a cobra, beetle  and flower print on it.

I've been working on more dolls. I recently sent 2 to America!!
Everything I make can be seen in my Folksy shop(link above)
Here is my Facebook page if you'd like to follow the good and bad things that happen in my world of craft.
That's it from me for now. I hope you are all enjoying your crafts. Add links of your work to my comments if you wish.

Wednesday, 7 March 2018

Depression Mode

A friend of mine wrote this and thought I'd pass it on to anyone that's suffering.........

Depression was described to me about 12-15 years ago as, when you know you love something but don't feel it.
I started to cry , I didn't know how I felt was 'a thing' seeing as I'd been like it for so long.
It took me over a decade to do something about it.

Do you really want to hurt me.
I worked at a God forsaken place for 5 God forsaken years. I had 4 bosses, 2 of them decided I was to blame for everything that went wrong, which was mostly caused by them . If I said th esky was blue, they would say 'no, its yellow with stripes'. they were that idiotic and had to dominate the little employee.
Like the good little person that I am, not wanting to anger my parents and for the pay(which wasn't great) I stayed.

Over the next few years things just got worse. Id seemed to have stopped having emotions, maybe to hide how badly I had been treated, I didn't want to show signs of weakness, I couldn't show how I felt at work or at home,so I just carried on as if everything was ok. All the time in my head I had the worst thoughts eating away at everything. Telling me how crap I am, Im useless, I shouldn't have my own opinions etc

Gradually being used as a verbal punch bag effected me to the point of going bonkers (in my head)  Id gradually given up caring and quit my job.

So yes I felt a bit better, my parents noticed I was happier. But that's on the outside.

What happens on the outside isn't always what's going on the inside.

I will try to recall how depression feels. Please don't think Im cured, but I am a lot better.
I felt like my head was in a fish bowl.
People didn't seem real.
Its such an effort just to smile, even time with friends was a challenge. I had to think of things to say to react to a conversation or Id just sit there and say nothing. I had to act like I was interested, in most cases I was interested, I just couldn't muster up a reaction.
There were bad, negative thoughts constantly going through my head.
I felt nothing positive.
Smiling is very tricky and led to me just wanting to cry.
Anxiety levels are high in certain situations.
And yes, I was suicidal for most of that time.
Thats just a hint of it, sadly a side effect of medication is memory loss, but its not all bad, there's good to come(keep reading)

Too shy shy.
I hate talking about me(but I can type like a looney so get comfy).
I'm useless at job interviews and just as bad at talking to a doctor. Thank goodness for emails and blogs.
So 10+ years came and went, each day getting worse and worse. During that time I went through a period of hearing voices or things outside my head when I was alone, but I went through phases, the voices didn't last long and didn't say anything bad. Years went by again, I was in such a bad place I had completely broken down on the inside, I could no longer function as a human being and HAD to go to the doctors.

Tears for Fears
I had to see a doctor.It took a few days to get through, due to nerves/doctors not being available, but eventually I got through. Just making the phone call(not an appointment) was enough.
As soon as I got off the phone I was so proud of myself for doing something about it, then a split second later I burst into tears with complete and utter relief that Id started to do something about it. It was the best cry Id ever had in my entire life, I sobbed, fell to the floor, I totally broke down.

Open your heart
Eventually I spoke to a very nice doctor who invited me to an appointment in about 2 hours from the call. Yes I was fricking nervous but I was like a robot by then, I had to help myself.
I was so relieved that they believed me.
Nothing came out right, I barely said anything that was in my head.

Doctor and the Medics
I was given some tablets which took about 6 weeks to truly kick in.
I tried 3 different types over  year.
Sadly one of the side effects for me is memory loss(have I already said that?)

So gradually as time went by, I started to feel better. I laughed more easily(well I laughed, I hadn't done that for ages)I smiled more easily and the negative thoughts eating away at my brain can still be heard but they are muffled. They are still there but they are in another room,  with the door closed.

I started taking tablets at the start of the year, by Christmas I was off them and don't really feel like I need them.

As I said before I'm not cured. I still don't have positive feelings which is heart breaking but the negativity has seriously reduced which is great.
I told the doc about the memory loss(have I mentioned that can be a side effect) he left me with  a prescription so if my mood was low I had something to try.

I should be so lucky
Since then we have had some crappy family news so my smile has been tougher to conjure up. I'm currently not on any tablets but its good to know I have something if I need it.

Some of the most entertaining people in celeb land  have depression, (correct me if Im wrong) Rob Delaney, Carrie Fisher, Robin Williams, Ruby Wax and I think we would all consider them to be very popular people and fun to be around but we don't know what its like in their heads.

 I think I'm trying to say that yes some people feel awkward about it(I havn't even told my family about any of this so please keep it to yourselves if you know me).
I cant give any advice to anybody who has a friend of loved one with depression. Personally a hug wouldn't have helped me but it may help someone else. Though I am always up for a hug whether it helps or not.
And please don't tell someone with depression to cheer up. THEY CANNOT HELP IT. Nobody wants to be like this, I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy(though I secretly would wish it on the person that made me this way)

Everything counts in large amounts
So, if I have inspired just one person to be brave and make a doctors appointment I would be absolutely chuffed to bits(without actually feeling it)
PLEASE MAKE THE CALL. If I can do it, anybody can.

I thoroughly recommend the books written by Ruby Wax that she has written about her mental health issues. A Mindfulness Guide for the Frazzled is particularly good.There's some good advice and an understanding as to what's happening in your brain.

Monday, 22 January 2018

Ink and water card toppers craft tutorial

I've been having more fun with my water spritzer bottle and washable pens. I thought Id share my experiments with you so you can design your own toppers.

You will need - paper/card to work on and card with a shape cut out. Water bottle spritzer, water soluble pens, water proof work surface..
I have used my die cutter to make a heart shape in some card to create a stencil, but you can choose what shape you use for your project.

Place shaped stencil onto a piece of card you are using for your topper. Using water soluble pens draw round the inside of the shape. Pen will transfer onto the stencil piece of card so you can use that in projects too(see  pic further down).

Using your spritzer bottle spray on top of  the shape you have drawn. You can leave the stencil in place as it may help  to control where the ink travels, or take it away for a more unstructured look.

In a few seconds the water mixed with ink from the pens will start to move the colour around creating a gorgeous water colour look.

Because of the water on the card, the card may buckle, meaning the water will roll and drip to the edges of the card, so you may want to flatten it, depending on where you want the water to flow.

Here is the card stencil I used, it has some ink on the inside so I added water and the colour flows.

Here are both elements with the beautiful, colourful results

I've added some rubber stamped letters

And cut out the stencil to create a different type of topper

This is just a basic idea of what the final elements can look like but you can add your own style to make it even more one of a kind.
This is an image of a Valentines card I have made using the same idea for the heart.
I've been sewing again, here a  couple of new make up bags I've made, each  one of a kind. You can find my work here if you'd like to see more of my work.   My crafts 

Thursday, 11 January 2018

New year, new crafts

So its new year, well a few days in. My health kick lasted a matter of hours and I've already spent all craft vouchers  I got at Xmas on many craft supplies.

I just thought Id check in and say what I've been up to.

I may have mentioned that I'm trying to reduce my crafts so I can focus more. I'm focusing on rubber stamped or hand drawn greeting cards, sewing and soldering.

I think I will just bombard you with a load of images of what I've been making.

I had some drawing made into rubber stamps.

 Then I realised I could just draw things, scan them and create images with photo editing. I hope to make this little owl as a birthday card. I have to work out what she should be sitting on first.
 Another card from my rubber stamps
 Card and matching pillow box.

 I love seahorses so I drew a seahorse with a unicorns horn, no idea if they have a name, Im going to call them Sea-corns.
 A penguin and baby penguin, are they called pufflings? I'm not sure. I hope to make this into a birthday card too.
 This is my latest design, with people going through tough times in mind. The Juggler.
 I hope to make more of these paper doll cards too.
All of my work can be found in my Folksy shop and you can learn a lot more of the inspiration behind them,  or I have a number of other items in my Etsy shop. Ive reduced my handmade cushions and you'll find some jewellery on there too.

Wednesday, 29 November 2017

Ombre raffia tutorial

Ombre raffia tutorial-

I have had a great time messing around with water  and paints recently. I have also started drawing and I've made Xmas and birthday cards with them
Whilst experimenting with art, a lot like Leonardo Da Vinci, I discovered this decorative idea, so I thought Id share it with you.

 1.You will need a waterproof surface, a spray bottle of water, raffia in white(depending on what colour you want to achieve) and water based pens or paints.

 2.Spray a length of raffia with water and let it soak up the water.

 3. Add pen/paint colour to the centre of the raffia, then use a finger to squish it toward the ends of the raffia. Add more colour to the centre if required. Leave to dry.


If you want to make a bow. Create a bow with the raffia and spritz with water. Add water based colour to the centre of the bow and leave it for the water to carry the colour out. add more colours if you wish. Raffia can be uncrinkled to make the bow more voluminous (see pic.)
I hope that was of some use to you. Its a great inexpensive way to make a bow and brighten up gift packaging.

Here are some pics of my drawings and other items I have available like bags and jewellery. I have made some of my drawings into cards which you can see in my Folksy shop. Gifts and cards galore

Have a Merry Christmas and don't get too drunk or eat too many mince pies. I won't..honest.


Thursday, 29 June 2017

Costumes and me.

So it seems to have been months since I last blogged. Ive not been on any kind of espionage related adventures or gone into hiding as a hermit, just sorting my head out one weird thought at a time.

I realised that blogs are partly meant to be about the person writing them, so with each blog I shall add a bit about what I like.
I don't claim to be the most interesting person in the world, I still have a video player and Ive no idea who is at No1 in the charts(if its still called that nowadays). But I do like the fact that Im interested in things that people may not immediately think of as an everyday subject.

I feel the best place that my mind is show is on my Pinterest page. I have posted a link here before but I think I should pick out a few things that really float my boat. They may appeal to you, they may not but if you like an image enough for it to spark a new interest for you then Il be a happy blogger.

I shall add pinterest links so you can see what I am waffling about and I will try to pick out 2 or 3 images to talk about.

I am interested in costumes, always have been since I was little and had dolls. I can recall taking sleeves off a dolls regency dress and making clothes out of felt for them to wear.
So where on earth do I begin. ................................................................................................................................................

Pinterest Costumes

I love the silhouette of clothes the way they are constructed, how they are held together, the shapes of each piece etc
To me a costume has to be made up of appropriate fabric and maybe have an updated twist to it but nothing too unbelievable.
It jars my brain if I see something that doesn't work(in my opinion, Im no expert) I wasn't happy with the remake of Psycho, I felt the costumes of Anne Heche were all wrong, almost too young and comedic(no offence to her or the designer)even the earrings wound me up.
I have to admit to liking ladies costume more than mens but there are some films where I can't help but prefer the mens outfits, eg Rob and Jude Sherlock Holmes, Brotherhood of the Wolf.

I have a list of films I love due to their costumes,
Gangs of New York- amazing sillhoettes and bold flashes of colour.
Madness of King George. The clothes were meant to be seen by candlelight and I feel they really shine in their right environment.
Helen Mirren in The madness of king George, design by

                                                             Sue Honeybourne
                                                              Mark Thompson   
                                           image from

Gypsy, who doesn't love the clothes Natalie Wood wears in the last few scenes of that film!
Dracula (with Gary and Winona) Her red dress is breathtaking and Eiko Ishioka has designed some stunning costumes(also see The Cell  The Cell info)....
too many to mention
Also music videos have  had some great outfits eg Lady Gaga and Annie Lennox.
Lady Gaga and Beyoncé. Image from on Pinterest.
My heart skipped a beat when I saw these outfits. Amazing  proportions, unflattering, an interesting mix of cowboy hat and Edwardian dress. What I like about Lady gaga is that she isn't afraid to look hideous or interesting so she has doubled the amount of costumes she can wear. Most people want to look their best I whatever they wear, flashing a bit of leg or cleavage, but nope, Gaga has cola cans in her hair, strange make up and a phone on her head.
Annie Lennox and her Diva videos are one heck of a costume event to feast your eyes on, also Love song for a Vampire and No more I love you should get a mention too.
The overall look is beautiful, giving it a Victorian ethereal feel. This angel costume is so vaudeville and the colours go from pink sequins to rusty golds and moss greens. I havn't seen the videos for a while but Ive no doubt they are on some kind of social media
Annie Lennox Angel costume, picture from Costume supplied by Angels Costumiers of London.

I love the silhouettes of the costumes, she wears a crinoline dress for one video, the dress is a perfect bell shape, very similar to the dresses by Janet Patterson who was costume designer for The Piano.
Detail of Holly Hunters skirt in the Piano,
image from

The dresses and bonnets in this film are a perfect shape.
Image from

Now, back to reality and my makes.


On another note, Ive been crafting.  Ive decided its going to be 99% fabric items so the table has a theme, rather than a jumble of different things Ive made.

I still love to create things with sewing, here are a couple of OOAK shoulder bags in mid make, Ive used cotton, canvas and twill. I have a few to make, hopefully il get them completed before the fair.

Ive been making little dolls for card toppers, they've been fun to make, they include my love of photo editing.
Ive also recently acquired an embossing and die cutting machine so my cards have a bit extra going on with the textures and cut outs.

I made this skirt, the fabric was second hand and my jeans were falling apart so I used the pocket as a feature.

Xmas decorations are being thought about, I noticed last year that people like angels so Ive been experimenting. I think Il stick to the angels Ive made with smaller glass pieces, rather than the idea above, tho I do like the wings.

Im back into rubber stamping so Xmas cards have gone  a bit crazy with this little Santa fella.

More doll toppers. Who can spot the spelling mistake?

Ive tried to use my limited drawing skills for my crafts, I drew this little snowman, I havn't done much with it yet but I may give it  another go.
So, all the above was written in 2016.
I really must get into the habit of blogging and keeping things up to date.
Its now June 2017.
I had about 5 Xmas fairs last year, only 1 was profitable, so with that disheartening outcome and year another redundancy (my 4th) I think I shall give up actual craft fairs for this year.
Obviously the urge to make things is still with me. Ive focused mainly this year on sewing. Ive moved my sewing machine and overlocker about 3 feet from my sofa and my sewing output has seriously increased.
I attended a vintage outdoor fair a few weeks ago which was very busy and went well, luckily the weather was good so I made some crafting money there.
Here are some things Ive been working on.
My new sewing are and cutting table.
The floor has since become covered again.

A dress I made

Me in said dress(sorry about the bad photo)

Tote bags with vintage inspired touches.

Zipped make up bags. Somebody suggested they would be good for knitting and crochet projects.
Ive been trying to go through all my draws of craft making items. I found some film cell charms Id made years ago and made a pair of pirate earrings with them.
One of a kind pirate earrings
That's it for now. I hope my costume talk didn't put you off watching films. Il try to blog more regularly.