That sounds like something medical, doesn’t it?   It’s actually the next Popular Crafts magazine craft swap, and this time I was linked with the lovely @sarahwalters99.

Her likes included fabric, buttons, pink and girlie so I got my thinking cap on and came up with a heart door hanger.   A bit of IKEA curtain remnant (which I use A LOT!), some buttons, some felt, embroidery thread, a Sizzix Big Shot and flower Framelits die and a bit of stuffing and I came up with this.

I had so much fun creating this.   It was different, creative and I got the same feeling that I got when my owls fluttered their eyelashes back at me for the first time.   My Craftyguidelets both want them for their bedrooms now!

Going with the pink theme, the treat I bought was a mini metal pink bucket (just because it was pink and looked cute) and some heart shaped buttons (again- pink, cute, themed, buttons)

And the best bit of any swap?   The goodies that arrive in the post!

Sarah worried for ages about her swap but she needn’t have.   It’s great!

This fabulous wooden heart with a cute flower embellished peg is lovely.   I’ve always wanted one and it’s the perfect colour for my kitchen.   At the moment it’s keeping all my miscellaneous papers in check.   I love love love it!

My treat was a real treat.

In a lovely glittery bag I got a crochet hook (I want to learn to crochet!), some multi coloured jade beads (I’m also starting jewellery making!) and two heart sweets.   The note with them said that they were to have during my crochet trials but they’ve already gone.   I gave up chocolate for Lent so I needed a sugar fix.

My aim this year was to participate in a craft swap but I’m now hooked (no pun intended!).   Next swap – Spring!!!!!

Cubby Kits Review

Having spotted a tweet from @cubbykit asking for bloggers to review their craft kits for kids, I wondered if I was the girl for the job: a) I have a blog, b) I love crafting, c) I have 2 craftyguidelets who d) love crafting and e) it’s half term!   I qualify and Cubby Kit agreed to send me a box to review.   Yippee!

As my girls are 5 and almost 3, Cubby Kit chose to send me a box suitable for 3-4 year olds.   A box arrived for 5-6 year olds instead which was OK as the craftyguidelets are both professional crafters after all.

The box is addressed to the children which made it very exciting when the postman rang the doorbell.   Inside, the box contained everything you need (and more!) to complete three main activities, complete with full, child-friendly instructions, glue and spreader, paints, paper, and three brown paper bags containing the three main projects.   This month the theme is Outer Space.

As eldest craftyguidelet has been poorly this half term, we chose to make the foam rocket and constellations wall chart projects as a team.

The first brown paper bag contained the precut foam sheets, foam stickers and double sided tape to make the rocket.   Both girls got the hang of what they needed to do, and mummy just applied the tape.   This is our masterpiece!

As we were making it, it sparked lots of conversations about space, what all the stickers were representing, where the rocket was going to and what it would be like to travel in it.   It didn’t take long at all to finish.

The next brown bag was the constellations wall chart.

There were four cards and a silver gel pen to mark the constellations in a ‘join the dots’ style.   This suited both girls, but the constellations were a bit wobbly!   Once the cards were stuck to the black paper sheet using the supplied tub of PVA, the girls got to decorate their chart using the pen and some glitter glue and foam stickers.

The other kit is a papier-mache sun, moon and earth to make which we’ll attempt when the bugs have left the house.

The girls both loved working together on their kit.   There were ideas that I wouldn’t have come up with on my own, and I do sometimes steer clear of paint and PVA in favour of crayons and stickers!   Cubby Kit also supply extra materials so you can go on their blog and look at other ideas, or just carry on creating your own ideas.

To find out how subscribing to Cubby Kits works, just click here.   I received the kit free of charge, but the opinions in my blog are mine and the craftyguidelets.

Lacy Scarf

I’ve been knitting since I was little.   I think my first knitting project was a garter stitch frog in the first year juniors which was a dark green octagon with felt features.   I also got my knitting badge in Guides, but my impatience meant that I got bored with projects quickly.   A jumper took me about 5 years and I hardly wore it.   I moved onto sewing as the fabric was already there and just needed sewing together.

Since then, I’ve knitted various little projects like toys and egg cosies which are finished quickly.   When I was pregnant with my first daughter, a period of enforced rest gave me time to knit cardigans and jumpers for my baby to be.   My journey through the Debbie Bliss patterns gave me some new stitches and techniques for my knitting CV.

Now my craftyguidelets are older, I’ve picked up the needles again.   I’ve knitted a ruffle scarf after watching a demo on Create and Craft and picking up a ball of wool in Hobbycraft.   A few tweets led me to Purls of Wisdom by Jenny Lord which was recommended to me as a book with small projects.

I chose to knit the lacy scarf as I’d never tried lacy knitting before.

It’s a simple pattern which is just 21 stitches across and every other row is a purl row.   It was a bit tricky to start with as I kept losing track of which row I was on, but I soon learned to recognise the pattern.   It grew really quickly and I now have a finished scarf.

I chose Rowan Cocoon in Seascape which is the same colour as in the book.   Apart from the mohair shedding a bit, it’s a lovely wool to work with.

I can’t believe I’ve managed to achieve this so quickly!   It’s really given me confidence to try other new things.   On my list is a pair of mittens, socks, a hat and a gadget sock.   But first is the Deramores snood knit along.   It’s my first snood and my first knit along, and so far I’ve cast on.   Watch this space!

Button Swap Parcel!

This morning I got a lovely parcel in the post from Sarah-Jane, my popular crafts magazine button swap partner.   Poor thing had a sewing machine die on her halfway through, but it was definitely worth waiting for!   Details of what I sent are here.

Look at all the gorgeous stitching!


The back is equally beautiful.   Beautiful patchwork squares.   I did take a photo but it refused to upload 🙁

Inside is plenty of room for needles, a tape measure and anything else I need to hand.

It’s great doing these swaps and I really recommend signing up.   The current Popular Crafts Magazine one is hearts.   I need to get my thinking cap on.

Owl Swap Parcel!

I received a lovely parcel today from Kerry @craftsftheath.   She’s my Popular Crafts Magazine owl craft swap partner.

I opened it up and look at all the gorgeous goodies I’ve got!

The owl is a beautifully stitched needlecase and I also have some lovely buttons and ribbons for my stash.   I love the grey square buttons!

And I’ve just seen that the next swap has been announced on the Popular Crafts website.   Hearts this time!   I’m off to sign up.

Owl Swap

While I was at the post office with my button swap, I took my Popular Crafts owl swap too.   It doesn’t have to be there until the end of next month, but I prepared it at the same time so I thought I’d get it out of the way before I forgot it!

Of course my owl had to be one of my babies.   This is Ruby.   Her brothers and sisters will miss her terribly, especially her identical twin sister, also called Ruby!

The goodies are from my local habby again.   A handmade crochet flower, some butterfly trim, and a gorgeous floral ribbon.

The owl swap is still open until the end of January and your swap needs to be sent before the end of February.   Give it a go!

Button Swap

One of the things on my four-one list was to participate in a swap.   I’ve seen so many blogs where people have crafted something for someone and got a wonderful gift in return, so when I saw the Popular Crafts Magazine mentioned on twitter, I took the plunge and applied.

The button swap was just about to close so I sneaked in at the last minute.   I’ve made button hair clips for my website so I thought I’d make something like that.   However, when I got my swap partner’s details and likes, I thought of my decopatch kit I’d bought before Christmas.

Unfortunately I forgot to take a photo including the detail on the box.   It’s a heart shaped lidded box with a great red and black lacy pattern.   I chose some red and black buttons for the lid from my stash to go on the top.   I really enjoyed trying decopatch for the first time so I’ll definitely be hurrying back to the kit when I get time.

I also had to choose a treat to buy to go along with it so I went to my fantastic local habby and bought some orange and black handmade fimo beads and some assorted charms.

Fingers crossed she likes them!

(That’s got ‘participating in a swap’ and ‘adding photos to my blog’ ticked off the list!)

Work in Progress

I haven’t made new year resolutions for years as I always made unachievable goals that got me down when I inevitably failed at them.   This year, to coincide with my birthday which is in the new year, I’ll be sharing my list of aims for 2012.

One of these aims will be based on getting my Work in Progress (WIP) load down.  I currently have numerous kits from magazines I want to do, as well as a fancy dress costume for the youngest craftyguidelet from a year ago, and her birth sampler cross stitch I started over three years ago.   Added to that are some flannels that need embroidering for a friend and her son, and some fabric to make into a present for her too.

I also have half finished kits.   I’m sure I’ve got a load of candle wax stashed somewhere, and card making decoupage pages.

I keep promising to make things for me and the craftyguidelets.   Add some Barbie sleeping bags, various princess fancy dress costumes, quilts, clothes for me, mini bunting for the kitchen and hundreds of other things.

I am also a sucker for new things.   On the pile of new crafts to try I have a decoupage kit and a jewellery making kit.   I bought felt for Christmas decorations for the website, and I’ve also got some lovely lavender to go in lavender bags.   I’ve got a large collection of craft magazines inspiring me to try things, and some wool to make mittens, a scarf and a phone case.

Work in progress?   Unfortunately there’s not a lot of progress!