Thursday, 3 May 2012

Back to Blogging

Wow, I can't believe that it's been so long since I last blogged.  My hands flared up so badly that I couldn't bear to hold a needle let alone type on the laptop.  So sore :(  But it's better now and I' ready to take up my tools and crack on with something creative.

The Folksy thing hasn't really taken off. Not sure if there is an average wait time before you get your first customer.  All I know is that if I were buying something on there, I would probably want to use a person who has made some sales and got some customer feedback.  Hmmm I could be waiting a while!

But I'm not ready to throw in the towel with the site and I feel I must persevere. So I am off to tweak the 'shopfront' :)

Thursday, 26 January 2012

I'm on Folksy!

After reading a bit about it I decided to give it a go and opened a shop on Folksy.  For those who don't know, Folksy is a website where people can sell the things they make. A bit like Etsy, but more British centric.

I don't have a lot up, just two different styles of brooch. But there will be more to come and I am having fun with it.  I am learning to be patient - I think I may have to wait a while before I get a sale!

Moving house has kind of put a crimp in my crafty plans.  All my paraphernalia is in boxes and there is a rule in the new house ... 'no more stuff comes in, until we've found proper places for it'.  So the craft supplies have to hang around in the other house until I designate (and clear) cupboard space for them.  Oh how I want a craft room just for me all the more!!!

Find me on Folksy at the link below!

Thursday, 27 October 2011

Felt Up Again!

I have been enjoying making the flower brooches and hanging hearts and have worn some of them to work, where they always attract comments.  Whether this is because people like them, or wonder what on earth I am doing with a couple of layers of felt pinned to me, I don't know!

Here are a few of the small flowers.  Each has a brooch back sewn in (not glued) for strength and are all hand cut and hand stitched:

The large ones are machine cut and would work well pinned to the bottom of a scarf, or the side of a hat

These hearts would look great hanging up somewhere, or maybe on a bunch of keys.  With colours this bright, you could never lose them in your handbag!!

Work in Progress

I have a number of WIP's, some half done, others done but not framed, and they are all stuffed into my craft bag (which is actually a bag for patchwork I'm told, but it holds everything in one place and it has a see through top so I can see what's in there!). There's even a few crochet yo-yo's in there that I might actually get round to doing something with one of these days.

Here they are:

Friday, 16 September 2011

Felt Up

Isn't felt wonderful? It's reminiscient of primary school when the only worry you had was getting your pencils back from the person who borrowed them. 

I've moved on from the pincushions and have been making things with felt.  It's such an easy medium to use. It doesn't fray, it comes in lovely colours and most things can be stitched in next to no time. I've made a variety of brooches and am starting on some keyrings.  I'll post pics when I get the chance. 

I spent last night in a comfortable chair, cutting out felt shapes and then picking and choosing which colours worked toegther and I now have a stack of paired-up shapes that are ready for stitching up. Perfect for something to do while the football is on TV!

I'm getting quite excited about the craft fair, although I noticed that their latest info sheet mentions that they don't want any more card or jewellery stalls, as they already have loads and need more variety.  Since my original product of choice was cros stitch cards, I'm rather glad I'm branching out, although I might have to not tell them I intend to bring brooches along with me!

I'm still unsure on pricing.  I wrote before about the 'penny per stitch' approach for cross stitch, but I also read this week of the '2.5 rule' where you total up the cost to make the item then multiply by 2.5 to arrive at a selling price.  I haven't done this on my projects, because with the exception of the felt bundle I bought last week, the materials have been knocking round the house for a number of years.  So I'm still getting to grips with that.

Hopefully the nerve thing won't come back. I've been enjoying my crafting lately and dread to think of not being able to create. All of what I like to do involves needlework, so when my right hand fingers flare up I'm pretty much stuck. As my Mum would say, "make hay while the sun shines" or to put it another way "make brooches while the hands are good"!

Wednesday, 7 September 2011


I was meant to be cross stitching but have allowed myself to become sidetracked by another crafty make. 

It came about because I was thinking ahead to the craft fair and imagining how I would set up my table and display things.  i read a few blogs on the subject and a lot of people suggest using different heights in your display, so that people can see some stuff from the other side of the hall, rather than keep everything flat on the table.  At the same time I was looking for inspiration and found it in the tomato pincushion in my workbox.  I thought that if I made some pincushins then I could use the cupcake stands to display them.  Only not tomatoes ... pincushion cakes!

Anyway, they turn out to be quick and easy 'makes' and I was able to do six of them in about two hours. Not bad at all.  My dog took a bit of an interest in them and tried to take a bite out of one, which I'm taking as a compliment (although I might not be able to sell that one)!

I is rainy tonight and there is nothing on TV of note, so it's an evening with my embroidery hoop methinks. Happy days!

Thursday, 25 August 2011

I'm So Excited!

My decision, taken a few days ago, to try and sell some of my crafts, has inspired me to get creative.  This is good, because I now feel that I have a bit of a purpose.  The day job is good, I still feel that I make a positive contribution there, but it's becoming a place where it is difficult to be really creative.  Senior management appear to be hell bent on turning everyone into clones and I have a real problem with that.

But anyway, I have set myself a goal to create one item per evening and I must say that I have not been successful ... yet! I attempted to complete the initial 'A' intending to have it stitched, back-stitched and bordered, ready to insert into a card blank.  I got as far as completing the initial and am partially round the border.  This is largely due to family demands on my time.  So a few lessons learned are:

1. Commence stitching only when dinner has been eaten and the after dinner coffee has been made
2. Check teenager requirements for the evening. Is there rugby training? Does he require running to the latest party? Will he need help with college projects?
3. The dog MUST be fed first or else concentration will be broken by incessant whining. Drooling also not a friend to embroidery.

Then and only then should I make a start, because there is nothing worse than doing a few stitches and having to put your work down to do something else, then having to find your place in the pattern again.  I need a good solid amount of time in which to work.  If we had the space I would love a room of my own, where I could leave all my crafty things out and where I could sit and stitch for a couple of hours.  I would have an uber comfortable chair and leave the radio tuned to my favourite 80's station.  Bliss!

Anyway, I have also noted that a lot of time last night was spent unpicking a border that I started to stitch from memory, having used it lots of times on cards, only to find that it wouldn't work out symmetrically with my initial.  I ended up trawling through my designs to find a suitable border for my initial letter. So I have resolved to spend a few evening with graph paper and pencil, working out designs and borders so that I can just go ahead and stitch with speed and confidence and not have to work out a border on the fly. 

I'm also planning on setting aside one evening to make card bookmarks.  I have a tried and tested design and so plan to make many and just vary the colour.  I made these a few years ago for people in a calligraphy group I was a member of and they went down well. Easy peasy to make up so I should be able to stockpile quite a few in readiness.

Now, should I go back to crochet and stitch my granny squares into a blanket?  How many squares make up a blanket?  Not sure I have that many ....

To anyone reading this, have you ever attempted to sell your 'makes'?  I would be interested in hearing your experiences.