Christmas Card Collection

This year I decided to work on a full collection of five or six card designs for Christmas.  I was asked recently to provide the cards for the lovely gift shop Hearts for Homes in Ramsbottom, so this idea of a collection has become more relevant and important.

I’ve had my Christmas craft materials out for a few weeks now and have rediscovered some beautiful papers and patterns.  I found a stack of twisted pyramage with some lovely winter images.  I particularly like robins at Christmas, so thought I’d revisit this style of papercraft.  I’ve really loved the embossed and aperture style cards I’ve been working on this year, so keeping with that I found a lovely couple of embossing folders to work as backgrounds.

The snowflake embossing folder is by Darice.  I think it’s so pretty.  The snowflakes are all different and very delicate.  I think it works well with the twisted pyramage robin.

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My next card style in the collection is the large poinsettia.  This is a Bigz die by Sizzix and it works so well on all types of card, paper and fabric.  Here I’ve used some Kanban papers and combined it with a circular die cut aperture and embossed snowflake background.

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The third design in my collection uses some gorgeous rich cardstock I bought at the creative craft show .  This green is so sumptuous it just cried out to be used with gold mirror card.  I added a snowflake cut using an X-Cut die.  I think the gold ribbon bow and gems set it off a treat.  Don’t you?

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I’ve had such fun routing through my crafting arsenal of dies and materials.  I bought this Spellbinders bow die a while back and haven’t really used it.  But it called to me to make Christmas paper bows and add to the front of some cards.  I was reminded of a series of cards I made several years ago with large organza ribbon bows on the front which were very popular with my work colleagues at the time.  I loved making these bows from all the different Christmas patterned papers.  They looked so lovely on square cards, I even made some look like parcels.  My Mum and Dad will be getting one of these and I hope they like it as much as I enjoyed making it.

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These cards take a little bit of time to make so I was in need of making something quick to put in packs and that wouldn’t cost as much to make or buy.  I’d been thinking about doing some cut outs with patterned papers behind for a while now, but never gotten around to it.  This was the ideal opportunity to do some with my snowflake die.  I love this silver holographic paper.  It it so sparkly behind the snowflake.  I think they will look great on my stall at the school fair too.

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As in the words of the great Monty Python, now for something completely different!  I bought this lovely papercraft kit from Create and Craft several years ago and not known what to do with it.  The papers are quite pastel in colour but very fun and wintry too, and the little elements are very cute.  I particularly like the children in their winter outfits.  I thought they were perfect to send to siblings and grown up children.

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For my final card design this year I went back to my love of DL cards.  There is somethigng so elegant about a tall slim card and I just couldn’t help myself in making at least one.  For these I again used a Kanban card kit with some lovely HunkyDory Mirri card.  Simple but elegant I hope you agree

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So that’s my collection for Christmas 2016.  There is a selection available in Hearts for Homes in Ramsbottom as well as in Holts Newsagents in Walmersley.  I will also be selling these directly at the Springside Primary School Christmas Fair and via facebook.

I hope you like them.

Happy Christmas Crafting
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Hearts for Homes

I mentioned a few days ago that I had been asked to supply cards for a craft gift shop in Ramsbottom, so I thought I’d introduce it. It’s called ‘Hearts for Homes’ and is on Bolton Street, Ramsbottom. The proprietor, Kerry, opened the shop a couple of months ago as a place to sell her own handmade homewares. She now also sells work by several local artists and craftspeople.

Green Floral Owl

Green Floral Owl

Having visited the shop I can honestly say it is filled with gorgeousness. There is a lovely homely feel as soon as you walk in and you can feel the love, care and attention that has been put into every item. It’s a haven for unusual and unique gifts for others and yourself, covering all ages from baby blankets to wedding gifts and home décor. It really is a lovely place to be.

Thank You Berry Much

Thank You Berry Much

My cards are on sale there now and I am busy making more to add to the range. As always, the cards are all handmade and although some may be similar designs, all will have at least one element making each card unique.

Natural Love

Natural Love

If you are in Ramsbottom or are stuck for somewhere to go, do visit the town. It’s a haven for foodies with a number of independent cafes, restaurants and food retailers. There is an abundance of chocolate (hence the annual chocolate festival) and plenty of independent shops from toys to music and from fabric to antiques. Plus you can arrive in style on the ELR steam railway. It really is a great day out, so what are you waiting for? Get down to Ramsbottom and don’t forget to pop into Hearts for Homes!

Happy crafting
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Ramsbottom Pre-Christmas Craft Fair Review

After all the panic this last week over making sure I had enough stock for my stall, and that my stall would look ok, I can’t believe the fair’s all over! It was a fairly early start as I had to get Alice ready for her dancing class fancy dress, before loading up the car with all my items. Fortunately the venue was only 10 minutes away. We arrived, and Alice decided she wanted to stay and help me set up. I discovered that I actually had too many items for my stall space! So there was plenty left in the boxes under the table. Anyway, here we are all ready to go.

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I was in a lovely little room with six other crafters, all of us with different items and a great variety of crafts on offer. I was surprised by the variety available across the whole fair, as I’m used to finding several cardmakers and knitters, so it was refreshing to see upcyclers, candle makers, there was a lady making keepsake boxes and pictures, and we had a lovely lady who was making up creams and lotions as well as giving shoulder and hand massages.

I took plenty of crochet to do, but never got anywhere near it. The fair was pretty busy, although many of the other stallholders said that the previous two days had been busier. We all put it down to being Halloween and children having classes and parties to go to. I wish I’d realised at the time of booking the stall that it was half term, but when you’re sunning yourself by a pool, it didn’t even cross my mind!! Never mind.

I found that this was a very different and positive craft fair experience when compared to others I’ve attended. It was so nice to be able to speak to the other crafters, everyone was so very friendly and we all got on well. So much so that I think we’ll be meeting up again soon. It was a great chance to swap ideas, network and I got some other suggestions on other fairs to do in the local area. I might do Bury Light Night next year.

Back to this fair and I found that I had a lot f interest in my knitted and crochet items, but the unseasonably warm weather combined with it still being October, meant that people seemed reluctant to purchase Christmas decorations or winter gifts. However, my cards did do well. I was particularly struck by how popular the owls were.

Pair of Christmas Owls

Pair of Christmas Owls

I came home with only 1 owl birthday card and a pack of owl Christmas cards left! So I shall be making more of those. I was also surprised at how well the gift tags were received, in particular the packs with poinsettias. It’s so nice to get some feedback on my items, and to see that other people like them was a great confidence boost.

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Right at the end of the day my daughter came back to help pack up, and she sold my last little knitted duckling! I’ve never seen anyone look so chuffed with themselves as Alice did at that moment – so much so she had to buy a sparkly blue knitted hedgehog from another stall!!

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All in all it was a great fair. I sold a few items but I’ve learnt a lot. Next time I think I will concentrate on my cards, and display them more individually rater than just having them in boxes. The ones that were out on the table for people to see where the ones that grabbed the attention. I could have done with a slightly larger table really, but that was the luck of the draw I think as some of the others did have larger spaces. I think I will also look into some more display items to bring height to the back of the stall. So there’s lots to think about, but now it’s time to get on with a couple of orders I took while there.

Happy crafting
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Christmas Cracker Cards

This year I have decided to get going with my Christmas cards a little earlier than usual. I made some poinsettia cracker cards from kraft card a couple of years ago and really loved the idea, so I thought I’d expand on it for my cards this year.

So I’ve been delving into my Christmas crafting box to see what I have in there. It’s amazing how much stuff I have accumulated and completely forgotten I have! It was nice to have a plan for a change though, so I was looking for ideas for making and decorating crackers.

I found some kraft card DL card blanks so started with those and decided to use up some of the craftwork cards kits I have purchased over the last few years.  The paper and card quality is fabulous and I loved the more muted colours in these kits. I also used some of the paper bows to add detail on the sides of the toppers, it was great to make some of them up and mix them with the papers.

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It was nice to make different cards for change, using sentiments as the main focal point of the card instead of images. Having made this I was eager to make some more in a slightly different style, so I made some little owls again. This time using some papermania Christmas papers and mixing the designs up has given some interesting effects. The colours here are a little more contemporary than the first set, but equally as stunning I think. I toyed with some options for the bows, using bakers twine or ribbon, but as I wanted to co-ordinate I decided to make the bows myself using the leftovers of the matching papers.

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This has now started a bit of a production line of different styles of cracker cards and really got my imagination going, out came the stamps, dies and papercrafting kits. I have a fairly large paper and card collection which have been saved for a ‘special occasion’, but I thought it’s time to start using some and I made some of my own card blanks as well. The patterned card makes a great backing for some handcut toppers too. I really love poinsettias at Christmas and making them up in different colours is great fun.

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I’ve been a fan of the Hunkdory cardkits for some time and have loads of them. The cardstock is so gorgeous though that I’ve always wondered what to do with it to make the most of the images. Now I’ve found a way of using some of the cardstock. So I’ve gone for some traditional images and as a compromise, there are some cute animals and some contemporary images too. There is such a great choice of colours too, ranging from very cool and crisp to the warm and cosy. I could just snuggle up by the fire with the little cat on the cushion!

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Finally I found this gorgeous Christmas kit. I have no idea where it came from but the colours are just gorgeous.

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The joy of making my own Christmas cards is that although the overall design is very similar, each one is individual. Once I’ve used up each paper design that’s it!

I will be taking all of these cards along to the Ramsbottom Pre-Christmas Craft Fair on Saturday 31st October, so they will be for sale. If you are in the area, it would be great to se you.

Happy crafting
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Pre-Christmas Craft Fair

Here’s the first details of the craft fair I will be attending in October.

It looks like a great event, lasting three days. It’s a shame I can’t attend all three days, but I have to factor in childcare and the school run, so I can’t manage Thursday and Friday as well. So I will be attending on Saturday 31st October.

It will be a unique opportunity to get hold of some handmade gifts from local craftspeople, and the library will be packed with around 50 different stalls.

Ramsbottom Flyer

I hope you can come along to say hello and let me know what you think of my blog and makes. It would be great to see you there.

Happy crafting
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Craft Fair

It’s always difficult to find the time to craft during the school holidays, with my little one running around and needing entertaining, I hardly have a minute to myself. This summer holiday has been no exception, organising playdays with friends visiting us and going to visit others, as well as looking for low cost activities not too far from home.

However, in amongst the hive of activity that is our home and a sneaky few days away in Menorca, I have managed to book myself a stall at a new local craft fair. It’s being held at Ramsbottom Library on October 31st, so just the right time for people starting their Christmas shopping, or for the more organised, the ones looking for some unique gifts. So I am trying to find some time to work on my stock.

It’s looking like a great fair, and it’s on for three days. I’m just doing the Saturday. It’s being held in the adult learning centre attached to the library and will be full of local crafters with all types of products. I’m really looking forward to meeting some more local makers and to see what fantastic wares they bring. There will be locally produced refreshments available too!

I hope to post more information as soon as I have it, but in the meantime, get the date in your diary as I would love to see you there.

Happy crafting
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