Wednesday, 9 May 2018

WOYWW 466 - Charity Crafting

Hola to you all.  We are back from sunny Spain (and enjoyed the weekend of lovely warm weather here) and attempting to get back into some sort of routine, so here I am on a Wednesday (it is actually just afternoon as I type this) and sharing my crafty workspace.  Go to Julia's Stamping Ground for more details.

I went to another craft workshop just before our holiday (BTW - we saw a house that we are tempted to buy, but need to sort stuff out with the farm business before putting in an offer).  We made Travellers Journals - and you can see mine at the back.  The lady running the workshop had used dies to cut the journal covers, but I will use my Brother Scan n Cut to do some more (and different sizes).

I watched some of the shows on Create & Craft also, and bought this selection pack of Mod Podge (been meaning to paint some pebbles to hide on the local beach for people to find - click HERE to find out more about how the Kindness Rocks global phenomenon started).

I also could not resist this pack of doggy-theme fat quarters (it was in their sale too). 

I am hoping to make some items to sell in a dog rescue charity auction.  Any ideas on simple projects that doggy people would like to buy?

Hope that everyone is well and enjoying their crafting.

I leave you with one photo from Spain (I am sure I will eventually do a blog post with a lot more).  Go to my Instagram account for regular photos showing how I spend my days.

Ali x

Wednesday, 18 April 2018

WOYWW 463 - knitting bag

Happy WOYWW to you all.  Opened the curtains to another grey/damp/cold looking morning in Pembrokeshire.  I know that most of the UK (and hopefully us eventually) are forecast to have some wonderful weather starting today, but being so close to the West Wales coast is not doing us any favours this morning.  Hubby is happy, as the grass is finally starting to grow and I just need to remind myself that this time next week we will be in Spain.  (Which means that I will be missing WOYWW for 2 weeks.)

ETA - forgot to post the link so that you can all join in with us on Wednesdays.  Click HERE for more details.

My photo today shows the wonderful bag that I grabbed whilst in TK Maxx (yes, I do almost live in that store!) recently.  I was looking for a bag to carry my knitting supplies around in, and could not walk out of the store without this beauty.  It is quilted, double-sided (the lining is the same as the amazing tropical print on the smaller zip-up case) and even the handle is really nicely padded.  Would have cost a lot of money anywhere else, but the Haverfordwest store does seem to get a very nice selection of bags so this was within my budget.

The dog that I started knitting awhile ago (my first project for many many years) is finished, apart from his nose and eyes.  My sewing together/stuffing skills definitely need practising, as that part took me ages.

In other parts of my life, I am feeling a bit better.  The mystery lower abdomen/kidney pain has lessened, and I am generally feeling brighter.  I go back to see my doctor after our Spanish trip.  I have been making lots of effort to rest more, so a lot of the housework/organising that I usually like to do before going away is being left.  Those cobwebs and floor polishing can wait!

I have sad news that Doris the Donkey had to be put down on Monday.  Her sarcoid had flared up and spread considerably since the end of last week.  I wanted to go down to Devon and be with her, but obviously there was no chance of me making that journey by myself and Rich is too busy on the farm.  RIP DORIS xxxxx

(The last picture I have of Doris at 'home')

(Her with her new boyfriend, Dino - I am so worried about him - at the Donkey Sanctuary)

Wednesday, 11 April 2018

WOYWW 462 - Melt Pot and Floral Organising

Happy Wednesday to you all.  It is mid-week again and time to take a tour around global crafty workspaces.  Click HERE to join in.

This is going to be a quick post for me, as my eyesight is not so good this morning.  I have had a busy time for the past week (Rich was away in France doing the Paris-Roubaix cycle ride and I seemed to have a lot more dates in my diary than usual) and my body finally said "no" yesterday.  I am planning a quiet morning, and then off to take my little car for its MOT this afternoon.

Waiting patiently for me to find a few hours in the day (and some more energy) are 2 particular things.

Firstly, a used Melt Pot which I bought via a Facebook group.  Always wanted one when they were being demonstrated on the tv a few years ago, but did not have the funds.  Suddenly remembered them last month and when I went to Google to find one, it turns out that they are discontinued and the only new ones for sale are mostly in the US/Canada and expensive.  I asked on a mixed media Facebook group for ideas on how to use UTEE without a Melt Pot, and was given a few ideas (which didn't work too well for me!), but then a lady offered me one for the grand sum of £10.  It arrived with a book, some UTEE and dyes.  Planning to make some embellies for ATCs/journals/canvas projects.  Anyone got any tips?

Secondly, the lovely new (and gorgeous floral/gingham print) storage/organiser/transporting bags etc, which I treated myself to when I saw them on Create & Craft last month.  I also bought a sewing machine bag and the larger holdall, but my courier never delivered them (which has happened twice over the years with C&C and Hermes!) and they were sold out when I asked for replacements.  Again, when I find some spare time I will be organising my paints/embossing powders etc into a more easily used system (at the moment they are loose on an Ikea trolley - and I have to rummage around trying to find what I want, which drives me mad every time).  I can also get my small collection of yarns etc into one place, and take stash/tools with me to craft workshops.  I love storage and organisation!

I hope everyone is well and happy.

Breakfast time now!

Ali x

Wednesday, 4 April 2018

WOYWW 461 - Watercolour Trees

Happy WOYWW to you all.  It is Wednesday again and time to share our crafty workspaces.  Join in HERE.

My crafty table today is showing some watercolour action.  I haven't done much watercolour before, but had some tree ATCs to do - and whilst thinking about it an email popped up with a new class on Skillshare, which seemed perfect - Painting Trees with the ABCs.  I started the class on Monday and was going to finish it yesterday, but life got in the way so my sketchbook (which is now officially my SkillShare notebook!) and paints are just sitting there waiting for my attention.  I was good and washed my paintbrushes.  I am going to get some foliage on this practice tree, and then attempt them in smaller scale on some watercolour card that I have cut into ATC sizes.    Not entirely sure that watercolour is for me, but it is interesting to try out new mediums/techniques.

There is some other stash lying around still - including the new stash purchased from Tiger in Swansea (we went up there on Friday, after our planned visit to family in Barry was cancelled due to their ill health - we were showered and in tidy clothes, and Rich was expecting to be away from the farm, so we tackled the busy bank holiday roads and enjoyed some shopping/lunch).  I thought the manicure foam thingies would be good for stencilling, and if they work well will be a lot cheaper than the well-known brand of sponge applicators for crafters.  I loved the colours of these glue sticks and hope they fit the small glue gun that I have in my cupboard and never used!

The watercolours are a cheap set from Amazon, which had good reviews.  I also have a small travel set from Daler Rowney - one of my TK Maxx bargains.

Hubby is starting his journey to France later with a group of friends/cycle club buddies.  They are doing the Paris-Roubaix cycle ride (172 km!) on Saturday, and then watching the professionals ride an even longer route on Sunday.  He has been really busy on the farm, so is getting his bike ready as we speak so it is clean to go on top of a car, and still needs to finish packing.  I expect I will be called upon very soon to run around the house collecting stuff, plus lunch to prepare, so I will be commenting on your lovely blog posts later.

Ali x

Wednesday, 28 March 2018

WOYWW 460 - Easter crafting

Good morning to you all in various places around the world.  It is WOYWW, so here I am to share some photos of my craft room.  If you would like to join in, go HERE

I had plans to make some more intricate cards for Easter - involving dies/Scan n Cut, stamping etc etc.  However, I then left it too late as usual, so yesterday I showed my ability to get creative and get some simpler cards made.

I had bought some Easter/daffodil stamps recently, so used one with a Stazon inkpad and watercolour on top.  The cute felt rabbits are from The Works, and the paper underneath came from a pad that I have had for years (slowly using up stash!). 

I designed inserts in Serif CraftArtist - and I had 7 cards made within one hour.

Of course, I remembered one more person since then, so will get another card made today.

Here is my crafty table right now. 

There is one Easter bunny waiting to go in the post.  The Joanna Sheen magazine (with dies/stamps/embossing folder) that I was using to plan the more complicated card.  Cheap watercolour paper used to mop up the watercolour leftover from painting the daffodils.  Plastic palette knives that I use to apply glue.  Some Christmas scraps that need to be put in the relevant stash box.  Watercolours left to dry yesterday.  Other paper scraps from my mixed media session last week - and you can just see the other cute Easter papers.

I am attempting to rest more today, as had a busy day yesterday (shopping, bank etc) - and my foot pain flared up a lot last night.  There is a lot to do around the house, but really trying to stop myself attempting to do too much.

Hope that everyone is well and happy.

Ali x

Wednesday, 21 March 2018

WOYWW 459 - Spring and Easter are taking over

Happy WOYWW to you all (What is On Your Workdesk Wednesday).  Click HERE to come and join in.

It is a cold and properly frosty morning here (rare for Pembrokeshire).

As it is early and mornings are not my favourite time of day right now (not sure whether it is age/hormones or the Fibromyalgia, or both, but I really struggle to get going now until nearly lunchtime), there isn't any actual crafting going on in my craft room.  I will be making backgrounds for ATCs later - using mixed media.  I have no idea what that mixed media will entail, but I have a deadline to post them by tomorrow (they are for a group swap for an ATC forum that I joined last week - didn't realise that crafty forums still existed in these days of Facebook etc, but found it on a Google search - look for UKATC).

I have the start of a pocket letter (my first ever) on the left - just putting ATCs in there that are suitable for now, and will sort it out properly next week when other swaps have been posted.  A magazine that I saw in the supermarket and bought for the nice dies/stamps that came with it.  The black thing is one background that I found in my ATC Stash Box, so only need to make 5 more (this was a scrap from a shaving foam session!).  Various finished ATCs and the components for others.  The mini envelope journal I made in a previous workshop at our local craft shop - got another journal making workshop on Friday - on top of the monoprinting that I am slowly using in various projects.

For the past 2 days I keep getting distracted by looking at Spanish properties online - we have got dates set now for viewing with agents, and there are a few in our budget in the areas that we are preferring right not.  Obviously once we get back on Spanish soil we may well fall in love with something that does not look perfect for us!

In 'Other Crafting News' - I have finished knitting the little dog that I started a couple of weeks ago.  No pictures as I need to stuff and sew together, but I promise to do a blog post soon when he is finished.  I knitted a couple more flowers for our local yarnbombing last night whilst watching GBBO (loving the special series for Stand Up 2 Cancer) and then the final of Sky Portrait Artist of the Year (one of my favourite programmes too).  The F1 season starts this weekend, so that will be several hours in front of the tv - a good time to tackle trying to learn crochet (for about the 10th time!).  I have ordered a kit from Create & Craft - watched a programme yesterday and she made it look simple enough for me to try again, and also got a book from The Works which had nice clear pictures.

Have a good week.

Ali x

Wednesday, 14 March 2018


To change things up a bit, and because I am hurting a lot this cold/wet/windy morning, I have just inserted my photo right at the top.

It was actually taken a few days ago, but I cleared up my crafty table after doing some stuff with my Brother Scan n Cut yesterday afternoon and nothing else has happened so far (I do have some ATCs to make and more journaling to do - but that will be later once breakfast has happened/cats fed etc).  The photo shows my messy table whilst getting some previous ATCs finished.  I love that alphabet stamp set - one of my TK Maxx bargains.  Black embossing powder, which I love apart from the mess it creates.  Those Encaustic Art ATCs have dried now (I paint a Wax Sealer on top to make them last longer) and are put away ready for more layers of something.  The pink box is one of my 'scrap boxes' - I have one for coloured pieces, another for patterned and a larger one for white/cream.

This past week has been difficult for me/us, as very sadly a friend/neighbour died (at far too young an age) and we have the funeral on Friday.  This has contributed to my struggling health right now - yesterday I woke to extreme dizzyness/room literally spinning, which brought on nausea.  I had to miss a block printing workshop that I had been looking forward to for ages (so annoying).  A general flare up of my more usual Fibromyalgia symptoms followed for the rest of the day.  I still have a painful shoulder blade/neck area after some how moving awkwardly in bed a couple of nights ago.  As I have Hyper Mobility Syndrome, obviously this meant that I pulled something in that area and still hurting now.    Health moans over!  Crafting is one of the few things that I can use to distract myself, so will get busy later this morning - and I also have my Spanish evening class tonight, so will do some practice of vocabulary too.

If you would like to take part in the global tour of crafty workspaces, go to Julia's Stamping Ground.

Ali x