There will be a few regular posts appearing here on The Craft Room and Beyond each week or so, as well as each month, and one of those weekly (or possibly fortnightly) updates will be “On the Desk” each or every other Wednesday, where l will head into the craft room and share what I’m up to…
I was very kindly gifted a product within this post from Hobbycraft,
the gifted item has been clearly marked with an *
For Valentines day yesterday, Stu and I didn’t really have much planned. Neither of us really buy into the day, though we use it as an excuse to give each other a little present, and some chocolate (because any time is a good time for chocolate!). This year I decided I was going to make Stu something I’d promised a while ago!
I worked until 9pm, so we didn’t actually see each other until the evening! So we got a kebab and chilled watching Game of Thrones (we’ve been re-watching from the beginning, ahead of the new season coming out soon!) romantic huh!?
I was gifted some of the products within this post from Hobbycraft,
gifted items have been clearly marked with an *
Valentines Day, is something neither Stu or I take very seriously, though we sometimes give fun gifts to each other anyway! It’s only a couple of weeks after Stu’s birthday, so we’re usually pretty relaxed about it.
It is however a chance to do a bit of crafting here on the blog, though I would say that although some are Valentines products, they could be made and given for many occasions, from birthdays, anniversaries to Mothers Day (March 31st UK readers), and of course weddings!
I had a bit of a tidy up and sort out in the craft room recently, and it got me thinking about how individual a space it is! I wondered how I would go about doing a room tour post, and I decided I would do an A-Z which might give you a little more insight into me, if you’re new to the blog, or just feeling nosy! So here we go and A-Z of the craft room!
A – Alice in Wonderland
I’m a big fan of Alice in Wonderland, and she’s found her way into the craft room more than once! Both handmade by me, handmade FOR me and other gifts too!
B – Books
I don’t read as much as I used to. There are more shelves out of this room, but I do have a couple of shelves in here for some of my more “random” books, as well as craft books of course!
C – Craft Cupboard
I did a whole post on the upcycled craft cupboard, this is a really upcycled and repurposed space and I LOVE that. This cupboard is home to a lot of my craft supplies, from cross-stitch supplies and kits, my scrapbooks, some papercrafting bits and pieces, crafty tools and yarn. You can read the post here.
D – Disney
I’m a BIG disney fan, and this shelf has become a bit of a feature over time, complete with my Minnie Ears from our Disneyland Paris holiday, a Disneyland Paris 25th Anniversary Tinker Bell Tsum Tsum and even a traditional Czech Pinocchio style puppet from Prague. There are of course some other random things here too. A couple of years ago Stu even found a close match to the plush Minnie Mouse I got on my first Disney trip when I was 7. I’m also a BIG collector of Snow White things, and I love my Animators Collection doll!
E – Everything to Hand
When we made this space, and it really was made, I really tried to think of how I can have things I need to hand, This little drawer unit (which I want to replace at some point) holds all my pens and adhesive, and in front of me as I sit at my desk, are lots of little things I need to hand. The ink pads DO need to move though. I need to sort that…
F – Favourite Things
This room is very much somewhere for a lot of things to live. But among the crafting, there are some personal mementos, like this picture which was drawn when I was about 7-8 years old:
My Thumper cuddly toy, which I’ve had since I was 10 (clothing added at some point later), and my Hard Rock Cafe Paris bear: And photo albums from the day I was born onwards!
G – Gorjuss
A recent (ish) love of mine is Gorjuss by Santoro, I have a few things here in the craft room, like my The Hatter clock, which also ties in with Alice in Wonderland, and of course my Gorjuss stamps, and even a little mug which holds those little random bits until they get put away properly!
H – Hammock
I collect cuddly toys, on days out, holidays etc. Though I now have the sense to (mostly) pick up smaller keyring size teddies, I do have this hammock, to mostly hold them all!
I – Inspiration
It wouldn’t be a craft room without being an inspiring space! I have books, and cutouts in a folder, as well as notebooks filled with all manner of project and blog post ideas! Then of course there is all the fun stuff that gives me ideas at random!
J – Just Me
This is my room. While the door is rarely closed (unless I’m trying to keep the cats out!) it’s very much my personal space, and it’s really nice to have somewhere I can come and sit and just get on with things sometimes. Though I will admit, I do most of my crafting sitting on the sofa watching something on the TV.
K – Knitting
Of course, when you do a lot of different crafts, like I do, it’s important to stay organised, while I have bits and pieces stored in the cupboard, I do also have a project bag, which is always to hand, purely devoted to my current knitting project.
L – Lighting
This can be quite a dark room, but I have some alternative light sources in here, this reading lamp is so great for working at my desk, especially at this time of year, I love that I can move it around. While function is important, I have some more fun lights too, including a USB lamp, a light up K and my light box!
M – Movies
I’m a huge movie fan, and that has of course spilled over into the craft room! You can spot all kinds of things in here, here’s just some of what you can find on the bookshelves, notice that many of the books seem to have a movie theme too…
N – Notice Board
This was a really fun project, which you can read about here. I needed somewhere to keep things, though at the moment it’s still pretty clear, as I’ve tidied. I also think it’d be great for photography potentially, and it’s far better than the notice board being sat in a corner not being used! I also love how upcycling it with a bit of paint brightens up the room!
O – One Day
Because this is very much a handmade and upcycled space, there are bits that aren’t finished. This corner is something I really want to tackle this year! And I’d love to find some sort of cupboard or unit to go here, as opposed to my printer living on an old cupboard door!
P – Paper Crafting
My paper storage is something I got for Christmas years ago, simply because I wanted something big enough for 12×12 scrapbook paper. It’s got a good number of drawers and means all of my crafty paper is in the same place.
I did buy the white unit a couple of years ago, which sits next to the plastic drawers. It’s a great size for moving around the room if necessary, and is just where I keep those odd bits that don’t really have anywhere else to go. Though the bottom drawer has become home to smaller paper stacks, just because they fit nicely in here!
Q – Quiet.
I ended up swapping rooms a couple of years ago, as this room is on the adjoining wall to the neighbours house. It’s a room I try to keep fairly quiet, while I’ve been known to play music on my laptop, I’m not usually in here very late.
It’s nice to keep it as a chilled space too.
R – Rocking Chair
I wanted a rocking chair for years. I don’t even really know why!
For a long time this held onto a couple of large dolls, but now they are gone, and this is one of my big plans for the year, I want to revamp the cushions, probably in Alice in Wonderland fabric, and really make the rocking chair useable, instead of being a bit of a dumping ground! It also hides all the sins in the corner, so it’s dual purpose!
S – Sewing
I keep my sewing bits in a box on top of the cupboard, (along with Christmas crafts and some mementos etc) and the sewing machine lives on my desk, simply because, if I need the room it’s easy to move it, also I actually use the dining table to sew, as there is more space!
T – Tea
There are several mugs in the craft room. And there’s usually another one on the desk! I’m never too far away from a cup of tea!
U – Upcycled
I love the upcycled nature of this room. It’s functional, but quirky and is in itself an inspiring space. That being said, it means it’s always a work in progress! And of course there are parts of the room which are bought for purpose, and there will probably be more, but so much in here is incredibly functional considering it’s not it’s original intended use! From my pen holder, to my desk!
V – Versatile.
The idea when creating this room, was that it is a versatile space. As you’ll see when you get to Z. Most things in the room are mobile, and can be swapped or moved around (even the craft cupboard could be spliced back into two cupboards if it was necessary!) The thing with doing so many crafts, is that I have no single focus, so this space needs to work for many things, and at the moment it’s perfect for that, and though I want to move some things around, it’s a really workable space whatever I’m doing!
W – Wine Racks
I love my purple cubby holes, and in fact they are wine racks! Saved from skips, I have two, which are slightly different heights, both laid on their sides. They are the perfect size for various crafty storage, like my peel offs boxes, and even my ribbon jar!
X – X-Stitch
My cross-stitch supplies used to be in one big box, and it’s been gradually condensed to a couple of shelves in my cupboard. It feels SO much more organised, and I know where everything is now!
I swear by these boxes, which are sorted by colour at the moment, though not by shade. Maybe eventually!
Y – Yet to Come
Plans, plans plans!
I have a few things I want to do in here this year. I’d like a shelf or two, and that will mean I can rearrange things slightly. As I said earlier in this post, I’d like to replace the grey plastic drawers by my desk, but they would need to be the right size. I also want to sort the corner and the rocking chair out too. I would LOVE to have a unit for the printer to sit on, though I wonder if that’s a bit ambitious for this year. So that may have to wait!
Z – ZzzzZzzzzz
So… what is under the blue sheet?
A bed. Well, a fold out bed. This is why I’d like a unit put in. Ideally a cupboard which the fold out bed can sit in. This will mean it doesn’t have to be covered with a sheet! And will make the room look nicer generally! The cupboard could then double up as storage for any guest staying in the room!
This room doubles up as a spare room, on the very rare occasion we have a single guest. We do also have a sofa that folds out too, but it’s nice to be able to give someone a space properly, so if it’s only one person I move things around a little bit and this room becomes a quite nice guest room. I’d have done it, and taken photos, but yeah, lazy!
I hope you enjoyed this little tour of the craft room! DO let me know if you are reading this at a later time to original publishing, if you think I should do an updated post! This is always very much a work in progress! Feel free to ask me anything if you want more information, I can try my best ot remember where things are from etc!!
Do you have a crafty space? What would your dream space be like?
Though I arrange #CraftBlogClub now, I have been a part of it for so much longer, and the annual Secret Santa is one of my favourite of the regular challenges and events throughout the #CraftBlogClub year. I really like giving and receiving handmade gifts, and the wide range of crafts, and talents in #CraftBlogClub means it’s always a varied and fun activity at Christmas!
Do you craft and make handmade gifts? We’re always open to new people coming to join in the chats on Tuesday evenings! You can find out more over on Twitter.
So there’s not long to go, but maybe you’re looking for some last minute gift ideas, here are some quick handmade projects that you can do, with things you can pick up affordably, or may even have around the house!
Pom pom bookmarks – Super easy, and great to use up leftover bits of yarn in your stash! All you need to do is make a pom pom and leave a long tail of yarn to keep between the pages of a book!
Pebble or button art! These are adorable, and so easy to make, and great for something a little more personalised! All you need is a box frame, and either buttons or pebbles, a pen, and a little imagination!
T-shirt cushion cover – A great crafty project for a tee you can no longer wear, or maybe is past it’s best – simply cut into a square slightly larger than your cushion, and cut tabs around all of the edges. Tie together around your cushion of choice and done!
Personalised/decorated mugs – All you need is a sharpie or ceramic paint, depending on what you can get hold of. You can write, draw or stencil whatever you like onto a plain mug (or plate etc) which you can pick up from most places really affordably! All you need to do after writing or drawing on to the mug is cure in an oven, place in a cold oven, then set it to 180c/350f. Turn the oven off after 30 minutes and let the item cool in the oven. Wait 72 hours before using. Great for kids projects too!
Other quick makes include small knitted or crochet items, photo books, mini scrapbook albums, baked gifts, such as cookies, shortbread, cakes or even festive peppermint creams, all a quick google search away!
Christmas catnip toys – I used the baubles from the Jolly Santa stocking panel for this, but you can use any fabrics. All you need to do is sew together and add some wadding, or even cut up pieces of fabric, add catnip, which you can buy in pet shops and some supermarkets and you’re done! A fun toy for your festive feline friend! Easy dog toys – You can make toys for dogs really easily – for a fun example, all you need is an old T-shirt, simply wrap a tennis ball (or similar) in the fabric, cut strips and braid together to hold the ball in place! (This one is small because I have cats, and it contains a ball with a bell in it, but works for both!)
You can also find loads of recipes online for handmade treats for dogs and cats online!
These are just a handful of quick ideas, for those last minute extras!
Do you have any go-to quick projects for last minute emergencies?
This post contains items which I have kindly been gifted * All opinions are my own.
No matter how old you are, there really is nothing better on Christmas morning to find a beautiful stocking waiting for you filled with lovely gifts! The only thing that can be better is a beautiful handmade stocking, which is a gift in itself, and one that you can enjoy year after year. I was kindly gifted both the Jolly Santa stocking panel fabric, and the coordinating star print fabric (below) for lining from the lovely people at Truro Fabrics, to show everyone just how easy it is to make a gorgeous handmade stocking for yourself!
What you’ll need:
A sewing machine
(You could also do this by hand of course!)
How I made it:
Not going to lie, I had help, we’ve seen my sewing here on the blog, and though I could do it myself, I was nervous about messing it up so I called Stu’s mum, and we made it together! It was quite a fun hour and a bit, but genuinely didn’t take long from start to finish. After cutting all the pieces out, it was no more than an hour.
How WE made it:
Cut out the stocking pieces as per the lines on the panel, they give a nice seam allowance (and this makes a nice template for the next step)
Cut out the same pieces again from the lining fabric (using the panel cut pieces as a guide)
Cut out wadding slightly smaller than your stocking pieces (at this point you have six stocking pieces or three pairs, panel, lining and wadding.)
Pin your santa print pieces, “right sides” together, leaving the open end and sew as you’d expect, so that you have what looks like a stocking if you turn it in the right way.
Turned inside out, pin and sew the wadding carefully to the stocking fabric on the inside.
Pin and sew your lining fabric leaving the opening end AND THE TOE or base of the foot unstitched
Sew around your top edges joining the lining and print fabric together all inside out.
Pull the whole stocking through the hole in the toe part of your lining fabric. (You may want to carefully cut into your wadding to work the curve) you should now be all in the right way with the “right” or pretty sides of the fabric facing outwards (like in the photo above.)
Sew up your toe of the lining fabric, as above, and tuck inside, and you have a seam free stocking.
Here is the finished stocking – my sewing needs to be improved a little, I’m still not brilliant at sewing a curve and it is a tiny bit creased, because the cats took a liking to sleeping on the bag it was in! This would also be great quilted, as the design is gorgeous and it would really make it stand out. Or you could embellish the stocking with buttons, sequins or ribbon for example to really make it unique.
I also stitched the baubles and fabric tags (adding some ribbon) which came on the panel, as I thought they were fun! I like the idea of just writing on them with washable pens and then I can just throw them in the wash and re use them, alternatively you could sew names onto them for someone special!
The baubles, I did something a little different with, as you will see in a post coming in the next week!
This was a really fun project and was so much easier than I thought it would be! This stocking would make a great handmade gift, (either as a project to make, or made up), or even a little something for yourself.
Thank you so much to all of the friendly staff and management at Truro Fabrics, who were so helpful, offering advice and tips and of course very kindly gifted me the fabrics for this project. As a local family run business, selling all manner of fabrics, buttons, ribbons and lots more, it is a company close to my heart, and somewhere I love to visit for so many of my sewing and craft needs. This panel and fabric come from the Jolly Santa collection by Makower, the panel is priced at £7.80 and the coordinating star print fabric is £12.99 per metre. Both are available to purchase, along with a wide range of Christmas fabrics and many other haberdashery items, from Truro Fabrics, it is not currently available to order online, but you can call the store to make a telephone order. You can find contact information as well as other festive choices in the Truro Fabrics online store.
This post contains items which I have kindly been gifted * All opinions are my own.
I look forward to visiting the local Christmas market here in Truro every year, it’s always great fun and a great chance to see some wonderful handmade products made right here in Cornwall. I always try to do a bit of Christmas shopping here, and there are always some cheeky samples to be had too!
While I was having a wander, I thought I’d take some photos of some of the brilliant handmade products around the market! There were SO many stalls I didn’t get a chance to take photos of as it was extremely busy, but here are a few things I loved!
All photos were taken with permission, and I have included links so you can visit for yourself!I absolutely love fused glass products, they are so beautiful and there are such a wide range of pretty things on offer! The photos here are from stalls by Mel West Glass and ARTinside – so festive and fun!!
I genuinely LOVE Kernow Chocolate, and I buy some every year from the market! Their festive bars are a great addition to hampers and SO tasty! We always get enough to keep a bar for ourselves too, as a little Christmas treat.
I have tried some of their other bars too, like their caramel sea salt, bakewell tart, chili and even their milk, white and dark chocolate bars are incredible! It’s so great to know this Chocolate is ethically sourced and locally produced, and I’m doing my bit to support local business!
There are lots of things to see at Truro Christmas market, locally produced drinks, from lager to artisan gin. Locally produced honey, and candles made from beeswax. Stunning handmade clothing, for children and adults. Accessories, for your wardrobe, for your home, and of course for wonderful handmade gifts and beautiful jewellery. Foods, from chocolate to more savoury choices. And of course a HUGE range of handmade items from all kinds of makers. This really is a beautiful event to showcase the array of talent found in Cornwall.
I love the vibrant supportive atmosphere, which is not just for one week, but for every Wednesday in the lead up to Christmas, as well as another market on a Saturday. I loved visiting the DomsPottery stall, such beautiful handmade ceramics! I loved so many things here! As I’m a crafter, I thought I would share these yarn bowls! They are absolutely gorgeous! I love how different they are, and as a crafter myself I know how much love and work went into them! What a joy when knitting something, your yarn safely in a stunning bowl, to know you’ve supported a handmade business too!
These fab handmade bags are from Sherriff Designs, so many of us are now using reusable bags, so why not support an indie business too?!
You can find so many great designs too, so there really is something for everyone. These bags make great gifts, as it’s something that can be used again and again, and knowing they have been lovingly handmade makes them extra special!
I loved way too many products on this stall, all items were handmade by two lovely ladies, and there was something for everyone, from the useful oven mitts and potholders, to hanging decorations, tea cosies and even these fun gingerbread men! Not everything on the stall was Christmas themed, but I did adore the festive look they had going on!
Also in town are food stands from local businesses, ranging from vegan foods, tasty treats, bavarian sausages, thai, and of course it wouldn’t be cornwall without delicious pasties! I love to walk through town at Christmas every year, taking in the sights, the aroma of freshly cooked foods, and hearing various musicians playing Christmas music throughout the town centre.
I hope you enjoyed my little virtual walk around the market, and maybe you have been inspired to buy handmade too!
Do you visit any local markets or independent businesses at Christmas, or year round?
Throughout Blogmas I will be sharing some different ideas for handmade gifts and other items! Today I am sharing this easy quick project that makes a great stocking filler gift!
As a cross-stitch project these are quick and easy to make, great for beginners as you really can make them as simple as anything, though you can go the other way if you are more experienced, and choose a more challenging design. There are so many ways you can make bookmarks, all you really need is a strip of aida fabric, and some threads in colours of your choice and of course a needle!
Optional extras include tassels, beads, backing fabric or card.
This one, (which I made a couple of years ago, and still use) I made from several pink threads I had, and simply stitched blocks of colour.
I also made this one again but in shades of green and brown with a brown tassel.
Another great idea is to use a mini kit – although these usually come with fabric, you can change up your material and use your own, just measure the width of the design to make sure it will fit. Using mini kits is a great way to make a bookmark featuring specific designs, these are available in so many places too! This one is actually a Tatty Teddy mini kit I shared in this post. I added some writing for a bit of fun.
You can also buy bookmark kits in some cases, though designs are sometimes a little more limited, depending on what you want.This one was a free kit in a magazine years ago, which is another option, it was supposed to be backed onto some patterned card, though I plan on backing this with fabric. You can also find loads of designs online, and even make up your own!
Would you consider stitching a gift? Or have you in the past?