Thursday, 31 October 2013

Mum - I need a Halloween Costume - for tonight! Ideas for Quick Costumes

Picture of young boy in home made Under the Sea Lobster costumeThey always do it to you don't they? Tell you they want a costume last minute.

And if it's not the kids themselves, it the school - how many of you have had a letter saying "Your child has been chosen to be a Sheep / Alien / Christmas Parcel /Lobster (delete as appropriate) for our School Show. Please can you supply a costume for tomorrow's dress rehearsal."

And yes really, I once had to do an  lobster costume. It was for a dance show routine "Under the Sea" - the girls wore mermaid costumes but the only boy was Sebastian the Lobster.  

Today is the last day for entering the Get Crafty with Creative Connections October Challenge which has a Spooky theme. So if you've made any fabulous Halloween costumes, or if you have got some fantastic spooky themed makes you'd like to share, just follow the link: October Challenge - Spooky (Halloween, Ghosts, Ghouls). Our favourites will be shared on this blog next month and the winner will get a set of Funky Fabric Coasters from The Old Button. 

And if you need need to create a Halloween theme costume really quickly with stuff you may have at home or can find at local supermarket or high street shops, you might find the following ideas helpful:
  • Harry Potter - you can do any of the characters in a school uniform - get your child to draw a Gryffinor (or Ravenclaw etc) badge onto an old white school shirt with felt pen. Add a wand (or a clean stick from the garden). You could run up a quick cloak if you have the time - a rectangle of fabric can be fastened with an old fashioned brooch or button.  And don't forget to draw Harry's scar in eyeliner pencil. And tie up a few old books with string for Hermione and give a "Quidditch" broom to Ron. Or maybe you can make some cardboard Radish earrings (use thin cord elastic or hair bobbles to loop round non pierced ears) and a "Butterbeer" cork necklace for Luna Lovegood.Picture of scowling green faced man in hand made Grinch costume
  • The Grinch - if you have an old Father Christmas outfit and hat, you can use green face paint to create a this really lovable creature!
  • Black Cat - tight black tights or leggings and a long sleeved crew neck tshirt, jumper or old dance leotard. Black furry or cardboard ears sewn or glued onto an old headband. Add a tail made from black fur trim or sew a narrow fabric tube stuffed with cotton wool or old tights.  
  • Or you can adapt this into a Black Bat by swopping the tail for shaped wings cut from black fabric or a thick black bin liner and tacking or safety pinning to the back of neck and the sleeves once the costume is on.
  • Pumpkin - got a big orange t-shirt? And a black sharpie or felt pen? Just draw thin curved lines and then go crazy with blacked out pumpkin designs. Faces, bats, witches - much easier to draw than to carve on a real pumpkin! And you can tie a couple of pillows round the tummy if you want the to show the roundness of the pumpkin.Picture of children wearing light up accessories  
  •  Hunches from Seussical / Crazy Hair Creatures - I used some Crazy Hair with flashing lights to create Hunches for a local production of Seussical. I made huge black bat-wing tunics and the kids wore black leggings.  They also wore flashing gloves and looked brilliant on a black stage.   I bought these flashing assessories on-line but you may be able to find similar in the super market Halloween section or from a fancy dress shop.


Keep an eye out over the next couple of months as we share some more design ideas for costumes as well as lots of other makes, craft tips and tutorials.



Friday, 25 October 2013

September Wedding Challenge Winners

Last month's challenge was all about Weddings. So we challenged you to show us what you can do and we had two fantastic entries.  

Silk Dreamer Cushion by csvernm



This luxurious handmade white silk cushion by csevenm has a lovely phrase embroidered onto it "every great dream begins with a dreamer" and would make a great gift for a newlywed or an engagement. 



This beautiful embroidered wedding envelope from Joan Glen Martin is just stunning. There are lots of little details from the cute girl holding a just married banner to the flower and lace surround.  


Elsie May and Bertha kindly offered some prizes for this challenge - and the Design Team unanimously agreed that both entries were so amazing that we would have two winners. 

So well done csevern - you win the needlecase and pincushion  - and well done Joan - you win the lavender pillow. Either drop us a message on the Get Crafty with Creative Connections Craft Challenge or email Louise on elsiemayandbertha@virginmedia.com.

And don't forget everyone - October's challenge is Spooky (Halloween, Ghosts, Ghouls) so get your amazing entries in now  - you have until the 31st October - just click on this link to find out how to enter.

The makes entered into October's month's challenge will be judged by the Design Team and the top makes will be featured on this blog next month. And there is a prize too - the Old Button is donating some Funky Fabric Coasters.  

Friday, 4 October 2013

Get Crafty with Creative Connection's Monthly Challenge October 2013 - Spooky (Halloween, Ghosts, Ghouls)


Hiya all and welcome to October's Challenge which is all about Halloween and other spooky things.  We would love you to take part - full details on how to enter are at the end of this post - and please share share share to promote the challenge - Twitter, Blog, FaceBook - whatever works for you.

The makes entered into this month's challenge will be judged by the Design Team and our favourites will be featured on this blog next month. And thanks to those who entered September's Wedding theme challenge. It was great to see some gorgeous entries - watch out for a feature on these later this month. 

The nights are getting darker here in the UK and the shops are filled with lots of scary costumes, bags and decorations. While some of these are pretty good, it is great to have something unique, something that appeals to your taste and something that you will love to bring out year after year. 

And as crafters we just love making our own. So it's time to get spooky......... here are what a couple of members from our Design Team have been busy making.....

Just take a look at this fabulous bunting by Louise from Elsa May and Bertha - I just love the autumn colours and the gothic theme. Ravens and bats. Perfect for a bit of grown up decorating for Halloween.


And for the kids - what about these not so scary padded goody bags by Sharon from The Old Button. Cute appliqued felt pictures and embroidered words - perfect for little ones who don't want the blood and gore look.  



So why don't you show us what you've been up to?

So how do you enter -  it is simple - just add your item via the link tool at the bottom of this post.  But check out the rules and guidance first: 

  • This challenge runs until the 31th October 2013, so you can enter at any time during the month.  
  • This challenge is open to all crafters, and all craft business owners, to enter.   
  • You can enter up to two times in any one month.   
  • Please always make new projects, no back linking to previous projects.
  • You can include items you will go on to sell, most of us who are members of Creative Connections sell things so that is not a problem. 
  • You can combine your entry to this challenge with any other challenges that you contribute too.  
  • Please include a link back to this blog and Creative Connections (www.creative-connections.ning.com) when talking about the Get Crafty Challenge on your blogs, or any social media places. Creative Connections is on Twitter, Facebook and Google+.  
  • If you want to blog about your challenge items then please do so, please remember to link back to the challenge post and please add your links to the Get Crafty Challenge Group over in Creative Connections, (you need to be a member to do this which is free to join) the group is here for you to add your posts.   
  • If you would like to add the Get Crafty Monthly Challenge badge, you can copy the image from the side of the blog and link it back to www.getcraftywithcc.blogspot.co.uk
We're looking forward to seeing your entries - and there is a prize too - The Old Button is donating some Funky Fabric Coasters.


 

Tuesday, 3 September 2013

Get Crafty with Creative Connection's Monthly Challenge September 2013 - Weddings

Welcome to this month's challenge!

First of all, we must apologise for us not being around these past few months. Unfortunately, due to unforeseen circumstances, we were unable to run the challenge regularly. However, we have now reorganised so ensure that the monthly challenge is back, and here to stay!

So to start as we mean to go on - September's challenge subject is 'Weddings'. All different types of crafting can be used to make something for this challenge. From cakes to jewellery and sewing to card making.

We hope that you get involved in this challenge, and to have as many makers involved as possible, could you please promote the challenge via Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Google +, Instagram etc.

Here's what two members of the Design Team came up with.

Sharon from The Old Button has made a wedding heart "Something Old.... Something Blue" 
It is made from recycled materials left over from her own wedding 18 years ago. The guipure lace was used on her bodice, and the ribbon trim was used on the hem of her skirt and train. The blue silk was used to make the bridesmaids' dresses, and the silver button is a spare left over from the men's waistcoats. 




Louise from Elsie May and Bertha created a ring pillow. Again, she used materials from her own wedding dress to make this pillow. (You can see how she made it on her blog).





The makes entered into this month's challenge will be judged buy the Design Team and the top ten makes will be featured on this blog next month. There's also a prize for the best make, for this challenge, a couple of lovelies from Elsie May and Bertha (a  needle case, pincushion and a lavender pillow).

You can enter the challenge by adding your item via the link tool at the bottom of this post. 
The rules for the challenge:

  • This challenge runs until the 30th September 2013, so you can enter at any time during the month.
  • This challenge is open to all crafters, and all craft business owners, to enter. 
  • You can enter up to two times in any one month. 
  • Please always make new projects, no back linking to previous projects.
  • You can include items you will go on to sell, most of us who are members of Creative Connections sell things so that is not a problem. 
  • You can combine your entry to this challenge with any other challenges that you contribute too. 
  • Please include a link back to this blog and Creative Connections (www.creative-connections.ning.com) when talking about the Get Crafty Challenge on your blogs, or any social media places. Creative Connections is on Twitter, Facebook and Google+.
  • If you want to blog about your challenge items then please do so, please remember to link back to the challenge post and please add your links to the Get Crafty Challenge Group over in Creative Connections, (you need to be a member to do this which is free to join) the group is here for you to add your posts. 
  • If you would like to add the Get Crafty Monthly Challenge badge, you can copy the image from the side of the blog and link it back to www.getcraftywithcc.blogspot.co.uk

We're looking forward to seeing your entries.





Thursday, 1 August 2013

Louise @ Elsie May and Bertha

I've called this Louise @ Elsie May and Bertha as people sometimes that I'm called Elsie May or Bertha. In fact, these were my two grandmothers, Elsie May Hancock and Bertha Hodson. The name  popped into my head one day when I was trying to think of a name to call my 'shop', I'd gone through lots of names, many of which were already taken. So Elsie May and Bertha (EM&B) it was.

I've been making things for as long as I can remember using a mixture of sewing and knitting. I've now added paper crafting to those two, and attempting crochet, but I don't have enough time for that really (a poor excuse I know).


I've been selling my wares under the EM&B banner since October 2010 after I'd taken voluntary redundancy from work (I have chronic fatigue so I went before I was made too). I sell via my website, Folksy and vintage/craft fairs. The latter are really good for meeting like-minded people and puts names to faces that I follow on Twitter and Facebook.


I really enjoy being able to spend my days (when I can) creating lovely things. I'm especially keen on reusing things and a lot of my stash has come from charity shops and I love coming up with new ways to use something that someone else didn't want.


I've not been able to make any kind of living from my making, as yet (where are all those sale?), so have had a considerable drop in lifestyle, but I do get to make things every day! Some thing are worth more than money (but don't tell the bank manager that!).


I don't really have one style, as I tend to make either for someone specific or to use a specific item from my stash, so the style can depend on that.


I have started to branch out into more arty things, creating collages out of fabrics and/or paper and I participated in my first art exhibition this may. I'm looking forward to doing more of this kind of work.


I really enjoy being a member of the Monthly Challenge design team, I like the discipline of having a deadline to work to. I have quite a few things waiting to be completed in my work basket! I am also looking forward to seeing the things that people make for the different challenges. The ones we've judged so far have been really difficult because of the standard of the entries.


TTFN 
Louise

Wednesday, 22 May 2013

Who am I? The Old Button Undone

So who, or what is The Old Button? Inspired by a box of old buttons my grandmother gave me as a child, I have to admit I have a love-hate relationship with the name.

On the love side, it's short, cute and fairly memorable. And it sounds a bit retro.  But on the hate side it makes me sound ancient - ok I am approaching the half century but I am still young at heart. It begins with "T" so it is always towards the end of an alphabetical search. And worse of all - I don't sell buttons!  Not exactly what it says on the tin which seems to go against all I advice I've since read about developing your brand. But I've grown attached to it so it is here to stay.

What to say about me?

I've been designing and making things since I was a little girl and needed more clothes for my Sindy dolls. Luckily Sindy is more forgiving than her high maintenance cousin - Barbie - and was more than happy to wear my "Sarongs" - aka clumsy wrap rounds with ribbon belts. She didn't even complain when I made her wear my latest "Dress" design - two "t" shaped scraps sewn together with huge stitches and a neck hole so small I had to pull off her head before I could get it on.

Luckily both my skills and technique developed and as a teenager I made some of my own clothes and "improved" others - despite what my teenage daughter thinks - customising clothes isn't a new thing. Unfortunately this was during 70s and 80s and both my taste and style was severely compromised - think bright pink polka dot ra-ra skirt with matching boob tube. Or wide leg jeans turned into drainpipes by taking in the inside seam - looked fabulous if worn with an oversized t-shirt to hide the baggy bottom. But I got through this and graduated onto evening dresses, cushions and curtains and even designed and made my own wedding dress. Wish I was still that slim...

.... fast forward a number of years. I live in South Wales with my fabulous husband, two gorgeous children that love performing and two pesky cats. Our house is an under-maintained Edwardian semi that my poor parents keep nagging us about and a lovely garden that I sadly don't spend enough time in. I work part time as a Financial Resources Manager in the NHS and have a second "job" as Mum's taxi. My "me" time is reading, sewing and designing - I make stage costumes as well as gifts for children and the home - and more recently I've discovered I love writing blogs.

I am really looking forward to sharing some of my ideas and inspiration with you and finding out what you are all up to.

Sharon- The Old Button





Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Who is Maelotti


Many people have asked where the name comes from and I can tell you it is not Italian it is actually the names of my two grandmas, May and Lotti. In 2011 I set up a website to display my creations and showcase my husbands art, which in 2012 had a shop added as requests were coming in.
Recently I have had some of the artwork converted into cross stitch patterns which are now available on my website.

So, about the person behind it all. My name is Claire and I cant remember a time when I didn't do some form of craft. From a young age my grandma, May, used to spend time with me teaching me to knit, crochet and make pompoms, lol.


About 20 years ago I started making the occasional card and it spiraled from there. Know i cross stitch, make bobbin lace, glass paint and have recently began to draw under my husbands tuition (he is a teacher of fine art) I have a passion for anything that sparkles so jewellery seemed the next best thing for me to make. Silver Angel started after I had made a necklace for a gift and then was asked if i could make another.


I now live on the Suffolk coast with my wonderful husband, Phil who puts up with all of my crafting stash. Our two beautiful children Keianna and Reggie, our dog Angus and new addition of Misti the kitten. 


I am pleased to be on the design team and am looking forward to seeing all of your creations.I am still fairly new blogging, but I hope you enjoy my creations, some of which may not be quite as planned. 


Claire
xx

Friday, 10 May 2013

Who is Nikki K?

Who am I?  Now there's a question.


I'm Nikki K, passionate about mixed media, stamping, resin jewellery and polymer clay.  Owner of Fairy Elephant Design, where my jewellery started.  The name came from my mum, she used to shout it at me as I ran up the stairs at home when I was young. 

I've recently decided to expand and show my other loves, and let people see 'me', - stop hiding behind the elephant if you like!  So here I am, Nikki K.

The painting above sums me up really, nothing but a dreamer!

I live in the Midlands with my husband, dog Luna, and cat Magic.  I'm an IT Technician four days a week, and get to run my business mainly on Monday's, weekends and evenings. 

I'm pleased to join the Get Crafty team here on the new blog, and to be a contributor.  I hope to bring you randomness, humour, and lot's of tutorials, and look forward to hearing what you would like to learn from us here.

Best Wishes,

Nikki K.
x





Thursday, 9 May 2013

noodleBubble ...Who am I?


Who Am I ? 

*Sits at cluttered desk twirling a curl round a biro* 
WHO am I??? 
oooh. 
 I feel a bit like I need to be locked in a high school on a Saturday morning with Judd Nelson & Molly Ringwald for this one (If you’re too young to remember  The Breakfast Club just stop reading now- I have nothing to offer you. Honestly! GO! ...& take your youthful elastic skin with you)

So Fact One…  I never quite left the 80’s.

*stares out of the window* hours pass…  It goes dark.

Next day at same untidy desk .

*dunks biscuit in tea* Sorry, do you want one? *proffers packet*

Do you want the truth? I have the concentration span of a gnat.  Hate talking about myself & even worse *shudders* photos of myself…luckily I’ve discovered an app on my phone that makes you look less like yourself…



I’m noodleBubble aka Lisa… I’m a full time felt fiddler and button collector. I always have a book on the go. Adore a charity shop rummage. Throwing things away causes extreme distress so I don’t do it often. I sell my work online, in a few shops and at the occasional fair. I also sell supplies online. I enjoy working at home but do find that I miss the watercooler moments that going out to work provides. For this reason I embraced social media… and seemingly forgot to let go… I WASTE spend a vast amount of time on Twitter… Look me up & say Hi…. @noodleBubble on Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Words with friends…  

Thanks for reading
noodleBubble
X

Monday, 6 May 2013

Crafty Maths - Going Dotty

Whether you loved it or loathed it is school, there is no doubt maths (or math if you live a bit further west than I do) is part of our everyday lives. And crafting is no exception.

Measuring, buying and cutting materials, whether in fabric, card, metal or wood, needs the crafter to have an understanding of estimation, shapes, angles and proportion, as well as the ability to use a rule and add up. “Measure twice, Cut once” as my dad says. Especially in these austere times – we just can’t afford to get it wrong.

And I believe creativity has to be rooted in an understanding of scale, balance and symmetry, even if you choose to completely ignore it. I wish I could do this - I am so in awe of people who can create seemingly effortless freestyle creations that look amazing.

For my contribution to the Get Crafty with Creative Connections blog, I’m going to be doing a series of posts that all figure maths somehow. I’ll be offering a mix of tutorials, patterns, show and tell, and showcases as well as digging up some fascinating number facts. So stick with me – maths is great – I promise.

But I won't jump in feet first - I thought I'd start off with a quick show and tell featuring one of the simplest mathematical symbols of all - the circle.

I read recently that one of the favourite shapes drawn by young children is a circle. Ok, it maybe a bit lopsided and often not fully joined up, but still a circle. And they love colouring them in, and covering the page with dots. Even as adults - our fascination with all things spotty and dotty continues - go into any big store and you'll see them everywhere - on dresses, mugs, tablecloths, wellington boots, bow ties - you name it - it comes in spots.  Spots never seem to go out of fashion. 

For me, it is dotty fabric.  I can't resist it. I love it. So I thought I'd share just a couple of the things I made last year featuring Spots and Dots.

Simple handmade fabric dog in dotty fabrics photographed on grass
The Old Button Spotty Dog
This is one of my Spotty Dog Gang. Each one was made in different new and recycled fabrics, including spotty ones. With only two legs, he does find it hard to stand up - he prefers to be propped on a shelf or sit on a chair waiting for a friend.

Fabric owl in spotty fabrics
The Old Button Spotted Owl

Not easy doing a garden shoot, especially of the whole gang as they kept falling over. Daisies, clumps of grass and bits of sticks were all pressed into service as scaffolding.

And here is his friend - a rather wild eyed Spotted Owl - who hasn't just got a spotty body, but lots of his feathers are dotty fabric too.

I needed to cut out quite a few different sized circular and curved shapes for these little beauties. I'm pretty nifty with a compass which is great when you want accurate circles of an exact size, but for these projects, I just rummaged in the cupboards for some circular "things" and just drew around them.

I used cotton reels for Spotty Dog's spot patches and jam jar lids for Spotted Owl's eyes. And the curved parts of the dogs ear, owl's body and feathers were shaped using drinking glasses, bowls and plates - its a good thing I have a lot of mismatched crockery.

I'll be coming back to circles later in the series, so look out for future tutorials for circular skirts and a cheat's method for Cathedral Window lookalike patchwork blocks.

Have fun!

Sharon from The Old Button

Friday, 3 May 2013

in Stitches with noodleBubble X


Hello. How exciting- My first piece for this new venture!

Some of you may know me but for those that don’t… I sew.  I sew a lot. I love the fact that hand sewing can be done anywhere. I sell my hand sewn creations but also sew to relax. I always have a pile of stitchy projects on the go & the first thing to get packed when I go on holiday is the sewing tin.

I hear ‘oh I can’t sew’ SO many times & think YOU CAN. JUST TRY. Really, the hardest thing I find is threading the needle. With this in mind I’m going to be doing a regular feature here so you can learn a new stitch every month... 

in stitches with noodleBubble! 

Papercrafters, Don’t dismiss this feature - Stitching doesn’t have to be limited to fabrics… if you can make a hole in it it can be sewn... Card can have holes punched through and then the card 'sewn' like a piece of fabric... Papercrafts get an added dimension with stitched borders…

SO looking forward to getting to know some of you – 
please do leave a comment and say Hi...

Thanks-
noodleBubble
X

Wednesday, 1 May 2013

Get Crafty With Creative Connections May Challenge - Weather (Showers, Snow, Sun, Wind and Rain)

This months challenge has moved! 

We are now in our new home, which will be our forever home over on this lovely little blog, and we have changed our name. If you are looking for the Creative Connections Monthly Craft Challenge then you have come to the right place! As this new fab looking Get Crafty with Creative Connections is now the place to find Creative Connections Challenge. 

We hope that you get involved in this challenge, don't forget to pin it, tweet it, facebook it and promote it as it is all a new place for us and we would love to get more people involved. 

Now for the Design Teams take on Weather (Showers, Snow, Sun, Wind and Rain)

Nikki K has made this gorgeous Vintage Summer Lady Ring 

Nikki K has also added this photo, which a bit of a sideline to her jewellery and stamping.


NoodleBubble has made this lovely Sunny Yellow Button Brooch


The Old Button has made this gorgeous summer skirt for her niece


Claire from Maelotti has made this lovely Lily pastel piece of art


Kerry has made this lovely Flower Scrapbook page


Louise made this lovely weather collage



We hope you enjoy what the design team have made and can not wait to see what you make this month for this challenge. 

Please add all your items to the linky at the bottom of this post after the rules for the challenge. 

Rules

  • This challenge runs until the 31st of May 2013, so you have the whole month to enter. 
  • This challenge is open to all crafters, and all craft business owners, to enter. 
  • You can enter up to two times in any one month. 
  • Please always make new projects, no back linking to previous projects.
  • You can include items you will go on to sell, most of us who are members of Creative Connections sell things so that is not a problem. 
  • You can combine your entry to this challenge with any other challenges that you contribute too. 
  • Please include a link back to this blog and Creative Connections (www.creative-connections.ning.com) when talking about the Get Crafty Challenge on your blogs, or any social media places. Creative Connections is on Twitter, Facebook and Google+.
  • If you want to blog about your challenge items then please do so, please remember to link back to the challenge post and please add your links to the Get Crafty Challenge Group over in Creative Connections, (you need to be a member to do this which is free to join) the group is here for you to add your posts. 
  • If you would like to add the Get Crafty Monthly Challenge badge, you can copy the image from the side of the blog and link it back to www.getcraftywithcc.blogspot.co.uk

Sunday, 28 April 2013

And Here's To The Beginning!

So as you can see there have been a few changes around here.

We used to be the Creative Connections Monthly Craft Challenge, and were held on the 1st of every month over on the Creative Connections Network but we had a little jig about and decided that a change was long over due.

So we moved the challenge, we renamed it and we got the design team more involved.

And...

Get Crafty With Creative Connections was born!

This isn't JUST about the challenge. The challenge is still happening, it will be posted on this blog every month, on the first of the month with a nice linky on the post so you can all join in. Nothing has changed there, except the place it is hosted.

But this blog is about more than just the challenge.

It is a place for all of our Design Team to be regular contributors. We will all be writing posts and tutorials and showing you, our readers, our inspirations.

But it will also be a place for us to help you. Got a crafty question then send it over, as we may just be able to help.

It will also be a place for the winners of the Get Crafty Challenge to show of their talents by having the opportunity of doing a guest post themselves!

So there will be lots of things happening. So keep your eyes peeled. Get following via email or the Google Friend Connector on the side of the blog and lets get this party started!

Kerry
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