Saturday, 31 March 2012

found = best of british jewellery

With SPRING having well and truly arrived (hazzay and huzzah), I have tried to de-black my wardrobe. 
My boss described my winter look as, "grieving mafioso widow".
Hmmm, I say, "f*!% him".
Still, it IS time to show a little fresh colour.
Here are my favourite ecoutrements from BRITISH sellers on Etsy this week:
    Nautical colours dangle brooch by Forgotten Stitches

Bon Weekend!
Tinkety Tonk

Thursday, 29 March 2012

paper + card: water colour 'Inspiration' take two

Go back to Monday's post and you'll see I was inspired by a watercolourist
 Poppy and Pinecone on Etsy to create my own version.  
But I'm not one to give up and I had another go with greater success.  
I'm still not happy with my thanks postcard  (I'll get back to you when I've jazzed it up a bit) 
but I AM pleased with the painting of the messy Isle of Wight (it's where I live).
I used masking fluid to paint the heart before painting on the land mass and edging it with water to make it run a bit.
Tinkety Tonk

Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Crafting to lift my spirits

If you read the previous post you will know that I am down.
I don't often make myself things.
Tonight, I did!  It's an effort to lift my spirits.
I will wear it tomorrow as a psuedo-smile that will be lacking from my face.
1. I cut lengths of scrap material and folded them into a bow shape with an additional strip to go round the middle.
2.  Then, I hot-glued the pieces into place.
3. After that, I hot glued a crocodile clip onto the back.
4. Done!  Clip onto your hair and face the day.
Tinkety Tonk


Do you know what? I've had a totally begins with b and end in ollocks day.
My current job is really horrible.  It's hard living through it. 
Yes, I know, I'm not starving, I have a loving family, I have a roof over my head, but that doesn't take away the fact that my job is hideous.
 Yesterday, I found out that one of my favourite students was being severely bullied, that today she was going to visit a new school.  When she returned from her visit she told me herself, through tears (I had to hold back my own), that this would be her last lesson with me.  I set the class an individual task so that I could make her a card (I have them last lesson and she was leaving straight after). 
 I drew a cartoon sketch of her as a princess and inside wrote in it how special she was and how her unfailing smile lightened my days.
The fact that she has specific educational needs and despite being 13 has the mind of a much younger child made her even more individual.   She has an innocence and lack of self-consciousness that is so delighful.
The fact that she will not be coming through my class door and telling me the most outrageous and hilarious (and very likely untrue) stories anymore makes me really sad. 
 She even brought me in a piece of cake on my birthday. 

I saw this written on the door of a student toilet at my school (it wasn't written by her) -  it says everything.  AND puts my moaning into perspective.
Why could someone not have done something for her?
I would if I had known.
 Now, it's too late and I feel useless.
Tinkety Tonk

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Inspirational 'fail'

I'm not perfect.  
I am quite happy to share my troughs as well as my peaks 
(metaphorically speaking, of course - I'm not about to get my jubblies out or anything).  
AND, herein follows a significant trough.
I needed a thank you card and I was considering what style I should use.
I saw these lovely watercolour pieces on Etsy the other day and they have been playing on my mind.
So I thought marry up the ideas!  
BUT, sssshhhhhhh on the cheap:
watercolour pencils rather than the real thing. I DO have real watercolours but I am INCREDIBLY lazy and thought I'd take a short cut.
 I paid the price of sloth
Still, I've learnt my lesson and shall try day...
Tinkety Tonk

Monday, 26 March 2012

Doodle Day: day six

I bought a sketch diary at Christmas for myself and was determined to keep to it.  And, apart from weekends, I have! Some of the doodles are really poo but some are alright. 
I like this little chap who seems to not be very happy about his fancy dress outfit. 
I call him, bunny boy.

Sunday, 25 March 2012

my weekend= wings of the morning

I took this photo at my refuge, Newtown, yesterday.  We went there early in the morning to avoid the weekenders and enjoy the peace.  
I've taken to going there on Sunday evening too to see if it will lift my spirits which sink unfailingly at Sunday lunch time when the prospect of dreaded work floods my mind.  
It was another beautiful evening.
But I cried most of the way round the walk, even amid such beauty.  Proper self-pity.
There is a church in the village there and Tony suggested we walked around the graveyeard which was small and filled with primroses.  I saw a holly bush near the path which had an inscribed plaque near it. 
I wish I could say it made me feel better but I did appreciate the beauty and signifcance of the words:
If I take the wings of the morning
and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,
even there thy hand shall lead me
and thy right hand shall hold me.
Tinkety Tonk

Friday, 23 March 2012

found = Best of British

D'you know what?  My week has been largely rubbish and full of meh.  I read the post below AFTER having published it and thought blimey could it be any more mediocre!? It screams boredom and blah-ness.  I looked at the cushions I had chosen and though they are nice, lovely, they do not make me feel better. They do not make me go, "ooo".
  They may have done another day, but not today.  
I think that post was just plain lazy.
So, I got back on Etsy and found something that made me feel amused and up-lifted,  something that I would not have thought of myself:
It is by Linda Sarah and this piece is called Cafe Charmante.
It is an original 3d watercolour diorama and it is DELIGHTFUL, tres, tres charmante!
Happy Friday,
Tinkety Tonk

found = best of british cushion comfort

Lay back and relax.
I always have great plans to make cushions on my sewing machine (the one I haven't even attempted to use yet - yes, it's fear).
However, given that I'm unlikely to get round to it in the near future, I'm lushin' the ones below from UK sellers on Etsy.
They reflect my love of nature.  Birds in particular.
And as it's SPRING...
Tinkety Tonk

Thursday, 22 March 2012

paper + card: simple paper blooms

Today, I found a really simple tutorial by the wedding chicks - click for their fanastic original.
It looked so simple I thought, give her a go! AND as I was extremely jaded after work that's all my shrivelled brain could cope with. 
I don't think it turned out too shabbily.  Thanks Wedding Chicks!
I think I will use the finish product to beautify a birthday present.
Here's how I did it:
Tinkety Tonk

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

DIY = pom pom garland

This is craft is SO simple and you only need wool and scissors.
 1.  You wind the wool round your fingers.
2.  The more you wrap, the more dense the pom pom.
3.  Then you ease it off your hand onto a short length of the same colour wool.
 4.  Then tie the length of wool round it's middle, tightly.
 5.  Cut the loops and fluff it out.  It will look really wonky.
 6.  Trim it.
7.  Keep your eye in, you don't want a wonky pom pom.
8.  When you've made the desired numbers of pom poms, push a length of wool (or ribbon), the length you want your garland to be, through the centre .
BE GENTLE (so you don't push out the wool strands)
Et Voila! Pom Pom Pleasure:
Tinkety Tonk

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

'Inspired' birthday wreath

 A few weeks ago I shared some inspiring wreaths made by other crafters. 
Well, I DID get around to making one to hang on the front door to welcome my neice home on the weekend that we celebrated her 21st birthday.  
I cut 2 equal lengths of plumbers insulation 
 and then I cut the ends diagonally to make it easier to align
 then stickety stick stick with ye olde gaffer tape (duct) into the heart shape -
don't worry aout the kinks you'll cover those.
then I wound the chosen wool/yarn round it (this is a yawn making bit, don't drop off!)
 when that was done (and I was 20 years older), I cut out the birthday number out of cardboard and wrapped them in a bright red wool.
 I got a length of natty material folded it in half, tied a knot in the top, cut a notch in the bottom for neatness and then hot glued the back seam shut and the numbers on the center at a jaunty angle. DONE!
This is it in situ:
 Tinkety Tonk

Monday, 19 March 2012

Doodle Day Numbero Five

I don't know what I was thinking when I sketched this man.  He ended up looking slightly like my dad with the addition of a rather unsightly goitre.  He doesn't tend to walk around in his pants (pants aren't trousers here) much either, I hasten to add.
Tinkety Tonk

Saturday, 17 March 2012

Paper + Card = Secret Message Card

This was my first design for my neice's birthday card. That was before I found out that it was her twenty first.
I like the idea of putting personal messages on the tiny cards and then placing them so that they peek out.
It was simple.  I made a small envelope template (without the sides) and cut out six from decorative paper.
Then I cut out tiny cards to fit inside.
I'll now be using it for mother's day this Sunday coming.
Tinkety Tonk

Thursday, 15 March 2012

Strawberry Shortcake Update

I started a tutorial here (yeah it was ages ago) but I finally finished one of the strawberry felt things as a hair clip.  It was a gift for a colleague's child who had expressed an interest (actually she said,  "Can I have one for my daughter?" and, bitch that I can be, I couldn't exactly say, "No, it's for my youngest neice you grasping cow.") 
Still, it was good practice and I tried out some packaging on her.   
Don't get me started on what she did when I handed the gift to her, cos I want this blog to be positive...
So, after I had appliqued and embroidered the strawberry (see step by step up to this point here) I cut out a red piece of felt for the back and got a crocodile clip (ebay).  I ironed on some stiffening fabric (forgot what it's called, oopsie) from my local haberdashers and then hot clued it together.
Then I hot clued on the crocodile clip.
 Then I cut out a square bit of card and hand drew my blog name with a stitch edging (just for presentation) and clipped the strawberry on.
I found a free small flat box template online here.
And finished it off with a strip of russian doll paper and my inital in the sealing wax.  
I thought it looked quite pro!
Tinkety Tonk

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

'Inspired' 21st birthday picture

Last week, I posted about my neice's birthday and the wonderful inspiration for a homemade picture for her by the Irish artist @  Karo Art on Etsy
 In the end, I was disappointed with how my present turned out (I'm glad I opted into the Kindle as her 'real' present). I'll still give it to her, but it wasn't as stylish as I had in my mind. Here's how it went:
 1.  I cut out free hand some fish shapes from rolled out air drying clay (I trifle too thinly, in hinesight) and left them to dry overnight.
2. Then I painted them with nail varnish (I don't own any glaze) and left to dry overnight. 
It's a shame but the varnish was a trifle too dark and although I had anticipated that the sheen would add a scale-like look, it made them look a bit tacky.

3.  I arranaged them in a circle so that I could include some text and hot glued them into place.

 4.  Lastly, I added some words: her name, the day of her birth, the birthday she was celebrating and some descriptive phrases describing her birth sign.  I did this in fine-liner.  
This compounded the problems. It became childish and amateurish - I should have stuck with pencil or used water colour.
Still, it was made with love and, therefore, has been given with love.
Tinkety Tonk