Monday, 20 April 2015

A week of making

Having a week of making some time in spring seems to have become a bit of a tradition for me: you can read about 2013's week here and 2014's here. This year, I decided to make it a bit easier for myself and have the week during the school holidays, so my second week of the Easter break was spent beavering away on a variety of projects...

I'm really into making these cute mini-zines at the moment, after seeing the idea on Design Sponge (although I think it was Laura who originally provided the link). I've already made a couple of Thomas, and this one - as you can see - is for a good friend. I'm a pretty terrible artist so the pages of my zines tend to be text-heavy, but they're really fun and quick to make and greatly appreciated by the recipients.

I wish I'd taken a 'before' photograph of our extremely shabby and sad patio furniture, but a quick trip to Wilkos for some outdoor paint and a few hours in the sunshine gave them a whole new look.  So perhaps not strictly a make, but certainly a makeover, and I am thrilled with how lovely the table and chairs now look (just don't look too closely at the white primer showing through on the feet).

I finally finished sewing seemingly endless bunting shapes onto my quilt-in-progress. I have a feeling this piece will feature a lot this week!

My friend Charlotte hosted a crafternoon - four of us, all working in schools and hence on holiday, gathered at her house for tea, homemade biscuits, and a spot of making. I'd been nominated to provide the craft, so took along some embroidery hoops, thread and scraps of fabric to teach them the slip-stitch technique of slogan embroidery (which I blogged about here). We all wrote our words/phrases out freehand, and as a total perfectionist I'm not entirely happy with my result, but as a teaching tool it worked really well and by the end of the afternoon we had four completed hoops.

Another makeover, but I reckon they still count. One black maxi skirt from the charity shop, one checked midi skirt from a vintage store, and half an hour on the sewing machine makes two summer skirts that are now the perfect length for short-arse me.

A nice easy make before heading into town to go to the cinema. Two sample pots of paint, three wooden beads and one leather thong = a funky necklace to jazz up my spring uniform of skinny jeans and t-shirt.

After yesterday's afternoon cinema date turned into a long pub session, I was feeling rather tender of head today. Not up to anything more taxing than cutting the backing fabric and batting for the quilt, then tacking it together on the machine ready for bias binding. I'm dreading binding it: it's not something I excel at at the best of times, so with a monumental hangover it definitely wasn't going to be a task I tackled today.

I love how having a semi-regular Week of Making gives me a kick up the bum to get crafting. Lots of these are projects I'd had in mind for ages but just never got round to. It's also a good reminder of how little time crafting can take: both the mini zine and the necklace were 30 minute makes, so there's really no excuse not to get crafting more regularly.


  1. Glad to hear it, otherwise I'd have two days to make up!

  2. I'm obsessed with these tiny zines - so quick and fun to make!

  3. I'm with Sarah - makeovers most definitely count ;) the garden furniture looks great and I can't wait to see your finished quilt! Oh man, I always find the worse bit is laying out the backing, waddling and top and pinning them altogether, I'm impressed you did it with a hangover!

  4. Though I've been a bit behind in keeping up, I always enjoy your super creative ways! Just the fact that you took time out for a week to do all these projects is inspiring. Oh and love that term, "crafternoon"! Thanks for being an inspiration and I'm certainly going to try out some of the ideas like the mini-zine, furniture makeover and possibly a bit of charity shop clothes alternations.

  5. A Crafternoon sounds like one of the best ideas ever! Feeling inspired, particularly on the garden furniture front, mine is in dire need :)

  6. I've now started binding it together 3 times and each time had to unpick - I think it might be the death of me, this quilt!

  7. We should arrange a bloggers crafternoon, it was so fun!

  8. A week of making sounds amazing! I'm guilty of opting for a lazy evening in front of the TV rather than picking up my knitting and sewing. This has definitely inspired me to pick up my needles again!

  9. Rebecca Shipley21 April 2015 at 21:20

    I am loving the idea of a mini-zine! I totally need to make one of those!!

  10. The problem I find is that, once the week is over, I go back to my old habits of reading or watching TV instead of making. I still need to be better at including making in my day-to-day schedule.

  11. Ah,I LOVE this idea, so cool what you've been doing. HOW effective does that bead necklace look- seriously cool and all painted by you! Wow, impressive! I had a lovely quilling session the first week of the holidays making a few birthday cards, it was such a happy time, I really enjoyed it!!!!x

  12. Awesome work on the skirts! And I love the colour of the patio furniture, blue is the best :)

  13. Janet, you really amaze me with how awesomely crafty you are! That I would have done one of these in an entire year would be a miracle, let alone one every single day haha. Perhaps I need to come along to one of your embroidery 'classes'! The garden furniture looks awesome, such a striking colour.

  14. Love these - this is the sort of thing I say I'll do and then never actually follow through on. Maybe this weekend I could do *something*