Tuesday, February 23

Memory Box - Plush Heart Pocket

I'm blaming Jennifer McGuire for my latest crafting obsession.  She's been posting beautiful pictures on Instagram of her felt creations using dies which not only cut out the felt shapes for you but also provide all the guide holes for sewing.

I didn't need much more persuading as I love hand sewing, although my stitches are never neat, then she posted a really helpful video and my finger was on the pay button before I could stop myself.  In fact I made a quick list of things I could make with the heart die and once I got to 5 I realised it was really going to work for me with the added bonus that I already have everything else I needed to go with it.

Here's my 1st attempt.

I used some leftover felt to experiment and make a holder for needles and threads ready for the next project.  My stitching still isn't as neat as Jennifers, but it's much improved from my normal free-hand stuff.

The die I used is from Memory Box and is called the Plush Heart Pocket.  I ordered it from Crafts U Love and Simon Says Stamp have them too including their own exclusive Easter ones ( I love the little basket!)

YEEEEEEESSS I am back crafting!!!!!!!!!!


Monday, February 22

Tackling Magazines

My decluttering plans for the weekend were totally derailed.  Before Christmas I was using my Sizzix die-cutter a lot with Bigz dies, mainly making those gorgeous little houses that Tim Holtz brought out.  I impulse purchased a thin die a few days ago and decided to treat myself to an hours crafting to test it out.  After all, the readon I was tidying was to give me the opportunity to get back in touch with my creative side, wasn't it?

Well someone somewhere is conspiring against me - no base plate for the die-cutter.  It hads to be somewhere and its not exactly small, but could I find it - NO!

Any spare time at the weekend was spent in the fruitless search and I have been forced to move on to a new tidying category in the hope that it might bring the results I'm looking for...................MAGAZINES.

The floor was covered in them and I was convinced the base plate lay amounst them.  This morning I've cleared as many as I could get my hands on and put them all on the bed in piles according to different categories....

Crafts, work, colouring, kids, Guides, Photography, food/health and home decor.  My plan is now to move the piles to the dining table and work my way ruthlessly through them.  The reason for this is time.  If I leave them where they are and don't complete the mission in a day I will have to return them to the floor and the cycle of mess will begin again.  On the dining table we can eat around them and they will be ready and waiting for me when ever I can spare them 15 minutes.

Oh yes, I did find the base plate.  Tucked in a box beneath the debris.  Now, if I set myself a tidying target for the day, maybe I can be rewarded with some die-cutting play this evening .


Friday, February 19

Ink Pad Storage with Artbin Quick View

Whilst researching the tidying and decluttering experience, I've read in several places that you shouldn't buy any new storage until you've sorted everything and know exactly what you want to put where.  This makes complete sense, of course, but as soon as I saw this container on Pinterest I knew it was exactly what I was looking for.  

It's the  Artbin Quick View case and it fits all my large ink pads, after a little pruning, which thankfully was far less painful than my attempts with the stamps the day before.

Completely portable and completely full, but as I only buy small pads now when ever possible that should be fine.  Please don't ask why I didn't colour the labels before I attached them!  I think it was because back then I used them so often I thought I knew them all. 

There's room inside for a few sponges and they help keep everything in place too.  The unlabelled and unopened ones are new releases from 2015 before I stopped buying them and bought the mini multi packs at the end of the quarter.  Picket Fence is in there too so nothing more to add, except my Versamark is missing.  It might be with the embossing powders, I haven't tackled them yet.  If I find it that blue Memento can probably be sacrificed to make some room.  One in, one out from now on.

I bought my case at Jackson's Art.  You need at least the 14inch/36cm one for the pads to fit. 

Onwards and upwards.


Thursday, February 18

Rubber Stamps To Go

I think I picked a hard category to start my purge with, or may be I'm going to have great difficulty with everything!

This is the pile of stamps ready to go.

But, it's not nearly enough.  There are still far more here than I need.  It's been easy to look at the unused ones, leaving the issues of expense firmly at the back of my mind.  For most I remember why I bought them, sale being the #1 reason, and the projects I thought I would make.  For the majority I can say "If I had an hour to craft would I make that project?" and the answer would be no, so they can go.  

The used ones are harder, looking through I remember the projects I made and the number of uses I had from them and it's too easy to say "Yes, I would use that again."  

Thinking of the Konmari principles, there was one, just one, box that I opened and a smile of pure joy instantly lit my face.  Does that mean that should be the only box I keep?  I can see why the answer should be yes, but I don't know if I'm ready to take that step. 

For now I am taking a stamp break and turning my attention to ink pads.  Surely that can't be too difficult, can it??


Wednesday, February 17

Tesco Free From Madeira Cake

I found a mini gift cake reduced to clear in my local Tesco last night.  I decided it was worth an extra, late, little valentines treat to myself!

It tasted great and I nearly forgot to take a picture.

The labelling is gluten free and wheat free, but it does contain egg and milk.  There was quite a short date on it so hopefully that was the actual reason for the price reduction as it is not the sort of thing Tesco needs to discontinue.

It would make a great gift for the gluten free individual in your life or if you are making/buying a birthday cake for someone else in your family you could pick one of these up as an on the side item for yourself!

Now do I go back and pick myself up another one?!?!


Tuesday, February 16

Why I'm reducing my craft supplies by three quarters

It's the half term holidays and I am on yet another craft purge and tidy.  BUT, this time it's different.  I've decided to reduce my supplies down to a quarter of what they were, here's why.

I don't craft anymore........... 
Not because I don't want to but because I can't.

Can't reach anything
Can't find anything
Can't find the inspiration and joy in all the mess

Alpha stickers, adhesives and mini books

I'm no longer running craft stalls............  
I loved running a craft stall, meeting new people, chatting to like minded creative souls, but it meant finding time in the evenings and weekends just  at the same time when my family needed me.
My desk is under here somewhere

I'm crafting for myself...................... 
Not what someone else would like to buy
Not the the details specified by the latest competition
 My jewelry supplies with other stuff heaped on top

I'm no longer...........
Making complex cards
Quilling, hand embossing, parchment crafting etc, etc
Mass creating jewelry
Altering random objects that I don't know what to do with

Cling stamp storage

BUT, I am looking forward with excitment to............. 
Photography projects
Home decor projects
Creating individual jewelry pieces for myself, family and friends
Memory keeping in what ever format that takes
More planners and art journals

I'll document here how I'm getting along, what storage ideas I find and what I'm getting rid of and why.  I have homes for a lot of the items I'm letting go of with childrens clubs and charities, but if you make cards for charity let me know, I could have some things to send your way.