Craft: jewellery making part 2

Second night as a student, still loving it. This session was all about experimenting with textures. I’m still a bit rusty at this whole student thing so I didn’t take any notes and can’t remember what any of the techniques are called. It’s was basically pressing patterns into the surface, burning texture in and using heat to create different colours. So much fire and red hot metal.


First attempt went a little bit wrong. I think there was too much pressure on the roller so it stretched the metal out and the hessian got a bit too squished in the process.

The second attempt was a bit better but needs a polish. I quite like how it’s got the net print on both sides.


This was a little bit terrifying. The first attempt was a happy accident and I love the results. All the textures and colours are how it’s supposed to look, I think.

The second attempt was interesting. It took 3 tries to get the metal glowing red hot, I then left it too long and things got a bit melty. It did make me wonder if I could make some kind of sculpture kind of thing.


This was another get the metal super hot and hope for the best. You’re probably supposed to be able to tell when that point is but I’m not there yet. The first strip collapsed under the heat. I think I got over my fear of the fire a bit too well. The next two I didn’t get quite hot enough, there shouldn’t be as much black showing for it to be technically right. I kind of love it though.

Next stage is thinking about how these techniques can be applied to finished pieces. So many ideas for things to do!

Stay tuned!

Much love!




Craft: jewellery making part 1

I am officially now a student. I love it. Had started to get that stuck in a rut kind of feeling, everything getting a bit Groundhog Day so needed something to shake things up. I’d seen this silversmithing and jewellery course a couple of years ago but never got around to signing up for it. I finally got my ass into gear and enrolled. I’ve only been to one session, but so far it’s the best decision I’ve made in a long time.

The first session was a get straight in there kind of session. All us newbies walked away with a fully polished, perfectly fitting ring with our own designs and completely handmade.

The brief was very simple, make a ring that fits and hammer a design into it. I went with an all over ‘H’ design, it is all about me after all. I’m honestly not that much of a narcissist. I kind of like it, looks a little bit liked ‘HI’.

So proud of myself for a first attempt. It’s still a little bit messy around the solder line and the edges but that’s where practice comes in.

So excited for the next 15 weeks of experimenting and making!

Stay tuned!

Much love!



Crafty bits: lino printing (part 1?)

A few years ago, I got a lino cutting and printing set for Christmas. I’d asked for it and had so many ideas, but up until tonight it has been packed in the box pretty much untouched. My (pathetic) excuse is I just had far too many ideas to know where to start. This is the year to change that mentality and just get stuck in. Does anything actually work out when it’s overthought anyway?

My usual go to starting point would be Pinterest. I’d spent a night scrolling through all the gorgeous images and drawings other people have put out into the world when I had a flash back to GCSE art and my lovely teacher grading anything down if it wasn’t completely your own work. Surely I’ve spent enough years on design courses to come up with my own ideas. What’s the student debt for otherwise? I then switched to scrolling through my own photos. I need to start taking better photos. Initially, I wanted to try and capture my gorgeous little boys in ink. Then I realised they aren’t all that photogenic, it could be that I’m not that skilled at photography but I’d rather blame them.

Then I came across this little gem.

Still not something to show off any photography skills, but screen shots definitely come in handy. Clearly I don’t like making things that easy for myself so I narrowed the clip down to two stills.

This cheeky guy kept sticking his tongue out but not for long enough for a camera novice to get a good picture. Just to be fussy I wanted the tongue shot but not quite at that head angle. Yes, I need to get out more.

As a rule I hate drawing but every now and again I find myself wanted to give it another go. Tonight was one of those nights where I was pretty happy with the result and didn’t regret starting.

I have never claimed to be an artist but I was pretty chuffed with this.

Next came the fun part, cutting the lino. The only instructions in the box were in German. They were a great help. So with the theme of the new year in mind I just went for it and hoped for the best. No blood was shed so I’m going to take that as a success.

So far so good in my opinion.

If I did have instructions for this next part, I’m pretty sure they wouldn’t have had a look in anyway. I squeezed a bit of ink in the tray and tried my hardest to remember anything I learnt in college about any kind of printing. My best guess was roll the ink around, pop the lino in the tray and whack it on some paper.

Not bad for a first attempt I don’t think. There was definitely too much ink in the tray and I was thinking I hadn’t made all the detail grooves quite deep enough. Didn’t really know how to make it any better at this point so thought I might as well carry on printing.

Half way through (this is going to be cheesy, sorry) I saw a surprise little nice thing that made me remember why I do love making things. The left over ink made a cute reverse print. I love when you’re making something and even the left overs look nice, surely that means you’re onto a winner?

It only took 5 sheets of paper to realise I was getting the print of the floor boards through the back of the paper. Yes, I’m a genius. After finding an actually flat surface, things went a lot better and the small details started standing out a lot better.

It might not be perfect, but I think for a first attempt it isn’t that bad! All I need to do now is work out what to do with nine sheets of various quality prints. Hopefully another minor brainwave will come soon, otherwise I’m very open to suggestions!

Stay tuned!

Much love!



House: diy foot stool

Sundays are for attempting diy aren’t they? Or have I got this all wrong and Sundays are usually reserved for relaxing? That sounds more like it! So anyway, a couple of weeks ago on a slightly hungover whim, I thought it would be a great idea to make some kind of a foot stool type of furniture. Obviously shops don’t sell anything like that and I know exactly what I’m doing. That doesn’t sound quite right either but that’s what thinking on a hangover does for you!

After dismantling all the wardrobes that we’re left in the house, I have a nice stock of spare/scrap wood waiting in the garage.

The most logical first step would have been to do a drawing with dimensions and joint plans. So that’s not what I did first. I went to B&Q and bought everything I might need, a saw, nails, wood glue and a staple gun. What could possibly go wrong?

Stage 1 – attempting to make a square.

Once I had my 4 pieces of (roughly) the same sized planks, the question was how to fix them together? I thought I’d try the glue first. That was a mistake. There’s some nice glue puddles dried into my living room floor now to memorialise that error. Next try was nails. They seem to have worked but they’ve definitely shown that I can’t cut a straight line and they are crazy noisy to put in so best not to try this too late at night if you don’t want your neighbors to hate you.

Stage 2 – finding a bottom

So even though there’s a massive amount of wood in the garage, I chose a piece that was slightly too small. Perfect logic again. My thinking was probably fuelled by laziness and a complete lack of faith in my abilities. To be fair to myself, all the bottom is covered, there’s just slightly less overlap on two of the edges, if that makes any sense at all?

Stage 3 – finding a top

Just like the bottom, the top is also a smidge too small. I think I’m going to try and turn it into a design feature, well fitting lids are so last year.

Stage 4 – polishing a poop (part 1)

I don’t have that much faith that this can be saved to be a beautiful piece of furniture, but I’m pretty sure any kind of improvement can be made. I had a quick look on the internet for proper upholstery supplies, and they are expensive! No amount of money could save this thing, so I thought I’d truly embrace the diy spirit and use anything I could find in the garage. A few Pinterest ‘tutorials’ said to wrap all the ugliness in with wadding. I’m not buying wadding but I do have old curtains. Do two uglies make something pretty? Most definitely not but it should help hide the couple of nails that are trying to poke through.

Stage 5 – polishing a poop (part 2)

Although I hate this red being back in the living room, it does do a pretty good job at hiding the dodgey edges and rogue nails. A bit of padding on the top seemed like a good idea too, for comfort at all that. So the next step was hiding the red. There were a couple of bits of knitting I’d done a while back and had no idea what to do with them. Perfect for a project with no direction. Unfortunately there was only enough knitting for the sides, which leaves the top still being an issue. What better way to hide any issues than with something else that doesn’t really fit?

So. My diy skills definitely need some work. A lot of work. I don’t think it’s completely horrendous for a first try but I’m not too sure how long it will be living in the house for. I’m torn between scrapping the whole thing and starting again or trying a ‘stage 6 – polishing a poop (part 3)’ we’ll see. Maybe I’ll see how well it works as a footstool before I make any decisions.

Stay tuned!

Much love!



House: garage clearing

The plan for the garage has always been for it to become my sewing/craft/office room.  The perfect space for designing and making new pj styles along with some way of making my craft supplies look less like I’m a crazy person with no social life.  After the first couple of days of being officially moved in, the garage quickly became a dumping ground for all the boxes and anything else that didn’t have a home just yet.

Not exactly the perfect space to grow a business or be productive in anyway.

A quick trip to the skip made a massive improvement.  We accidentally missed the first black bin day (first nightmare), then the recycling men wouldn’t take any of the cardboard from the boxes we had managed to unpack – so irritating when you’re trying not to be a hoarder with a thing for squashed boxes.

It’s not a massive help having basically two double flat packed wardrobes stacked up against most of the walls, but I can’t bring myself to skip all that usable wood (not to mention I don’t know how I’d physically move it all again).  The plan is to use them to try and make a bit of furniture, it seemed like a good idea to use free materials to practice some DIY skills and (hopefully) end up with some unique pieces for the house. 

I found some sturdy looking shelves on offer at B&Q, they seemed like a pretty good idea to try and do a bit of organising and finally get rid of all the cardboard boxes.  What a nightmare to put together.  So much faffing around and making a racket hammering bits of metal together.  After finally getting them together, they definitely seem worth the effort although I completely underestimated quite how much stuff I have.  I swear I’m not actually a hoarder. 

I have a feeling this room is going to be the most frustrating room to get as I want it but fingers crossed one of the most rewarding.  All I need to do now is find the perfect organisational system and storage boxes.  Piece of cake. 

Stay tuned!

Much love!



Crafty bits: knitted blanket

Like any cool and hip twenty-something, my Friday night has been spent crocheting knitted rectangles together.  Such a party life I know.

Like the majority of projects I start, this has been half done for quite some time.  Just a sad pile of forgotten rectangles getting tangled up every time they got shifted over to a different seat.  What better way to spend Friday night than finally putting them all together into yet another blanket.


I’m definitely not claiming to be any kind of knitting expert – I was first taught by the local lollypop lady when I was probably around 7 years old.  YouTube has been a massive help jogging all those dinner time knitting club lessons but so far I’ve been playing it pretty safe and sticking to fairly basic stitches.  I like my knitting to be chunky and grow fast.  I think I’ve mentioned before my slightly irrational fear of committing to colour.  My usual tactic would be to stick to one colour and then not be a massive fan of the outcome.  When I was browsing online for reasonably priced wool (basically all my shopping is done online) I came across the best wool website ever – yes I am that sad. has all different colour packs, selections of colours that i think are supposed to have been chosen by designers so they work perfectly together.  I feel like I need to point out I’m not sponsored by them (although I’d love to be!).  I’m so happy with the results.

I can’t quite decide if I’d hate to work out how many hours I’ve spent knitting or if I’m quite proud of my dedication.  One of the plans for my new house is a hygge feel (is that how you use that word in a sentence?)  I want anyone who comes to visit to feel cosy and at home.  Anything that avoids paying for heating is also a pretty good bonus – not that I’m a cheap skate or anything.  I still need to do all the pesky stitching rogue tails in, but there’s plenty of time before any sign of a move in date!

One pretty satisfying thing about (nearly) finishing a blanket, I can now curl up under up with a glass of wine and finally watch the final Pretty Little Liars episode!


Stay tuned for the many more blankets in the near future!

Much love!



Crafty bits: printed quotes

I’m a massive fan of inspiration quotes.  Any cheesy line that can give you a boost when you need it most definitely has a place in my life.  I’m not however a massive fan of anything too girly, irrelevant stock photos, or anything that looks like it’s just trying to hard.  No offence if that suits your style to a tee, it’s just not for me.  Instead I like a little quote project that looks like it has taken no effort at all but has taken hours and nearly driven me crazy.  Makes perfect sense, right?IMG_2297

All the quotes I have used were found on Pinterest.  I can’t be the only one who loves a night spent on there ‘planning’ to be productive and somewhat creative at some point in the future.

I love that every time I look at these sheets a different quote stands out.  I also love that the series can be extended whenever I feel the need to lose all sense of words, their meanings and play around with stamps for a few hours.

Stay tuned!

Much love!