Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Felt Christmas Gift Guide - Issue 3

This is likely to be the last one of my Christmas Gift Guides, but I don't see why I can't continue these Gift Guides next year. It is a great excuse for me to browse through the Felt website and drool over all the goodies I want!

So here it is folks, my last Christmas Gift Guide for the year :)


I couldn't decide on just 6 this time... so popped in a few extras for a last little burst of Christmas Spirit :)

Happy Shopping x

Monday, December 14, 2009

Sawing, sanding and a broken camera

Okay, so although the title suggest my broken camera was something to do with my own doing, that is not the case at all ;) Last week was a crazily busy week preparing for the Crafternoon Tea market (as I am sure it was for many people) and thinking that I had all the time in the world to prepare, I decided one of my first projects would be a couple more displays for my pendants. My first was another smaller version of my earlier created display and the other was the snazzy creation pictured below. Such a cheap but rather effective display (if I don't say so myself). I wanted to add more depth to my market display and make it more visually interesting so I decided to create a display for the pendants without them being on individual cards.

I had some left over board from my first display so decided to put it to good use. I purchased some wood for the legs, a couple of hinges and then a stack of self tapping eyelet thingamajigs (yes, that's their technical name) and got to work. I actually cut this board using a stanley knife as although it takes longer, I find it gives a much cleaner cut than using a saw. Plus it means a LOT less sanding once you've cut it. My main aim when creating displays (apart from them displaying the product well of course) is to make them easily portable which is why I put the legs on hinges and the crossbar bits with hooks so they can unhook and fold flat. I am really happy with how it turned out, and it not only saved me a lot of room on my table, it looked pretty effective too. AND it only cost me about $9 in materials. It was wins all round really ;)

My snazzy new pendant display

So as you can tell, no cameras were harmed in the making of this display. However my camera did leave us last week, on the day that I planned to photograph all my completed pendants, and a day before the Crafternoon Tea — typical. I was more angry than sad about it dying, as I wasn't overly attached to my 18 month old Fujifilm (NEVER buy a Fujifilm, they are rubbish!). It was only a cheapy at the time so I shouldn't really be surprised that it just stopped working one day, but still... it was rather inconvenient! On the bright side however, I managed to use my FlyBuys points to score myself a really snazzy compact Olympus in a sexy Pearl White colour. She's such a little gem and I'm looking forward to using her!

Anyway, Crafternoon Tea on Saturday was a fabulous market and I really loved the Mt Eden Normal Primary School hall. It had a lovely vibe to it and felt very welcoming. Although it was a fairly quiet day I think Luisa and Trent did a fabulous job advertising it as best they could — Kudos! I had a wonderful day chatting with my fellow crafty peeps such as the lovely Jess and Bronwyn and to top it all off it was a successful market for me. I am really looking forward to the next one in January, back at it's regular Kingsland location.

My table with my new displays at Crafternoon Tea

I've cut 3 more bags ready to sew for this weekends Love Handmade market, and I have cut out 6 *new product alert* 'Obi style Belts' which I will be launching this Saturday — exciting stuff! I'm also getting ready to snap (with my sexy new camera) all of my pendants and start uploading them to my Felt shop over the next week.

Chat soon x

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Loving the Sunshine

How awesome is this weather? I am completely loving it. Summer just puts me in an extra good mood and helps motivate me to get things done. And that is exactly what I have been doing this week — getting lots done! (Warning: The Chrissy Decorations that I made for my ornament swap are in this post... so don't scroll down too far if you don't want to see them!)

Over the weekend I was lucky enough to get along and see the Dalai Lama talk in Auckland. Whilst he isn't a public speaker as such, he is an amazingly insightful and down to earth guy. His philosophies are truely wonderful, yet are so simple. I left the talk feeling very enlightened and positive, so it was a lovely start to the weekend.

The wonderful Dalai Lama

You may have seen my blog last week about my little melt down I had, when my 160 pendants that I had coated with my new brand of lacquer failed to set, leaving me with 160 unusable pendants. I was worried that they wouldn't be able to be saved BUT yippeee... they have :) I was frantically researching alternative products to use to make the pendants completely waterproof rather than just splashproof. I came up with a couple of options and reluctantly decided to give resin a go. I am very pleased with the result and although they are still drying, I am confident that they will all be completely set and sealed by Friday (just in time for Crafternoon Tea on Saturday!) I had heard some really scary stories about resin like the toxic fumes, making sure the mix was accurate and thoroughly mixed and also about the bubbles it is prone to getting. Thankfully aside from being a bit of a messy exercise to begin with, I eventually got the hang of it and spent quite a few  hours carefully coating my pendants. I'm very excited that they are now waterproof too :)

I was very excited to receive another Christmas decoration in the post yesterday. It was a lovely beaded snowflake (I think!) with a sweet little angel hanging below made by Helene of Mira Design. It's going to look great on my Chrissy Tree.

Thanks Helene - it's lovely :)

As I mentioned at the top of this post, I finally managed to get my decorations finished today and in the post. They took me ages, as they are all hand sewn, but I am pretty chuffed with how they turned out. I used a variety of materials to make them — fabric, ribbon, buttons and freshwater coin pearl. I made a couple of extras for a gift and for my own tree. Here they are...

Little Handmade Tree Angels

Another busy night tonight as I am cutting out fabric ready for assembly tomorrow. Want to make sure I have my new products ready for Crafternoon Tea this weekend. Very excited about it — it's going to be a blast. Looking forward to seeing all my crafty buddies and selling lots of goodies to Christmas punters :)

Enjoy your evening x

Felt Christmas Gift Guide - Issue 2

Wow - it's Wednesday again already! How quickly time flies... Here are my Felt picks for this week :)

Hope everyones Christmas preparations are coming along nicely xx

Indigo Tree concertina photo albumHandstitched wool felt dog - yellow
Essence Lampwork BraceletDaisies on Green Japanese Inspired Brooch (B34)Max BroochSteampunk watch movement pendant necklace

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Crafternoon Tea is near...

And I will be there — Yippee. Third time lucky! I have sadly missed out on the last 2 but I vow to be present at all future ones :)

For December it'll be held at a different location than normal, so pop on down to the Mt Eden Normal Primary School on Sat 12th Dec from 10am-3pm. It was be a lovely day of crafty goodness and it'd be a shame if you missed out!

See you all there xxx 

 Click here to check out the Crafternoon Tea website

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Shopping, Wine and Good Times

This week has been a very crafty community week for me. On Sunday I popped on down to Kraftbomb with Jess to have a browse and do a spot of shopping. Of course, I was meant to be shopping for Chrissy pressies for friends and fam, but it ended up all being purchases for me. I picked myself up an adorable wee owl from Purrsie — I'd been eyeing these up for a while now and when she mentioned on her blog that stocks were low, I grabbed one quick smart! My other lil purchases were some super cute badges from Nut and Bee and an adorable little spotty ring by Leila Loves Handmade.

My wee purchases :)

On Tuesday night I was lucky enough to be able to head along to the Lucky Penny Crafty Club in the city. I was supposed to have my final class that night (I've just completed my Small Business Management Cert - Go Me!) but it got postponed until this evening, so my Tuesday was freed up. If you are ever free on the 1st Tuesday of the month, I highly recommend coming along to one of the Lucky Penny evenings. They are great fun, and a good excuse to drink wine, eat cake and talk craft (couldn't get any better really!). It was the first one I have been able to get along to, and it was great to meet some new crafty peeps. There were a few pics taken, but alas none by me, so hopefully they'll make their way to fellow crafters blogs soon.

This week I also received my first "Christmas Ornament Swap" in the mail. I just love getting packages in the post. It's a hand felted mini stocking with my name on it and was made by Peach of Twohand Jewelry.

I really need to get onto making my decorations to send out, I just can't decide what I want to make. Think that might be a Friday night project for me.

On a final note, I have been having a nightmare of a time with Pendants this week. The supposed "new and improved" lacquer I purchased to coat my pendants with has turned out to be far from that. So I've been frantically researching a better alternative to re-do them in time for Crafternoon Tea next weekend. Here I was thinking I was being super prepared getting them ready the last couple of weeks, only to discover a week before the market that they need fixing - eek! I'll be fine though, just maybe a tad busier next week than anticipated!

Hope everyone is getting themselves all prepared for Christmas... I know I'm not ;)


Felt Christmas Gift Guide - Issue 1

If you have been checking out the Felt Forum recently you will have seen a very nifty idea by Supervery — Our own Gift Guides for Christmas. Here are just 6 of my Christmas Pressie recommendations from Felt for this year.

Of course, I wanted to put WAY more items in here, but 6 a week will have to suffice.

Happy Christmas Shopping x

Friday, November 27, 2009

The First Handbag :)

I plan on continuing to expand my range, to give myself a new challenge and to always have something fresh to offer my customers. I'd been hunting around for inspiration recently and decided that handbags will be my first addition to my collection. I sketched out a few rough plans for one style of bag and proceeded to cut. I know now why they always say measure twice, cut once. After a few hiccups, and a couple of miscuts later I have made my first prototype.

I've picked out the colour combinations for another 4 'Sweetpea Bags', and will be launching them for sale for the first time at Crafternoon Tea on the 12th December. These are super cute and I can't wait to make more.

Am working on another new product to add to the range this weekend too, so will put a blog up once the prototype is complete!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Mairuru - An inspiring blog

Recently I happened upon a lovely blog called Mairuru which is written by a Japanese girl named Mai. I am absolutely hooked. It is clear that English is not her first language, but that is one of the things I love most about the blog — the style in which she writes. I find her blogs fascinating and once I start reading I find it difficult to stop.

She is a very unique crafter that literally hand sews everything. Her patience must be amazing, as the detail and work that goes into each item she makes is impeccable.

I'd love to post some pictures of her creations, but wouldn't want to do that without her permission so you'll need to check out her blog. She also sells on Etsy, so you can check out some of her items on there.

As well as blogging about her crafts and love of craft, she also blogs about her day — often including what she has cooked that day. She looks like a fantastic cook and reading about her yummy Japanese lunches that she makes always makes me hungry. I also particularly love the photos of her neighbourhood and the beautiful local dog she passes most days in her travels, Bo-chan.

Her blog includes many tutorials for the neat things she makes and I could honestly sit and read it all day. People like Mai inspire me.

Definitely a blog to check out!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Crafternoon Tea is Tomorrow

And although I won't be attending this one, I highly recommend you pop along to do some chrissy shopping. There is going to be loads of talented crafty peeps there selling their wares, and you are sure to find the perfect gift for just about everyone. My pal Jess is debuting her absolutely gorgeous new cushions and I am sure there will be lots more new goodies available from plenty of stall holders.

As it says in the poster above, it's at the Trinity Methodist Church Hall in Kingsland from 10am to 2pm. So go grab a coffee or brunch at one of the Kingsland Cafe's and then mosey on down to the Crafternoon Tea.

It's sure to be fabulous.

Cupcakes and a Cute Magazine

I popped along to the launch party for Extra Curricular last night — and it was FABULOUS. I couldn't wait to get my hands on a copy so I made sure that was the first thing I did. It was lucky that I did, because I managed to score myself the very first copy off the printer. That's gotta be worth something one day.

Check it out - Print Run 1 of 500!!!

There was a fabulous turn out, with plenty of fellow crafty peeps coming along. The lovely Olivia was there, as was AnnaHeleen, Luisa and I also spotted Rachel and Jamie there too. Of course, I knew that Heleen would be there, due to her now being famous and all ;) Here is a snap of her great article in the mag...

The lovely Heleen... in a magazine!

Now I am trying my best not to devour the magazine and read it cover to cover straight away, as I tend to do with great mags like this. I plan to savour the articles and read them over at least a couple of days ;)

I cannot wait for the next issue to come out... even though I know it'll be a while off yet. Well done to Ellie for producing such a quality magazine that is full of interesting articles and inspiration. I particularly love the beautiful way it was finished... especially the cute round corners on the pages!

I'll be treasuring my copy for years to come x

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Extra Curricular Launch Party

I'll be heading along to the Launch Party for the fabulous new magazine especially crafted for crafty peeps, Extra Curricular (See what I did there?!). The magazine is put together by the talented Ellie of Miss Ellie May. I am extra excited about finally being able to get my hot little hands on a copy. They are on sale on the night for $12 a pop, and you'll be one of the very first people in NZ to own it. Doesn't the cover just make you want one?

The launch party is being held at DOC on K' Rd at 7pm tomorrow night (Thursday 19th Nov) so if you haven't already made plans it'd be great to see you there.

(Rumour has it there will be cupcakes there too...)


Pendant Assembly Line

What a crazily busy weekend it was! On Friday night I was up late, making sure I was all set for the Love Handmade market on Saturday morning. I honestly can't remember the last time I was up before 7.30am on a weekend! But although it was an early start, I am really impressed with the amount of people that came through the doors throughout the morning. Although it wasn't super busy, for a first market it was a fairly successful day. Not to mention it was a fabulous location... nice and sunny, room to move and very comfy chairs ;) Fingers crossed I get to sit up in the same spot next time! I also got to chat to lots of lovely crafters that were there such as Podgy Panda, Books by RachelFerrit and my girl Jess. Of course there was loads more people there so big apologies to anyone I didn't mention — everyones crafts looked fabulous and it was hard to restrain myself from dipping into my sales money!

Here is mine and Jess' tables all setup first thing in the morning. My pendant display worked a treat!

Jess looking all sweet at her stall. Who could say no to that face?

I couldn't resist purchasing a couple of cute Gingerbread men though, for Jess and I from Gretel's Gingerbread and I have to shamefully admit that it was indeed my breakfast! (But what a tasty breakfast it was!) I am really looking forward to the next Love Handmade market which will be at the same lovely location and at a even more lovely time of 10am-1pm. It'll be on Saturday 19th December, so mark that in your diaries!

Late Saturday evening I got a surprise message from Sarah from the Devonport Craft Market saying that there was one last little spot left at the markets if I was still keen. So I quickly nabbed it and re-packed all my market stuff into it's box ready for the next morning.

The Christmas Spectacular was exactly that... very spectacular! I had a fabulous day at the markets and although it tends to quieten down for the last 2 hours, it was a busy day overall with about 450-500 people through the doors. The first hour saw 110 people come through and by lunchtime there was nearly 300 shoppers that had come through! Not a bad effort for a market on a weekend that was in addition to it's regular weekend! The Sarah's did a fab job promoting the market and I loved the big banner outside. It definitely made us easier for shoppers to find, and a lot harder for them to resist a gander! I was also stoked with my little calendar — I've already gone through and marked it with the application close dates too.

I was far too busy on Sunday to get any pics, but again there was lots of talented people at the market. Unfortunately I didn't get the opportunity to pop around and see everyone this time, so will have to make sure I make time, next market.

After a successful weekend of sales, my stock has depleted so it'll be a busy couple of weeks ahead of me preparing for Crafternoon Tea and Love Handmade in December. I have already prepped and started assembling over 160 pendants — how good am I? hehe. I also have some plans for some new products to launch then... so time permitting, there will be some new goodies on offer in December.

Will keep you posted x

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Pendant Market Display

As I mentioned in my last blog, I purchased supplies to make myself a display for my pendants to sit on at the markets. Well today was such a glorious day outside, I decided the get all my materials and head out side in the sunshine for some sawing and sanding.

 Supplies for my pendant display

Now I am in no way a green thumb, but I do really appreciate gardens. The place that I recently moved into has no shortage of gardens and flowers and whilst it may not be my particular taste in garden style, there is undoubtedly a lot of pretty colours and flowers amongst it. This was bits of my scenery whilst I was at work creating a display.

Some of the pretty flowers in my garden

So after taking some snaps of some pretty flowers, I got to business and cut, sanded and assembled my display. I am pretty stoked with how it looks, and it works really well so it was a successful venture :)

Left: My finished display
Right: A couple of Pendant cards positioned, to make sure it fits nicely!

I am still in two minds about whether or not I will cover it in Brown Paper, as I had originally planned. I quite like the natural wood look, but I think natural brown kraft paper stuck on with Mod Podge might look quite cool too. What do you think?

Anyway, I am looking forward to testing it out at Love Handmade on Saturday morning. Hope you are all coming along to say hello and check out all the talented peeps at the market :) Will be fab to see you there x

Monday, November 9, 2009

My Market Travel Case

I had a right pain in the butt of a time trying to get all my pendants to stay upright in a box and not get all messed up everytime I picked it up last week, so my weekend endeavour was to create a carry case for all my market stock. I had an idea in my head on how I thought it should work, so it was off to the Stationery place, the Warehouse and Mitre 10 for supplies.


I picked up a pretty pink patterned box for the Warehouse for about $20 to use as the case, and purchased some heavy black corrugated plastic for the dividers. I carefully measured it all out and began cutting.

 Cutting and Measuring... it's getting there!

It took me WAY longer than I anticipated, and there was a couple of minor design glitches along the way (the long dividers started to bow with the more dividers I added) but all in all I am very stoked with how it turned out!

The finished case :)

It fits all of my current pendants, as you can see, and has plenty of room for all the news ones I am busy making! My final touch was to put a dividing piece of plastic along the top, so that I could sit all the rest of my other stock, such as headbands and coffee cup sleeves on the top.

When I was out getting materials to make this carry case, it also dawned on me that my current market display needed some refining, so I also picked up some bits to make a pendant display. It's nothing super fancy, but it'll make it all a bit easier! Will be making that this week so will post another blog about that once it's done!

K x