Monday 19 November 2012

Christmas Crafting #2: The Hardwick Christmas Bazaar

Hi all,

I hope everyone's week has started well. Over here at the home of B's we are clearing up after a week of preparation for the Hardwick Christmas Bazaar.

I don't know about you but craft fairs and the like are always a grey area for me. Do you go, do you give it a miss, individual persons selling produce of their hobbies v businesses. For me the local bazaar is a good way to contribute to the worthy cause of raising money for the Scouts and Guides building and getting to know a few more local people. If I can sell a few things to pay for my next batch of yarn, then great!

I talked to a few people on Saturday who showed an interest in Monday nights craft group and I hope that we will gain few new members with me having done so. Obviously another great perk of local fairs.

Last year my cupcakes were really popular and so this year, I skipped the homemade fudge and home grown money trees and focused on cookies and cupcakes. Unfortunately, so did other stalls and so we have quite a few left over. That's breakfast, lunch and tea sorted for the next few days then!
My handmade Christmas decorations were a hit but I wasn't prepared for the feeling I had when my first one sold. My sole Christmas bootie went first and a piece of me went with it! Handmade items are very under rated and I feel that they are most appreciated by others who craft or by those who understand the concept of handmade.

I LOVED my Christmas bootie and I know that as it was crocheted freehand, I will never make another the same.
I overheard someone at the bazaar say that they could buy decorations for the same price in Asda which is very true, and some probably cheaper. This got me thinking about what handmade means at Christmas. At this time of year it is so easy to get stuck into a commercial Christmas, shopping for the masses on the high street, great supermarket deals on chocolates and toiletries, clothes and small gifts. Sometimes I feel that the spirit of Christmas can get lost here and we lose focus on those things that matter. The receiver of the gift that we purchase to show our love and appreciation for them. The old adage of 'it's the thought that counts' is gone. Probably at the bottom of the wrapping paper waste! Whilst I take part in commercial Christmas every year to some extent, I like to try and stay a bit focused on the important things. I recognise individuals and the things they might appreciate.  I know some people who would LOVE a tin of choccies or a bottle of creamy alcoholic yumminess, but I also know a lot of people who would love to receive a gift that is handmade or carefully selected just for them. That is what I strive for. That feeling of satisfaction when one of my nearest and dearest unwraps a scarf that they desperately needed for the cold months in their favourite colour. They realise that it has been made just for them with the sole purpose of making them smile for whatever reason. What more could you ask for at Christmas!

So in support of handmade, please remember when you are shopping online, that it is just as easy to find a handmade personalised item for a loved one if you aren't crafty and if you are, then it just as easy to find ideas for things to make!

I hope this Christmas brings out your crafty side and if it does, please come and join all of the Crafty B's on Facebook and share your pictures.

Mrs Crafty B

Wednesday 14 November 2012

Christmas Crafting #1


Recently, whilst I was perhaps feeling a bit hormonal, I heard Hubby B saying to Baby B, "Don't worry, Mummy will be happy all the time soon, Christmas is coming." Well, I would like to think I am happy most of the time but at this time of year when the weather has turned, the colours are beautiful outside and we don't need to make excuses to snuggle in on an evening in anticipation of the holiday season, I can't see any reason to be down. Summer will be back next year so why not make the most of this season. OK so I find it hard to get up in the dark as much as the next person, but I refuse to brought down. As for Christmas, I don't do 1 day Christmas. For me it isn't weeks of stress for one day. Its weeks of fun, food, anticipation, family and friends. Every Christmas there is some sort of drama surrounding my side of the family and I always spare a thought for those in need and do my bit where I can,  but life cannot be lived with sole focus on the negative. With that in mind, lets cosy up and talk about crafts.

Having spent the year getting to know my sewing machine, I thought it apt to make use of it for a few Christmas projects. The biggest one is Baby B's advent calendar. I have cut out pockets from random fabrics, painted number patches and stuck them on and I am ready to get sewing. This will be an advent calendar with a twist as it will also be a present sack. I can't wait to piece it all together. I hope Baby B will enjoy it for years to come.

At Crafty B's this week, I cut out some other decorations from beautiful Christmassy fabrics and as I was on my own for an evening this week Big J came out to play for sure. These are now waiting to be filled and sewn up.

Last year I was given a pattern for a 3D Christmas tree so this is also on the list. The pieces are cut out and ready to be sewn.

I have found an old mini Christmas tree which used to hang on the wall with lights and decorations. It used to be my Mums and under the assumption she won't want it back as it is falling to pieces, I have decided to pull it apart and reuse it by making it into a Christmas wreath. Excited much?!

There has also been shape cutting from old gift bags etc and if I can fit it in next week, I am going to make my Christmas cards this year. A heat gun is on my Christmas list so I won't be using the embossing powder I purchased. Not for Christmas anyway.

Christmas wouldn't be complete without a bit of crochet or baking so I will have some more pictures to share soon but for now, here are just a few.
Now I must get back to getting ready for the local Christmas Bazaar. There is one every year in the village to raise money for a new Scouts and Guides building. I'll post some pictures of my stall next week.

Mrs Crafty B

Thursday 1 November 2012

Crocheted Infinity Scarf

As previously promised, here are a few pics of my sister modelling the infinity scarves that I made for her and my other sister. One is wider that the other and slightly longer but that is because I did them freehand and not from a pattern.

I have now written the pattern from both and intend to take commissions on these babies, so if you would like a scarf that no-one else has, customised just for you, please get in contact with your preferred colour and I will happily make one for you.

I fully intend to get these up on my site with the crochet heart key pendants but time is not on my side. Maybe I should have used that extra hour we had last weekend a bit more wisely. Eek.

What did you do with your extra hour?

Mrs Crafty B