Tuesday, 29 September 2009

Country Living Magazines halloween ideas

I love Halloween.

As a child I grew up in a small village and every kid went trick or treating although we didn't call it that 'in those days'. We just used to say "Happy Halloween" and hold out our bags! Also we didn't have pumpkins in the UK then (I sound about 90 but I'm not - honestly!) so we used to use swedes (turnips) which are really hard to carve out and would take my poor Mum and Dad ages to do as there are three of us and we all had to have a lantern. My Mum was a nurse and in the seventies nurses in the UK wore short black capes and she had two of them so my sister and I were witches or vampires every year. I moved from there when I was ten and everywhere I've lived since then hasn't celebrated Halloween with such enthusiasm. We lived in London for almost 6 years and never once had a kid call on us on Halloween - so sad! When we moved back to Wales when I was pregnant with my son we moved to the kind of place I grew up in. He had his first Halloween costume at 8 months of age - he had a red devil velour romper - SOO cute (this has been passed on to friends kids, my daughter, my nephew and my baby niece, Kitty will be wearing it for the first time this year) and we have had a Halloween party every year since he started school. One of my neighbours shares my enthusiasm and between us (and other neighbours we have roped in to help us) have a really big party in the street every year. We do different activities in all houses and the kids can move from one place to another. The party kind of grows in numbers and enthusiasm every year so I am always on the lookout for new ideas. I'll post some photos from our previous parties soon.

Here are some great ideas for decorating your home at Halloween which are in the current issue of Country Living Magazine (the American version):

you can find the template for these bats at


the template for these crows/ravens is here:


Happy Haunting xx

Make your own white pumpkins

I just came accross a lovely craft idea on a little bit vintage blogspot

Check out this blog for really gorgeous and easy pumpkins for you to make yourself

I think they are gorgeous and may well use this idea as a craft project for children to do at our Halloween party. We don't have white pumpkins (not that I've seen anyway) in the UK so I'll probably change the fabric to orange or I'm just going to confuse the children. I like to give them all something to take away with them so it'll be cool for them to take home something they've made.

Monday, 21 September 2009

My Etsy shop plus more wooden blocks - I'm on a roll

I've made a couple more sets of wooden blocks and have now listed them all on Etsy along with a set of my wooden letters which were already painted ready for Christmas.

I've really enjoyed making this and can't wait to make some more. I hope people like them!!

Sunday, 20 September 2009

This weekend I have been busy making wooden blocks. This is a new thing for me. I have been making wooden wall letters for years so this is a natural progression for me. I usually distress everything I paint after them as I feel it gives them more character. I also plan on making a load of these kind of blocks for Halloween to sell and if they go well will make some for Christmas. I am also going to make some with kids names on them with a block separating first and second names with either a heart on for a girl or a star for a boy. I am sure these will go well in my Christmas parties (I hope so anyway!). My husband cut me a load of 2.5inch square blocks which I painted and sanded a few times. I then made letter stencils (using laminating pockets) and painted the letters on. They have come out quite well and I am really pleased with them. Only thing is I now am on such a roll that I wish I could take a few days off work to keep going with them. I hate to stop once I'm in the zone! I do plan on putting some things on etsy to sell but will wait until I have made some more - keep looking!

Below are the letters I make. On a family holiday in Canada about 5 years ago I bought some wooden letters for my daughter's room. I have never seen anything similar in the UK. I sourced a guy in the States to cut the same shape letter for me (as in Molly and Love) and I order these in bulk then paint and distress them myself. These have always been really popular especially as no-one else in the UK has them. Molly is distress and love is plain.

Sunday, 6 September 2009

Craft Room Inspiration

As is painfully obvious, I am new to blogging! I have been looking online for inspiration on craft rooms and how to organise craft supplies and this is how I stumbled into the wonderful world of blogging. I have been cutting pictures of beautiful rooms and houses out of magazines, then filing them into boxes according to room types, for at least 20 years. Most of my friends think I'm nuts for doing this but I just can't part with my pictures. It's fantastic to see that I am not alone and there are so many of you other home loving nuts out there! I am also an avid crafter - wish I wasn't as I can never seem to switch off. I am sure that most of you crafters, like me, amass so much stuff that I either forget what I've got or can't find what I'm looking for as it's behind or under a pile of other stuff. I make a lot of Christmas Decorations and used to sell them in my shop (which due to the recession I closed this year but I'm not sad as you have to move with the times and this is just a step in another direction). Before I had my shop I used to sell my decorations in other shops or at parties in customer's houses so am going back to that to cut my overheads. Anyway, this time of year I really need to get myself organised and find this so stressful and huge a task that I usually spend most of my time just opening my cupboard doors and just staring at the contents hoping they will organise themselves. I have found so many gorgeous craft room and work room pictures online that I am now really inspired and ready to tackly my supplies and get them labeled and organised.

I love these storage baskets being repurposed to hold craft supplies. I had a pink wire cake stand which I used to use in my shop to hold bits and pieces and I am going to spray it either grey, black or white (completely undecided cos I love all of these photos) to put on my work table when I have one! I currently use my desk or my dining table!

Now onto cabinets and storage units

I love that all the supplies in these units are on display yet still look really neat and tidy. I find that if I put things behind closed doors I never really get to use them so love the idea of things being visible yet organised.

Inspiration Boards
This board is fantastic and I may try the idea out in my daughter's bedroom as she gets older - incorporate a few different fabrics and include photo's of her and her friends and souvenirs she picks up along the way.

Small storage

The bottom two pictures are from a lady whose craft room is the most organised thing I have ever seen in my life. Absolutely stunning. Sorry I can't remember who you are as I have been googling and saving craft room images for a few weeks now but I do love your room! These are simply spice racks holding small craft supplies. I also store small bits in little glass jars from Habitat but they don't look as good as this.

Gorgeous Craft Rooms

This room is my absolute favourite and I love everything about it. I would love to sit in front of that window and day dream all day. I love the colour on the walls and the nick nacks on the walls too. It's so homely and so organised. I wouldn't say no to any of the rooms below either...

This room belongs to the lady who has organised some of her stuff in the spice jars shown earlier. I will try and find her blog/website and post a link cos there were tons of photos and very inspirational. I forgot to save a photo of where she had stencilled a ruler to the side edge of her work table to make it easier to cut fabric to size - such a good idea!

I absolutely love the rooms above and below. They are both so light and fresh - it would be a real pleasure to work in either of these rooms. Also if I had a room like either of these the rest of my house would be immaculate as I would never use any other room. On second thoughts the rest of my house would be a bomb site if my husband, son and daughter had free reign!

In Wales we use the word cwtch (even those of us who don't speak Welsh) and it means a loving cuddle or hug and both of the pictures above make me feel really cwtchy. I would love to snuggle up in either of these chairs and sew to my hearts content.
I hope when I get round to creating my own craft room it manages to look a tiny bit like one of these rooms.
I'm not sure if I have to state where I got the pictures from and also don't know how to actually do this so if I have pinched one of your photo's please accept my apologies and know that I did it because they were so inspirational!