Saturday, 26 October 2013

Shopping for Craft Supplies

Now come on who does not like shopping?  OK, I know a few men who don’t, but us women love it!  I wonder why that is?  Shopping for craft supplies is one of my most favourite things, even when I don’t have any funds! Oops!  Still, I do keep a very keen eye on the overdraft then and try hard to resist any impulse buys, if I can!   Now are you an impulsive shopper, or an “only buy what’s necessary” shopper?  I wish I could say I was the latter, but impulsive buys are much more fun!

Before I get too carried away telling you about my shopping experiences and recommendations please have a look at the beautiful handmade items decorating this blog post today.  It was Breast Cancer Awareness Day yesterday (25.10.2013) and many folk on the folksy daily listing club shared pink items from their shops, so I thought I would share with you a few of those pink items!  I hope you like them.  Please click on the photos and take a peek inside these wonderful seller’s shops!  You won’t be disappointed!

Now back to shopping.  I keep a list by the computer of supplies that I need and add and delete as needed.  But, I am always open to buying impulsive supplies if I see something I have just got to have.  This week I visited a wonderful page on Facebook called UpcycleRecycleMakeDoMendI purchased some beautiful beads and elephant charms to use in my bag/purse charms.  This is a destash album so the prices are amazing! If you are looking for a bargain – this is the place to go! I now have a huge stash of beads and charms which is growing all the time!  I didn’t think it was possible to be a fabricholic, laceholic AND a beadholic!  (Not sure they are words but you get my meaning – I’m obsessed!)

Another on-line shop that I have been a customer of for some time now is Rag RescueThere are pros and cons about buying from this one.  I’m not sure the postage costs are very reasonable e.g. my order was the cost of a large stamp (90p) but I was charge £3.50 for postage.  Can’t get my head around that one, but I do have a bee in my bonnet about postage charges and do resent paying over the odds!  However, this shop is a treasure trove of vintage fabric, lace, trimmings and lots of different things, so if you are not bothered by the postal charge, then it is somewhere you definitely want to visit.  I purchased some fabulous vintage fabric and some fabulous antique/vintage lace!

Now you can stop reading at any moment you get bored!  Which might be about to happen!  Recently I restocked my supply of board, good quality recycled paper and glue sticks.  This is needed for my notebooks and journals.  I plan to make some new notebooks and journals over the coming weeks (lots of ideas and fabric I am dying to use!) as I haven’t made any recently because my shop has been fully stocked, but fingers crossed I am hoping this will change!  You would be surprised how difficult it is to buy good quality recycled paper.  I am a bit of a fuss pot where paper is concerned.  I prefer a certain weight because hope it won’t tear when I am stitching it together, but it is also important that it is recycled paper.

Are you still with me or have you fallen asleep!?   I could give you a huge long list of fabric suppliers (I like to shop around!) but you’d be off in a nanosecond, especially if fabric is not your thing!  But, I do want to recommend one place you may not have thought about.  It is the Victoria and Albert Museum shopThere is a 20% discount offer on at the moment (limited period) on all fabrics.  Their fabrics may not be “popular” but I love them! Their shop collection of beautiful printed cotton fabric is inspired by the V&A's collections, created by Westminster Fibers.   If you love fabric you definitely must pay them a visit.

Another on-line shop that I must recommend to you is an organic textile companyI have made several purchases and sometimes I feel a bit reticent about recommending them – not because there is anything wrong – far from it, but I want to keep them as a secret for my own private use.  How daft is that?  Well, now the cat’s out of the bag!

I hope you have enjoyed shopping with me and find some of the links helpful/useful.  Now, I need some wide grosgrain ribbon, so I’m off to Ebay to see what they have......



FROM TOP TO BOTTOM: Handmade by Edwina, Sewflair, Bojanglies, Oakapple & Rose, I Love Sparkly Stuff, Loutul, Whimsy Woo Designs and Knittingtopia

Sunday, 13 October 2013

The Road Not Taken

Totally Conkers!  Yes, that is the name for the daily listing club on folksy for the month of October.  Fabulous name, don’t you think?  Well, today I shall be illustrating my blog post with some beautiful blue items from the listing club.  Blue is my favourite colour, so it was a natural choice, but what fabulous items!  Please click on the photos and explore the shops – I am sure you find something you would like to purchase!

Now, what has this to do with “The Road Not Taken”?  Absolutely nothing!  I just decided it was time for some poetry and I am sure this poem by Robert Frost is a favourite for many people.

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood.
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveller, long I stood
And looked down one for as long as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that, the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads onto to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I –
I took the one less travelled by,
And that has made all the difference.

I hope you have enjoyed re-reading the poem, or perhaps reading it for the first time.  I think Robert Frost gives us a lot to think about.  I hope you have enjoyed looking at the beautiful items for sale from folksy sellers.  Here is one from me:

What road have you taken?



FROM TOP TO BOTTOM: JAusten Jewellery Designs, Whimsy Woo Designs, Paper Chains & Beads, World of Cards, NOfkants Curios, Clare Sherwen and Handmade by Edwina.

Saturday, 5 October 2013

SPECIAL FEATURE: Natalie from N Ofkants Curios

Have you experienced the excitement and anticipation when you are about to browse a Curio shop? You never know what treasures will be waiting for you or what gems you will find.  Well today I have a special feature with Natalie whose shop on folksy is called N Ofkants Curios.  And yes, it is full of hand crafted treasures.  I asked Natalie how long she has been selling on folksy: “Approx 5 years now I think, it's difficult remember with my advancing old age!”  I also asked her to share five of her favourite items from her folksy shop.

Natalie said: “this handbag made from a single long length of cotton rope, hand sewn together, it was a challenge to make, but I love working with unusual materials!

I asked Natalie to tell me a little about herself:

“I'm a working Mum, with lovely children and fabulous Hubby. I have had a passion since childhood for fossils and gemstones and have been collecting for many years. As a family we go on fossil hunting expeditions, but there is only so much you can keep for yourself, so crafting with fossil is a real treat!  Nature itself is the inspiration!

 Natalie said: “for a similar reason to the above, I had fun creating a handbag out of gent's neck ties, something unique but usable too!

“I enjoy knitting and working with yarn and wool, making items from simple scarves through to handmade handbags. Inspiration is often taken from nature, or by the look of how differing yarns, wool and other products work together. Each of these items will be unique and guaranteed handmade.

“I am unable to stick to one craft, hence why my shop is a curios shop, a little bit of everything that I've tried my hand at.”

“I really enjoyed creating something structural from simple crochet and these trilby style hats are such fun!  This one in particular with its feather trim makes me think of autumn, which is a season I love!

“My motivation is that crafting is often a little life line for me, keeping me active, sane and giving me a purpose when I felt times were hard, or giving me relaxation at times of stress!

“I just adore fossils and fossil hunting, the hours of time searching through silt, rock and shale to locate the fossils, then the time spent working them to clean and prepare them for use as something decorative and functional is a joy!

“I adore gemstones, tiger’s eye is one of my favourites, it has such life, and tumbling and polishing stones in our garage is wonderful when you see the finished outcome.

“I love to just throw myself into something, although custom orders and commissions are lovely and always welcome, I much prefer to start experimenting and see what I come up with!

I so enjoy being on Folksy, the community is wonderful, the sellers, crafter and artisans have become friends, even if we may never physically meet, folksters have become very important to me!

I asked Natalie to share three of her favourite items from my folksy shop.

“I adore this notebook in your folksy shop, the fabric you have chosen to use is stunning!

“Not only is this a beautiful piece, the sheer level or work and hours you must have put in is equally impressive!

“Your Christmas bunting is so jolly and different from the normal style of bunting you see around, almost heritage in style!  I love it!

If you would like to read more about Natalie on her blog or Facebook page here are the links.

Don’t forget to visit Natalie’s shop on folksy which you can do by clicking on the link above or any of the first five photos.  Remember it is a Curios shop, so you never know what you are going to discover!  Exciting!

Thank you for reading my feature and many thanks to Natalie for sharing with us.