Very Berry Handmade Hoop Swap

Well I’ve taken part in Artist Trading Card (ATC ) swaps before but this was my first very berry handmade mini hoop swap!  The ATC swaps involve making a small credit card sized original hand crafted piece of art.  There must always be some sewing but the ATC can be a multi-media extravaganza of whatever takes your fancy.  The mini hoop swap is very similar except that the work of art is encompassed within a mini hoop of 4-5 cm in diameter and has some embroidery.

In the past my ATCs have been very diverse and they haven’t included embroidery so this was a new challenge.  There was no theme to this swap just some brief details from the recipient of my hoop as to what colours she liked.  Ali from Very Berry Handmade sorts out all the swap partners and sends off the details to everyone.  It’s a secret swap so the recipient of your art is not the person who sends one to you!

Here are some of my ATCs from previous swaps.

ATC for the Verry berry handmade spring swap

My ATC I sent to my swap person!

textile picture of Glastonbury Tor

My ATC – NightFall in Avalon

Felted scene of houses with decorations

Sparkly Mid Winter Madness!

Little card with mini patchwork quilt, some crochet and a little greetings card.

ATC My Favourite Crafts

Handmade card with green fabric Christmas tree

Sparkly tree with liberty wrapped presents

Appliqué sewing machine and quilt with a cup of coffee

“My ATC – My Craft Room!

Fabric picture of a fire, a black cat and a girl sipping cup of tea.

“Tea by the Fireside”





















For the mini hoop swap I took a long time to start actually making it as I just didn’t have any inspiration at all. Then one evening I was idly playing with a small square of purple fabric and it  struck me that folded into four it looked a bit like a butterfly!  So that’s how I developed my mini hoop – I sewed the ‘butterfly’ onto some linen, then placed the hoop around it to see where I wanted it to sit, then embroidered freehand the stem of a flower, the butterfly’s antennae and sewed a button for the flower head.  A little bit of silver glitter glue to enhance the butterfly’s wings and it was done!



Fabric butterfly in an embroidery hoop

My mini hoop for the swap

Winter 2016 ATC Swap

A few weeks’ ago I was very excited to get the chance to take part in the ATC swap entitled Winter Sparkle! I’ve done a few of these now and it’s always great fun preparing my own handmade card for my partner then waiting for one to drop through the letterbox for me! This is the one I made for my partner  The tree is made from heated and fused Angelica fibres and the little presents at the bottom are scraps of liberty fabric from my stash.

Handmade card with green fabric Christmas tree

Sparkly tree with liberty wrapped presents

I posted my card out at the beginning of December as per the rules of the swap but didn’t receive anything back over the next couple of weeks.




On Christmas Eve morning I was having a much needed cup of tea before the family get together when the postie brought this! Ooh the excitement!!

Air mail packet

Christmas Eve post delivery

Inside was a beautifully wrapped package made so I had to remove the fastening round the two buttons to open it. This forced delay in seeing my card just added to my anticipation and I was filled with excited glee as I slowly unwound the twine.

White Envelope

Beautifully wrapped!






And inside? A pretty, ethereal winter scene which really did Sparkle!

Hand sewn scene of winter snow


Sparkly fabric catching the light

See the sparkly bits!

See the sparkly trees?

Hand sewn fabric card with

The delicate stitching

I really love this card.  You don’t know who is sending you one until it arrives as it’s not a straight swap. My card was from Larissa at Stitching Notes, I have thanked her for it and it has added to my seasonal decorations at home! It came a long way overseas but receiving it on the last postal delivery before the Christmas break was almost as magical as the card!

If you fancy taking part in an ATC swap you can find details by checking the VeryberryHandmade blog by another Ali, Ali Burdon. She arranges 3 or 4 swaps each year.   You have to be quick to sign up though as the participants have to be limited to a reasonable number Ali can cope with when working it all out!

Maybe you’ll be my next swap partner? 😀

ATC August 2015

This week I thought I’d share my ATC which I made as part of the ATC August 2015 swap over at Very Berry Handmade!  I haven’t got a lot else to show as whilst recovering from surgery my days are mainly taken up with exercises, resting with ice packs and sleeping!

So what is an ATC swap?  It stands for Artist Trading Card and is a small, handmade card which is crafted to a theme.  It can comprise all different crafts as long as there is some stitching involved.  The them this time was a bit more flexible than previous swaps as it was ‘My Favourite………’     I chose to add the word ‘crafts’ on the end and so made a card with a  mini quilt, some crochet, a mini Quillie, a little greetings card and some freehand embroidery.

i had a lot of fun making the card, it distracted me from the immediate aftermath of surgery and focussed my mind on something other than the pain!  It’s not my best work as I just wasn’t in the best state to craft it but I decided it was ok enough to send to my swap partner in France!   I had collected all the things needed to make my card into a little box before surgery and so everything I wanted was within my grasp once I was back home.  It will be a while before I am back in my craft room, but part of that. Is my fault as it’s so messy in there it’s dangerous when you are walking with two sticks!!

Little card with mini patchwork quilt, some crochet and a little greetings card.

ATC My Favourite Crafts

Linking up with Lucy Blossom Crafts!