Happy New Year Everyone!
Well the holidays are almost over! Son No 2 has returned to London. Son No1 left last week and tomorrow my DH goes back to work. WOOHOO! House to myself again!! (they don’t read this!) . I have been having a good rest this week, mainly because I got a seasonal virus just after Christmas day and am still not completely well. Having Fibromyalgia, amongst other things, seems to mean getting things badly and taking a long time to recover. I think the strain of going to London for the ill fated craft fair didn’t help either 🙁
For anyone who was wondering how Handmade Christmas at the 02 went – well it wasn’t a very good experience and I would not recommend anyone to book with this event in the future before being very sure that things will be different from the December one. We were not the only stall holders unhappy with various things – there is a facebook group of us all trying to get some compensation from the organisers. I have written to the OFT, as have others, and am awaiting a response. You can read more about it my last weeks POST which also has a link to the Folksy blogpost about it.
But to move on to happier things – I have started my first WIPs of 2014! A Ripple Blanket using the Attic 24 pattern and am really enjoying making it whilst resting on the sofa.
Remember the crosstitch heart in last month’s craftseller? Well I decided to have a go last night and it’s coming along nicely, just the top half to do now!
Half a crosstitch heart!
So that’s two WIPs already- one good thing from having an xmas fair is that all but one of my other WIPs are finished – and some even got sold!! It’s soooooo good having the opportunity to build up a new stack of WIPs!! 🙂
When not making new things I am spending my time planning them from ideas in these two fantastic books I got for Christmas! GBSB from DH and Vintage book from DS2!
Crafts books for new ideas!
And that’s me sorted for a couple of weeks! Looking forward to reading about other people’s holiday adventures and new year plans over at Handmade Monday Have you got a stack of WIPs Yet? Do tell!!
Managed to make a few more things towards the Handmade Christmas Market at the 02 this week. It’s getting near now and I am very excited!
Patchwork Tote Bag
Christmas Table Runner!
Alternative Advent Calendar!
This patchwork bag was based on the tutorial at Sew Mama Sew. I used much tinier scrap pieces in mine and made the fabric handles instead of using webbing. However I have now managed to get some and so the next ones will have cream cotton handles.
This is a Christmas table runner in lovely thick white fabric with ‘Joy’ and ‘Peace’ and ‘Love’ printed on it as well as snowflakes and reindeer! It’s padded and backed in red but not quilted.
This is the start of an alternative type of advent calendar. I am cutting up Christmas fabric into little squares and sewing them onto a plain cream background to make 7 little pockets which can hold 7 little presents for the 7 days leading up to Christmas. My mum did something similar for us as children and I have continued it with my grandchildren too so I thought it might make a good sell at the Christmas market!
The next task now is pricing! I hate this part – I have read loads of articles and books on the ‘art (science?) of pricing’ and yet the main feeling I have is – all this is no good if items don’t sell – the pricing needs to fit the situation as well. Shop prices are somewhat higher in London than the provinces – but does this apply to handmade craft fairs or has the boom in online sales evened out the regional differences? Another quandary is, I imagine over a 3 day event sellers are expected to hold back stock to ensure enough is for sale on the last day, but how to do this without ending up with unsold items at the end? I would appreciate some advice on what others have done if anyone has exhibited at an event longer than one day.
Maybe the Handmade Mondayers can help? I’m linking up at Handmade Harbour again for a lovely evening’s blog reading and maybe some helpful advice?!!
No more lolling in reflection this week! I am on a countdown to the Handmade Christmas at the 02 and have to increase my stock dramatically! So I’ve tried to get up early and get some morning sewing in before I get too tired. Trouble is I want to try out all my ideas but designing and making prototypes is very time consuming although very interesting!
So here’s what I managed:
I though this would be a nice little pouch for a child’s reading book or for a kindle?
small fox bag
This one is a small shoulder bag -it has orange spot fabric inside!
And these are healing hearts! – Each is stuffed with soft filling and includes essential oils so they smell lovely. I am going to attach some of the red string I think, but I am not sure. The idea is that they would be a nice gift instead of, or as well as a card for an unwell person. They are all Reiki blessed as well as I am a Reiki Master. What do you think? Are there too many stuffed hearts on the market all ready?
Now over to Handmade Monday for the usual weekly read and see what everyone else is making!
Had a very lazy week crafting wise so not much to show! Last week I just couldn’t get my comments to work on lots of blogs so I am really seemed to have ignored blogs who had visited mine. Hopefully this week blogger will have sorted out the error?So this week I tried out two projects I bought at craft fairs and haven’t even opened till now! (this is not an isolated incident I am ashamed to say!) Things look sooo interesting and exciting I want to try them all!!
felted flowers attempt
I tried my dry felting kit and managed to make some felted flowers which will be good for embellishing bags or quilts, when I have perfected them a bit more that is!! However at this rate I will never have enough stock for our stand at the Handmade xmas at 02 fair!! Has anyone else managed to get going on xmas stock yet? checking over at Handmade Monday!!
This week I have had absolutely nothing that I had to do (apart from usual shopping cleaning etc) but no appointments or family to pick up/take out etc so I have pretty much been able to sew sew sew! It has been really relaxing and enabled me to complete my quilt top ready to start the quilting and binding next week.
I didn’t think I’d be doing any hand sewing on a patchwork quilting course but we did, we learned applique as well, and I found it very relaxing sitting in the garden doing some hand sewing. Here is the finished quilt top which now needs making into the quilt sandwich!
My Wonder Block Quilt Top
I don’t know if any of you crafters who join in in Handmade Monday heard about the Folksy collaboration with the big Handmade Christmas Fair at the 02 in December?? Well I have taken a leap of faith and booked a market stall for the 3 day event!! I am sharing the stall and the costs with my sister who is a photographer and so I am quite looking forward to it as a sister road trip as well as the selling side. I am, however, a bit nervous of managing a stall for 3 days on the run and also worrying if we will sell enough to make it worthwhile! I will be selling quilts like the one above as well as my smaller items, the mobile ‘phone cases and Tablet cases and some of my jewellery.
There are concerts on at the 02 and the fair organisers have agreed to arrange a ‘buy now – collect later’ point in the arena so that concert goers can buy things more easily. 60,000 people are expected to visit so it sounds good!
Anyway I’d be interested to know if anyone else has booked a spot and what you think are the chances of anyone buying something as big as a quilt? Would more smaller items be better? Please share your thoughts – any advice welcomed!!