Tag Archives: #CraftBlogClub Challenge

#CraftBlogClub June Challenge – ‘You Complete Me’!

craftblogclub badgeWith May well and truly out the way, it’s time to dust off those sandals (not that I own any) and look forward to a Summer of Love…and Crafting…mostly crafting in my case!

We had a staggering amount of wonderful challenge entries for the last challenge – the Spring Clean Gift Swap, so I thought it was high time to set up another challenge, to keep our crafty fingers ready in the sun!  Fancy joining in with this one?  Read on….

‘You Complete Me’

Whilst the Summer air is busy blowing away the cobwebs and sending us fresh motivation and ideas for home, hearth, wardrobe and whatever else, my lovely co-host Fiona, came up with the idea of trying to finish something we have left!

So….let’s take June to dig out those Christmas presents you’ve stashed away, pick up that knitting that’s gathering dust, or get on with that home improvement project you’ve been dreaming up.  Summer’s here and the time is right…for finishing things!  Starting today, go forth and finish, then drink a cool glass of Pimm’s, or five, and bask in the glory of your crafty triumph!

Them’s The Rules…

1. Not much to this one, pick a project you’ve been meaning to finish in, well, forever, and use June to finish it!  If you’re one of those commendable types who has, in fact, finished EVERYTHING, why not pick a dream project to do, or something you’ve not tried before but have always wanted to? (Within reason, I don’t want anyone getting all Belle Du Jour on my watch)!

2. Present your lovely project in a blog post by June 30th…as ever there will be a linky set up on THIS BLOG to showcase your makes – and do take some time to have a gander at the other posts, it’s lovely to see some of the amazing creativity we have in our #CraftBlogClub!

3. Let us know how you’re doing throughout the merry month of June – use our #CraftBlogClub hashtag to keep up to date and also #YouCompleteMe – you know, just cos!

That’s about it..what are you thinking of doing?  I’m pushing myself to the limit for this challenge, I just hope it turns out well!

Stay Crafty!

x

#CraftBlogClub – I Re-Love You Challenge REVEAL!

craftblogclub badgeTuesday evenings are, undoubtedly one of my favourite times of the week!  Even if I’m not hosting, I love watching lots of crafty types getting together from across the globe to discuss all things craft and blogging!

One of things I love most about setting up #CraftBlogClub, are the challenges we do.  I always try and come up with interesting ideas that members can really challenge themselves on, or can ultimately show what they are capable of.  So, for our first challenge of 2014 and, of course, in keeping with my self-imposed frugality; I set an upcycling challenge on something you have around the house (or something you have purchased – if easier).  Wanna see mine???!!!

toy box 2

BEHOLD!  This is one of my first attempts at furniture upcycling!  As Daisy turns One this month, I had the brainwave a while ago that I wanted to do something memorable for her.  I love traditional wooden toy boxes and, after a bit of Pinteresting, decided that I wanted to paint a toybox for her Birthday.

After searching the length and breadth of eBay and Gumtree – I FINALLY managed to find a blanket box, going locally, for £20.  It was a little smaller than I originally hoped for but, upon arrival, it looked ideal for Daisy’s bedroom.

toy box 1

 

 

Being a little rusty with furniture painting, I took myself to Homebase to find the sort of paint I felt would work easily on the box. Paint brushes I found some gorgeous Dulux Satin Wood ‘Willow Tree’ green furniture paint, priced £14.99 and supplemented with a primer – priced £6.95.  My paint choice apparently needed no undercoat and, while the box wasn’t antique, I wanted to make sure the ‘mocha’ colour would cover easily.

I painted one coat of primer and two of the green to get an even, covered result and I am pretty happy with the colour!  I toyed around with different ideas and colour ways – D’s nursery is a pale pink Beatrix Potter theme; but I felt I wanted to paint something timeless, that she would continue to use as she gets older.  So, along with the decision to ‘go green’, came the decision to scrap my original idea of scripting her name on the box, replaced with tiny dotted vintage-inspired daisies instead.

Now, I don’t claim to be an artist or painter of ANY description, so this was the part I was most worried about!  To aid in my questionable cack-handedness, I decided to use the other end of two paint brushes to make my yellow and white daisy dots to make firmer, striking dots. toy box close up The result was pretty good, they aren’t perfect, but I think that’s part of the charm.  I decided to create the daisies in the corners of the lid, rather than cover it completely.  Once this last pain-staking part was done, all that was left was to give it a quick clear varnish.  The box came with the lovely horse paper inside, which I decided to keep, in keeping with the ‘vintage’ feel.

What started off as one idea, has become something simple, sweet and hopefully a lasting memory for D as she gets older!  I’m pleased with my handy work AND from a frugal point of view – I used less than a third of both the paint and primer, meaning this Birthday make totals in at £27.31 for the box and paints plus a little extra for brushes.  Compared to a personalised toy box price of around £70 minimum, I’d say we’ve done pretty well!

I’ve definitely got the bug and I’m eyeing up my next piece of work that I really think will suit the colour of my paint.  But you’ll have to stay tuned to see how that turns out!

For now, let me say a huge thank you to all the lovely #CraftBlogClub tweeples who tirelessly take part in my challenges and produce such gorgeous work!  I’m always truly inspired and I can’t wait to see what everyone has come up with.  I’ve popped the Linky below and I’ll be sharing these great posts in the coming weeks!  Fear not, if you haven’t quite finished – the link will stay open for two weeks!

toy box 3

The question is…..are you ready for another challenge??

THE BIG SPRING CLEAN!

In true Spring style, I’ve suddenly had the urge to have a huge clear out and get to grips with some of those left over crafty projects that have been building up!  So…due to the success of our Secret Santa, I thought we could do a ‘Spring Clean Gift Swap’ – make a gift using only products and materials you already have or by finishing off an old project you’ve left.  Fancy it??  Here are the rules..

1. To sign up – please drop me an email at missemmaberry@gmail.com to be added to the swap list.  All entries must be in by Wednesday 12th March.  I will then pair up gift swaps and email everyone with their swappees name, address and Twitter handle.

2. As this is a little more complicated, we will run the challenge over a two-ish month period.  All gifts should have been received by their recipients and posts ready to go by Tuesday 22nd April.

3. Unlike the Secret Santa, you only have to write a post about the gift you RECEIVE and it would be wonderful to link back to your gift maker’s blog!  You CAN tell you recipient who you are or even pop a little letter in there for them – it’s up to you!

I thought this would be a great way to see in Spring and, perhaps, all get to know each other a little better too!

I really hope you all want to take part – be sure to email me your full name, address and Twitter handle so I can pair everyone up efficiently!

And, in the mean time, don’t forget to link up your ‘I Re-Love You’ post below!

Stay Crafty x

 Come join us!


#CraftBlogClub Challenge: I Re-Love You

craftblogclub badgeOooooh look – a cheeky #CraftBlogClub post!  It has been a while since I launched a #CraftBlogClub challenge and a while since we have done one!  So, for February, may I introduce our crafty challenge….

‘I Re-Love You’!

Since the heady days of our Secret Santa challenge, #CraftBlogClub has gone from strength to strength and we have welcomed aboard some lovely new members!  I wanted to set a challenge to ease us all in to the New Year – I toyed with a Valentine’s theme and wanted to do something a little different. 

Before Christmas, we talked about what we would like to incorporate into future #CraftBlogClub challenges and the word ‘Upcycling’ came up A LOT.  So, with frugal in mind, February’s challenge is to upcycle and bring new life to an old piece of furniture or homeware!

Them’s The Rules.

I’ve kept the rules pretty basic – you can either purchase something or use something you have lying around the house.  I haven’t placed restrictions on this – but keeping to a budget would be advisable, for your own sake!

By furniture or homeware, I mean exactly that, furniture or homeware.  You can use a craft method you are already familiar with, or try something new.

As usual, when you have finished your piece, it would be great to write a post on your challenge and I will upload a post and provide a Linky for you to link your posts to. 

The deadline for ‘I Re-Love You’ is March 4th – so we have a month to upcycle and write a post on it!  

If you fancy joining in, to test your upcycling skills and get involved with some truly crafty talent, then we would love to have you!  Our challenges have been a great success so far and I am already looking forward to seeing what everyone comes up with!  Challenge posts and WIPs are also welcomed – just use the #CraftBlogClub hashtag and also #IReLoveYou to show everyone how you’re doing!! 

P.S The amazing new logo at the top of the page was designed by the lovely Icy Sedgwick and JUST as soon as I’ve worked it out, it will be the official badge of #CraftBlogClub for you all to display, proudly, on your blogs!  Once the teccy bit is all done – I shall pop it up for you all to grab!!

Stay Crafty x

Hello Frugal February….

100_0608Well, the cold really seems to have settled in and everyone is talking pastel palettes and Springtime already….what a weird and wonderful world we live in!  Hello February indeed!

Being on the opposite end of the Seasonal Affected Disorder spectrum, I like the cold and gloom a little more than most.  I love the dark winter nights, the warm casseroles and the general lack of going out – though it does get hard with a babe, who loves nothing more than trips to our local park to watch the rustling trees.  I brave the cold and rain and get on with it, then I relish with the home comforts of dry clothes, warm radiators and cosy socks. 

 Daisy windowJanuary went by in a flash, the easiest month of frugality indeed; everyone wants to save money after a Christmas blow-out, so it didn’t feel so different or difficult for me.  February, however, is a month of Birthdays, trips and meet-ups.  We are all awakening from our wintry slumber and are ready to face a bit of socialising. 

At the start of February, yesterday in fact, we celebrated Mr J’s Birthday!  This year was a quiet affair, but we did have babysitters and we did manage to head out to a local gig and had a delicious Sunday Roast with his family.  The most important gift you can give new parents, is the gift of time, people.  I also have my Step-Dad’s Birthday coming up towards the end of the month and, whilst I’m super-envious that he is embarking on a trip to Sweden – the holy land – in March, I want to put together something lovely for him!  Watch this space!

casserole pan

Not only that, but saving our bargain-hunting energy through January is really starting to pay off; look at this gorgeous *Brand New* casserole dish I found for £3 in a local charity shop!  And Mr J came home with this little bargain surprise for me tooelvis frame – a lovely retro print of Mr Presley – I’m still debating if I’m going to ask house guests to bless it as they enter the kitchen!!

So what else is coming in February???  Well, with Valentine’s Day just around the corner, I’ve been putting together a couple of little, frugal ideas for the big day.  It probably won’t surprise you to know that me and Mr J aren’t so keen on the Big V.  Our first V Day was spent watching The Woman in Black, followed by a Hot White Choc at the wonderful Malt Cross – mostly to calm my nerves.  Last year, I dragged my bestie to Derby to a book signing with James Bowen and Bob the Street Cat.  Can you say Rock and Roll??!!

Amanda Cass - How to Mend a Broken Heart

Source: Amanda Cass – How to Mend a Broken Heart

Even so, I think it’s important to appreciate the little things in life and in your relationships and, this month, I’ll be posting a few little frugally fabulous ideas if you’re planning to acknowledge the Big V on a budget…look out for my ‘Frugally Ever After’ Posts coming in the following days….Hell, you don’t even need an occasion!

February also sees the first #CraftBlogClub challenge launched! This week, the lovely Katie from Katie Gets Crafty will be hosting AND launching the new challenge.  I’m excited and I hope you’ll join in the fun….I’ll be posting details tomorrow!

As if that isn’t enough fun for one month; one February 22nd I will be co-hosting our #MidsBlogMeet in Nottingham, a meet up for Lifestyle and Mummy Bloggers from the Midlands area.  I’m really excited to have organised this event with Kelly from To Become Mum and I’ll be sure to post some pics and updates of the event when it happens!!! Want to come along??? Read all about the event HERE and be sure to email while we still have a few places!

Aside from this, I’ll be getting my craft on ready for some big dates in March and I’m determined to make friends with my sewing machine…and I think I have the perfect tool to help me.  More on that later guys….I’m off to wrap up warm and hit the park.  

Before I go….. Did you enter my little handmade giveaway last week??? Well the winner of my little Oscar Mug Warmer is……….

MARGO PRICE

Congratulations – Please send an email to missemmaberry@gmail.com with your address and I’ll get the little man on his way to you!

oscar 3

Stay Peachy x

Everyone’s Talking About #CraftBlogClub

Knitting1If you’ve had a little snoop around my blog, you’ll be aware that I run a Twitter networking chat on Tuesday evenings called #CraftBlogClub.  I launched the chat back in September 2013.  I wanted to start branching out and learning new creative skills and I felt a lot of other craft bloggers wanted to be part of the same support network.  Craft Bloggers are a particularly special bunch of bloggers – we never stop dreaming up new ideas and we want to be continually challenged.  We already havethe delights of Lifestyle Blogging chats, that we can join in and the wonderful #HandmadeHour, for promoting your handmade businesses; but I was struggling to find a networking hour for us crafty blogger types.  So, with a little cajoling from the lovely Amanda over at Gift Frippery, I decided to launch #CraftBlogClub on a Tuesday evening, with no idea who, if anyone, would join in.  To my surprise, we had about twenty bloggers join in our initial chat and most of them are still going strong with us today!

Fast forward to January 2014, #CraftBlogClub has come such a long way – I’ve set up its own Twitter page, to help with the busy-ness of each week’s chat (I often suffer from RSI with the amount of Favouriting and RT-ing) and we seem to be a lovely, growing community, with new members joining each week.  We had some great successes with the challenges we set last year – over 20 people took part in our Secret Santa challenge.  We are launching our next challenge at the beginning of February and I have a great ‘Spring-Clean’ themed challenge in mind as we head to warmer weather – I love people joining in the challenge and it’s a great way of trying new craft methods too – if you fancy it!

A while back I set up a Pinterest page for #CraftBlogClub also, if you want to join in and start pinning some inspiration, I would love to invite you – just give me a follow!  As if that’s not enough social media platforms for you, we now have a Facebook group!  I primarily use this to keep in contact when we aren’t running the hour, it’s great for swapshops, asking questions and promoting your blog posts and crafty WIPs…why not come and join us?

I still run between 1 and 2 chats a month, but have enlisted the help of three lovely co-hosts will be helping each month too!  We aim to make each week’s chat different and interesting – last night the lovely Hayley from Showered With Love hosted a really interesting chat about the pros and cons of WordPress vs Blogger, whilst we kicked off the year TRENDING on Twitter, chatting about craft catch ups and resolutions and last week we talked tips for crafting on a budget – what with the January blues and all that!  I no longer do a weekly write up, but I am still aiming to do a monthly post detailing our challenge and some of the highlights of the month’s chat!

If you have a craft blog, enjoy reading craft blogs or are just plain crafty, why not come and join in our chats on Twitter every Tuesday?  We run the chats between 7-8.30pm, just give @CraftBlogClub a follow on Twitter and use the #CraftBlogClub hashtag to join in.  If you’re really keen – Pinterest and Facebook are also waiting for you!! We’re a very friendly, inspiring bunch and we love nothing more than talking all things CRAFT!  I look forward to meeting you soon…..

Stay Peachy x