I hope everyone had a good festive break. I’ve enjoyed a bit of time offline, doing some embroidery and a bit of crochet too.
The embroidery is a drop cloth sampler pincushion kit. It’s totally different to any embroidery I’ve done before and it’s really fun making it. It’s from Beyond Measure which is a gorgeous online shop selling highly desirable haberdashery and more.
I’ve started a new cleckheaton jumper in style craft life DK in Silver Nepp which is a gorgeous yarn with multicoloured slubs throughout. However I might have made it a bit small so I might be pulling it out and starting again!
I want to share a few of the handmade gifts I made for Christmas this year; I didn’t make many as the three weeks before Christmas I’d put aside for making got ridiculously hectic with some other projects.
I knew my parents were getting a slow cooker for Christmas so I made my mum a crocheted pot holder for it. The pattern is from Emma Lamb’s book Crochet Home. I made it using DK cotton yarn which worked out to be just the right size. For some reason I didn’t take a finished picture before it I wrapped it. Here’s a work in progress photo, it was finished with a scalloped border. I then went on to make another of the pot holder patterns in Crochet Home for my godmother. I used the same DK yarn but this one came out rather on the large size! I still liked it though, so off it went!
I designed and made an embroidered tree for my sister which I loved doing. She has a beautiful collection of Christmas decorations so I hoped this would fit in well! I enjoyed it so much that you might see a limited collection of them in my shop next winter…
During a browse on Pinterest a few months ago I’d come across some little tiny dolls made from scrap fabric which were super cute, and I thought I’d like to have a go at making some as a gift. After doodling a few ideas I made a little pattern and thoroughly enjoyed making a little lady, a cat and a fish with two tiny blankets. I used some scraps of Liberty cotton, wool felt and some vintage pearl beads. The cat and lady are filled with lavender so they can be popped in a drawer with your clothes. I gave them to a friend in a little tin and I will definitely be making more of these!
One of my commissions before Christmas was to make a Christmas card with the three kings on, I’ve not made any cards for a while now so it was a nice change.
This Christmas I managed not to have too much of a melt down about actually giving people the gifts I’d made them. It seems silly when I make stuff to sell to complete strangers that giving something to someone I know well (and who usually likes me!) is so hard, but there you go! I can’t help being a bit daft.
This weekend sees the first of my craft fairs for Christmas 2018!
On Sunday 4th November I’ll be having a stall at the Embankment pub on Arkwright Street, Nottingham. I’m in the Jesse Boot room upstairs so please come and say hi if you visit! There’s lots of stall and the pub serves food too, perfect for a Sunday lunch.
The following weekend on 10th November I’m having a stall at a fundraiser for a charity called Open House, which offers fantastic support for women with post natal depression. It’s going to be a great event, there’s a bouncy castle, cake stall, raffle, craft stalls, and visits from a local choir and some therapy dogs too! For more information about the support Open House offer please check their website here.
The fundraiser is held at The Vine, Bobbersmill Road, Nottingham.
I have a weekend off after that, and then November ends with a stall at the SOCK Gallery in Loughborough, on 26 November from 10-5pm. It’s the same day as the Christmas lights turn on so there will be a lovely festive atmosphere!
December begins with my first fair at the well established Craft in the City event in the centre of Nottingham, at Waterstones. I’m really looking forward to this fair! It’s held on every weekend in December with different stall holders each weekend. I’d love to see some friendly faces so if you are shopping in Nottingham please pop by.
Hello! How are you? My goodness it’s been a while since I wrote a blog post! Hope you are all okay. I’m fine and very busy getting ready for the festive season. I’ve got quite a few fairs lined up in November and December which will hopefully be lots of fun. I’ve put a full list of the fairs and so on on my events page, and there is (will be soon) more information on my Facebook page. It would be great to see you if you are in the Nottingham area!
I’ve got a few new products I will be taking to the craft fairs and thought you might like to see them on here too.
My sewing machine has been getting quite a bit of use lately, as I’ve been making these zipped pouches. Each purse is lined in cotton and features a hand embroidered patch, which I’ve hand stitched in place. I’ve made them in two sizes, a small coin purse (which fits a bank card in too) and a larger pouch, which could be used for all sorts of bits and pieces. Sewing and crafty bits and bobs, makeup, or a handy pouch for all those odds and ends that end up in the bottom of your hand bag. I think they’d be suitable for all ages!
I’ve also been making a crocheted version of the small purses. This is a pattern by Rosina at Zeens and Roger which she has kindly given permission for me to use and sell from. They are so much fun to make, and I’ve really enjoyed choosing the lining fabric too, I’ve used quilters cotton which comes in so many fun prints I always want to buy loads. These purses have been a great stash buster and I’m hoping they will be popular at my fairs.
And badges… lots of badges have been made. I love the pink and gold ones especially. They are perfect for filling festive hosiery! A selection of badges (no two are ever exactly the same!) are available at the Victoria Walker Boutique, Leeds, and The Focus Gallery, Derby Road, Nottingham.
I know it’s a bit on the early side but here’s a little update on Christmas goings on here at Shirley Rainbow HQ. Well, my living room really! I’ve been making a few Christmas decorations recently so it’s time I spread the word. My Folksy shop has been updated with festive goodies, and there is free 1st Class UK postage on all orders.
I’ve made loads of these baubles recently, some for a craft fair at the end of November, but some have gone to my new stockist, The Focus Gallery in Nottingham. I’m so excited to have my work in an actual shop! The Focus Gallery is on Derby Road, which has a really good selection of independent shops, an excellent bakery (Tough Marys Bakehouse, where the brownies are AMAZING) and a couple of nice pubs too. It’s well worth a walk up if you are in Nottingham for Christmas shopping.
The Focus Gallery shows the work of many local artists and craftspeople, and has a great selection of jewellery, glassware and artwork, as well as some embroidery from me! The website link is here.
I will have a stall at Southwell Garden Centre Christmas Craft and Food fair on 25th and 26th of November, I will have lots of Christmas gifts and decorations for sale.
So I’m feeling (mostly) prepared for the Christmas season. I’m looking forward to doing some Christmas shopping too, hopefully with as many local, independent and small businesses as possible. It’s a fabulous feeling when someone buys from my shop, or craft stall, and I’m hoping to pass that on as much as possible.
Have a lovely weekend!
Well it’s the end of November and I feel rather odd, because even though I’ve been a busy bee, making hand made gifts for as many people in my large family as possible, I can’t show any of them! (Or I could, and just spoil Christmas Day….!! )
One thing I can share is the gift I sent as part of a crafty gift swap I joined on Instagram, hosted by Miki of Set Free My Gypsy Soul. I was partnered with Kate of Jelly Bean Junction who is a very talented crocheter. After a fair amount of Internet stalking I decided what I would make… A little badge hand embroidered with the ‘sign of the Deathly Hallows’ as Kate is a Harry Potter fan, some crocheted tree decorations, and, my favourite, an embroidered wall decoration with a crochet frame. I really enjoyed making and wrapping this all up.
Then, last week I received my gift, from Norra Jones, of Oh Sew Norra. It was the most delicious smelling parcel I’ve ever opened, courtesy of a Christmassy Yankee candle, and some delicious gingerbread men (which my children and I scoffed before I took a photo- oops!) Inside was a super cute crocheted gingerbread man, a soft ball of sparkly red yarn, some hot chocolate stirrers and a gorgeous crocheted bauble, which turned out to have a chocolate orange inside! A truly great parcel of goodies.
In other Shirley Rainbow news I’ve popped a couple of new Christmas things in my Folksy shop, this hand embroidered Gingerbread House hoop art,
and a crocheted Star Garland. All orders placed during December will come with a little crochet star decoration and a Christmas Santa chocolate or two!
I hope your count down to Christmas is going well and that preparation isn’t too stressful. Here at Shirley Rainbow HQ things are surprisingly organised and calm! The decorations are up, presents are ready to be wrapped and it’s my little boy’s nativity play tomorrow-he is going to be an angel!
I thought I would just give you a quick reminder that the last postage date for my online shop Shirley Rainbow is on Saturday 19th December. Orders placed after this date will be posted as soon as possible, but I can’t guarantee they will arrive before Christmas.
I still have some hand made Christmas decorations available, and also other items that will make a beautiful and unusual gifts!
This necklace is hand embroidered onto cotton lawn using Japanese embroidery thread. The chain is silver plated.
This hoop is a very mini 3″ wide, and comes with a ribbon to hang it on the wall, perfect for the super star in your life! I have more embroidered hoops available here.
Before I go I thought I’d share this picture that I created for Folksy, for Merry Craftmas (#merrycraftmas). I used some little motifs I hand stitched for a bespoke Christmas card order last year, I think my favourite is the Mince Pie, which one is your favourite?