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Dastardly Crafty

Craft, Crochet and Cthulhu.

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gingerbread

Happy Handmade Christmas!

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‘m super excited about Christmas this year!  It’s my first Christmas in my new house, with my new partner.  We decided we both wanted a real tree and as I’m pretty crafty, I thought I’d have a go at making a few of my own decorations. I ended up enjoying it so much that, aside from the Christmas lights, I’ve ended up decorating the entire tree with decorations that are handmade.

My favourite is definitely the ‘gentlemen gingerbread’ (pictured above) that I made entirely from fimo, using a cookie cutter.  It’s the same sort of design I use for my gingerbread brooches, only with the addition of fimo monocle and pipe.

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Most of the decorations above are made using fimo too. To make the candy canes I took red and white fimo and rolled two long sausages.  Then I twisted the white one around the red one to make a long candy cane stick.  I then cut them into smaller sizes, bent them, baked them and tied a silver bow around each one.

The Christmas trees took the longest amount of time to make.  I used a tree cookie cutter to cut the basic shape and then made multi coloured baubles and a star and pressed them on before baking.

I did however make some other decorations that were not from fimo.  At the edge of the photo above, you can see a decoration that is made by taking three cinnamon sticks and fixing them together with decorative Christmas tape.  I then tied them with red and white string so that I was able to hang them.  They look traditional and smell gorgeous as do these…

I’m not sure how long these will last!  I first tied silver ribbon around the clementine, as you would tie up a parcel.  Then I pierced cloves along the edge of the ribbon.  This helps to fix the ribbon in place and releases the wonderful aroma of oranges and cloves.  They look pretty effective too.

There are several reasons why I’ll be making more decorations next year.

Firstly, it is very cost effective.   Some of these literally cost pence to make.  Even if you have to buy clay,  they are still a lot cheaper than buying decorations from a home store.

Secondly, there is something satisfying about hanging something that you have made yourself.  There is something soulless about a factory made, polystyrene, sequinned bauble when it lies near a ‘gentleman gingerbread’ that I have made by hand.  And the fact that no two are exactly the same adds to their character. I like that I have made something that I know nobody else has.

Thirdly, the smell of Christmas spices, means no need to buy air freshener or scented candles.

Go ahead and make your own.  It’ll be worth the time and trouble.

And have a very Merry Christmas!

xxx

Tis the season to…get crafty

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Christmas is well and truly on the way.  I exhibited at my first ever craft fair last weekend, after crafting like crazy for two weeks to make enough jewellery to sell.  It was a good experience and the very talented jeweller on the stall next to me gave me some great tips about selling your wares:

1.  Don’t reduce your prices.  The reason why people like handmade is because they know they are getting something original.  Handmade takes time and your prices should reflect this.  If people see something they love enough, they won’t care about the price.

2.  That said…not everyone will like your stuff.  People can be critical, and sometimes downright rude about your products.  Some will say they could make it themselves for a lot cheaper than you are selling them.  You will need a thick skin.  Just smile.

3. Some days you will sell lots at craft fairs.  Some days you won’t.  Make sure you sell other places too, such as on etsy.

Sound advice.

And on that last point, here are some of the latest products on my etsy page.  Find me at http://www.etsy.com/shop/craftybstards

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