Saturday, 25 February 2012

Doing a lampworking taster for the WI...

...this morning.  Everyone got to watch a bead being made, then practised together, then made one each.  I think my guests had a good time, I certainly enjoyed talking and doing craft with like minded people.  Really looking forward to the next WI class very soon.

Here I am dispensing "wisdom"

And the finished articles with their new owners, well done ladies!!!

And finally, a shot of what inspires me most  - all those lovely colours!

Would you like to learn how to make glass beads? I offer an "Introduction to Lampworking" half-day session in the relaxed environment of my workshop (aka kitchen), for £29 per person (for two people), or £55 for one person.  You will take away all the beads you make, all my demo beads, and a set of coordinating spacers.   Courses can be during the day or at weekends, give me a call to book, 01737 762078.

Sunday, 19 February 2012

Charity marathon... other half, Ed, is currently raising money for "Help the Hospices" by doing the London Marathon in April.

Funnily enough, for at least as long as I have known him, he has said things like "it's a crazy thing to do" and "you'll never catch me doing one".  And yet...  here he is slogging through his training miles; must be a mid-life crisis!

He's pledged to add 10% to whatever's given, so with tax relief that means for every £1 donated, Help the Hospices receives at least £1.38.   He has already made a downpayment in suffering - some serious chafing went on today after his 15 mile practice. (am I oversharing!?).  If you would like to support "Help the Hospices", please visit .

Thank you,
Helen x

Runners at last year's London Marathon (not including hubby, obviously, because he's not run it yet...)

Green and Gorgeous...

...was the name of a wildlife event my family went to a LONG time ago, that I ended up scrapbooking this weekend, and here's why...

For the first time ever last week, I premade a layout  - in pale purply pink and lime green - and it has been sitting around for a few days waiting to be put to use.  That's when I was put in mind of a shirt my hubby used to have, and I went on the search for photos.  After several hours of nostalgic procrastination over the photo boxes (obviously!) I found these piccies of an outing to Godstone's Bay Pond, which matched the layout perfectly.   I also remembered the rather large stash of embroidery silks that I showed you earlier in the week and resolved to use some on this layout.  I managed four times, can you spot them? *

Bright photo courtesy of this morning's beautiful sunshine!  I'm slightly surprised but very pleased about how inspiring it was to make a "blank" page and add to it.  If you do the same, do post a link!  Hope you like it, ttfn. x

* I made pretend baker's twine by twisting a green and a white and tying it round the pictures, wrapped pink round a scalloped circle to make a sort of starburst effect embellishment , made a pompom out of a collection of greens, and used green to tie on the little yellow buttons at the bottom of the page.

Thursday, 16 February 2012

Three new classes for you...

Join me on one of the following RIDICULOUSLY good value workshops, please call in advance to book, as places are limited - 01737 762078.

Yes! I cannot describe the joy of getting out the box of already-made Christmas cards on the first of December. All sorts of ideas for you to go into production. Make 8 cards for £8, and take away a kit at cost price to make more.
(postponed from last month due to an unfortunate lack of electricity in my workspace!)

TUESDAY MARCH 6th 7:30pm - 9:30pm, at my place! BUTTERFLY PICTURE
Would you like to make a butterfly picture like this one? The workshop is £8, bring your own frame to embellish. I also have some of these frames available for £9, but do let me know when you book if you would like one.

Enjoy two gentle hours exploring the craft of scrapbooking. There will be plenty of examples for you to look at and to consider what styles you like. Bring a photo and get into the scrapping habit using some of Helen's scarily big stash of scrapbooking materials and tools. £8 each.

All workshops are free if you order at least £40 of StampinUp products.

I'm very pleased to welcome... my crafting space, a 90 slot storage unit!
It doesn't have 90 drawers yet because I couldn't afford them all at once, and didn't know how many I'd need. The answer is, definitely more than I thought! I am going to have a big de-stash very soon so keep an eye out...

I have only had time to load up a few drawers, but it has been a very satisfying day:
Now, how can I take advantage of all those lovely colours?

Tuesday, 14 February 2012

Happy Valentine's day .... everyone, but especially dedicated to lovely Olive, member of a local church craft group I go to.  She is devoted to her husband who is sadly very unwell, and visits him every day.  A true valentine!

Olive has a special birthday soon (I don't think she'll mind if I tell you it starts with a 9 and ends with an 0).  Yesterday, she had us all in stitches doing a full action-replay on the carpet of how she fell over under a (parked) car last week in the snow - including how she managed to get up, (difficult when you're not allowed to kneel on your replaced knees) mainly by rolling over and over until she got to something she could pull herself up with.  I wish I'd had a camera, she was brilliant!

PS the card is made with the designer paper "Sweet Blossoms" (hostess set) and the versatile floral stamp from the new "Charming" stamp set in Rose Red.

I've been busy with the day job...

...over the last few weeks working with a lovely group of ladies planning to go back to work after a break looking after their children.  It's very rewarding work, but doesn't leave much time for blogging or even crafting, especially given that I'm re-learning how to commute.  Hopefully this week will leave more time for both as it's half term and we're all taking the week "off" to look after our little angels.

I have a craft group at the Harlequin Theatre Redhill on Mondays, which is part of a project for the over-50's called Hi Days. Here's the felt pot project we made this week - it's surprisingly simple.

You cut a U shaped template, cover both sides with three layers of felt, alternating the direction of the fibres, decorate, wet down with soapy water and then abuse it for all you're worth for about 20 minutes! I'm not sure if you can see but mine's a bit sparkly due to some Angelina Fibres I trapped in the wool.  This template also makes a pretty bag shape, and Jenny in my group made a bag beautifully decorated with vibrant spring flowers.  Hi-days is open to new members: there's an exercise class 10-11, then from 11:30-1 a choice of activities like calligraphy, silk painting, craft (that's me), antiques or computers.  Last week we did the picture behind the pot, next week it's cards, the week after, it's paper bunting all ready for the jubilee!  Contact 01737 219809 for more info on Hi-days or follow this link for an article about the group that was in the Surrey Mirror recently.

If you'd like to learn how to make pretty things out of felt (beads, corsages, hairslides, bags, bunting...), I run workshops for groups all year round - at my place or at yours - just get in touch on  01737 762078!