Wednesday, 24 June 2015

The First National Upcycling Day

Do you that today is the very first National Upcycling Day? It's great to see that people around the world are sharing their makes over on social media. So follow along with your DIY makes at #nationalupcyclingday. Don't be shy!

Here are a few of my makes using vintage fabrics. I love the thrill of finding an old button or fabric and giving it a new lease of lift.

These are my favourites -

a crocheted covered button I used on a corsage

Bunny bunting with vintage ribbons from a charity shop find habby box
buttons sewn onto keepsake hearts and little messages typed with a retro typewriter

old fabrics created into fascinators

Nottingham lace applique on little hearts

What is your best DIY upcycling project? Let me know,

Happy Crafting,


Monday, 22 June 2015

Making Memory Boards

Last Saturday, I hosted a Making Memory Boards Crafternoon Tea at Pickford's House in Derby. I love the Georgian venue and getting the chance to craft in the museum kitchen is amazing!

This was my third workshop this year in the venue making the chalk board scrapbook inspired craft. The concept came about when I was asked last year by some scrapbookers to come up with a Crafternoon that they could bring their scrapbooking skills to and lift them off the page.

The class brings together stitching and paper art to form the decoration to the chalk boards. We used some of the instructions from a vintage accessory class plus ones for a jewellery making flower class to add pretty three dimensional pieces to our chalk creations.

memory chalk board from Jan 2015
Valentines plant chalk board
Here are a few pictures from the Crafternoon ...
tea, cake and chalk board memory crafts
time for tea!
crafting away

kitchen memory board
I will be hosting the Crafternoon again due to it's popularity, it's such a fun way of using a mix of crafty skills to give the chalk boards a vintage twist!

Happy Crafting,


Friday, 19 June 2015

You're Invited To A Charity Crafternoon Of Stitching!

Are you free next Saturday afternoon, love sewing and live near Derby?  You are...then read on....

You are invited to our second crafternoon of stitching as part of the Inspiring Derby 2015 programme. And it's a free event though booking is essential.

All the materials are supplied and you will be able to stitch a pretty little corsage with the art gallery as our inspiration in the taster session. Also you will hear about the Autumn Crafternoon programme at the Museums ..first! ... .exciting....

We have pretty silks and vintage fabrics to choose from and also a chance to learn about Derby's rich textile past. Places are limited and we have goodie bags for everyone! Hooray! Call 07881 163955 to email me to book a place.

We are raising money for the Colin Bloomfield Melanoma Appeal a skin cancer charity in memory of a local BBC radio presenter, so bring your pennies to donate.

Here are a few of last years makes, excuse the flash

last years theme was Georgian corsages
stitching our Georgian corsages
Happy Stitching!

Monday, 15 June 2015

Fathers Day Man Cupcakes


I hope you have had a great start to the week? Yesterday I made man style cupcakes with Little L for Daddy's Father's Day on Sunday. They were so much fun for both of us, she's only three and starting to understand what it all about! I've secretly hid these cakes in the freezer so he doesn't find them and so far Little L hasn't told him too!

 So why a man cupcake? I've been with Mr. S for eight years this Wednesday and I now know pretty much what he doesn't like about cake. 'Minimum or no icing on a cake, crunchy toppings or even better crunchy cake centres, cherries and a little tipple'. Does this sound familiar? It's fair to say that swirly icing with sparkles isn't his thing, it's just too sickly and calorific.  So this is my solution...

Chocolate & Cherry Cupcakes With A Brandy Swirl

Firstly follow the recipe for perfect sponge cakes using three eggs and then add 20 glace cherries halved.

Then three dessert spoons of nutella or chocolate spread, one tablespoon of brandy and stir until it looks like a swirl.

Spoon a dessert spoonful in each case and put into a oven at 180C or similar to your own oven's manual.

After 15 -20 minutes or until a knife comes out from the centre of the cake clean the cakes are ready. Bring them out the oven and place on a cooling rack.

We made 24 cupcakes, 12 muffin size and 12 cupcake size. The photo only has 22 as we tried one of each (well you have to!)

Once cooled, we decorated with honeycomb crunch and little chocolate pieces.

I hope you enjoy making these for the Dad's in your lives as much as we did and they freeze well for a few weeks so if you want to save some for later. I will comment below on his reaction on Sunday.

Thank-you for stopping by! This blog post is linked up on Fizzy Peaches #lifestylelinkup. Why not link one of your posts from this week here to?



My Mellow Yellow Insta Week

Good Morning,

Last week was a happy week, the creative blog meet went really well, it was my Mum's birthday and the balance between work and family life was feeling right. I started to post a unplanned theme over on my Instagram of mellow pastel yellows.

On Monday I started my crafty hand regime with Weleda's citrus refreshing body oil, applying a few drops to my nails and cuticles before I sat down at my desk. I am now seven days into my regime and love the mini-pampering I'm getting. I must admit I am starting to get used to it and my finger tips feel so soft from all the stitching they are doing!

On Wednesday, I attended the Summer Market evening for exhibitors, excuse the quality of the picture. It is an honour to be invited back again with my stall for a second time. I do feel really lucky as I am still such a new business. They gave us these little sweetie bags with sherbet lemons in. How pretty!

After the talk, we were allowed around the venue, The Roundhouse in Derby. It's the oldest railway roundhouse in the world and a beautiful restored space which is now used for events in the heart of the city.

I felt really lucky to stand on the turning circle in the middle of the huge domed space looking down  where the rail tracked used to in use. I wore my new rock'n'roll skirt to the events in pastel yellow (not insteading to match the goodie bags!) with cream bow pumps . Really looking forward to the 5th July and meeting all the lovely visitors to this year's Summer Market.

As it was Mum's birthday, we went for afternoon tea and present giving in a beautiful lodge in Derbyshire. I gave Mum this handmade tote bag that I'd made. It's from a new class I've just started hosting and Mum loves receiving handmade. I love printing with fabric paints, I made this one with a vintage bow and buttons on in her favourite colours.

I posted this on my Instagram this morning, of my beautiful yellow roses from last year's Father's Day and I am hoping with a little sunshine we will get the same for Sunday.

Bye from my yellow week,


Samantha x

Saturday, 13 June 2015

A Mid Century Hair Do And Crafternoon in Nottingham


Love Mid Century retro coolness, the 1950's beauty school look (think Grease kitsch) and lots of tea, cake and crafty fun? Oh yeah! This post is about my time hosting a Crafternoon tea party and having a vintage 'do in Nottingham's The Little Vintage Beauty Parlour. 

This is me with a bee-hive half up do that the lovely Miss Whittley-Belle styled for me whilst I drank tea out of a china cup and soaked up the ambiance of the parlour. By the way the 'do was amazing, I had it done at 3pm and by bedtime I had to take it down myself. Incredible! even  my Wedding day hair fell down in less time than this so a big hooray to Mis WB!

the dresses, pink walls and pretty petticoats

From the moment you walk in, it's like walking onto a movie set, a retro reception desk, old fashioned fifties hair dryers and a record player with real records. You kinda leave 2015 at the door and whizz back to 1955.
afternoon tea on a hostess trolley with Babycham glasses

When I was asked  by Lulu B to start Crafternoon Tea Parties in this fabulous space I said yes! This is a snap shot of an afternoon of vintage crafty fun. You can also recreate for your own Crafternoon for a hen party or birthday or baby shower in this light airy space.

A 1950s fascinator made with old fashioned materials
Whether you want a 50's fascinator (pictured above) or a boho flower crown, with the vintage fabrics and haberdashery plus professional crafting advice we can make this happen for you!

the craft table ready to go

We provide the templateS, step by step instructions and craftiness so you can create a bespoke piece.

I bring pretty suitcases of old fabrics and vintage beads, pearls and buttons to choose from. And after three hours of crafting and scrummy afternoon tea the girls made two hand pieces each. The girls told me they hadn't made much crafty before and were so so happy to have made unique pieces. I was really happy too!

And what's more, The Little Vintage Beauty Parlour is based in Hopkinson's Vintage Department Store (yes a department store of vintage!).

And you can shop for old fabrics and sewing collectables in the cool Iris store on the first floor. If you are luck you might find an old sewing machine or a rummage through the baskets of vintage fabric to find a gem. Really worth a trip.

We are really lucky to have a space like this in Nottingham, do you have one in your part of the world? Leave me a comment as it's great to find little gems like this to visit on my next trip away.

Bye for now,


Tuesday, 9 June 2015

Our Blog Meet Charity Crafternoon At Breadsall Priory

Last Sunday Creative Bloggers Got Crafty In The Most Enchanting Of Settings...

I hope you are having a lovely sunny week so far. I wanted to drop by to share all my pictures and more after a fab-u-lous Crafternoon Blog Meet on Sunday in the beautiful setting of Breadsall Priory near Derby raising money for the Mollie Makes Crafternoon For Comic Relief.

From the recent edition a boho inspired textile hoop
 This is our third Creative And Crafty Blog Meet (#ccbloggers) I've co-hosted with Kat. Here is my post capturing an incredible day spent eating cake, being pampered, crafting for a good cause and enjoying the ambiance of the oldest Marriott hotel in the world.

On arrival we had drinks served (the ginger beer was my favourite!) with views looking out onto the patio and grounds of the estate. It was a really lovely relaxed setting for everyone to get to know each other in real life.
My view on Sunday morning at the #ccbloggers welcome drinks
Breadsall Priory treated everyone to an afternoon tea of dainty sandwiches, a selection of scones, mini lemon tartlets, delightful little puddings and sweet treats. All baked on the premises so they are as fresh as possible, I loved the attention to detail and variety. Served on Denbyware and traditional afternoon tea stands, the afternoon tea was perfect to set the bloggers up for an afternoon of crafts!

We started the afternoon with local Derbyshire company Weleda  pampering our crafty hands with their organic alternative therapies, natural products and remedies.

Ellie from The Mummy Diaries samples the hand treatments
 Crafty hands get a lot of use and need to be soft so not to snag on fabrics, yarns or papers. Firstly, advisor Annette showed how to dry brush, then bathe your hands in Weleda’s beautiful natural body washes. After rubbing refreshing body oils in citrus and almond into nails and cuticles, the group were ready to craft!

Charlotte from English Girl At Home sampling Weleda's hand treatments
Taking inspiration from the Etsy global party brief of colour, kaleidoscope and paper and using projects from Mollie Makes. The bloggers enjoyed a Crafternoon of making, chatting, swapping blogging tips and listening to fellow creative’s businesses and creative projects.
Crafting in the Morely suite at Breadsall Priory

We crafted with pretty papers from the  Readicut range and learnt how to paper weave! I hadn't even thought about this before the meet and love the effect for cards, scrapbooks and hangings.
paper weaving Readicut's pretty papers
And hoop embroidery art with Korbond's sewing supplies. It was great to see everyone made something different and for some of us it was our first time using hoops to stitch with.

Readicut also provided a goody bag of knitting goodies from the Lily Sugar’n’Cream range and Bernat baby soft yarns. I am really looking forward to working with these to create something for my little Miss Crafternoon. I had a lovely lilac yarn in my bag so I am going to get my knitting pins out this Summer.

Home DIY company Polyvine ( got the group into scumble glazing and paint effect with a demo. I am saving this product to get a retro effect on some wooden letters I've had made for the living room.
We also heard about local creative projects Lunar21 and Inspiring Derby as well as from Alice from Bless You Arts.

The event raised over £100 for charity and I really enjoyed working with all the brands and the venue to make the Crafternoon!  Thank-you to everyone for coming, crafting, eating cake and sharing your passion in craft and creativeness.

Looking forward to the next.

Here is the blog roll from the day ,

Alice Bless You Arts Boutique

If you want to get involved (and we love meeting creative bloggers), follow the group on #ccbloggers over on twitter. Or if you are a Midlands creative and love sewing join Charlotte for her #sewbrum meet on Saturday 31st October.

I'm off to get crafty!

Samantha x

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