Archive for October, 2010

{week 21} suffolk puffs

This week could have been titled clip-frame purse as I tried them out this week for the first time as well. But I couldn’t resist the title, Suffolk puffs, not least because I’m from Suffolk.

Suffolk puff clip frame purse

Also known as yo-yos, Suffolk puffs are very easy to make and can be used in loads of projects from necklaces to quilts and cushions. I’ve never made one before so I followed the simple instructions in Ruth Singer’s wonderful book, Sew it up (a great book covering every sewing technique you can think of) to whip up a simple linen ‘puff’.

Suffolk puff clip frame purse

I then made the clip-frame purse – I got covered in glue but it turned out pretty well I think. The lining is my favourite fabric (again, I used it for the clock and cushion too).

I’m definitely going to make some more of these purses – just perfect for Christmas presents!

Suffolk puff clip frame purse

PS Welcome to Sew Hip readers – hope you enjoy my little blog and get inspired to try your own crafting challenge.


{week 20} soy candles

You may have noticed that I have rather a lot of tea cups so this craft utilises some of them – and not as photographic props this time.

I’m starting to look ahead to Christmas presents so I thought this week’s craft – soy candles – would be perfect.

You need:
Suitable containers – teacups, jars, tins etc.
Glue dots
Soy wax
Fragrance oil
Double boiler (I used a small old saucepan over a larger one with water in)
Old metal spoon

I got my wax, wicks and glue dots from here.

1) Gently heat the wax in the double boiler – don’t let it go over 80°C and don’t let any water or steam touch the wax. I used about 12oz for my four small teacups.
2) Warm the containers up in the oven slightly.
3) Put glue dots on the bottom of the wicks and attach them to the bottom of the containers. I used pegs clipped together to hold the wicks in place (see photo).Candle making
4) When the wax is melted, take off the heat and allow to cool slightly. Then stir in the fragrance (max concentration is 30ml per 16oz).
5) Pour the wax carefully into the containers. Leave to set.
6) Trim the wick.
7) Leave them about 24 hours before burning.

Mine are at the cooling stage so the pegs are still in place and the wicks are untrimmed. Hopefully they’ll set soon and I can finish them off. Four Christmas presents. Done.

{week 19} mosaic

I’ve been wanting to have a go at this week’s craft for quite a while so I was excited to get stuck in. Before I show you what I made, here’s some inspiration from the wonderful world of flickr.

1. Archive: Mosaic Hall Table, 2. Sedna Mosaic, 3. Fish Mosaic 1, 4. Mosaic table, 5. Mosaic Flowers Door Panel, 6. Homage to Keith Haring Mosaic

As always I kept it simple – with a new craft every week I don’t have time to do anything complicated or too time-consuming. I gathered some supplies (tiles, adhesive, grout, gloves, sponge, float/squegee) and something to decorate: a plain photo frame.

I tested out the design on the frame to make sure I had enough tiles to hand and that I didn’t need to cut any. I then applied the adhesive and got sticking. And then, although patience is not one of my virtues, I left for a day to dry. Next step is to apply the gMosaic photo frame

I can’t believe it’s week 19 already – where does the time go? I think it’s time to start making Christmas presents so expect some Christmas themed posts soon (apologies to those who don’t like the C word in October).

{week 18} easy card making

Card making isn’t a new craft to me but the tool I used this week is. If you read a lot of craft blogs, the Silhouette SD won’t need any introduction. If you haven’t a clue what it is, read on…

I make a lot of cards – I never buy them – so a tool that allows me to digitally cut-out easily repeatable shapes, lettering, borders etc. instantly appealed to me. You can use it to cut out pre-loaded shapes and your own designs (something I haven’t had time to try yet) onto card, paper and vinyl (to name just a few materials). The Silhouette plugs into your PC or Mac (Mac software has just been released thankfully) and you use the software to determine the shape you want to cut.

Card making with the Silhouette SD

I first selected the basic arial font and used it to cut “happy birthday” out of a plain white card. Then I chose one of the flower shapes and cut it out of the blue card. Easy as that – and nearly as quick as that once you’ve done the initial set-up.

I can’t wait to make a tonne more cards and I can see me using it for lots of other uses: gift wrapping, scrapbooking and even glass etching (a future 52 weeks project maybe?).

PS – if you’re in the UK, I bought my machine from CraftsULove.

{week 17} tick tock

Another week, another tutorial. I needed a little help from my husband for this one (which is nice as it’s our wedding anniversary today) as he has cool tools like staple guns. And he’s good at figuring things out like the fact we’d need the cardboard in step 2.

You need:

A blank stretched canvas
Some pretty fabric (some left over Anna Maria from the cushion project)
Some scrap corrugated cardboard
Clock movement – you could recycle them from an old clock or buy new (I got mine here)
A staple gun
Scissors, ruler, pencil
A glamorous assistant (aka husband)

Gathering supplies

1) Find the centre of your canvas. Make a hole big enough to fit the clock parts through.

2) Cut some cardboard to use to pack out the back of the canvas – it needs to be thick enough so it’s the right depth for the clock to sit securely – we used three pieces. Make holes through all the pieces as before.

Making the holes big enough

3) Cover the canvas with the fabric using the staple gun to secure it.

Staple gun fun

4) Make a hole in the fabric using the earlier hole as a guide.

Holey holey

5) Poke the clock part through all the holes – secure with the nut.

Attaching the back

6) Attach the hands and there you have it, a pretty clock to match your cushions!

Finished clock


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All images and text are © Christine Evans unless otherwise stated.